Let’s embark on an unforgettable journey through the fairytale castles of Europe. These magnificent architecture giants have fascinated us for centuries with their magical landscapes and cultural and historical richness.
Take a look at the most beautiful castles in Europe and start planning which one you will visit first. It’s not an as easy decision since each palace is full of history, mystery, and stories.
Neuschwanstein Castle, Germany
Long before it served as the inspiration for the castle from Disney’s Cinderella fairy tale, Neuschwanstein Castle was the refuge of the German King Ludwig II of Bavaria, who spent all his royal wealth on building castles. Neuschwanstein is the most popular of them and is visited by a million visitors every year, writes National Geographic.
Only 14 of the planned 200 rooms in the castle have been completed, but they are all beautiful with sumptuous gold leaf, woodcuts, and murals that reveal the king’s obsession with myths and legends about Richard Wagner’s operas.
Bran Castle, Brasov, Romania
The fog-shrouded Bran Castle most likely has been the inspiration for Bram Stoker’s horror novel Dracula. The creepy atmosphere is mesmerizing, an experience like no other.
The author has never visited this castle, known as Dracula’s castle, and is guarded by a mountain ring in Transylvania. However, the place still attracts curious lovers of literature.
Château de Chambord in Chambord, Loir-et-Cher, France
Chambord is a stunning example of French Renaissance grandeur and is the largest castle in the Loire Valley. It was built by; Francois I Valois in 1519. A table of 440 rooms is open to the public, and dozens of staircases, including a double spiral, believed to have been constructed by Leonardo da Vinci.
In the neighborhood, there are 54 square kilometers of greenery, where you can enjoy the nature reserve or on hiking and biking trails, and you can also rent a boat.
Leeds, Kent, UK
Located on two islands in the middle of the lake, Leeds Castle is massive, romantic and fairytale. It was built during the reign of Henry I and was a royal residence for almost 900 years, and since six medieval queens ruled, the castle gained the reputation of the Ladies’ Castle.
If you’re looking for a gorgeous European castle with a strong message, Leeds Castle is the one for you. It’s a real testament that women can have all the power and use it just as good as men!
Prague Castle, Prague, Check Republic
Prague Castle is not your usual castle, but a complex of gardens, courtyards, paths, and historic buildings, including the Gothic Cathedral of St. Vitus, where Czech kings and queens were crowned.
This settlement is one of the most significant court complexes in the world, with 70,000 square meters. Since the 9th century, when Prince Borivoj established a fortification, it has been the seat of the monarch and the official residence of the president.
No matter which castle or palace you decide to visit, you’re likely going to feel like you stepped back in time. From art collections, historical pieces to the atmosphere, and all the stories that follow each of them, it’s a unique experience for every traveler.
Most European castles have tour guides, so it’s good to know that not only you’ll get to see, but also understand what was going on in the past and how the so-called blue blood aristocracy lived. Despite being real, there are fairytale elements that make us want to know all about these unusual buildings.
Which castle sounds the most appealing to you? Are there any urban legends you’d like to know more about regarding these places?