Day Trip from Munich to Neuschwanstein Castle

The castle looks unreal the first time you see it; a royal crown nestled a top the mighty Alps. It’s hard not to have your thoughts wander off to the seemingly impossible feat of the structure and off to a distant fairy tale land. This is the castle so great, it inspired Disney himself, to make it the icon of your favorite fairy tales. It’s easy to see why this day trip from Munich to Neuschwanstein Castle is one of the most popular excursions to the Alps. Enjoy taking photos and exploring the beautiful castle with a tour, or make it a day filled with adventures, including hiking and a bike ride.

Day trip from Munich Germany to the Disney Neuschwanstein Castle

The day trip from Munich to Neuschwanstein Castles is a great option for everyone. There is plenty to do from hiking, two different castle tours and a museum. You can even get up to the castle in style with a horse drawn carriage or bus, if you have mobility concerns. Since this is one of the most popular day trips it can get very crowded, if you go on the weekend be prepared to fight crowds and wait around. If you can, I recommend going in during the weekday in the summer. To avoid the longest line of you life, make sure you read the section on how to avoid the line, or you might head home unable to tour the castle. The first part of my guide, will help you get there on your own. Then at the end of the post, I’ll include some advise on taking a group tour with Mike’s Bikes. I’ve been to the area twice, once independently and once with Mike’s Bikes, Munich. Both are great options!

This guide covers specific details on getting to Neuschwanstein castle from Munich, ensuring you secure tickets to tour to the main castle and doing the gorge hike after. If you want to go to the museum or the other castle, plan according.

Day Trip from Munich to Newschwanstein Castle Independent Tour

Day Trip to Neuschwanstein Stats

Length of Time: A long full day, 8-10 hours depending on your activities.
Timetable: 9:52 am train leaves from Munich Hbh.
11:55 train arrives in Füssen
12:20 pm, bus arrives at ticketing
12:55 pick up tickets before 12:55
1:55 tour starts
2:30 tour ends
Time to explore, hike the gorge, take photos, eat lunch.. etc.
6:05 pm last train from füssen home, give yourself time to catch the bus and get a seat.

Skill Level for Neuschwanstein: 20-50 HP. As I mentioned before if anyone in your group has mobility issues there are options, such as busses and horse carriage rides, but there will be some light walking involved. For my more independent readers, you can choose to take a little hike through the gorge or walk up. It’s really up to you how intense or relaxing you want this day to be.

Options and Cost to get to Neuschwanstein: Your cost for this tour will include the Bayern ticket. For groups of 2-5 people, always buy the group ticket, as it only costs you about 25 euros. This saves a ton of money. The cost for an adult to tour one castle is 13 Euros. For more ticketing prices, check here. Bring money for lunch and expect tourist prices.

Seasons: All. Be warned that in winter the gorge and bridge may be closed due to ice and snow. Check the website for more details.

Packing List:

  • Small backpack.
  • Water bottle or camelback.
  • Camera.
  • Check the weather and dress appropriately. In Summer bring sunscreen or a hat. In winter, a hat and gloves and a warm jacket.
  • Good walking shoes.
  • Snacks.
  • Your ticket reservation information.
  • AVOID THE LINE: Reserve your tickets

    This should be the first thing you do before you even think about going to Neuschwanstein if you want to physically go inside the castle. If you do not do this, you will be waiting in a miserable line and during the summer you won’t even make it into the castle. Trust me. I walked up to the reserved line on a hot sunny day during peak summer and picked up my tickets no problem, while the line to get tickets on spot almost ran all the way to the bus stop, which was a LONG WAY! Don’t be one of those suckers. RESERVE YOUR TICKETS HERE You can reserve your tickets two days in advance, meaning you want to do this by noon two days before your trip. You need a credit card to book online. You pay once you arrive, but this just puts a hold on your card. If you follow my guide, ensure that you do the tour at 1:55. YOU MUST PICK UP THE TICKETS BEFORE 12:55 OR YOU LOSE THEM The train arrives at 11:55 then by about 12:20 you should be getting off the near the ticketing center. Please note that you will need to hustle to get your tickets and get up to the castle. After your tour, you will have plenty of time to wander around and enjoy the scenery and take photos.

    Getting to Füssen and the Ticketing Center

    The direct train to Füssen leaves the Munich Central Station at 9:52 a.m. It will be full, during the peak season, so be at your platform at least 20 min early, arriving at the station 30-45 min early, if you want time to buy tickets and get breakfast. Buy your ticket at any kiosk at the station, the U-bah station or S-bahn stations. If you want help, see an attendant. Ensure you’re buying the group ticket to Füssen. Your train departs exactly on time from platform 29, but it will be parked and loading about 15-20 min before then.

