August 18, 2013

Day 3 + Day 4 in Munich: Neuschwanstein Castle

One of the most popular attractions in Germany is Neuschwanstein Castle, about an hour and 45 minutes south of Munich. We drove through beautiful manicured landscapes and at times, the lack of speed limit did make me a little anxious. In any case, we arrived safe and sound at the castle that is the inspiration for Walt Disney's castles.

Despite getting up bright and early, my friend and I arrived at 9:15am to a ticketing queue that was over 2 hours long. The wait did not end there, when we got to the ticket counter around 11:30am, the earliest available tour in English was at 3:25pm (the interior of the castle could only be visited with a tour guide). With 4 hours to kill, we checked out some of the local scenic spots in the area. If you plan to visit this beautiful castle, do consider pre-booking tickets online.

While taking in the clear and calm waters of Alpsee, we debated the three options for reaching the castle: walk, bus, or carriage ride. With a lot of time on our hands, we decided to hike up the hill.

Lunch at Schloßrestaurant that is situated about 3/4 of the way up the hill. The Wiener schnitzel of pork was a classic and I was glad that it wasn't very greasy. To my surprise, the restaurant charged €0.70 for the packet of ketchup, but then again, this was at a tourist spot. The Kick It (vanilla ice cream with coffee) was very good.

View of the Hohenschwangau Castle, built by the father of King Ludwig II of Bavaria (the man who commissioned the Neuschwanstein Castle)

View of the Neuschwanstein Castle from the Marienbrucke (Mary's Bridge) that hangs 90 meters above the ground. I wasn't fully confident in the bridge's ability to support the crowd that gathers to take pictures of the castle. Apparently the view from the bridge captures the castle at its finest.

Photography wasn't allowed inside the castle. The interior was heavily influenced by Richard Wagner's operas. Apparently the king adored swans, thus the birds appeared everywhere from on door handles to life-size models used as flower vases.

We drove back to Munich and went back to Luigi Tambosi for dinner. The Insalata con Pollo was very good, and of course, I couldn't leave Bavaria without trying out the apple strudel. Yum.

My last day in Munich (August 15th) happened to be a public holiday. Thus my friend and I went for brunch at Cafehaus Griesbeck before heading to the airport. We each had a Fitness Frühstück, which included a selection of bread with cream cheese, butter, marmalade, yogurt, and fruits. I also added a side of eggs with a ham and cheese pretzel (another German invention). While dining, a Canadian friend of my host caught up with us, a small small world indeed.

Overall, I had 4 fantastic days in Munich. I would love to visit again in the future!

Contact Detail: Cafehaus Griesbeck
49 Theresienstr., Munich

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