22 Spectacular Castles near Munich

You can find many castles near Munich. Have you ever wanted to visit a Disney castle? Or perhaps you want to visit the longest castle in the world. There are plenty of castles in Bavaria that you can visit.

Munich is the capital of the state Bavaria in the south of Germany. With a population of 1.5 milion, Munich is the third city in Germany, after Berlin and Hamburg. Munich enjoys a high standard and quality of living.

When Bavaria became a sovereign kingdom in 1806, Munich became a center of arts, architecture, culture and science. Not just in Germany but it was one of the biggest cultural cities in Europe.

And this still cultural history is still visible in Munich today. Therefor making it a perfect destination for a city trip. And while you’re traveling to Munich, you can visit the many palaces and castles the area surroundin Munich has to offer.

Due to its rich Royal history and it being one of the riches states in Germany. You can find many palaces and castles near Munich.

I have selected 22 spectacular castles near Munich. From one of the world’s long-stretching castles, to the famous castles that inspired Walt Disney. The area around Munich is packed with interesting historic castes for you to enjoy.

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Castles in Munich

You can find several castles and palaces in the city of Munich.

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photo: Richard Bartz

Nymphenburg Palace

In the western district Neuhausen-Nymphenburg in Munich stands Nymphenburg Palace. This Baroque palace is built between 1664 and 1675 for Elector Ferdinand Maria and Henriette Adelaide of Savoy after the birth of their son (and heir to the throne) Max Emanuel (the later Maximilian II Emanuel).

The palace was built as a summer residence, but it later also become the hunting lodge of the court. During Maximilian’s reign the palace was extended and it gradually became the palace that you can visit now. The gardens were also extended to what is now Nymphenburg Park.

Nympenburg Palace and Park are open to visitors. But the palace is also the residence of the Duke of Bavaria. There are no guided tours, but there are audio guides in German, English, Italian, French, Spanish, Russian, Chinese (Mandarin) and Japanese.

Opening hours: April to 15 October: daily 9 am-6 pm; 16 October to March: daily 10 am-4 pm

How to get here: S-Bahn to “Laim”, then bus to “Schloss Nymphenburg”; U-Bahn to “Rotkreuzplatz”, then tram to “Schloss Nymphenburg”

In the Nymphenburg Park you can find several other palaces: These palaced are only open to visitors from April to 15 October: daily 9 am-6 pm.

Pagodenburg

The Pagodenburg is a pavilion on the estate of the Nymphenburg Palace. The burg was built between 1716 and 1719 by Joseph Effner for Elector Max Emanuel.

The pavilion stands north of the canal with a garden parterre at the south and a green where “Mailspiel” (a sort of golf) was played at the north.

The Indian building is aplace where Lords and Ladies rested after their Mailspiel. On the ground floor is a Hall with two cabinets decorated in Arab and Indian styles with Chinese figures and pagodas. On the top floor is a Chinese drawing room with Regency style cabinet.

Badenburg

The Badenburg is the House of Baths in the Southern half of the park. The park pavilion was built between 1718 and 1722 by design of Joseph Effner.

The ground floor consists of an oblong Banqueting Hall with an adjoining oblong wing consisting of the Bath, and Elector’s Apartments.

Amalienburg

The Amalienburg is a small pleasure palace and hunting lodge built in 1734 commissioned by Elector Karl Albrecht for his wife Maria Amalia.

While the palace may look simple from the outside, it’s spectacular on the inside. Amalienburg is one of the most impressive buildings in European Rococo style.

Every room is styled individually according to the rules of French court art. The palace has many rooms, with the Hall of Mirros forming the center of the palace.

Magdalenenklause

The Magdalenenklause (or Magdalenen Hermitage) was built between 1725 and 1728. It was built as the living quarters of a hermit. and it’s surrounded by small overgrown woods.

From the outside the building almost looks like a ruin with cracks in the masonry and crumbling plaster. Inside is a chapel at the Elector’s Apartments with austere rooms clad with oak panelling.

Visit the Nymphenburg website →

Munich Residenz

The Munich Residenz is the largest inner-city palace in Germany. It slowly transformed from a 14th castle to the vast palace you can visit today.

The Munich Residenz was the seat of government for the Bavarian Dukes, Electors and Kings. And with more than 130 state rooms you can easily spend half a day at the Munich Residenz.

Besided the state rooms, the palace also offers an expansive art collection ranging from Renaissance, early Baroque and Rococo to Neoclassicism.

Opening hours: April-15 October: daily 9 am-6 pm (last entry: 5 pm); 16 October-March: daily 10 am-5 pm (last entry: 4 pm)

Visit the website →

photo: High Contrast

Blutenburg Castle

This 15th century moated castle was built by duke Albert III of Bavaria. The castle lies between two arms of the River Würm and was used as a hunting lodge.

