The 10 Best Preserved Castles in Europe
Europe is a great place to go if you want to visit some impressive castles. Although most of the castles that were built in the past 2 millenniums perished along with their owners, there are still some impressive ones standing. These gorgeous places might have a bloody history, but this doesn’t make them any less amazing to see.
10.Mont Saint-Michel, France
This place is renowned for the role it played in the summer 1944, during the Allied invasion of Europe. The castle is set on a peak, close to the French coastline at Normandy. The fact that the place was so nicely preserved is probably what is drawing so many tourists to it every year. The castle was initially an abbey and a famous location among pilgrims.
9.Brodick Castle, Scotland
This specific castle is one of the oldest of its kind in Europe to be in such good shape. It is located in the Isle of Arran, which is found near the Scottish mainland. The fortification reportedly dates back to the 4th century AD. Over time, the castle has received various additions and improvements so it could offer better protection from Vikings and later from the English.
8.Bran Castle, Romania
This fortification is located close to Brasov, a medieval city in Romania, and is also known as ‘Dracula’s Castle’. The reason why this castle is associated with the famous vampire is that Bram Stoker depicted its first owner, Vlad III, Prince of Wallachia, as the infamous Count Dracula in his acclaimed novel ‘Dracula’.
7.Castle of Coco, Spain
It is locally known as ‘Castillo de Coca’ and was built for the Archbishop of Seville in the 15th century. The castle is situated quite close to the town of Coca, Segovia. It is not such a commonly known fact that Spain is home to around 6,000 castles. However, this one is without a doubt one of the most exceptional. Its architectural design is a blend of the Mudejar and Gothic styles and the materials used for its construction have such a light color that from afar it appears to be a large sand castle.
6.Eltz Castle, Germany
It is not difficult to classify this castle as one of the best preserved in not only Germany, but the world. For a period of time that exceeds 800 years, the place was in the possession of members of the same family. Its location adds to its beauty, as it is situated amidst a stunning mountain range, between the Trier and Koblenz towns.
5.Malbork Castle, Poland
The staggering fortification is located on what was Prussian land and currently is Polish property, an hour away from Gdansk. It was constructed by the Teutonic Order and dates back to 1274. This place holds some impressive records. For instance, it is believed to be the castle that occupies the greatest surface and also to be the largest structure made of bricks in Europe. It always has a great exhibition on display, which completes its appeal. This Gothic-looking fortification is an impressive piece of work and attracts numerous tourists every year.
4.Castle Neuschwanstein, Germany
This particular castle is a stunning example of a classic European one with post medieval influences. The process of building this towering fortress took place between 1869 and 1892. It was requested by Ludwig II, who allegedly wanted to use it as a private getaway. Ludwig might have not been able to enjoy this architectural beauty that is more of a palace than a castle (he passed away before it was completed), but today’s tourists have the chance to. A fun fact about it is that it is the castle that inspired the one we see in Disneyland. It was also featured in numerous movies and more than 1 million tourists come to visit it every year.
3.Edinburgh Castle, Scotland
This stunning fortress is set on a volcanic rock formation and has been looking over Scotland’s capital city for the past 1000 years. It was refitted more than once during this time and it is currently thought to be one of the strongest constructions of its kind in the world. This staggering landmark is visited by thousands of tourists every year. Its central location helps with its popularity because it results in the castle being easily accessible.
2.Windsor Castle, England
This famous castle has been around for about 1,000 years and it is still in great condition. It served as a Royal residence since its inception and it was originally the home of William the Conqueror, after he successfully invaded Saxon England in 1066. It has been the residence of a long line of English Monarchs ever since. The first in line was Henry I, the son of William, who lived there in the 1100s. Now it is the home of Queen Elizabeth II. Windsor Castle takes the crown for the longest occupied Palace on the continent.
1.Prague Castle, Czech Republic
This beautiful fortress was built in the 9th century and is perhaps one of the most iconic places in the Czech Republic. Bohemian Kings, Roman Emperors and Czech presidents used the castle as their home and place of work throughout time. Counted among Europe’s most important landmarks, this fortification entered the Guinness World Records as the largest ‘Ancient’ construction of its kind.