Location & description
King Ludwig II of Bavaria intended Neuschwanstein Castle to be his home and refuge among the hilly terrain of Bavaria far away from Munich. The King commissioned the huge castle building project as homage to Richard Wagner, his friend.
Ludwig paid for the project out of his private funds and increasingly larger loans, rather than Bavarian public funds. It was the strongest passion in his life and fate ordained that he would not live to see to its completion and would stay only a few days in the incomplete castle.
After his death, the inheritors opened the castle to the public and from tourism charges continued to pay off the loans as well as moved towards completion of the project.
Today Neuschwanstein stands tall as a global symbol of the era of Romanticism and is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Europe attracting more than 1.3 million tourists a year and 6000 tourists a day during peak season.
The castle made by the mad king Ludwig generated so much fascination that stamps were printed with its motif, meteorites were named after it, popular board games were created in its name and it was involved in at least four major international movies.
Though the palace is not on the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, it reached the finals in the widely publicized selection of New Seven Wonders of the World.
For Europe tourists it is a destination that cannot be missed.