Linderhof is the smallest castle commissioned by King Ludwig II. That doesn’t make it any less spectacular. Actually, of all three beautiful King Ludwig II’s castles, Linderhof is our favourite one.
The courts of absolutistic French monarchs were inspiration for architecture and decor of Linderhof. The symbol of the sun, which represents the God-given absolute power to rule, will follow you everywhere inside.
However, King Ludwig II was also a big fan of technological advances of his era. Linderhof is full of technical gadgets. For example, the fairy-tale king didn’t like companionship very much. The people, whose company he could bear, had been gone long before Ludwig was even born. So, the idea of a disappearing table “Tischlein deck dich” (table lay yourself) was born. When the king was about to dine, the servants set the table in the kitchen one floor below the dining room. Then a mechanism was used to pull the table up to the dining room – as if it appeared from nowhere. The table had to be ready for at least 3 more guests because Ludwig held imaginary conversations with his idols – King Louis XV or Marie Antoinette while eating.
Linderhof is surrounded by a beautiful garden. After the tour in the castle, you should visit smaller huts such as Moorish Kiosk or Moroccan House. A rarity is an artificial Venus grotto with a lake and a platform, where arias from Wagner operas were performed while Ludwig was floating in his swan-like boat. The cave was fully illuminated by artificial light and dynamos provided electricity – quite a technical masterpiece for the late 19th century.
Note: The grotto is now closed due to reconstruction works. It will be accessible to public again in 2022. Have that in mind, while planning your trip.
At Linderhof, there aren’t usually as many visitors as at Neuschwanstein. You can enjoy yourself in the gardens and surrounding park. Of course, it is busier during weekends and Bavarian school holidays, but it’s nothing compared to Neuschwanstein.
Linderhof is set in the magnificent alpine scenery of Ammergauer Alps.
How to get there
To be honest, it is a little tricky to get to Linderhof if you don’t have a car at your disposal. There is a train from Munich to Oberau, then you have to change to a bus to Klostergasthof Ettal and change again for a bus to Linderhof Palace. It all takes more than 2 hours. An option, we personally have never tried, is getting there by bus using FlixBUS. According to their website, there is a bus leaving Munich in the morning at 09:15 and returning at 19:05. The price is 9,90€ one way.
While you are in the area, it is worth to plan a stop at Ettal Abbey. You can admire magnificent baroque frescos under the monastery’s dome. They run their own traditional brewery and distillery. Try a glass of Ettaler Helles or a shot of the Abbey schnapps – provided you are not driving.
Visit Linderhof for its striking beauty compressed in the smallest Palace of King Ludwig II. After all, this was the castle, where the fairy-tale king spent many nights, dined and relaxed in the cover of a mighty 300 years old lime tree in the palace’s garden.
Get away from the crowded Neuschwanstein. You won’t regret it.