Thursday, May 08, 2008

Germany - Neuschwanstein Castle

NEUSCHWANSTEIN CASTLEOne day, I went passed a jigsaw puzzle shop. I saw a "Glow in the Dark" jigsaw puzzle. I was captivated by the look of the castle. Never seen anything this beautiful. Thus, I brought it, fixed it and framed the jigsaw up beside my bed. Every night, when lights are off, the castle would come to life! I wished I could travel through time. Time where I could visit the castle at it's glory, where the king was still alive! Where people are still living inside the castle. Sometimes, the silly me would imagined myself as the castle guard standing near the bridge. "A castle guard!" maybe you would ask? I don't know why too! It just kept coming into my mind.LOL!!!

A castle that I've dreamed of visiting for ten years before I finally was able to visit. The day was 23 March 1999... A dream come true!

A horse carriage. I took this carriage up to the castle. First time, so I quite excited about it! I sat at the front of the carriage, very near to the horses. Halfway up the hill, one of the horse started to shit!!! OMG!!! It's like right in front of my face and the smell is so strong. Everyone on the carriage started laughing!!!

The orange brick in front of the castle entrance.

Castle view at the entrance doorway.

Side view of the castle. It was quite misty up there but I like the coldness.

Up on the hill is the "Schloss Hohenschwangau". A castle rebuilt by King Maximilian II (Father of King Ludwig II). Ludwig II spent his childhood at this castle.

Image from a postcard. You can see from here that the Schloss Hohenschwangau is very near to Neuschwanstein Castle. I've written the castle name in Red.

A painting of King Ludwig II in 1865 by F. Piloty
King Ludwig II was born on 25 August 1845.
He is the King of Bavaria from 1864 - 1886.
In 1886, The King was found drowned in Lake Starnberg. How he died is still a mystery.

"Do not disturb the idyllic solitude of this romantic setting, whose picturesque is even greater in winter than in summer, by building factories and railroads. For there will come a time when many other people will yearn, as I do, for such a piece of land where they can find refuge, a place left unspoiled by modern culture and technology, greed and haste, as place far from the noise and turmoil, the soot and dust of the cities."
(King Ludwig II)

Image from a Postcard I brought from Neuschwanstein Castle. There's a swan logo stamp chop on the back of the card. The view around the castle is simply fantastically Beautiful!

Entrance Ticket into the Castle.The guided tour around the castle is great and informative.

The following three images are captured from my book, as photography is not allowed inside the castle!
This is the Throne Hall, one of the most impressive room in the Castle. Except that the throne is missing because when the King died, his family cancelled all uncompleted orders from contractors and the work on throne was never started!

The bedroom that King Ludwig II has a fondness.
It is designed in a late Gothic style.

At the village below the castle, there are also lots of stores selling souvenirs.
I like the mini wine bottle very much as it has the King picture printed on it!

These are some of the books at I brought at the castle or the village near the castle. Many of these have about the same informations. It contains lots of beautiful pictures of Neuschwanstein Castle and it's history.
I've also got some slides of the interior photos of the castle.
I'm not sure if they are still selling the Castle's photo slides now. Since it's the digital age now! I think slides are nice and when I projected it on the wall, I feel I'm at the castle again!

1868 - Preliminary draft of Neuschwanstein Castle by Count V. Pocci
1869 - A draft of the castle by Christian Jank found the King's approval
1869 - 5th September,cfoundation stone was laid for Neuschwanstein Castle!
1886 - When King Ludwig died, the castle was still under construction. The interior of the 3rd floor was not completed.

Construction of the castle requires enormous amount of materials.
465 tons of Salzburg
4550 tons of sandstone from Nuerting
400,000 bricks
600 tons of cement
50 tons of hard coal
2050 cubic meters of wooden scaffolding
The cost of building Neuschwanstein amounted to $6,180,047 marks even though the King intial plan on spending was 600,000 marks!!!

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