Project Description

Linderhof and Neuschwanstein castles are two royal buildings built under Ludwig II. I had the opportunity to visit both during a stay in Munich. You will find below a short presentation, as well as some images.

LINDERHOF CASTLE

The royal villa of Ludwig II is among all the buildings he undertook the only one he could finish. One can recognize the influence of French Rococo elements executed at the time of Louis XV that unfold behind the facades of Baroque style. Ludwig II was also very inspired by the rococo style of southern Germany which were created by his own ancestors and he had known during his childhood in Nymphenburg. He created in Linderhof sumptuous rooms of great wealth.

Linderhof was once a simple family farm was taken over by King Maximilian II, father of Ludwig II, for his hunting days. He modernized the interior, but left intact the outside. If the new King Ludwig II often went there, it was more for the isolation that the hunting, which he hated above all, as the war. From 1872, after many demolitions, reconstructions and renovations, Linderhof Castle appeared gradually in its current state. In 1873, he was covered with stones and its roof was renewed. The last work was completed in 1885-86.

The bedroom is a copy of the one from King of France Louis XIV: a railing separates the canopy bed of the audience expected to attend the king’s levee. Ludwig II hated the presence of witnesses. The dining room was equipped with a platform on which rested the table. This platform slid to the floor below, where were the kitchens. Then, the table went back with the meal; the king was therefore not to cross the servants. Unfortunately, no picture, as it is forbidden to take any inside the castle. After visiting the interior, we visit the adjacent park.

The last, one of the finest of the 19th century combines elements of baroque style garden with its beautiful ponds and those of the naturalistic style of English gardens. It houses fascinating buildings like Moroccan house, Moorish kiosk and Venus Cave. The last is an immense grotto furnished according to the stage directions of Richard Wagner for the first act of his opera Tannhäuser. There are also two sets erected for the music dramas of Wagner as Hunding’s hut (the first act of the Valkyries) and the Hermitage of Gurnemanz (third act of Parsifal). Linderhof was the favorite place of Ludwig II and I definitely agree with this !

NEUSCHWANSTEIN CASTLE

Work on the future building site began in the summer of 1868 with up to 8 metres of stone outcrop removed to make way for the foundations. In June 1869, the new access road was completed. The foundation stone was laid on September 5, 1869 with the building plan, portraits of Ludwig II and coins from his reign incorporated in it in accordance with the tradition established by Ludwig I. The latest building techniques and materials were used in the construction of the castle. The foundations were cemented and the walls built of brick with light-coloured limestone used merely as cladding.

The Gateway Building was completed first. The opening ceremony was celebrated on June 11, 1872 and the castle was ready for occupation at the end of 1873. For years Ludwig II used the upper floor as provisional accommodation when he visited the site. Building of the Palas commenced in September 1872. For structural reasons, the latest technology was required in order to incorporate the large Throne Hall subsequently requested by the king, which was built as an encased steel construction. Another ceremony was held on January 29, 1880. The decoration and technical fittings of the interior were only completed in mid 1884, though without all the final details. Ludwig II only ever saw his new castle as a building site. The Bower and the Square Tower, simplified versions of the originally planned buildings, were not completed until 1892.

The tour of the palas (the residential part of a medieval castle) begins with a view into the servants’ rooms with authentic oak furnishings on the first upper floor. The rooms on the second floor were never finished and today house a shop, a cafeteria and a multimedia room. The apartments and state rooms of the king are on the third and fourth floors.

Visiting the castle is through guided tour only, no exceptions. You will be able to follow a guide in different languages or with an audio guide. Your ticket will include a number and specific time entry. You are unable to enter before or after that time, so be at least 15-20 minutes early on the spot, knowing that it is sometimes difficult to move because of many tourists waiting their turn to enter the castle.

It is strictly forbidden to smoke, photograph and film inside both castles, but despite this, the visit was great and very interesting!