As the home to the iconic folklore duo, the Brothers Grimm, it is no surprise that Germany offers many magical destinations reminiscent of the fairytales from our childhood. It is nearly impossible to see traditional German buildings and not think of your favourite stories.
So, where should you go if you want to see the medieval destinations pulled straight from your favourite fairytales?
Most of our stops landed us on the Romantic Road, a route intended to revitalize tourism following the war. The official route takes you from Wurzburg and Augsberg, to the walled cities of Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber, Dinkelsbühl, and Nördlingen, and ending at the iconic Neuschwanstein. The route takes you driving through vineyards and rolling hills until you reach the Alps.
All the while driving alongside beautiful vineyards, clear waters, and rolling hills, until you reach the majestic Bavarian Alps.
Take in historical castles, stroll through lush parks, and take in the excellent wines and gourmet restaurants. Würzburg also boasts colourful wine festivals and beautiful vineyards. With these beautiful views, wine, and historic buildings (including a Unesco World Heritage site), Würzburg has a lot to offer in the way of magical medieval towns.
Check out the baroque Würzburg Residenz for a Unesco World Heritage site filled with antiques, frescoes, and a beautiful garden. Then, stroll across the Alte Mainbrücke (Old Main Bridge) with it's lively atmosphere and views over the water. Spend some time at Marienberg Fortress, especially at the Prince's Garden overlooking the city, bridge, and water!
2. ROTHENBURG OB DER TAUBER
Cobblestone streets, beautifully preserved timber homes, ancient ramparts... Although considered more touristy than other medieval cities, there is definitely a reason Rothenburg brings in the crowds. With bright colours, and a walled medieval haven at it's centre, Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber is a medieval fairytale come to life and untouched by time. It inspired the village in Pinocchio, and was even used for filming a touch of Harry Potter!
Try out the unique food fare known as a Schneeball, a deep-fried ball of pastry, covered in sugar and often chocolate. I mean, I didn't particularly like it, but try it anyway! And, if Christmas is your holiday, check out Käthe Wohlfahrt or visit this Christmas capital during the holidays for the most picture perfect Christmas.
If tourism is less your style, you may find the historic town of Dinkelsbühl is the perfect stop. Although Dinkelsbühl offers similar traits to Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber, Dinkelsbühl offers a more solitary experience than the other towns that made this list and is a pleasant break from the crowds.
4. NEUSCHWANSTEIN CASTLE
Probably the ultimate destination for fairytale lovers is the iconic Neuscwanstein Castle. Considering it was used as the inspiration for the Disney castle, it is safe to say there is no castle as romantic and fairytale-like as Neuschwanstein. A perfectly positioned bridge gets you ultimate views of the castle, but take the tour to see the grandeur of the inside!
You'll feel like a prince or princess if you take a horse and carriage up to the Castle. Visit at different times of day for a completely unique perspective of the beautiful castle.
Although they are stops along the Romantic Road, these places bring to life so many memories of stories as children. To step back in time, make sure to visit these 4 fairytale destinations in Germany.
And because no fairytale destination list could be exhaustive of the home of fairytales, for more destinations check out the Fairytale Road, and more stops on the Romantic Road!