Visiting Neuschwanstein Castle: The Ultimate GuideHey there! Travel looks a little different right now. Please be sure to follow local restrictions and double-check openings and guidelines for places you visit. And stay safe and wear a mask! Also, his blog post likely contains affiliate links, including Amazon Associates links. If you make a purchase through one of them I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.
Whether you’re a long-time Disney fan or simply a sceptic looking for a day trip from Munich, visiting Neuschwanstein Castle is usually on everyone’s list.
Unfortunately, actually organizing a visit to the castle is a little bit more complicated than it might seem, which is why I decided to create this guide!
I’ve had the pleasure of visiting Neuschwanstein Castle twice now, and have figured out all of the ins and outs along the way. So let’s get started!
How to Get to Neuschwanstein Castle
Getting to Neuschwanstein Castle is actually surprisingly easy, though it may take a little bit of time if you’re coming from further afield.
Neuschwanstein is located a short walk or horse-buggy ride from the village of Hohenschwangau, where the ticket center is located, so all you need to do is get there and you’ll be good to go!
Visiting Neuschwanstein Castle as a Day Trip from Munich
If you’re coming from Munich, the best way of visiting Neuschwanstein Castle as a day trip is to take the train from Munich to Füssen. The train ride lasts approximately 2 1/2 hours.
From the train station in Füssen, you can take local bus (#73 towards Steingaden/Garmisch-Partenkirchen or #78 towards Schwangau) to Hohenschwangau.
Alternatively, you can take a guided day trip via coach, though with this option you’ll have a bit less freedom.
Visiting Neuschwanstein Castle From Füssen
To get to Neuschwanstein Castle from the nearby town of Füssen, all you need to do is head to the Hauptbahnhof (train station) and hop on either the #73 bus towards Steingaden/Garmisch-Partenkirchen or the #78 bus towards Schwangau.
The bus ride lasts about 10-15 minutes and drops you off just around the corner from the Neuschwanstein Castle ticket office.
Where to Stay Near Neuschwanstein Castle
If you have the time to make visiting Neuschwanstein Castle more than just a day trip from Munich, I highly recommend spending a few days in the nearby town of Füssen.
Not only will you be able to get to the castle earlier to avoid the crowds, but the town itself has so much to offer in the way of cute, colorful buildings and excellent hiking.
Old Kings Füssen Design Hostel – $ – If you’re traveling on a budget you’re going to absolutely fall in love with this medieval little design hostel. I was originally booked in to stay here and was bummed when there was no availability when I changed my plans in the middle of my trip. Hopefully I’ll be able to go back and stay soon!
Hotel Ludwigs – $$ – This simple mid-range hotel is where I eventually ended up staying when I visited Füssen and it was ideally located right smack dab in the middle of the main pedestrian street and only a five minute walk from the train station. The beds were ridiculously comfortable and the breakfast spread good as well!
Hotel Fantasia – $$ – For a romantic fairytale-themed stay in the heart of Füssen, you can’t go wrong with Hotel Fantasia. Set in a castle-like villa with views of the surrounding mountains and royal-inspired design, it’s the perfect place to stay when visiting Neuschwanstein Castle.
Hotel Hirsch – $$$ – Look for the adorable pink building just down the street from the train station and you’ll find Hotel Hirsch. This hotel is perfect if you’re looking for a conveniently located, slightly more luxurious option. The rooms are modern and stylish and they have a rooftop terrace with views that are to. die. for.
Hotel am Hopfensee – $$$ – If you want to get a little further out of town and have a luxurious stay in nature, then Hotel am Hopfensee is for you. Located right on Lake Hopfensee just outside of Füssen, the hotel features a wellness center (with a Finish Sauna!!) which is free for guests to use and a restaurant recommended by both Varta and the Michelin Guide.
How to Get Tickets
Getting Neuschwanstein Castle tickets is honestly a lot more complicated and convoluted than it needs to be, but there are essentially three ways: reserve online (harder than it sounds), go with a tour group, or get to the ticket office before it even opens.
Here’s what you need to know about each of those options
Reserve Tickets Online
If you want to reserve tickets for visiting Neuschwanstein Castle online, you’ll need to do so well in advance. Reservations are only possible with a credit card at least two days in advance, but will usually sell out well before then.
