Neuschwanstein Castle (German: Schloss Neuschwanstein) is without question one of the most beautiful castles in world. Built in the 19th century, this Neo-Romanesque masterpiece was commissioned by Ludwig II, King of Bavaria.Ludwig II was fascinated by sagas and fantasies. Many of the castle’s rooms and decor pay homage to the legend of the Knight of the Swan, a medieval tale that inspired the opera Lohengrin by one of Ludwig’s friends, the great German composer Richard Wagner.As time passed by, Ludwig II started to lead the life of a recluse inside the castle. With time he identified himself with Percival (German: Parzival), a legendary medieval figure who became the “Grail King” in honor of his purity and faith. This made Ludwig redesign the “Audience Room” and turn it into the Grail Hall, a sumptuous monument to kingship and the divine right of kings.However Ludwig’s constant desire to make the castle even more luxurious left him with a great number of debts. Finally in 1885, foreign banks threatened to seize his property, a situation to which Ludwig refused to react rationally. This in return took the Government to declare Ludwig insane and intern him in Castle Berg near Munich on 12 June 1886.
The next day, after Ludwig had gone for a walk with his psychiatrist Dr. Gudden, he was found drowned under mysterious circumstances in Lake Starnberg. He was together with Dr. Gudden and no one reported to have seen or heard anything. After Ludwig’s death, the castle and its entire splendor was opened to the public.
Nowadays, Neuschwanstein Castle, meaning “New Swan Stone” Castle, is the most photographed place in Germany with over 1.3 million visitors each year. The inspiration of Walt Disney’s Sleeping Beauty Castle in Disneyland and a global symbol of the era of Romanticism, this wonderful building and the story of Ludwig’s life are sure to remain in the hearts of people for a very long time.
- A Bus Trip Through Bavaria (theeternaltraveller.wordpress.com)
- Neuschwanstein Castle Bavaria, Germany (ardunward.com)
- Amazing castles … (beartales.me)
- Disney castle,King Ludwig ..show.. snow & more – Munich, Germany (travelpod.com)
- Bavaria – Medieval Splendour (photographymemoirs.com)
Uploaded on Sep 16, 2011
King Ludwig the Second (1845-1886) was known as the ‘Mad Monarch of Bavaria’ but left in his passing a series of fantastic castles that are visited by over 3 million people a year and recognized the world over. This is the unusual story of an ill-fated King and his tragic end, his strange relationship to the composer Richard Wagner and a first-hand visit to his famous creations. I also hoped to illustrate how the lush musical selections of Wagner conveying the beauty of the Bavarian mountains and countryside helped to shape the majestic fantasies of King Ludwig. Hosted by Munich’s own Octoberfest Queen, Ms. Brigitte Viez with observations, video and photography by Bruce Blank and Charlene Henning.