The Rhine

   
Rudesheim

Rüdesheim (Ruedesheim), at the southern end of the Rhine Gorge

Drosselgasse street in Rudesheim

Drosselgasse shopping and restaurant street in Rüdesheim

Vineyards at Rudesheim

Vineyards on the hills at Rüdesheim, started in the 6th century

Rhine cruise boat

Cruising on the Rhine, through this UNESCO World Heritage zone.

Rhine River village

Typical small village along the Rhine, with typically steep terraced vineyards

Ruine Ehrenfels

Ruine Ehrenfels, above the vineyards, the Rhine, and modern commerce

Ruine Ehrenfels

The Ehrenfels ruins, near Rudesheim, date from 1210

Burg Rheinstein

Burg Rheinstein, near Trechtingshausen, 13th century

Pfalz, Rhine toll castle

Pfalzgrafenstein (the Pfalz), a mid-river toll castle near Kaub, erected in 1328

Lorelei Rock

The Lorelei Rock was said by careless sailors to be home of a deadly maiden.

St. Goar

St. Goar, on the west bank of the Rhine, between Rudesheim and Kobblenz

Burg Katz

Burg Katz, opposite St. Goar at St. Goarshausen, dates from 1360

The Moselle, Neckar and Main Rivers

   
Burg Eltz

Burg Eltz, a medieval castle nestled in the hills above a tributary to the Moselle

Burg Eltz

Burg Eltz is still owned by the same family that lived there in the 12th century.

Burg Eltz interior

The interior of the castle was segmented to accommodate three branches of the family.

Cochem, on the Moselle

Cochem, on the Moselle, dominated by the hilltop Cochem Castle

Heidelberg skyline

Heidelberg, on the Neckar, a Rhine tributary, settled by Celts about 800 BC

Heidelberg bridge

The southern end of the 1786 bridge was linked to the city wall and a defensive gate.

Heidelberg Castle

Heidelberg Castle, 260 feet up the hill, dates from the 15th century.

Heidelberg Castle

A series of wars brought repeated destructions of Heidelberger Schloss.

Rothenburg ob der Tauber

Rothenburg ob der Tauber is an amazingly well-preserved medieval town.

Rothenburg street

A busy street in Rothenburg, with a gate in the fortification wall at the end of the street

Rothenburg horse carriage

Cars must stay outside the original Rothenburg, but horse carriages are allowed.

Rothenburg town square

Rothenberg's town square, with its Town Hall dating from 1250

Munich

   
Munich skyline

Munich, capital of Bavaria and Germany's 3rd-largest city (metro 6 million)

Munich's Olympic Park

Munich's Olympic Park, site of the 1972 Summer Olympics

Munich's Olympic Park

Olympic Park is still an integral part of the life of Munich (München)

Konigsplatz, Munich

Konigsplatz (Königsplatz), created at the command of Crown Prince Ludwig

Munich's Ludwigstrasse

Munich's Ludwigstrasse, Residence, Odeonsplatz, and Theatine Church (L-R)

Munich's National Theatre

Munich's opera house, the National Theatre

Marienplatz, Munich

Marienplatz is Munich's central square, dominated by the Rathaus (city hall).

Munich City Hall

Munich City Hall's animated Glockenspiel entertains tourists three times a day.

Neuschwanstein – Ludwig's First Castle

   
Neuschwanstein Castle

Neuschwanstein, Ludwig's first and most famous castle, built between 1869 and 1886

Neuschwanstein - helicopter wide shot

Neuschwanstein sits on its own height of land at the base of Mount Tegelberg.

Neuschwanstein Castle

Schloss Neuschwanstein (Neuschwanstein Castle), seen from Mary's Bridge

Neuschwanstein Castle

Neuschwanstein Castle was designed by Christian Jank, a theatrical set designer.

Neuschwanstein - helicopter view from the north

The helicopter provides a rare view of the castle – the view from the north.

Neuschwanstein - helicopter view from above

This top view reveals the audacity of the architecture of Neuschwanstein.

Singers' Hall, Neuschwanstein

Singers' Hall occupies the entire fourth floor of Neuschwanstein Castle.

Hohenschwangau

Hohenschwangau as seen from Neuschwanstein in the autumn

Herrenchiemsee – Ludwig's Third Castle

   
Herrenchiemsee Palace

Herrenchiemsee is hidden on an island in Chiemsee, Bavaria's largest lake.

Herrenchiemsee Palace

Herrenchiemsee, inspired by Versailles, was the most expensive Ludwig project.

Herrenchiemsee gardens

The formal gardens feature many fountains and statues, both in the classical style  ...

Herrenchiemsee gardens

... and in the fantastic style of romanticism favored by King Ludwig.

Innsbruck and Salzburg

   
Innsbruck street

Innsbruck's older pedestrian district, with the Alps in the background

Golden Roof, Innsbruck

The Golden Roof (Goldenes Dachl) was built in 1500 with 2657 fire-gilded copper tiles.

St. Jakob Cathedral, Innsbruck

Interior of the St. Jakob Cathedral, converted from Gothic to Baroque 1717-24.

Innsbruck Tyrolean entertainment

Traditional Tyrolean entertainment at an Innsbruck dinner show

Salzburg skyline

Salzburg has one of the best- preserved city centres north of the Alps.

Mirabell Palace, Salzburg

Mirabell Palace, built by a Prince Bishop in 1606 for his mistress

Mozart's birthplace, Salzburg

Mozart was born in a home on Getreidegasse and raised in Salzburg.

Fortress Hohensalzburg

Fortress Hohensalzburg, on Festungsberg hill, can now be reached by funicular.

Fortress Hohensalzburg

The fortress, begun in 1077,  is one of the largest medieval castles in Europe.

Fortress Hohensalzburg

Its hilltop location gave the fortress a view (and control) of a wide region.

Hellbrunn Palace, Salzburg

Hellbrunn Palace, built in 1613-19 by the Prince-Archbishop of Salzburg

Hellbrunn Palace trick fountains

Hellbrunn Palace is famous for its extensive trick fountains and "watergames".

Vienna

   
Vienna's Hofburg Imperial Palace

Vienna's Hofburg Imperial Palace was the home of the Hapsburg dynasty.

Austrian Parliament Building

The Austrian Parliament Building in Vienna, built between 1874 and 1883

Vienna State Opera House

Vienna State Opera House, home of the world-famous State opera company

Vienna City Hall

Celebrations in front of Vienna's Rathaus (City Hall), built 1872 - 1883

St. Stephen's Cathedral, Vienna

St. Stephen's Cathedral in central Vienna, on the site of an 1147 parish church

Schonbrunn Palace, Vienna

Schonbrunn Palace evolved over centuries from a 1696 hunting lodge.

Schonbrunn Palace, Vienna

Queen Maria Theresa made Schönbrunn the imperial summer residence.

Neptune Fountain at Schonbrunn

The Neptune Fountain, one element of Maria Theresa's gardens and park plan

Schonvrunn gardens

The 18th century gardens are used for current day concerts and celebrations

Schonbrunn's Gloriette

The Gloriette crowns a 60m / 200 ft hill overlooking the Palace and Vienna

Schonbrunn's Gloriette

The Gloriette was built on Maria Theresa's instructions in 1775

Palm House pavilions at Schonbrunn

The Palm House pavilions with temperate and tropical sections, added in 1881-82