At the Ticket Office
If you can’t reserve tickets online, or simply don’t want to restrict yourself to a schedule, the next option is to buy tickets on the day at the ticket office.
Since visiting Neuschwanstein Castle is so popular, you’ll need to get to the ticket office as early as possible–preferably before it opens.
Then, all you have to do is wait in line and buy your tickets once you get to the counter.
You’ll automatically be assigned a tour time, which may be much later in the day (you’re simply assigned the first available one), so be sure to prepare to find a way to kill a bit of time.
Go With A Tour Group
If you don’t book far enough in advance and you only have one day to visit Neuschwanstein and know you won’t be able to arrive early enough to get tickets on the day, your only other option is to go with a tour group.
Although you will have much less freedom going with a tour group, you’re also guaranteed a ticket (just double check to make sure the tour you’re taking includes tickets!).
There are several different ticket options for visiting Neuschwanstein Castle.
If you just want to visit Neuschwanstein, then a single ticket costs €13 for adults, €12 reduced (seniors, students, and groups), and free for children.
A combination ticket for both Neuschwanstein and Hohenschwangau Castles costs €25 for adults (€23 reduced), while a combination ticket for Neuschwanstein and the Museum of the Bavarian Kings costs €22 for adults (€20 reduced).
A combination ticket for all 3 (Neuschwanstein, Hohenschwangau, and the Museum of the Bavarian Kings) costs €31.50 for adults (€30 reduced).
No matter whether you book online or in person, there is a service charge of €2.50 per person.
The Neuschwanstein Ticket Center is open daily from 8:30 am – 3:30 pm in the winter (January-March and 16 October-December) and from 7:30 am – 5:00 pm in the summer (April -15 October).
Neuschwanstein Castle Tour
Once you have your Neuschwanstein Castle ticket, you’ll notice that it has a tour time on it. This is the time when you can enter the castle for the guided tour (there are electronic ticket gates that won’t let you in before then).
You can’t explore the castle on your own, but instead are led by one of the castle’s tour guides through the highlights of the castle. They’ll tell you plenty of stories about crazy King Ludwig, so I think it’s absolutely worth it.
Unfortunately, you can’t take pictures inside the castle (so please don’t be the a**hole that tries to take pictures secretly-we see you).
Other Things to Do When Visiting Neuschwanstein Castle
There are so many other things to do in the surrounding area when you’re visiting Neuschwanstein Castle. Definitely don’t overlook them!
Neuschwanstein’s sister castle, Hohenschwangau, is located just across the way and receives much less foot-traffic. In fact, you’ve probably never even heard of it!
Hohenshwangau Castle actually came first and was the childhood residence of the future King Ludwig, who build Neuschwanstein.
The castle has some really interesting architectural details on the inside, so I highly recommend getting the combination ticket to visit it alongside your visit to Neuschwanstein!
Museum der bayerischen Könige (Museum of the Bavarian Kings)
If you’re a history lover then you’ll definitely want to add the Museum of the Bavarian Kings onto your ticket.
Tracing the history of the Wittelsbach dynasty, you’ll learn all about Bavaria’s kings and the history of the area.
The museum is also the only spot that doesn’t have timed entrances, so it’s a good way to kill time if you’re buying your tickets on the day and have a lot of time before your guided tour!
If you’re looking for the picture-postcard view of the castle, you’ll find it standing in the middle of the Marienbrücke, just a short 5-minute walk from the castle entrance.
Take a Hike
From the Marienbrücke, you can actually go even further and take a lovely hike through the woods. There are also great hikes all throughout the surrounding area!
Finally, if you have time, I highly recommend exploring the nearby town of Füssen! Complete with adorable colorful buildings and gorgeous mountain views, it is the quintessentially perfect southern German town.
If you’re there in December, be sure to check out their charming Christmas Market as well!
Final Thoughts on Visiting Neuschwanstein Castle
Visiting Neushcwanstein Castle is honestly just one of those once-in-a-lifetime bucket list trips that you just HAVE to do. Although organizing the visit might be a bit of a pain, you’ll be grateful once you get there. It truly is magical!
Read a few of my other posts about Germany:
- 2 Days in Heidelberg
- Nuremberg Christmas Market Guide
- Rothenburg ob der Tauber Christmas Market Guide
- Regensburg Christmas Market Guide