Castles have something mysterious about them, don’t they? I feel like as soon as you step onto the grounds, you feel like royalty. Here is a list for all those princesses, princes and royals of all kinds to enjoy around the world.
1. Windsor Castle, England
This castle was originally built in the 11th century and the Queen of England still likes to spend her time here. You can see where many famous monarchs lived and also take a look in rooms like the King’s Closet, his Dressing Room and Bedroom. Before entering the castle make sure to check which flag is flying from the round tower – if you see the Royal Standart (a red, blue and yellow flag) The Queen is in residence.
2. Glamis Castle, Scotland
This castle was the inspiration for Shakespeare’s Macbeth. You can have a look on the inside when taking a guided tour but the gardens outside are just as pretty. There are also two trails on the property, one of them being the Macbet trail displaying scences from the play sculptured out of wood from the estate.
3. Caerphilly Castle, Wales
This castle in Wales was constructed in the 13th century. It’s the biggest castle in all of Wales and second biggest in Britain. This castle might not be the prettiest but it for sure has the funniest looking tower: During the Civil war the south-east tower was heavily affected and is now even wonkier than that of Pisa.
4. Schloss Schönbrunn, Austria
You have to visit Schönbrunn when in Vienna! It’s very oppulent both from the inside and out. You wouldn’t want to be a housekeeper here since it has 1.441 rooms to keep track of. The most exciting feature is the oldest, operating zoo in the world: Tiergarten Schönbrunn. (Here you’ll find other things to do in Vienna.)
5. Château de Chambord, France
Construction on this masterpiece was completed in 1547 after 28 years of hard work. You could recognize this castle under 100 other castles because of it’s very distinctive French Renaissance achritechture. You can take guided tours through the château and enjoy an electric boat ride on the canal located at the foot of the castle.
6. Château de Chenonceau, France
This castle is built across the River Cher, which makes it even more magical! The architecture is a mix between late Gothic and early Renaissance. The gardens are the prettiest in the dark, when the lights turn on. You can go on a tour or discover the castle with the “Discover Chenonceau”-App.
7. Schloss Neuschwanstein, Germany
This is propably the most famous castle in the world (after the Disney castle which was actually insprired by Schloss Neuschwanstein, so does it really count?). The castle was commisioned by King Ludwig II of Bavaria and has been visited by over 61 million people since it was opened to the public. Just a 20 min walk from the castle you will find Hohenschwangau Castle.
8. Burg Eltz, Germany
This also looks like a castle out of a fairytale. Burg Eltz also used to be portrayed on the 500 German Mark bill. This castle was never harmed during war and has been in the same family since the 12th century! Inside you can find artifacts from the medieval times and in the shop you can even buy a fullsize knight armor (for 2.000€ !!!).
9. Sanssoucci, Germany
This palace is a World Heritage Site and was the summer palace of King Friedrich the Great. Sanssoucci, which means “without worries”, was built upon vineyard terraces. The rooms insode have a very opulent feeling but at the same time it’s not too much. Like any great palace, Sanssoucci also has a park surrounding it. There you can experience the different aesthetics of past residents.
10. Hohenzollern Castle, Germany
This castle was destroyed 2 times so the current castle was only built between 1846 and 1867. You can stroll around the castle and have a look in different rooms. If you’re up for it, you can even have a look in the cellar. During christmas time, the castle offers a special event called “The Royal Magic of Advent” where you can enjoy the castle in a whole new light.
11. Castello di Miramare, Italy
Besides the castle you can visit the park, the stables and the castelletto (a small castle in the park). The style of the castle is a mix between Gothic, Medieval and Renaissance. You can visit the beautiful garden for free and with a ticket you can have a look around the pretty castle. Don’t forget to enjoy the stunning view of the Adriatic Sea, where the castle is located!
12. Chillon Castle, Switzerland
Chillon castle is more rustical looking and is located at Lake Geneva. The underground rooms, are the most spectacular as the constructions are nearly 1.000 years old! They were also used as dungeons at one time. The three great halls all have windows looking out onto the lake and you can even rent them to have a dinner, reception etc. there.
13. Pena Palace, Portugal
Pena Palace is propably the most colourful out of all af the castles mentioned in this article. On a clear day it can even be seen from Lisbon! It’s build in the Romanticism style. The palace is surrounded by a forest area, which gives it even more of a romantic feel. As the architect was german, he again took inspiration in Neuschwanstein Castle.
14. Prague Castle, Czech Republic
The castle complex was built in the 9th century and is the official office of the President of the Czech Republic. The complex is huge so you won’t just find a castle. Instead you’ll also find a basilica, a cathedral, a few big towers and the Golden Lane. This street looks like straight out of a fairytale and is lined with colorful houses.
15. Buda Castle, Hungary
Sadly this castle had to be rebuilt after WW II but was declared part of the Budapest World Heritage Site in 1987. Now you’ll find the Hunagrian National Gallery and The Budapest History Museum inside. You can also find The Royal Stables and Riding Hall on the grounds. Outside in the western forecourt of the castle you’ll find beautiful the Matthias Fountain.
16. Peles Castle, Romania
This Neo-Renaissance castle was built between 1873 an 1914. It was actually the first European castle to have electricity. The rooms are all styled in a different style or theme, for example the theme for the Music room was India and is home to furniture from India. When you’re already in this area, you should also check out Bran Castle (about 1h away by car) as it’s said to be the home of the title character in Bram Stoker’s Dracula.
17. The Palace of the Shaki Khans, Azerbaijan
Propably the smallest “castle” on this list, it was the Shaki Khans’ summer palace. When visiting you can enjoy french stained glass, russian wood, Ottoman ceramics and iranian mirrorwork.
18. Osaka Castle, Japan
This castle is propably one of Japan’s most famous landmarks. You can just image the beautiful garments the residents must have worn. To get a panoramic view of Osaka Castle, you can get up to the 50m high observation deck. Dive into the history of this place by having a look at all the artifacts on display.
19. Matsumoto Castle, Japan
Its black facade and bird-like architecture gives Matsumoto Castle its nickname: “Crow Castle”. Matsumoto is also the oldest five-tiered, six-story castle tower remaining in Japan. The best times to visit are propably summer because of the Taiko Drum Festival and the Takigi Noh Festival and during the cherry blossom season in April.
20. Boldt Castle, USA
This castle is located in the state of New York and is open to guest between mid May and mid October. As it’s located in the middle of Saint Lawrence River, the castle is only accesible by boat. If you come here from the canadian side of the river, make sure to bring the required paperwork!
If you visit any of these castles make sure to show us on your pleyces map!