Saturday, August 15

Photos to follow

Up early and into town to catch the bus. We were off to see two castles and stop off in Oberammergau on the way.

First stop was Oberammergau, where we strolled around and looked in a few gift shops. If it was made out of wood, it was here.  

Both castles were built by Ludwig 11, being two of three castles he built. Interesting was that no one ever visited them during his lifetime as he was both a recluse and a bit different.  Unfortunately no photos were allowed inside.

 The first castle was Linderhof, which was the only one completely finished, and it was over the top with gold leaf everywhere. In terms of castles it was reasonably small, given that Ludwig was the only person using it.  He did have a staff if thirty people to cater for his every need. 

The height of indulgence was the dinner table which was on a lift mechanism. All the good was prepared in the kitchen underneath his dining room, the table set and then it was raised to appear in front of him. When he finished the reverses happened. In this way no one saw Ludwig eat. 

In his bedroom he even had running water for the toilet and hand basin. The bed took seven wood carvers four years to complete and looked like a Gothic cathedral. He even had his own private chapel off the bedroom. 

Onto his second castle, Neuschwanstein, past some beautiful lakes, brilliant greens, post card stuff. This was a lot bigger, probably to fulfill his ego, but was never finished inside. 

Had commanding views of the surrounding countryside, located on a high plateau, which could only be accessed by a two kilometre walk, all up hill. Took half an hour to get up there. 

Another magnificent wood carved bed, and again no one was allowed to visit the castle. The downside for Ludwig was that he ran out of money and the state had a doctor, who never actually visited him, declare him unfit to rule. So he was arrested and then he and the doctor died of mysterious circumstances. They both drowned in a lake. Some say, that Ludwig murdered the doctor and then committed suicide. We will never know. 

 Tour of castle finished, we walked back down the hill to the bus and back to Munich. Dinner and rehydration at a restaurant, then back to Myrtle.

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