The castle includes a palace chapel in Gothic style. There are three alters by Jan Polack which are some of the best examples of panel paintings from the late-Gothic period.

Today the castle houses the International Youth Library.

Opening hours chapel: April-September: 9 am-5 pm; October-March: 10 am-4 pm

Visit the website →

Alter Hof (The Old Court)

In the center of Munich stands Alter Hof, the former imperial residence of Louis IV, Holy Roman Emperor. The castle consist of 5 wings. Only two have been preserved. The other three have been rebuilt after the destruction in the Second World War.

The Monkey Tower is one of the highlights of the Alter Hof. The story goes that Duke Ludwig II had a tame monkey who once stole the heir to the throne, baby Ludwig the Bavarian, from his cradle. The monkey was driven over a wooden bay window onto the roof. But the monkey calmed down and put the baby back into his cradle. Since then the bay window is called The Monkey Tower.

In the vaulted cellar is a permanent exhibition that tells the history of this former residence of the Wittelsbacher dynasty.

Opening hours: Monday-Saturday 10 am-6 pm

Munich is extremely close to the Austrian city Salzburg (which you can easily reach by train). You can also find many castles and palaces in and around Salzburg. Take a look the full list of the best castles in & around this Austrian city.

Castles near Munich

The area surrounding Munich is packed with castles and palaces. Visiting these castles is perfect as a day trip from Munich.

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Neuschwanstein Castle

The most famous castle near Munich is Neuschwanstein Castle. It’s not just famous in Bavaria, but perhaps the most famous castle in Germany, and perhaps even the world. Neuschwanstein Castle is also known as the Disney Castle. Neuschwanstein inspired Walt Disney for his fairytale castle in Sleeping Beauty.

Even though the castle looks old. It is actually a relative young castle. King Ludwig II of Bavaria (“the shy king”) built Neuschwanstein Castle in the 19th century as a private refuge.

It is one of the most visited castles in Germany with approx. 1.4 milion visitors a year. And that is for good reason, because the castle and the setting is like a true fairytale.

During the guided tour of the castle you will visit more than a dozen rooms in the private aparment and state rooms. These rooms include the Throne Hall, bedroom, study and dining room.

Opening hours: April to 15 October: 9 am-6 pm; 16 October to March: 10 am-4 pm

How to get here: The path to the castle starts in the village of Hohenschwangau (this is where you park your car & buy your ticket). From here it’s a 1.5km walk to the castle. You can also take a shuttle bus to the castle.

By public transport: You take the train to Füssen. From there you can take the bus to Neuschwanstein.

Castles close to Neuschwanstein: Hohenswangau Castle

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Hohenswangau Castle

Though there has been a castle at this site since the 12th century. The current Hohenswangau Castle dates back to the 18th century, when King Maximilian II built the castle according the original plans.

Hohenswangau which measn “The High District of the Swan” in English became the summer and hunting palace of the Bavarian Royal family. Kind Ludwig II spent several weeks a year in this castle. And while he was staying here, he started the built of the fairy-tale castle Neuschwanstein Castle (see above).

A visit to this castle can be combined with Neuschwanstein, since they are so close to each other. The castle lies approx. 1.5 hours from Munich.

Opening hours: October 16 to December 31, 2021 / January 02 until March 31, 2022 daily from 9.00 a.m. to 4.00 p.m.; April 1, 2022 to October 15, 2022 daily from 9.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m.

How to get here: The path to the castle starts in the village of Hohenschwangau (this is where you park your car & buy your ticket). From here it’s a 20 minute walk to the castle. You can also take a shuttle bus to the castle.

By public transport: You take the train to Füssen. From there you can take the bus to Neuschwanstein.

Visit the website →

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photo: Martin Falbisoner

Linderhof Palace

Linderhof Palace is one of three palaces built by King Ludwig II. It is also the smallest of the three palaces and the only one which he saw completed.

Linderhof is a rebuilt palace. He inherited the orginal palace, called the Königshäuschen, from his father. But in 1874 Ludiwg II decided to tear down that palace and rebuilt and extend in at its current place in the palace park.

The Rococo palace is inspired by Versailles and has a staircase very similar to the Ambassador’s Staircase in Versailles. The palace is also decorated with the symbol of the sun.

The gardens surrounding the palace are designed by Court Garden Director Carl von Effner. And it combined Renaissance, Baroque and English garden styles. In the park also stands a Moroccan House.

Opening hours: April-15 October: daily 9 am-6 pm; 16 October-March: daily 10 am-4.30 pm

How to get here: Take the train to Oberammergau: from Oberammergau there is a bus connection to Linderhof (bus 9622).

