We had arranged a day tour of Bavaria. It meant a 8.30 start but luckily it was only a five minute walk to Bahnhofpl where we were met by a single and double coach along with a lovely guide called Anitka.
It was interesting to pass through Munich again and we were soon back on the autobahn surrounded by trees and beautiful countryside. The first thing I noticed was how clean and crisp it all looked compared to England and the messy hedgerows filled with paper and waste.
After an hour or so we reached Linderhof Palace which King Ludwig II decided to use as his main residence rather than his many other castles. It was finally small but inside no expense was spared. Full length mirrors, hand carving, expensive ornaments & paintings and many items gilded in gold or silver.
Next we went to a beautiful village for a quick stop and coffee. I wish I could have stayed there a lot longer as it had so much to offer including shops selling unusual items, murals on many of the walls of the houses, nice restaurants, all surrounded by the beautiful back drop of the Alps. The village was famous for having a ceremony every ten years to thank God for helping them to survive in this remote area.
Next onto the main event, the King's dream castle of Schloss Neuschwanstein high up in the mountains. The guide told us that a young Walt Disney came to Bavaria and was inspired by this castle and used the image for his film Sleeping Beauty. The guide said we had about four hours here including our tour of the castle but it was on an automated timed ticket at 2.00 so we had to be there on time. This gave as a good two hours so we decided to walk up the hill to the castle along with many other tourists and those tourist that decided to take the large horse and carts. It was a nice journey through the trees and because we were too early we had time to go up further to the bridge where there was fantastic views. Still early we went down the valley again to have a quick lunch before returning to the castle. Our five minute slot entry was accompanied by a tour radio and we walked round in silence again looking at the ostentatious rooms in the castle. Unfortunately this was the downfall of the King along with other rumours. It was said that he was very close to Wagner and once their relationship turned sour he lived more as a hermit and spent vast amounts on his castles. So much so that the government more or less declared him insane and he was found dead under suspicious circumstances.
We boarded back onto the coach at about 4.30 arriving back in Munich at 6.30. A truly wonderful day that now gives me the desire to go back to Bavaria and also explore the beauty of Austria and Switzerland.