    Kick back and relax as the train ends at your final destination, Füssen. Use the train’s bathroom before you go. If it’s summer there are only about 2 toilets, where you buy tickets and the line is just as long as the non-reserved ticket line. As soon as you leave the train follow everyone out of the station, take a left stepping off the right and a right at the Y, and another right. You can easily follow the crowd, but if you linger too long you’ll be waiting for another bus. Use your same ticket to hop on to bus 78. Ride to the bottom of the ticket center. Walk uphill and get in the reserved ticket line, pay for your ticket and ask any questions you might have.

    Getting to the Castle and your Tour

    Day trip from Munich Germany to Neuschwanstein Castle

    Day trip from Munich Germany to Neuschwanstein Castle

    There are four ways to get up to the castle, but my recommended route is to walk straight up the paved trail, to make sure you have enough time to get there before your tour. The guide says it takes about 40 min to walk up, but I think I did it in about 20 minutes, as a fairly capable walker. There is also a horse-drawn carriage for a dramatic entrance or a bus system that can get you most of the way uphill. I have not taken either of these, so ask an attendant how to do this if this is your mode of transportation. The 4th option is a good plan if you don’t have a tour of the castle at a specific time and it is hiking up the gorge. I like to do this on the way down or with Mike’s Bike’s and I’ll go over that later. You should have plenty of time to meander and take photos on your way up and at at the top. The castle tour starts in the main courtyard of the castle, line up and enjoy your tour! One of my favorite reasons for doing this tour is you not only to learn about the history of the castle and King Ludwig II, but you also get some great photo ops otherwise unavailable. See below photos.

    Day trip from Munich Germany to Neuschwanstein Castle

    Day trip from Munich Germany to Neuschwanstein Castle

    Exploring After Your Tour

    Day Trip from Munich Germany to Neuschwanstein Castle

    Day Trip from Munich Germany to Neuschwanstein Castle

    After your tour is over, you have plenty of time to explore the surrounding area. If you want a view like the photo above, walk up a bit further behind the castle to the Marienbrücke Bridge. This bridge gets very crowded in the summer. My sister and dad opted to stay behind and let my mother and I brave the bridge. Just be patient and you’ll get your turn at this majestic photo opp.

    Instead of walking down the same paved road you originally took, on your way back down from Marienbrücke to the main castle look for a dirt road that cuts into the gorge from your right. Occasionally this area is closed due to maintenance or flooding; pay attention to all signs and follow instructions. (Photos of this hike in the section about Mike’s Bikes.) You will be following the Pöllat river and you end near the toboggan ride and gondola. Keep an eye on the time and explore this area if you want, but make sure to be back at the train station by 5:50 for the last train back from Munich (depending on the season it may not be the last, but it is the quickest and best, check the seasonal timetables.) To get back to the visitor and ticketing center follow Tegelbergstrasse to the west to Füssenstrasse and take a left.

    There are also plenty of forested walks back down instead of taking the main paved route. If hiking isn’t your thing, but you want to shake things up. This option was perfect for my parents. Aren’t they cute? This takes you right back to the visitor center and your map provided at ticketing has the trails.

    Day Trip from Munich Germany to Newschwanstein Castle

    Day Trip from Munich to Newschwanstein Castle with Mikes Bikes

    If independent adventures aren’t your thing, but you want to enjoy everything Neuschwanstein and Füssen have to offer, while making new friends, then check out Mike’s Bikes! The first time I came to Munich almost six years ago I used this company. They picked us up from our hostel and bused us out to the castle. They handled all ticketing and transportation, so we just had to enjoy the day. We started off by renting bikes and riding around Swan Lake. We got some amazing views of the castle from below.

    Day trip from Munich Germany to Neuschwanstein Castle 1

    After our bike ride, we had lunch and hiked up the gorge to the castle where we took the tour. There were also plenty of options for anyone who didn’t want to bike, including a toboggan ride and tickets to the other castle or museum.
    Day trip from Munich Germany to Neuschwanstein Castle 3

    Day trip from Munich Germany to Neuschwanstein Castle 3

    It was a well put together tour and I normally don’t recommend pre-packaged tours, but this one was great! Find out more about Mike’s Bikes here.

    Pro Photography Tip

    If you want a great view of the castle from the front, with the old red stone facing, take the gondola up near the Toboggan, you’ll need to make this a priority and if you’re lucky the guide will allow you to open the window for photos. I have not done this, but this is where you find the stunning front photos without a drone.

