Please sign in to post.

neuschwanstein castle or nymphenburg or linderhof castle which is better

My heart was set at Neuschwastein but after reading the reviews in depth it seems the other two are better. Could you please let me know? This would a day trip from Munich. Thank you all so much.

Posted by
316 posts

I went to Neuschwanstein several times as a kid growing up in Germany. Honestly, it's better seen from a picture postcard. There's not much to see inside, and it's the worst sort of tourist trap in terms of lines and crowds. I think Linderhof is more interesting. But then, if it's something you've always dreamed of seeing, you should go. Just be prepared that it might not be the coolest thing you've ever seen. I remember a little grotto that was the most interesting part.

Posted by
1556 posts

I thought Neuschwanstein was pretty inside but the tour is very short, 25 to 30 minutes. That is the part that bothered me. I have not been to the others you mention.

Posted by
18297 posts

I've been to all three, Nymphenburg and Neuschwanstein twice each and Linderhof once, plus quite a few other palaces and castles in Germany. They are hard to compare because they are all so different from each other, but if I could only see one, it would be Neuschwanstein.

Yes, the tour of Neuschwanstein is short, but so is the tour of Linderhof palace, itself. There was no limit on the time in Nymphenburg when I was there, but there's not that much to see. With both Linderhof and Nymphenburg, the grounds are possibly more interesting than the central building itself. Of the three, Neuschwanstein is the only one that resembles a real castle, even though it is not. But it is such an icon of Germany; no one should be allowed to leave the country without their passport being stamped at Neuschwanstein.

Posted by
99 posts

If you want to see Neuschwanstein, see Neuschwanstein. The tour of the interior is relatively short and is worth doing once. The exterior and surroundings are gorgeous. I loved the walks up and back down, and the different views from around Neuschwanstein. We went during shoulder season so we didn't have to deal with the worst of the crowds, which was nice. I want to go back to Neuschwanstein during the other three seasons of the year and see what it looks like then too. It was that pretty.

Posted by
3258 posts

I agree that if you want to see Neuschwenstein, then you should do it. But to make the day trip worthwhile, also see Hohenschwangau while you're there. The 2 castles are a fairly short walk apart. And I think they still sell a combo ticket. I've been there in all 4 seasons. Doesn't seem to matter- it's always crowded.

Posted by
52 posts

Just my two cents here, but my wife and I recently returned from our Germany trip and have to say, Neuschwanstein was by far the least favorite place or thing we did during our entire two week stay. It's a massive tourist attraction where you are rushed through a rather uninspiring tour in 25 minutes. As we neared the end of our tour, the man in front of me leaned over to his wife and mentioned what a letdown it was. If seeing Neuschwanstein is something you're dead set on, by all means, you should do it. However, if you're not, it's a long journey all the way down to Fussen for something that will end up not living up to the hype you have built up in your head.

No matter what you decide, have a wonderful time during your travels.
RF

Posted by
12040 posts

You'll get the most out of the Neuschwanstein tour if you pre-arm yourself with some knowledge of Ludwig II and his weird obsessions with Richard Wagner and his operas. The tour needs to accommodate thousands of guests each day, so there simply isn't enough time to explain all the operatic references he built into the castle. With this knowledge, the tour can be a fascinating glimpse into the mind of one of Europe''s strangest monarchs. Without it, you're just seeing a bunch of pretty rooms without explanation.

As noted previously, the tour of the central palace at Linderhof doesn't take very long either, but the grounds are the real attraction anyway. Unfortunately, the highlight of the complex, the Wagner-influenced grotto, will be closed for the next several years for rennovation.

Posted by
25 posts

Great responses -thank you all so much. I wanted to see because it looked so beautiful and wanted to show it to my little girl. But if it is not worth the trip there, we may as well skip it. The conducted tours to both Linderhof and Neuschwanstein are pretty expensive compared to DIY trip to either one, so we will have to make a call (very soon:)).

Not much into history, so not sure if I can and will have time to look up in details about Ludwig's history

Thank you all once again

Posted by
18297 posts

I wouldn't bother with a "conducted tour" of Neuschwanstein. It's easy to get there yourself, and the actual tour is by the castle's own guides, either way. Most all of what the conducted tours do is babysit you out to the castle, often by the same train/bus you would take yourself, for a hefty price.

Posted by
9363 posts

Linderhof was my favorite of all three. I loved the compactness of the palace itself, and the beautiful grounds were fascinating (especially the grotto).

Posted by
25 posts

I agree, conducted tours are pricey and may not offer much. Only reason I even considered about it was because I could see both the castles (Neuschwanstein and Linderhof) in the same tour. Even though in the map the castles seem nearby, there does not seem to be any public transportation between the two. Otherwise, if I could do a trip on our own to both, I may just stop by at Neushwanstein and then head to Linderhof and enjoy some time in Obermmagau (cant ever spell that properly:-) and head bac kto Munich.

Posted by
1754 posts

My heart was set at Neuschwastein but after reading the reviews in depth it seems the other two are better. Could you please let me know?

That depends very much on your personal interests.

You will read often on the RS forum that Neuschwanstein be a »fake« and therefore should be avoided. To put it bluntly, people saying so didn't most probably have the time yet to get even a superficial glimpse of the history and ideas behind the building.

