Last updated: 05:00 PM ET, Mon January 11 2016

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  • Sam Schuler | January 11, 2016 5:00 PM ET

    Germany’s Fairytale Castles: Planning a Dream Trip for Your Child

    Germany’s Fairytale Castles: Planning a Dream Trip for Your Child

    PHOTO: The real-life castles of Germany will thrill your children. (Photo courtesy of Auto Europe)

    It was in Germany where fairytale heroines such as Snow White and Cinderella came alive through the pens of the famous Grimm brothers. With its collection of impressive castles spread throughout the country, it is no wonder such tales originated in Germany.

    If your children are inspired and intrigued by sleeping princesses in overgrown castles and frogs turning into princes, why don’t you plan a trip to visit some of the most beautiful castles in the world? Germany’s fairytale castles are a popular choice for young families visiting Europe.

    Rent a car in Germany with Auto Europe for an unforgettable trip back in time. Here are some of our picks: the best German fairytale castles that you and your children will never forget.


    The ultimate fairytale castle, Neuschwanstein was the inspiration for the classic Disney castle. The setting of the castle on a hill outside Füssen in southwest Bavaria could not be more idyllic. Not surprisingly, it is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Europe and Germany’s most photographed building. A staggering 1.4 million people visit the castle annually.

    READ MORE: 5 UK Castles Your Kids Will Never Forget

    What makes Neuschwanstein so appealing to children and adults alike is the fairytale story of King Ludwig II, who commissioned the castle as a retreat and homage to Richard Wagner. The castle was almost completed when, in 1886, Ludwig was declared insane and found dead a few days later. Neuschwanstein was opened to the public within weeks of his death.

    Add to the fairytale experience at Neuschwanstein by driving up the hill to the castle in a horse-drawn carriage!

    Tip: A limited number of English tours are conducted through the castle every day. Be there very early or book your entrance tickets in advance to avoid disappointment.

    Lowenburg Castle

    Based on a fantasy of Landgrave Wilhelm IX, Lowenburg or Lion’s Castle outside the city of Kassel in central Germany is said to be the first major neo-Gothic building in Germany. It resembles a romantic, medieval knight’s castle, although it was only built between 1793 and 1801.

    READ MORE: Insider Tips for Renting a Car in Winter

    Built as a leisure palace with opulent living quarters, Lowenburg was sadly ruined in WWI. Fortunately it underwent some repairs, and today is the biggest attraction of the picturesque Wilhelmshöhe, Europe’s biggest mountain park and a world heritage site. The park is filled with features and attractions, such as the majestic Hercules, to keep the whole family busy for a day.

    Lichtenstein Castle

    If you thought this castle was in the small princedom of Liechtenstein, you were wrong. Instead it towers on top of a rugged cliff in the breathtaking Swabian Alps. Also known as Württemberg’s fairytale castle, little girls will love touring the romantic interior while boys will swoon over the weapons room.

    Inspired by Wilhelm Hauff’s novel “Lichtenstein,” the castle was built between 1840 and 1842 on orders from Count Wilhelm of Württemberg. It is an easy hour’s drive from Stuttgart by rental car, located in Baden-Württemberg.

    These are only three of Germany’s most impressive castles. Others worth reading up about and visiting if you have time include Wartburg Castle where Martin Luther translated the New Testament into German, Marksburg Castle in the Middle Rhine, and Hohenzollern Castle in southern Germany. Wherever you’re traveling, let Auto Europe help get you there at a price that doesn’t break the bank. We offer special deals including AAA car rental discounts, rental car deals for AARP members and military discounts, among other special promotions.

    Tip: If you’re worried about the hours on the road between your castle visits, why don’t you listen to some Grimm fairytales in the car to fill the hours and set the mood?


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Sam Schuler Europe by Car

Sam Schuler Sam Schuler is a travel writer, photographer, graphic artist and a member of Auto Europe's marketing team in Portland, Maine. An Oregon native, Sam has enjoyed trips to France, Italy, Bermuda, and Mexico on multiple occasions. Sam continues to draw creative inspiration from his travels, documenting many of them in a variety of mediums, including travel blog writing and photographic exposes.
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