A white castle on a hill at sunset

Neuschwanstein Castle Bavaria: Day Trip from Munich

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Now, if you want to escape the city of Munich just for the day to explore Bavaria, then you are in luck.

Munich makes a great place to base yourself for day trips to wonderful places like:

  • Nymphenburg Palace
  • Salzburg
  • Nuremberg

And luckily for us, we were staying with friends in a small hamlet called Babenreid, about 40 minutes by train from Munich city centre.

With the loan of a car, visiting Neuschwanstein Castle in Bavaria was a dream come true.

Related Post: Exploring Lake Constance


Neuschwanstein Castle: Day Trip from Munich

A lake with trees in front and a mountain backdrop
The beauty of Bavaria

Neuschwanstein Castle is about 1.5 hour’s drive from Munich.

And if you prefer the secondary roads instead of speeding along the motorway at speeds up to 130 km/hr, it makes for a more relaxing day trip.

The early morning mist of the mountains and great scenery will have you stop at lakes to admire the views.

It’s why we so love road trips.

How to Get to Neuschwanstein Castle

A white castle with a mountain backdrop
Neuschwanstein Castle, Bavaria, Germany

Take the Train

The train from Munich will take just over two hours to arrive in Fussen.

Fussen is a pretty town with some wonderful cafes and restaurants, and also the place to hire a taxi for the 5km drive to Neuschwanstein Castle.

Hire a Car

The easier option is to hire a car for the 1.5-hour drive from Munich to Neuschwanstein Castle.

There is plenty of car parking at the bottom of the castle road, about €6 for the whole day.

For more information on getting to the castle by Public Transport, click on this link Wanderwisdom.


How to See Neuschwanstein Castle

A high view down to a village and a large lake
A view down to Hohenschwangau and Alpsee

To visit the interior of Neuschwanstein Castle, you’ll need to purchase a Neuschwanstein Castle tour ticket.

Tickets are issued for specific tour times, so book in advance to get the time you want. Otherwise, it can be a potluck at the ticket office.

The ticket office is located in the village of Hohenschwangau, just up from the car park.

You can also book accommodation, eat at one of the many restaurants, or grab a coffee.

If you only want to visit the exterior of Neuschwanstein Castle, you can walk around the castle for free.


See the Splendor of Hohenschwangau Castle

A castle on a hill surrounded by trees
Hohenschwangau Castle, Bavaria, Germany

You can also purchase a ticket to visit Hohenschwangau Castle while in the village.

As you walk up the road to Neuschwanstein Castle, Hohenschwangau Castle is off the village’s right.

The Castle is two castles separated by a moat. Ludwig’s father originally owned it as his summer palace.

Castle Walk or Go in Style: You Decide

A white castle on a ridge with a forest
A view of Neuschwanstein Castle as you ascend the hill

As we walked the road up the hill to Neuschwanstein Castle, we were passed by several horses and carts. The horses had huge, solid legs from plodding their way up and down the hills all day.

How did we miss this option?

Oh well, we love walking, and within 30 minutes, we came upon what we had seen: Neuschwanstein Castle.

If you need a break up to the castle, you can stop in for a drink or a meal at Schlossrestaurant Neuschwanstein. It is also where you get your first up-close glimpse of the castle.

Seeing the castle set back on the rocky hill, we could see why it was the castle that inspired Disney’s “Sleeping Beauty.”

They say that King Ludwig II built Neuschwanstein Castle as a private retreat from his funds (or maybe his subjects).

Two horses pulling a cart carrying people
Take a horse and cart ride to Neuschwanstein Castle
A large German restaurant
Schlossrestaurant Neuschwanstein

Marienbrucke Bridge Castle Views

There are plenty of photo opportunities from the Neuschwanstein Castle out over the valley below. No wonder King Ludwig chose this spot to build his castle.

But if you want a spectacular view of Neuschwanstein Castle, you must walk past the castle to Marienbrucke Bridge.

Now, this bridge can be a little scary, especially if there are a lot of tourists.

The day we visited the castle, the bridge was “heaving,” with people crowded at one end.

We felt the bridge could have done with a few more struts to support the middle of the bridge, as the bouncy effect was a little unnerving.

However, the view back to the castle was stunning, and if you did make it across the bridge, there were even more photo opportunities.

A crowd of people on a bridge
Marienbrucke Bridge. Get there early, or be patient.
Looking over a valley to a village and a lake
A view of Schwangau and the valley below Neuschwanstein Castle

The temperature started dropping as we walked back down the hill to Hohenschwangau’s village.

With a few hours of daylight left, we decided to return to Munich by driving along the other side of the lake.

And as usual, we stopped quite a few times to take more photos of Neuschwanstein Castle.

A view of a castle between hills
Looking back to Neuschwanstein

One of the Best Things to Do in Germany: Eat Cake

Having not eaten since breakfast, we stopped at a cafe called Cafe Hans Preisinger in Steingaden on our way back to Munich.

Tasting a delicious cup of hot chocolate while sharing a homemade gateaux cake is so light and delicious. Perfect.

It was fun talking with the gentleman, who we found was the cake creator.

In our very basic German and his no-English, the conversation was interesting.

The gentleman then produced brochures about Steingaden. He encouraged us to visit the Kloster Steingaden, a 12th-century abbey, and the Wies Church, a UNESCO heritage site.

It’s why we love road trips. You get to see places besides the main attraction.

A large piece of cake and a coffee
Nothing like a large piece of Bavarian cake and a coffee or Kaffee und Kuchen

Best Day Trips from Munich: Neuschwanstein Castle

Organizing a day trip from Munich to Neuschwanstein Castle if well planned, is a great way to see more of Bavaria.

If you take the train, you can relax. But if you decide to drive, you can stop along the way.

Make sure to book your Neuschwanstein Castle ticket in advance if you want to visit the interior; otherwise, wander up to the castle for free.

Whatever season you plan to visit, the “Disney” Neuschwanstein Castle is one of those must-see places in Bavaria.

Where to Stay in Munich

You can either stay in the city itself or out of the city.

Hotel Am Nockherberg has breakfast included and is located near the Deutsches Museum.

Hotel Laimer Hof is a family-owned bed and breakfast near the Nymphenburg Palace.

  1. Booking.com.

2. Hotels.com for lower prices where after your 10th night booked, your next night is free based on your average stay rate.

3. Airbnb: When we stay longer and need a kitchen, we use Airbnb.

Moxy Hotel at Munich airport is funky, clean and reasonable, with meals available. The shuttle from Moxy Hotel to the airport terminals is €5.