The Most Magical Castles to Visit on a European River Cruise
Updated: May 31, 2023
There's something truly magical about castles. They transport us back in time to a different era, when nobility ruled the land. Today, many of these historic landmarks can be found along Europe's rivers, just waiting to be discovered on a river cruise. Here are some of the most beautiful castles you'll find on many of the most popular European river cruises.
1. Chillon Castle, Switzerland
Chillon Castle is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Switzerland, and for good reason. This beautiful castle is located on an island in Lake Geneva, and has a long and rich history dating back to the 12th century. Visitors can explore the castle's many rooms and chambers, as well as the underground prison. This is one destination you'll want to be sure to include on your list of European river cruises 2024.
2. Eltz Castle, Germany
Eltz Castle is a fairytale-like castle located in the Eltz forest in Germany. This castle has been owned by the same family for over 800 years, and it's easy to see why they never wanted to leave. The beautiful, turrets, winding staircases, and secret passages make this castle a truly magical place.
3. Habsburg Castle, Austria
Habsburg Castle is one of the most iconic castles in Austria. This castle served as the seat of the powerful Habsburg dynasty for centuries, and today it is open to the public as a museum. Visitors can explore the lavish rooms and halls of the castle, as well as the extensive art collection.
4. Hohenwerfen Castle, Austria
Hohenwerfen Castle is an imposing 11th-century castle located in Austria. This castle is built high on a cliff, and visitors can take in fabulous views of the surrounding area from the top. The castle also houses an impressive falconry museum, making it a must-visit for bird enthusiasts.
5. Lichtenstein Castle, Germany
Lichtenstein Castle is a beautiful, romantic castle located in the Black Forest region of Germany. This castle was built in the Middle Ages, and has been owned by the same family for over 700 years. Visitors can explore the castle's many rooms, as well as take in stunning views of the surrounding countryside.
6. Meersburg Castle, Germany
Meersburg Castle is a beautiful castle located on the shores of Lake Constance in Germany. This castle has a long and rich history, and has been owned by several different families over the centuries. Visitors can explore the castle and take in gorgeous lake scapes during their trip.
7. Mespelbrunn Castle, Germany
Mespelbrunn Castle is a beautiful castle located in the Spessart region of Germany. This castle has been owned by the same family for over 500 years, and it is easy to see why they never wanted to leave. The castle's beautiful setting, surrounded by forests and lakes, is truly magical.
8. Neuschwanstein Castle, Germany
Neuschwanstein Castle is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Germany. This castle was built by King Ludwig II, and is a true fairytale castle. A guided tour makes for an excellent way to spend your afternoon. You can even take a horse-drawn carriage ride from town to the castle before and after your tour.
9. Schwerin Palace, Germany
Schwerin Castle is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Germany. This castle is located on an island in a lake, and is surrounded by beautiful gardens. Guests can explore the building and take in stunning views of the lake while visiting.
10. Trakai Island Castle, Lithuania
Trakai Island Castle is a beautiful castle located on an island in Lake Galve. It was once the seat of the powerful Grand Duchy of Lithuania. Today, it's open to tours, so add it to your itinerary if you'll be near Vilnius.
These are just a few of the most magical castles to visit on a European river cruise. With so many incredible options to choose from, you're sure to enjoy a memorable excursion.