bavarian shopping mall bavarian shopping mall bavarian shopping mall
we accept

Learn more

Here you find lots of interesting facts about:
Bavaria and its customs Oktoberfest
Lederhosen & Dirndls
Nutcrackers München
Cuckoo Clocks Oberammergau
Music Boxes

King Ludwig II.

No other name stands in such a close relationship with Bavaria than this name of this well known king who ascended in 1864, at the age of 18, the Bavarian throne. The Crown Prince Ludwig of Bavaria, later on just called Ludwig II (the second), was famous for his unbridled passion for sweeping achitecture and art. This passion and his world known buildings created the "fairy tale king" legend, which is still remaining and even empowered by his his tragic and mysterious death in the Lake of Starnberg in the year 1886. During his domination, he built the beautiful castles Neuschwanstein, Linderhof and Herrenchiemsee, which are visited by thousands of tourists each year.
Imagine a panoramic view of the alps with mountaintops still snow covered, freshly repainted generously laid out country houses with oversize balconies and red geranium pouring over richly carved wooden rails. Immense naive wall paintings depicting scenes from the Catholic belief still practiced regularly by most Bavarians. Now add to this fairy tale-like setting three luxurious castles all built by Ludwig the II and you will find yourself in wonderland.
In 1860 while the rest of the world opened its doors to democracy and modernism, the beloved King played monarch and spent the country's fortune in building medieval castles and a small copy of Versailles in the middle of the Chiemsee. While the Sun King said "I am the state" Ludwig opted for "I am the taste", a leitmotif he decided to play back relentlessly.

Ludwig grow up in a beautiful real estate, called Hohenschwangau, which is located on a wooded hill between two beautiful lakes - the Alpsee Lake and the Swan Lake- and was bought by Ludwig's father, Maximilian II in 1832. The remaining ruins of Hohenschwangau, originally the seat of the Lords of Schwangau in the 12th century, were rebuilt and romantically decorated. Ludwig II spent a large part of his Childhood and youth at that place and got so already very early in touch with beautiful architecture and décor.

Eager to build something for his own, he waited for the ideal moment. After a visit to Versailles in 1867, the idea was born and Ludwig II purchased the land around Linderhof, where his father Maximilian II already owned a hunting lodge, called the "Königshäuschen". In a retrospective view, the Linderhof Castle will be unfortunately the only building project Ludwig II saw completed. He remained here in his favourite residence until his tragic death.
In the year 1869 Ludwig begun to construct Linderhof Castle, his preferred castle, a true rococo jewel case located in the middle of an austere mountain landscape and in the isolation of the Graswang valley. After 10 years of construction, the castle and the park were completed.
It resembles the "petit Trianon" (Versailles). The park, nearly covering over 200 acres, with its terraces, which are modelled in the French and Italien Renaissance style and its parterres done in the Baroque style. The main attractions, which can be visited by tourists, are the Maurische Kiosk with its precious peacook throne and the venus grotto, the boldest of Ludwig's fairy tale realizations, an artificial stalacitite grotto, which is a copy of the famous "Blue Grotto" of Capri. Made entirely out of cement with artificial arc lighting, rainbows, wave machines (and heating) to recreate what is described in Wagner's Tannhäuser.

The even more famous castle than Linderhof is for sure the castle in Neuschwanstein. You most likely have seen this castle before; it inspired Walt Disney in designing fantasy world at Disney´s Magic Kingdom in Florida, movie makers staged historical and crazy ("Around the World in 80 Days") scenes in this unique location and children's books spin off their accounts on its behalf. The impressive castle serves as a landmark for a whole region. Situated on the Swan Rock, like an eagle's nest high above a beautiful mountain sea and close to the thundering waters of the 45 meter high Pöllat Gorge Ludwig built the world famous Neuschwanstein.
On the 5-story castle, built in romanesque style using the Warthburg castle as inspiration, hundreds of craftsmen from around the world executed his wildest dreams. The ballroom, for example, is decorated in the theme of "Parsifal", an opera composed by the much admired composer Richard Wagner who remained an important source of inspiration throughout Ludwig´s life.

Finally, Ludwig II started in the mids of pre-alpine Bavarian countryside between Munich and Salzburg with the construction of a French royalist Versailles style castle, incomplete but nevertheless equipped with the famous 100 yard long hall of mirrors, longer than the one in Versailles.

This was his most costly building project ever - considering he spent only a week living there. With the Herrenchiemsee Castle, on a 230 hectare island in Lake of Chiemsee, - his dream of his own Versailles - Ludwig II wanted to build a monument to honour the absolute monarchy. The most famous room within the Castle is the Great Gallery of mirrors with its 2200 candles and hundreds of mirrors.

Still unsure about the mysterious death of Ludwig, his legend will live on. We recommend every visitor, who stays in Bavaria, should take the chance, to make a visit at one of those famous castles. You won´t regret it.

If you want to know more about King Ludwig II than feel free to learn more about them on following the links mentioned below:

This site is sponsored by:

Nana's Spaetzle - Dumpling Board Buy the gadget to make Gluten-Free Pasta.


Cynscribe: Compilation of over 1,000 Calligraphy Links by Category

to the top