Tuesday, June 23, 2015

The European Trip, Day 17 - Bavarian Castles

We got to the town of Schwagau, Germany yesterday evening and woke early to go and get ready to tour two castles near our hotel:  The Hohenschwangau and the Neuschwanstein Castle, both big tourist attractions here in the south of Germany, Bavaria.

Late evening view of Neuschwanstein from a viewing 
room in our hotel located in Schwangau

Martha and I had visited both castles 19 years ago on our honeymoon so I elected to skip the Hohenschwangau tour at 9:20AM so I could go get a data SIM card for my phone for work.  I got ripped off I believe:  Details here: LINK

Anyways, lesson learned.

These horse drawn wagons were quite popular with many
tourists, using them to go up and down the road leading 
to the Neuschwanstein Castle.  Me?  I thought it was silly to 
pay money to enjoy the fragrance of wet horse.
photo by martha

I met up with Patrick at the ticket center back in the Neuschwanstein area and found that Martha and Miles had decided to go ahead and take pictures from the Marienbrucke bridge which provides this rather famous shot of the castle:

Took me two trips to the Marienbrucke site to get these shots, 
all the others were either under heavily overcast or rainy skies

A view of the castle approaching it from Marienbrucke

We all got back together after I shot the castle the first time from the Marienbrucke or Maria's Bridge.  After a simple lunch, we lined up near the castle's gate to wait for our tour group's turn to go in.

Neuschwanstein's main gate

Inside the main gate area

While we waited our turn, there was time to shoot this
angle on the upper courtyard of the castle.

Marienbrucke from Neuschwanstein Castle

No pictures were allowed within the castle, sorry.

We made our way down to the bus station which would take us, for 1 euro each, down to the parking lot areas down the mountain.  Had I been smart enough, I would have taken the bus up as well but failed miserably to think about that.  Patrick and I paid the price there in terms of "exercise".

Hohenschwangau Castle

photo by Martha

Once in the parking lot areas, there was one last shot of Neuschwanstein to take a picture of:

They hunt dogs here!
Kidding, not sure why they put a dog's head up in the hotel
building's roof corner along with a deer's head.


Gary France said...

Those pictures from the Marienbrucke bridge are amazing. What a view.

Trobairitz said...

More great pictures. What is it that makes castles hold such appeal for us? The architecture? The history? Either way, I love to see them.

SonjaM said...

I believe those castles are so popular because they somehow belong into the world of fairy tales. Sometimes they are pretty or have an interesting story, a nice architecture or like Neuschwanstein: a reputation by Disney... I like it but I find this one way too touristy, and a bit, well, overloaded. Lovely pics as usual, Dom. Thanks!

redlegsrides said...

Gary F, thanks for the kind words. It's well situated, that bridge, good thinking on the part of it's designers/planners perhaps?

Trobairitz, for me, the appeal is the history behind the need for fortifications....I look at them with a military-trained eye. I enjoy the history but yeah, Neuschwanstein is just for looks and to fit a "mad" king's dreams.

SonjaM, yeah, a bit of a tourist trap but such a large piece of cheese eh? Thanks for the comments as well.

agent713 said...

Cool! I've had a few friends visit the castle and share the view from the bridge but no one has ever shared a picture of the bridge. It is beautiful too!

As for the dog, I guess that's one way to remember Fido... ;)

RichardM said...

Wonderful photos! I think it does look like the Disney castle and that's part of the attraction.

redlegsrides said...

agent713, thanks...they are nice to look at. That bridge is a bit of a hike to get to from the castle. It's best to take the bus to Marienbrucke and then hike to the castle, learn from my mistake.

RichardM, thanks..is does seem like something Disney's imagineers would come up with.

ToadMama said...

Lovely pics, again. When I said I could live in Italy, I meant Northern Italy, so I can pop over to Austria and Germay at will. :-)

We saw the exterior of those castles on our first motorcycle tour in Europe. The group unanimously voted to spend our time riding instead of touring the castles. I really LOVE your pics of Neuschwanstein from that bridge.

It is such a pretty area, and I am with Patrick on the pretzels.