We had plans to visit Munich during the weekend in late September for Oktoberfest 2013, and Neuschwanstein Castle (Schloss Neuschwanstein in German) was in our to-do list since it is a castle renowned for being the inspiration for Disney’s Sleeping Beauty Castle. Furthermore, as we would reach Munich one day earlier than our other Singapore exchange friends, it seemed perfect that we would be spending that extra day exploring the castle, which was a 2-hour train ride away from the main train station of Munich, the München Hauptbahnhof (German name – don’t ask me how to pronounce it). The train ride costs 23 euros for a return trip.
Picture of the pretty Bavarian countryside:
We dropped off at the small and sleepy town of Füssen in southwest Bavaria (Munich is also in Bavaria, by the way). It proved to be quite troublesome to get to the castle. First, we had to board a bus parked just outside the station that brought us to another bus station which took about 15 min. From there, we bought tickets for the bus that would drive us all the way up to the castle (20 min). All these bus trips cost money and I can’t recall the exact fares, but I’m pretty sure they didn’t exceed 10 euros in total per person.
Picture of what we saw when we got off the train:
A sneak peek at the castle from the bus:
We had to walk a short distance before getting to the suspension bridge which was specially built for tourists to get the best views of the castle. Because we went in late summer, there were still hordes of tourists and we had a hard time trying to squeeze onto the bridge and take photos of the castle and of us with the castle in the background.
As you can see, the weather wasn’t very cooperative that day. In fact, it was drizzing and the rain got heavier when we were at the train station waiting to go back to Munich later. Sporadically the rain turned into hail!
We didn’t go into the castle, sadly, because at that moment in time, we felt stingy and decided that it wasn’t worth it to pay to view the interior of the castle. When I was telling my brother (who had been to the castle before) about my logic for not going in because we felt that all castles look the same inside, he told me that I was crazy. >_< So, moral of the story: if you are planning a trip to Neuschwanstein Castle, do pay to go in and take a look! Perhaps you can also tell me if it was worth the money, haha!
There was actually another castle nearby, in orange, called Hohenschwangau Castle. It was the childhood home of the same reclusive king who built Neuschwanstein Castle, King Ludwig II of Bavaria. Spot the castle in the photo below!
We were pretty high up in the mountains when I shot this photo!
My friend felt that the castle wasn’t worth the time and effort taken for transport, but personally I really enjoyed the entire journey and admiring the beautiful castle. Perhaps I’m a romantic at heart and am a sucker for once-upon-a-time and happily-ever-after stories, having been indoctrinated by Disney since young! Either way, I would highly recommend this castle as a day trip to anyone planning a visit to Munich.