The 10 Most Beautiful Castles in the World

 

The myriad of breathtaking castles around the globe makes it difficult to compile a list of the most beautiful ones. We have tried and came up with this Top 10 list of the most beautiful castles in the world. Our data is based on a survey that involved more than 10.000 travel enthusiasts and 40 castles around the world.

So, which castle won the title of the most beautiful one?

Let’s find this out together!

10. Alcàzar of Segovia, Spain

10. Alcàzar of Segovia, Spain

Credit: Rafa Esteve

The Alcàzar is a stone castle located in the old city of Segovia. Its shape resembles the prow of a ship and it’s located on a rocky hill. The Alcàzar, one of the most characteristic castles-palaces in Spain, was built in the 12th century. It was originally supposed to function as a fortress, but it functioned as a royal palace, state prison, and military academy.

Fun fact: this castle inspired the one featured in Walt Disney’s famous Cinderella cartoon.

9. Noisy Castle, Belgium

9. Noisy Castle, Belgium

Credit: Pel Laurens – http://www.forgotten-beauty.com

The Noisy castle, which is based in the Ardennes region of Belgium, is also known as Miranda castle. It is a 19th-century construction, precisely, built in 1866. This neo-Gothic fortification has been neglected since 1991. Its unusual look makes it an attraction for tourists from all over the world.

8. Windsor Castle, England

8. Windsor Castle, England

Credit: Diliff

It is a royal residence in Windsor, in the English county of Berkshire. The castle is notable for its long association with the British royal family and its architecture. More than 500 people live and work in this magnificent timeless structure.

7. Bodiam Castle, England

7. Bodiam Castle, England

Credit: Antony McCallum

Bodiam is a 14th-century castle, located in East Sussex, England. It was built in 1385 by Sir Edward Dalyngrigge, under the concession of Richard II. Its position in the center of a moat completely covered with water is what makes it so fascinating.

6. Prague Castle, Czech Republic

6. Prague Castle, Czech Republic

Credit: Stefan Bauer

The Prague Castle is one of the largest and oldest castles in the world. Its construction began around the 9th century and resulted in a fortress 570 meters long and about 130 meters wide. It was built on one of the nine hills of the city and it’s the center from where the capital expanded.

5. Kilkenny Castle, Ireland

5. Kilkenny Castle, Ireland

The Irish castle Kilkenny was built in 1195 by William the Marshal, the 1st Earl of Pembroke, to control the Nore River. This medieval fortification has undergone numerous restorations and is currently open to the public. It’s considered one of the most popular tourist attractions in Ireland.

4. Conwy Castle, Wales

4. Conwy Castle, Wales

Credit: David Dixon

Conwy Castle is a medieval fortification on the north coast of Wales, built by Edward I during his 13th-century conquest of Wales. The huge investment made for the construction of the towers makes it the most expensive of all the castles built by Edward I. But calling it the most expensive would be an understatement as it is also the most important castle of all.

3. Hohenschwangau Castle, Austria

3. Hohenschwangau Castle, Austria

Credit: Ralf Roletschek

Hohensalzburg is one of the oldest and best-preserved castles in Europe. It was built in the 11th century and expanded during the 1300s and it’s located on a mountain in Salzburg. With a length of 250 meters and a width of 150 meters, it is one of the largest castles in Europe.

2. Neuschwanstein Castle, Germany

2. Neuschwanstein Castle, Germany

Credit: Taxiarchos228

This castle is a 19th-century mansion located on a solid hill in Bavaria, Germany. The palace was commissioned by Ludwig II of Bavaria as a refuge and was opened to the paying public soon after his death, in 1886. More than 1.3 million people visit this splendid stronghold each year.

1. Mont Saint-Michel Castle, France

1. Mont Saint-Michel Castle, France

Credit: Luca Deboli

The Mont Saint-Michel castle is located on the homonymous rocky island in Normandy, about 1 km from the coast. The highest point on the island is 92 meters above sea level.

This sanctuary, classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is visited by more than 3 million people every year. Its stunning architecture helps make it the busiest tourist site in the entire Normandy.