When you finally make it to the top, there's a pretty little courtyard. Everyone is waiting around for the time on their ticket to be called, which happens in five minute increments.
What kind of trouble are they getting into?
Maximilian rebuilt this castle in 1836 when he had purchased the ruined castle after his grandfather had previously sold it back in 1820.
SO FUNNY! Someone put a funny picture of King Ludwig II waving in the window!
I spy Neuschwanstein peeking over Hohenschwangau's shoulder!
The Swan Fountain is situated in the King's Garden. The swan was the "mascot" of the Knights of Schwangau, who were the original builders of Hohenschwangau back in the 1200s. (After all, that's what "schwan" means!) Ludwig II also had a slight fascination with the swan knight Lohengrin since he was a child as there were painting depicting Lohengrin featured in Hohenschwangau. Plus his buddy (read: guy he was obsessed with) Wagner wrote an opera about it. You're familiar with this opera, because the tune "Here Comes the Bride" is featured in it.
You can catch a glimpse of the Alpsee from the King's Garden. Hohenschwangau became the Bavarian royal family's summer home and "hunting lodge" (that's some lodge!) when Maximilian purchased it in the 1830s.
Dunno why. Just liked this red glass door, framed in boulders. I believe this was a bath house? Not certain on that.
The Gooseman Fountain with one of my silly geese. Interestingly, the original designer of this fountain was none other than Nuremberg's most famous son, Albrecht Dürer! There's actually a similar one IN Nuremberg.
The Lion Fountain was believed to have been modeled after the Alhambra in Granada (where Todd used to live).
We've made a 360 around the visitable part of the castle!
It looks very castley! (Is that a word? Well it is now!) We all wondered which rooms were the ones with windows open!
As you wait for your time to be called, you can go check out the gift shop on site. There's also a replication of what the kitchens would have looked like back in the day of Maximilian and Ludwig.
Finally our time was called and we walked up the stairs to Hohenschwangau's "front door."
We (obviously) took the English speaking tour, and the first stop after you gather in the Lower Hall and pass the old servants quarters is the Throne Hall. Now... I know a LOT of people who have been to Neuschwanstein and the general consensus among them is that it is FAR less impressive on the inside than it's sister down the road, Hohenschwangau. Are ya kidding me? Sure, you only get to see a handful of room here, but the beauty of these rooms is unmatched.
The famous Marienbrucke is the spot to take the iconic photo of Neuschwanstein. It was named after Queen Marie of Prussia (Ludwig II's mother) and was built as a short cut for riders.
This is legitimately the most terrifying bridge I've ever been on. It's got wood planks as footboards and there are large gaps in them. Little feet could definitely get stuck. There's a wait to get on the bridge and there is a castle worker there to monitor things, but she didn't really seem to care that it felt like the bridge was going to collapse at any minute.
Looking down from the Marienbrucke into the Pöllatschlucht (or the Pöllat gorge). That's a serious drop and you know I don't like heights!
Christmas card, maybe?
Crazy how it was just built on a big rock. They say that the rough climate of the base of the Alps is doing damage to the limestone and that renovations will have to begin on this and continue for years to come. They're also constantly shoring up the rock that holds up the castle to avoid any rockslides.
When you leave, there's a fantastic model of the castle to check out! Oh no! Godzilla is going to stomp on Neuschwanstein!!!
The Catholic church of St. Coloman with Neuschwanstein in the distance. The first chapel on this site was built between 1350 and 1400.