Eliza and Abbey are obsessed with fairytales and princesses, so I was thinking that a themed holiday would be one that would be both memorable for them and something we would enjoy as a family, as we really love to travel. Germany is a destination that is known for its gorgeous ‘fairytale’ castles and has been on my ‘travel bucket list’, for some time too!
So visiting castles like the ones in Germany could very possibly be the ultimate holiday for them, and for the family in general!
Travel tips for Germany with kids
- Make an itinerary
Especially when traveling with kids, you want to have your travels organized. Do some planning before you go so you can understand where exactly you want to go, which castles are open when, where you should fly into, budget allowances, etc. This will make you much more confident traveling, especially for the ‘off chance’ that your child is zapped of energy and maybe a little cranky and you are trying to figure out ‘what’s next?’
- Consider your accommodation
For family travel especially, it is extremely helpful to have your own privacy, space, kitchen to cook for picky eaters and be in a location that is easy to get to as well as where you feel safe. It is recommended that you check out apartments or homes for rent for family travel in Germany!
- Learn some German
I always find it extremely helpful, not to mention respectful, to learn some of the local language before traveling. With so many resources nowadays, it’s convenient too. For example, you can learn German online with Babbel’s language courses and even convince your kids that language learning on the app is fun tech time! That being said, German is a tricky language! So practice, practice, practice… even if you ‘just’ the essential getting around phrases. It is also helpful to have a few written down somewhere so if you are in a pinch you can simply show the card to someone.
- Keep your packing to the essentials only
Imagine this: you are walking through a train station with your family carrying food, your youngest, and your luggage. You’re going to want that luggage to be efficiently packed and in the smallest suitcase possible! Keep your packing to the essentials only, and since this is a trip intended to stop at the castles in Germany, let your kids use their imaginations as to what outfits they want to wear. Be sure everyone has comfortable walking shoes and layers, just in case! Many of the castles are situated up in the mountains so you’ll want to be prepared for weather shifts.
Fairytale castles to visit in Germany
- Neuschwanstein Castle
Neuschwanstein Castle is the ultimate ‘fairytale’ castle, drawing just under 1.5 million visitors every year. It is located just under 2 hours outside of Munich and entails a trek up the mountain to get up to the actual 19th century castle. You can also take a horse-drawn carriage up, which no doubt would be Eliza and Abbey’s choice!
- Hohenzollern Castle
Hohenzollern Castle is listed among the Hogwarts lookalikes and located 50 kilometres south of Stuttgart. You can explore the grounds and catch open air and Shakespeare productions, too.
- Reichsburg Cochem
Reichsburg Cochem is located a few hours west of Frankfurt and is a well-preserved castle even after being attacked by Louis XIV’s troops. For a medieval fairy tale experience, head to the castle on a Friday or Saturday evening for a ‘Knight’s Meal’ including traditional food and entertainment.
- Eltz Castle
Eltz Castle is a unique castle with red woodwork that stands out against the Wierschem woodlands. It is still a home to this day, owned by the Kempenich family, and has its original charm with many original furnishings and character.
- Linderhof Palace
Linderhof Palace is a ‘smaller’ castle compared to the rest here. It is located near Lake Constance and has gorgeous formal gardens. It was commissioned by Ludwig II and shows his respect and admiration for the “Sun King,” Louis XIV.
This will definitely be a trip that the castle and princess-obsessed kids won’t forget!