I hit on Neuschwanstein in my "Getting There" post. I couldn't write a castle post without including it one more time:
The next castle on the trip was Ehrenberg. There are actually 2 castles' ruins here: Ehrenberg & Schlosskopf. We could see them from our room in the Austrian Hostel:
The hike up:
Finally I could see the castle:
The castles are lit up at night, which make for a really nice view when you're at the bottom of the mountain. (No pictures, though!)
The views from the ruins:
Looking at Schlosskopf from Ehrenberg:
WiesKirche). This castle is on a mountain outside of Eisenach. We rode a bus to the parking lot, but then we had to hike up the rest of the way. It's a very good thing that we didn't have to hike up the whole mountain, because just half of it was plenty!
The tour began with some artifacts:
The outside of Wartburg:
St. Elisabeth's Chapel:
The mural in the Chapel that survived a fire in the 1300's:
The hallway to the Chapel, which has paintings from St. Elisabeth's life on the wall:
The doors were magnificent:
King Ludwig II (from Neuschwanstein) modeled his Grand Hall after this one, where concerts are still held:
And the views from the castle:
We even had the privilege of sleeping in a castle that has been turned into a hostel! From what I could find, it was the residence of a baron in the 1700's, but the architecture suggests it was built in the 1500's. We stayed in the tower, which was quite a walk, since the Europeans don't have the Individuals with Disabilities Act, and aren't required to make sure there is handicapped access everywhere.
Sunrise from my window
Come back tomorrow for Part 3B: Palaces!