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Schleißheim Palace

Located in Oberschleißheim, a suburb of Munich, stands the Baroque park of Schleißheim Palace. In this park stand three palaces: Old Schleißheim Palace, New Schleißheim Palace, and Lustheim Palace.

Old Schleißheim Palace

In 1617 Maximilian I built this Italian-style palace. Though the architect is unknown, the palace rooms are decorated by Dutchman Peter Candid who added stucco-work and frescoes.

During the Second World War, most of the Old Schleißheim Palace was destroyed. It was not until the 1970s that the reconstruction began. Most of what you see today is new, but the western vestibule and adjoining hall wall (including their decoration) have been preserved. Most of the cellar vault is also original, Same for the stucco decoration of the former chapel.

Today the palace is a museum of modern religious folk art (the Gertrud Weinhold Collection). The original vaulted basement rooms can also be visited during your museum visit.

photo: Sandor Bordas

New Schleißheim Palace

Elector Max Emanual started the built of the New Schleißheim Palace in 1700. Originally this palace was designed to be much bigger, with wings connected the new palace to the old Schleißheim Palace.

But the Spanish War and poor financial situated meant that a simplified palace was to be built. Joseph Effner designed the interiors for the palace and even though the financial situation was precarious, the interiors of the palace are splendid.

Highlight is the Baroque staircase hall which leads to the Large Hall, Victory Hall and Large Gallery. Elector Max Emanual collected art and even in the 18th century this was already a Gallery Palace. This tradition continues today with State Gallery of European Baroque Art.

Lustheim Palace

Elector Max Emanuel of Bavaria commissioned the built of a new palace in 1685. This Italian-style palace, designed by architect Enrico Zuccali, stands on a circular island surrouned by Baroque gardens.

Today you can find the Collection of Meissen Porcelain at Lustheim Palace.

Opening hours: April-September: 9 am-6 pm; October-March: 10 am-4 pm (closed Mondays, with a few exceptions)

How to get here: From Munich take the S-Bahn number 1 (direction “Freising / Flughafen”) to “Oberschleißheim”. From the S-Bahn you can walk (10-15 minutes to the Old and New Schleißheim Palace) or take the bus, line 295 (Monday-Friday only) or line 292, to the “Schloss” stop (Old and New Palace) or to the “Lustheim” stop (Lustheim Palace).

Visit the website →

photo: Rufus46

Herrenchiemsee New Palace

Versailles in Germany. Schloss Herrenchiemsee is the palace modeled after Versailles. King Ludwig II (the fairy-tale king) built Herrenchiemsee as a “Temple of Fame” for King Louis XIV of France. He greatly admired the French king and therefor wanted a palace just like Versailles.

The Neo-Baroque palace has a Hall of Mirrors (a copy to the one in Versailles) with 25 frescoes showing King Louis XIV of France.

Thre are grand state rooms with the State Staircase, the State Bedroom and the Great Hall of Mirrors. But also more intimate rooms in the private apartments of the king, designed in French Rococo style.

You can visit these grand rooms. And also a Museum dedicated to the fairy-tale king Ludwig II.

Opening hours: 27 March-23 October: 9 am-6 pm; 24 October-26 March: 9.40 am-4.15 pm

How to get here: Take the train to Prien am Chiemsee. From Prien station there is a special Chiemsee train to the Prien/Stock boat pier which runs during the summer season.

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Trausnitz Castle

Founded in 1204 by Duke Ludwig I and home of the Wittelbach dynasty. This Medieval castle in Landshut was the seat of the Bavarian monarchy. The castle has been remodeled several times over the centuries and you can still see some of the German Renaissance style it got in the 16th century.

During a tour of the castle you can visit the Old Knight’s Hall and Castle Chapel among others. The Wittelbach’s were also great collectors. And at Trausnitz Castle you can find some of the Wittelbach collection in the Kunst- und Wunderkammer (Chamber of Art and Curiosities).

Opening hours: April-4 October: daily 9 am-6 pm; 5 October-March: daily 10 am-4 pm

How to get here: From Landshut station take the bus number 3 or 6 to “Altstadt”, then number 7 or 7A to “Kalcherstraße” (from there it is a walk of around 1 km to the castle). From March to October the busses number 7 and 7A stop at “Hofgartenparkplatz” (800 m from the castle) on demand.

Visit the website →

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photo: © Bwag/Commons

Burghausen Castle

Burghausen Castle is the longest castle in the world, with a length of more than 1.000 meters (3280 ft). From 1255 to 1503 Burghausen Castle was the second “family” residence of the Wittelbach family (Trausnitz, which you’ve seen above, was their primary residence).

After that Burghausen become an important military fortification. Most of these medieval fortifications are still intact.

