Neuschwanstein Castle, located in Germany’s Bavaria region, captivates over 1.4 million visitors Every. Year. Isn’t that unreal? 🙂
‘The Castle of the Fairy-Tale King’: Neuschwanstein
King Ludwig II could be labeled a Richard Wagner fanboy. Utterly fascinated by the opera writer, Ludwig paid homage to him throughout the castle — including by utilizing a swan motif. The swan conveniently is the Counts of Schwangau’s heraldic animal, so it played double duty!
The king not only paid homage to Wagner, he in fact rescued him from financial crisis. The two parted ways later in life after governmental conflicts and a series of anti-Semitic comments made by Wagner. Additional historical information about King Ludwig, Wagner, and the castle can be found on the castle’s official website.
Ludwig moved into the castle in 1884, and only lived there for two years before he died under suspicious circumstances at the nearby Lake Starnberg. The case is one of the most well-known and hotly debated in the region to this day.
Neuschwanstein and its surrounding area (including a second castle, Hohenschwangau!) are well worth a visit. Consider hiking up to Marienbrucke (Queen Mary’s Bridge), where the above picture was taken in 2013. The castle’s official website provides additional information and ticketing.