13 July 2010


If you come to South Germany, you have to go and see Neuschwanstein, the fairy-tail castle started by King Ludwig II of Bavaria in 1869, though construction was stopped when he died in 1886 (something that probably came as something of a relief to the people of Bavaria, as he had managed to bankrupt the state by building so many fantastic castles and palaces).Neuschwanstein literally means 'New-Swan-Stone'. It was "new" to distinguish it from the original Schwanstein castle where Ludwig spent much of his childhood, though this castle was later renamed Hohenschwangau ('High-Swan-District').The swans in these names are from a local motif, which occurs in many names in the region. Here is a family of swans on the Alpensee, the lake near the two castles.