    Getting Home from Newschwanstein

    Essentially follow the same route back home. From the ticketing center, head to the bus stop and take the bus back to the Füssen train station. Be careful which train you get on, if you want a direct train home take the RE 57513 at 4:06 or RE 57515 at 6:06. Many of the other trains stop halfway through where you’ll have to change trains and can almost double your ride home. Grab some food or relax in order to make one of these if you have leftover time. If you do get on a train that stops halfway through, just exit and look for the platform with a train headed to Munich.

    I hope you enjoy your day trip from Munich Germany to the beautiful Neuschwanstein Castle. Let me know if you need any help planning your Munich trip and don’t miss these other day trips from Munich.
    Day Trip from Munich Hiking Tegernsee or this day trip to Dachau Memorial.

    Don’t forget to pin this to your favorite Germany, castle or European board!

    Enjoy the best day trip from Munich to the Disney inspired Neuschwanstein Castle in the German Alps. Enjoy the best day trip from Munich to the Disney inspired Neuschwanstein Castle in the German Alps.

39 thoughts on “Day Trip from Munich to Neuschwanstein Castle

  1. Shane Prather

    This castle is straight out of a fairytale, oh my! I wish I’d had time to make it as far as Munch and this day trip. Next time!

  2. Julie Cao

    The Neuschwanstein Castle is fairy-tale like and no wonder why so many people are visiting on the weekends. Great tips on reserving the ticket online in advance to avoid long hours line-up, route to get to the castle, as well as the pubic transport. It is the details of the trip planning that makes the travel easier.

    1. Wandering ChocoboWandering Chocobo Post author

      Thank you! Navigating the train system in Germany can be a bit overwhelming, especially with the language barrier. So, I’m glad it is helpful. Thanks for reading, Julie!

  3. Cynthia

    Ooo I didn’t make it to Neuschwanstein Castle when I was in Germany this past fall. It looks like such a beautful place though. Thanks for this helpful post. I’ll keep it in mind for the next time I’m in Europe!

  4. Candy

    I’ve never done a hike to a castle, but now I really want too! The castle is stunning and I can see where Walt Disney got his inspiration. I wouldn’t mind going all out and getting the horse drawn carriage 🙂

  5. neha

    You call the neuschwanstein castle unreal, i would call it surreal. It is so beautiful that it looks out of this world. Thanks for the tips, particularly around the advance ticket booking and group booking that will save time as well as money. When I visit Germany, will definitely visit here

    1. Wandering ChocoboWandering Chocobo Post author

      I always said it is one of the most castley castles there. It’s what I think of when I think of castle. I hope you are able to make it out here someday!

  6. Paige Wunder

    Gorgeous photos! I was at Neuschawanstein Castle in the winter so I didn’t do the hike around for those amazing views, but daaang, I missed out! Biking sounds like a great adventure! I need to head back there soon! Cheers!

  7. Alexandra Ogden

    Wow, it really is like walking into a fairy tale! I love how in depth you got – right down to where you should go to the toilet! Funny, but totally necessary information!! Bookmarking this now for when I go 🙂
    I don’t know if you’ve been to Sintra in Portugal, but that’s another fairy tale daytrip from Lisbon that I would recommend.

    1. Wandering ChocoboWandering Chocobo Post author

      I have never been to Sintra, or Portugal, but I would LOVE to go. I looked it up and it does look quite picturesque! Thanks for reading and the extra tip.

  8. Maja Mexatia

    The prettiest castle in the world! It has been a dream to see it in person, I can imagine us coming in a carriage 😀 Your guide is excellent and I love how you planned everything. Much is not so far from Zagreb, we will use your suggestions for our next trip.

  9. Kelly

    Lovely post. I had no idea that this castle outside of Munich existed. It reminds of the Beauty and the Beast Castle. But I love all your thorough tips about how to get there and reserving tickets early and even how to take the best photos. So amazing.

  10. Only By Land

    This is something I didn’t do in Munich, instead I took the flixbus to Innbruck. I’m more interested in photography the castle than a tour so I’d go out to Marienbrucke Bridge like you suggested, the image you took is stunning. Great info about avoiding busy times, I hate it when it’s super busy.

    1. Wandering ChocoboWandering Chocobo Post author

      Innsbruck is a great place to go too! If you ever make it back you’ll have to come see some castles. I prefer photos too, but my family really wanted to see the inside. Thanks for reading!

