What’s So Special About King Ludwig’s Castles?

What’s So Special About King Ludwig’s Castles?

When it comes to historic kings, you’ll find no shortage of zany characters. But even among them, King Ludwig stands alone as a truly interesting figure. Sometimes dubbed ‘the fairytale king’ or ‘the mad king’ Ludwig II ruled over Bavaria from 1864 until his death in 1886.
King Ludwig was a true patron of the arts, and architecture was among his greatest passions. King Ludwig spent all of his private funds and borrowed massive amounts of money in order to fund this devotion. He commissioned three ambitious castles, and the king's extravagances grew so extreme that he was declared insane.

Who was King Ludwig?

His great expenses aside, King Ludwig was subject to eccentricities. Ludwig disliked social events and avoided them whenever possible, living a life of seclusion and arts. He was known to sleep throughout the day and stay awake all night. 
While King Ludwig caused huge issues for the Bavarian government, he was generally liked by the populace. He is sometimes fondly remembered as ‘the cherished king.’ His modern day legacy is strongly connected with his artistic pursuits, and his castles have become a popular icon of Bavaria.

Linderhof Palace

Linderhof palace was the first castle constructed by King Ludwig. Linderhof takes great inspiration from the palace of Versailles in France which was created by King Ludwig’s idol, French King Louis XIV.
Inside Linderhof you will find exquisite tapestry chambers and even an elegant hall of mirrors.

Neuschwanstein Castle

The Neuschwanstein Castle is something straight out of a fairytale. In 1868 the Neuschwanstein was commissioned as a personal retreat for King Ludwig. Its construction was never fully finished. This gothic palace was constructed in honour of the iconic composer Wagner, who was a personal friend of King Ludwig. King Ludwig has a fascination with mediaeval myth and legend, and found these in the music of Wagner.

This castle could be called an art gallery, as every room is filled with amazing murals and carvings. Castle Neuschwanstein is very much a romantic take on the middle ages fuelled by the operas of Wagner. If you love mediaeval history or are a fan of classical music, you owe it to yourself to visit Neuschwanstein.


Also known as the new palace, Herrenchiemsee began construction in 1878. This castle was built as a tribute to King Louis XIV. The palace sits on the centre of Herreninsel island, the largest island of Chiemsee lake. There are few sights more breathtaking than a baroque palace surrounded by a picturesque lake. Herrenchiemsee can only be reached by boat. When King Ludwig died in 1886 all construction halted. This ambitious castle was too left unfinished.

Let Albatross Take you into a World of Fantasy

Too often travelling internationally can be a stressful affair. Let Albatross take care of the hard parts so you can enjoy your holiday stress-free.
If you would like to experience King Ludwig’s castles for yourself, be sure to ask our European tour specialists about our Black Forest, the Bavarian Alps & Austria small group tour.


Next Article

  • Winter Wonderland Mystery Markets Tour - Days 10-15
  • Albatross Tours