First of all the »fake« argument. You can take it for granted that the least intention Ludwig II had when building it, was to »deceive somebody« (as the Oxford English dictionary paraphrases faking); in fact, he was totally disinterested in the opinion of the public let alone his family. Exactly to avoid contact with the public he build his castles in remote places like Schwangau (when emperor Wilhelm I threatened to visit him at Hohenschwangau, Ludwig escaped to his Schachenschloss up in the mountains above Garmisch, where W. as unable to follow him). Besides, if Neuschwanstein is a »fake« than a good deal of the architecture of the 19th century are fakes as well, including the London parliament, the Sv. Sava Cathedral in Belgrad and Post's New York Stock Exchange building in NY, all build in some sub-style of the historism of the 19th century.

Secondly, Neuschwanstein is an outstanding example of that historism. Why? It has been said often here, and it's true, that the interior, compared against Linderhof and Herrnchiemsee, is rather simple. Well, unlike the two other castles, N. doesn't reproduce the style and spirit of a French baroque castle (both Linderhof an Herrnchiemsee are homages to Louis XIV). Rather it strives to reproduce the spirit of a medieval castle seen out of the perspective of the romanticism of the 19th century. It is not an imitation of some historical model but an imagination of a »ideal castle« that synthesizes the »best« social and political characteristics of different epochs and regions of the Middle Ages. The throne room, e.g., is an homage to the absolutism of Byzantium, where, very desirable in Ludwig II. views, both the political and the ecclesiastical power were united in the person of the emperor (no pope interfering in political affairs, no annoying parliament). Other rooms depict an ideal knights society from the perspective of Richard Wagners Tannhäuser, Lohengrin, and Parzival. So N. is not a reproduction of something but rather a construction of a kind of an ideal antimodern anti-world that never had existed but was, in the views of the Romantics, as close as possible to the “only real” ideal of the ideal kingdom (yes, its the idealism of Platonism that works in the background).

Some years ago, I had the opportunity, together with a couple of colleagues, to study the Riedl and Dollmann (the castle's architects) archive, where that antimodern ideology is expressed very clearly. The eclecticism of the interior is the necessary consequence of that »ideal Middle Age« ideology, which served both as an instrument of escapism for L. II and as a anti-model opposed to the real republicanism and constitutionalism of his time (an antimodern ideology the Wittelsbach family had sillily tried to make reality in their short-lived rulership of Greece 1831-1862).

Saying that, I certainly don't want to persuade you to visit N. On the contrary, every one should know what to expect and to decide accordingly. If you go, please read at least the short introduction available at the website of the Bavarian administration of castles and lakes: http://www.schloesser.bayern.de/englisch/service/infomat/infomat.htm Reading that you already are much better informed than the mass of visitors who are cultivating their »o look at mad Ludwigs fake castle« attitude and who, sadly, don't get much enlightenment by the short tour offered by stressed and mostly uneducated guides either.

Posted by
12040 posts

Thank you, sla019, for saying much more eloquently than I could... to really understand Neuschwanstein, you have to know something about the mindset of it's builder and his times. Unfortunately, accomodating the crush of thousands of tourists who want to visit on a daily basis means that the tour guide can only offer a very cursory introduction. Taken as a psychological projection of the king's obssessions, I find Neuschwanstein to be one of the most fascinating buildings in Germany (the grotto at Linderhof being another great example).

Posted by
18297 posts

there does not seem to be any public transportation between the two

Not a single line of public transportation, but there is a bus (RVO 9622) that goes between Oberammergau and Linderhof in 25 minutes and another bus (RVO 9606, from Garmisch-Partenkirchen) that makes multiple connections each day between Oberammergau and Füssen with a stop in Hohenschwangau (castle kiosk). It would be a stretch to start in the morning in Munich and do a day trip to both castle (although it could be done). It could be done from Oberammergau.

Posted by
3455 posts

sla019 , I thoroughly enjoyed your well written piece , there should be more of this sort on this site , many thanks !

Posted by
1754 posts

@tom and @steven, thank you so much for you kind replies and for overlooking my clumsy English, wich I learned as a book language only, 50 years ago (my American son-in-law uses to say »you are expressing yourself like an author of a Victorian novel« ;)).

Posted by
183 posts

I have not been to Nymphenburg, but I have toured both Neuschwanstein and Linderhof. Much preferred Linderhof. Visiting Neuschwanstein is like participating in a "cattle call" with too many people and a letdown after you go to all the trouble to stand in the lines, etc. Linderhof has gorgeous grounds to explore at your own leisure as well as the guided tours of the castle. It is highly underrated. No need to get advance tickets at a certain time even in summer. Three people ahead of us in line and a tour beginning within 15 minutes.

Posted by
25 posts

Thank you all so very much. I really appreciate your detailed responses. This forum is really helpful. I will update you all once we are back on what we ended up doing. Keeping it open as of now.

Posted by
5697 posts

Nymphenburg is IN Munich -- maybe 20 minutes on a local tram. If you're short on time, it's a pleasant afternoon trip to a castle and you can still be at the Haufbrauhaus for dinner.