  11. Jillian Michelle

    I’ve always wanted to visit Neuschwanstein!!! I had no idea you could arrive by horse drawn carriage though lol! I love that it’s an option. I’ll definitely opt for the tours when I go. Thanks for the tip about the photo op spots that are only available that way! I’d be bummed if I missed out on some epic photos by skipping out on a tour. Your photo of the castle from afar (with the bright blue sky and fluffy clouds) is my absolute favorite of all your photos though!! Thanks so much for telling us where to go to snag that same view!! So often I see people post great photos with no helpful info on how to take a similar one. I probably would have spent forever wandering around before realizing I should go BEHIND the castle to Marienbrucke Bridge (or missed out on it completely). Thanks bunches!! I love that your articles always have so many great tips and secrets! <3

  12. Jackie Taylor

    The view of the castle is absolutely amazing! I would love to see it in person someday. This is just another reason why I need to go back to Germany!

  13. Allison

    Neuschwanstein Castle looks like it’s straight out of a fairy tale so I can see why Disney would use it as inspiration. Good to know that you can reserve tickets in advance to avoid the queues as this is one of my biggest pet peeves. The rickety wooden bridge would freak me out … there is no way I would be walking across that lol

  14. Global Girl Travels

    Oh yes I’ve read that this castle actually inspired the magical castles on Disney. It’s amazing right that those that we see on fairy tale stories actually exist in real life. You’re so lucky to have witness such an architectural marvel. I do consider myself an architectural buff and love seeing all kinds of architectural beauty and I would be honored to behold this sight in person.

  15. Clare

    I have seen a lot of pictures of this castle recently and it just looks so beautiful. I need to try and fit in a few days to germany as I love castles and really want to see it. Thanks for the info, very useful. I always like to get to a place independently so this helps alot. Thanks 🙂

  16. Priyadarshini Rajendran

    Wow, Newschwanstein castle sounds so exciting. I love all things related to Alps and I am a sucker for fairy tales.. this castle looks like it is out of my dream!
    Thanks for sharing the schedule, looks great. I would love to know if there is any specific season you think is good to visit this castle?
    The photos are great by the way!

  17. Jacqui cooks

    Oooh I’m so envious you got to visit the original Disney Castle It certainly sounds magical! I’m so tempted to go and visit right now. Carriages and toboggans WOW! Thank you for your post!

  18. Manon

    I still can’t get over the fact how beautiful the castle is, and that I never visited it before. Always when I see photos, especially during winter times I remind myself to go.. I definitely need to make it a higher priority.

  19. Marguerite

    Thank you so much for this! I’m based in Berlin and am planning a trip to Munich in the spring. I wasn’t sure if I could visit the castle in one day, but thanks to your itinerary I now know I can. Danke schön!

  20. Karin

    There are gondolas?! I´m sold! I never took a gondola in my life in spite of visiting Venice twice. It looks like you have to plan the trip really well though as the tickets can only be reserved and not bought straight away!

    1. Wandering ChocoboWandering Chocobo Post author

      Bavaria is FULL of gondolas. They’re usually used for skiing in the winter, but great for skipping the hiking in the summer. If you ever come down here I’ll take you on some of the better ones!

  21. Jennifer McCallum

    Just found your blog and I love it! I’m currently planning a trip to Switzerland and was debating about adding a day trip to Neuschwanstein…and this confirmed it! Thanks for all of the detailed tips!

  22. Rafael & Thomas

    Hey, Susanna.

    Beautiful shots! Neuschwanstein is surely a pearl but all the nature around it is also incredible. We want to go back there in summer to enjoy it more!

  23. Jamie H

    Very helpful post..although what do you mean by get to the train by 5:50 to head back to Munich because it is the best, but not the last train?
    Also, how did you find the forested walk that your parents took while coming back down the castle? This is something I would be interested in with my parents. Does it lead to the same area at the bottom as the paved path?

    1. Wandering ChocoboWandering Chocobo Post author

      Hey Jamie, I’m so glad you found this helpful! The last train often depends on the season. I HIGHLY recommend getting back to the train station by 5:50 to get back to Munich. The options after that can take double/triple the time, with several stops and it can be quite complicated to get home. I believe during the offseason, it really is the last train. Train schedules change every year and are dictated by season though, I find that Google Maps does a decent job with train schedules, or you can ask when you buy your train ticket what the schedule is at that time. I would say for all logical reasoning that is the LAST train. If you’re worried about time, you can always look at getting to the area earlier, and look at taking a train before 9:52. This might be something to consider if you want to do a gondola ride or any extra exploring. However, with my whole family, we had plenty of time to do the exploring we wanted. There are two ways down I mention. The gorge which leads to a different area, and the off-trail gravel path – which does lead to the same area as the paved path and the entrance you came through.


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