Last Updated on January 26, 2024

Are you into visiting European castles? It’s one of my family’s favorite things to do when crossing the pond from the U.S.

Whether it’s a medieval fortress or magical châteaux, breathtaking castles serve as the backdrops for much of Disney’s famous lore – and now you can visit these enchanting destinations with ease through Europe’s number one rail booking app, Trainline.

From the captivating towers of “Tangled” to the dreamy landscapes of “Sleeping Beauty,” Trainline’s European Castle Guide showcases the mesmerizing backdrops that have fueled the most beloved fairytales. What sets this list apart is its seamless integration within the app, making these fairytale experiences just a train ride away from major metro hubs across Europe.

Scaliger Castle: Malcesine, Italy

Give the Roman ruins a break and get a breathtaking view of picturesque Lake Garda from the top of this castle’s 101-foot tower. This medieval lakeside castle contains a history and nature museum in addition to panoramic views stemming from its ancient protohistoric settlement in Malcesine.

Scaliger Castle is accessible by trains to Serravalle for rates between $11 – $55 via Trainline from Milan (1 hour 40 minutes).

Neuschwanstein Castle: Bavaria, Germany

This is by far one of the most enchanting castles I’ve ever visited.

Wish upon a star at Neuschwanstein Castle in Bavaria. It’s up for debate whether this German palace inspired Disney’s “Sleeping Beauty” or “Cinderella Castle,” but an encyclopedic knowledge of all things Disney is not required to enjoy a tour of this regal estate.

Visit Neuschwanstein Castle on a day trip from Munich by train (or by pumpkin coach if your Fairy Godmother is fronting the trip). Neuschwanstein Castle is accessible by train to Füssen for rates between $30 – $45 via Trainline from Munich (2 hours).

Château de Chambord: Loir-et-Cher, Centre, France

Chambord Castle, Loir-et-Cher, Centre, France
Chambord Castle, Loir-et-Cher, Centre, France. Photo courtesy of Deposit Photos.

After a trip to Disneyland Paris, be our guest to take a train into France’s castle-filled Alsace region. A dreamy real-life Disney destination, the Château de Chambord will instantly evoke memories of Beast’s enchanted castle from “Beauty and the Beast.”

We cannot confirm the presence of walking, talking candlesticks, but you will find stunning Renaissance-era architecture and gardens that make the entire property come alive.

Château de Chambord is accessible by rail to Blois–Chambord for rates between $22 – $42 via Trainline from Paris (1 hour 40 minutes).

Mont Saint-Michel, France

Mont Saint-Michel is worth the day trip from Paris whether you’re a “Tangled” fan or not. This stunning tidal island is actually home to an abbey, not a castle, so don’t expect a long-haired princess to be hanging out atop the Gothic architecture. Instead, you’ll find a small village of monks and nuns, restaurants and shops, and plenty of photo ops.

Mont Saint-Michel is accessible by rail to Mont-St-Michel for rates between $40 – $55 via Trainline from Nantes (2 hours 45 minutes). 

Buda Castle: Budapest, Hungary

Buda Castle in Budapest, Hungary.
Buda Castle in Budapest, Hungary. Photo by Noreen Kompanik

Situated atop a hill on the Buda side of Hungary’s capital, you’ll have trouble finding a better place to watch the sunset over the Danube.

Buda Castle is accessible by rail via Trainline centrally located in Budapest to the Budapest-Deli station. (17 minutes).

Author

  • Noreen Kompanik

    Noreen Kompanik is a retired registered nurse, legal nurse consultant, and military spouse turned travel writer. She launched her travel writing career in 2014 and has over 600 articles in both digital and print publications.

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