The castle stands high above te town of Burghausen overlooking the Salzach river. And during a tour you can visit te six courtyards, the Great Hall and the Gothic art collection in the State Gallery.

Opening hours: April-4 October: daily 9 am-6 pm; 5 October-March: daily 10 am-4 pm

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Nuremberg Castle

In the historical center of Nuremberg stands Nuremberg Castle, one of Europe’s best Medieval fortifications. The castle has dominated Nuremberg since the Middle Ages and showed the power and importance of the Holy Roman Empire, and the outstanding role of the imperial city of Nuremberg.

Due to its location, Nuremberg Castle has played an important part in history. After the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire the castle became part of the Bavarian Kingdom.

A permanent exhibition shows the importance and history of Nuremberg Castle. As well as information on the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation and the role of Nuremberg in the late Middle Ages.

Opening hours: April to 3 October: daily 9 am-6 pm; 4 October to March: daily 10 am-4 pm (excl. the castle garden)

How to get here: The castle lies in the city center. The following public transport stations are nearby: Tram 4 “Tiergärtnertorplatz; Bus 36 “Burgstraße”; U-Bahn “Lorenzkirche”

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Thurn und Taxis Palace (Regensburg Palace)

The largest non-palatial residence in Germany that is still owned and lived in by the Princes of Thurn und Taxis. The palace used to be a Benedictine monestary. But in 1812 the monastic buildings were offered to the princely house of Thurn und Taxis.

Thurnand Taxis has 517 rooms and it’s one of the largest private palaces in Europe. The palace, museums, cloister and stables take you through the interesting history of this fomer monestary and now palace.

From the Medieval cloister to the splendid Rococo interiors in the palace. It’s a wonderful place to visit.

Opening hours: State rooms and cloister can only be visited through a guided tour. Tour times: 10:30am and 11:30am, 12:30pm, 1:30pm and 2:30pm daily; the treasury and carriage museum can be visited without a tour.

How to get here: The palace is a short walk from the Reenburg train station.

Visit the website →

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photo: Krzysztof Golik

Würzburg Residence

The Würzburg Residence is a unique palace and a UNESCO World Hertigage Site. Even though the palace was built (almost) without interruptions it still shows several architecture styles. The architects drew inspiration from all over Europe. Therfor you can see a variation of styles such a French château architecture and Viennese baroque.

Inside there are many frescoes by Italian painter Tiepolo. Even the largest ceiling frescoe in the world can be found at the Würzburg Residence.

On a tour you will visit 40 period rooms, with beautiful furniture, tapestires, paintings and other art treasureds. You can also visit the court church.

Ps: there is also a Medieval castle in Würzburg, however the interiors were destroyed during World War II. It now houses a museum.

Opening hours: April-October: daily 9 am-6 pm (last entry: 5.15 pm); November-March: daily 10 am-4.30 pm (last entry: 4 pm)

How to get here: The Residence is located on a 20-minute walk from the station. Several bus lines run close by the palace (for more info go to www.wvv.de)

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Kaltenberg Castle

In the village of Geltendorf stands the medieval Kaltenberg Castle. The 13th century castle is still owned by onethe descendents of the great-grandson of the last king of Bavaria, Ludwig III.

Prince Luitpold of Bavaria (the great-grandson) still lives in the castle and therefor it’s not open to the public. But once a year a knights’ tournament (the Kaltenberger Rittertournier) is hosted on the castle grounds which draws over 10.000 visitors and is one of the largest medieval festivals in the world.

The castle also houses a restaurant.

Fun fact: There is also a brewery in the castle. part of the König Ludwig Schlossbrauerei has been part of the castle since 1870. Price Luitpold is CEO of the brewery.

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photo: Gerhard Salomon

Prunn Castle

Perched high atop a Jurassic outcrop overlooking Altmühl river stands Prunn Castle. The early 13th century castle is built in late Gothic style and has medieval interiors.

In the 16th century historian and privy councillor of Duke Albrecht V, discovered the “Prunner Codex” in the castle. This is the fourth oldest complete manuscript of the most famous middle high German heroic epic, the Nibelungenlied.

The manuscript is now in the Bavarian State Library. But an exhibition linking the Nibelungenlied to the castle can be visited.

Opening hours: April to October: daily 9 am-6 pm, last admission: 5 pm; November to March: 10 am-4 pm (closed Mondays), last admission: 3 pm

How to get here: Take the train to Saal/Donau, then the Bus VLK-1 to Nußhausen or Prunn. From these stops it is a 20-minute walk to the castle.

Visit the website →

As you can see there are plenty of castles near Munich that you can visit. Take a look at the map below for the locations of each castle (you can also click here for the map)

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