Rain, Castles, and Goulash
The following day was supposed to be rainy. We decided to book a tour of the interior of Neuschwanstein Castle. After a wonderful breakfast, we went next door to the Ticket Kiosk. The next available tour was later in the afternoon, so …
Top: One of the many charming hotels that line the main street.
2nd: The Museum of Bavarian Kings.
3rd: All the green makes for an enjoyable walk up.
4th: A break in the trees reveals a lovely lakeside community.
The walk up was wet, still this little city is so delightful.
The next day was indeed rainy. Our tour of the castle was booked for the afternoon, so we decided to go up to King Ludwig II’s other castle that morning. Huge, with beautiful gardens, it was wonderfully maintained. The King lived in this, his summer castle, while the new one was being built. There is an interior tour available for this structure but we did not go in. Some folks in the village said it is beautiful inside and worth seeing. Maybe next trip.
King Ludwig II is sometimes called the Swan King or der Märchenkönig (‘the Fairy Tale King’)
Just peeking. You never know what you might see.
I love peeking through screens. This time I found a red marble bathing room that looked like a jacuzzi!
Steve at one of the castle’s doors.
I liked the Man with Two Geese fountain. Especially the drip off his nose.
It looks like a long way up from the road even when you’re close to the top.
The main gate to the Castle Hohenschwan.
Man with Two Geese a fountain in the gardens.
“In 1832 the later King Maximilian II., father of King Ludwig II., acquired the ruin and had the castle rebuilt according to original plans. After its completion it used to be the summer and hunting residence of the Bavarian royal family. In his whole life, the famous Bavarian King Ludwig II. spent a few weeks each summer in Hohenschwangau.”
– Hohenschwan castle website
Right: A period depiction of the kitchen and its staff from when King Ludwig II was in residence.
Left: A taste of the hallway. Everything was decorated in a fanciful manner.
Below: The castle kitchen
The yellow Castle was fun to explore. But then the heavens opened up and it started raining buckets.
At least we got to see some of the interior. I loved all the copper pots and pans in the kitchen. But like Steve said, the rain was becoming quite heavy. We had to get down the mountain.
It rained cats and dogs! This must be how Germany stays so green. We had a little time before our castle tour, so we went back to the room for a drink of water and dry socks. Schwangau is not just a quaint German village, it is also quite walkable. OK. There is a lot of up. Hills are everywhere.
The Marienbrücke bridge from which many iconic Neuschwanstein castle photos are taken. Closed now.
IN THE MUSEUM – A small shrine.
IN THE MUSEUM – A wooden model of the castle built to scale.
IN THE MUSEUM – A photo of a photo taken during the Neuschwanstein castle’s construction. The foundation stone of the “New Castle” was laid on 5 September 1869. The project was so comprehensive and the mountainside building site presented enormous difficulties, therefore the castle was not built as rapidly as the king expected. Designers, architects, and artisans strove to realize the king’s detailed ideas, however the unrealistic deadlines he set could only be met by working around the clock.
Again we took the covered carriage ride up the mountain for our tour of the inside of the castle. We found the entrance and waited under our umbrellas for the tour to be announced. The start time for our tour passed and still no announcement. Dawn approached the officials at the door only to be informed that our tour had already left without us. They pointed us in the “general direction” of the tour route and told us to go catch up.
Castles are huge and nearly impossible to find your way around while inside but we managed to find our way to the first leg of the tour. It consisted of climbing a huge, seemingly endless circular stair case. It was here that I lost Dawn. I huffed and puffed my way to the top without sight of Dawn. Not knowing the photos of the interior were verboten, I took some photos while recovering my breath at the top. It wasn’t easy as we have been living at sea level for several years and this castle is at 800 meters (2620 ft) elevation. Not an excuse, just sayin’.
I had been climbing all 6 flights of stairs in our condo building for months. Preparation is key.
Finally I saw some officials at the end of a long hallway. I hustled myself toward them. They pointed me in the direction of Dawn and the tour group. A couple of the guides were aghast at the sight of me still gasping for air through my stupid mask. They offered me a chair but all I could do was loudly complain about needing some air. After standing and listening to the guide’s description of some of the most beautiful decorations we have seen, I quit clutching my chest and was breathing normally. As mentioned castles are huge so the tour only included four or five of the interior rooms. Each one was unique and beautifully decorated. It was well worth the punishing climb to see such artistry. I found out earlier that photos were not allowed so naturally I tried to capture some on the sly. Nothing doing. The guides and officials were everywhere and busted me cold. Sorry, you’ll just have to imagine the interior of Sleeping Beauty’s castle for yourself. I did come out with those photos I took while I was lost and dying, so we can show you those.
Although the rain had stopped while we were inside the castle, it had engorged the waterfall. The rain drops made the forest seem even more enchanting!
Another fabulous dinner at the hotel, again in view of the castle (sigh) in the late afternoon sun, was magical. The next day was a travel day.
During the evening on the patio we decided to head for Freiburg. It is in the state of Baden-Württemberg. We booked two nights. We looked at several hotels and picked one in old town Freiburg with nearby parking and a restaurant. We didn’t know what their virus protocols were going to be so we decided to get a swab before we left. We had a plan for two more days.