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Castles in Germany That Have a Bittersweet History and Legacy

Castles in Germany
The castles built by the medieval kings and rulers exhibit their magnificence and strength. This article enlightens us about some of the beautiful castles in Germany...
Vacayholics Staff
Last Updated: Feb 26, 2018
The castles in Germany mainly served as homes for kings and the royal families. They were built as strongholds against enemies, keeping in mind the possibilities of both attack and defense. Many war weapons were developed and stored in these castles. The building style of these castles varied from Baroque to Renaissance. From the fortresses in the Alps to citadels along the river Rhine, there are many exquisite and magnificent castles. Each castle has its own long and exciting history.

Neuschwanstein Castle

Neuschwanstein in the Bavarian Alps, is the most famed castle in Germany and considered to be one of the top ten attractions in Germany. This fairytale castle is neither very old, nor was it built for war or defense. With the help of a stage designer, Ludwig II of Bavaria constructed this castle in 1869 for pleasure and enjoyment purposes. Ludwig II used to admire Richard Wagner, who was a German composer, and this castle is a deference to that composer. The interiors of the castle portrays many scenes of Wagner's opera. The castle is built with modern technologies like flush toilets, running hot and cold water and heating. Neuschwanstein was considered to be the inspiration for the Sleeping Beauty Castle in Disneyland and Hong Kong Disneyland.

Wartburg Castle

The Wartburg Castle is one of the oldest and well-preserved Romanesque castle in Germany. It sits on a steep hill, overlooking the city of Eisenach; the only way to access to the castle is a draw bridge. Built in 1067, the castle has become a museum that displays art treasures like tapestries, precious silverware and medieval musical instruments. This castle served as a refuge for the German Church reformer Martin Luther, who in only eleven weeks translated the Bible into German within the Wartburg's monumental walls. During the medieval period, the Wartburg castle was used for many courtly cultural activities. It is one of Europe's oldest Romanesque buildings and was added to the list of the UNESCO world heritage sites in 1999.

Castle of Heidelberg

Once a medieval masterpiece, this castle has experienced turbulent times. In 1689, it was destroyed and burned by the French army. 100 years later, it got struck by lightning and its red stones were used to build new houses. The earliest castle structure was built before 1214 AD on the northern part of the Konigstuhl hillside. The castle of Heidelberg never retrieved its lost glory but is still considered to be the symbol of German Romanticism. It is the focal point of German Castle Road. The castle has the world's biggest barrel in the wine cellar holding up to 55,345 gallons of wine.

Eltz Castle

This castle lies in the West of Germany, between Koblenz and Trier. Eltz Castle is surrounded by a river and owned by the same family which lived there in the 12th century, around 33 generations ago. The family lives in one wing of the castle. The castle serves as a museum having an extraordinary collection of original furniture and artwork on display. The Knights Hall of the castle has an armor dating back to the 16th century and an original treasure vault. Some floors and walls of Eltz Castle still have strong Gothic plaster, comprising ox blood, quick lime, animal hair, camphor and clay. This castle was attacked only once but was never conquered.

The castles in Germany reflect the history, culture and ethnicity of its people. There are nearly 25,000 castles in and around the country. Some of them lie in ruins, but most of them are well-preserved and serve as museums, hotels and restaurants.
Famous Neuschwanstein Castle with scenic mountain landscape near