Europe is full of awe-inspiring castles! You’ll find medieval stone walls, sky-high towers, and intriguing stories from centuries past. These magnificent structures have stood the test of time, offering visitors a glimpse into what life must have been like everywhere from the Irish countryside to the Bavarian Alps. Join us as we explore 12 of the best castles Europe has to offer!
One of the most popular castles in Europe thanks to its majestic structure and clifftop location, you’ll also find an ornate interior including an artificial grotto.
Trakai Island Castle
Sitting on a postcard-perfect island, Trakai Island Castle was built in three phases starting in the 14th century and has since become one of Lithuania’s most visited attractions.
Château de Chambord
Built in the 16th century, Chambord became one of the most recognizable châteaux in the world and is the largest castle in the Loire Valley.
Alcázar of Segovia
Built on top of a rock and shaped like the bow of a ship, this impressive structure served as inspiration for Cinderella’s castle.
Nestled in the heart of the Connemara mountains, this 150-year-old neo-Gothic castle is now a Benedictine monastery.
Dating back to the 13th century, this Gothic-style castle was built directly into the side of a 404-foot cliff and hides a network of cave passages.
Sitting promontory above the Gulf of Trieste with stunning views, all the rooms of this castle still feature the original furnishing dating back to the middle of the 19th century.
The oldest and largest occupied castle in the world and the Official Residence of Her Majesty The Queen, the castle’s rich history spans almost 1,000 years.
This legendary castle sitting high up on a hill in Transylvania is rumored to have served as inspiration for Bram Stoker’s 1897 novel, Dracula.
This fully intact medieval castle has survived 850 years in a small German valley and has been owned by the same family for the entire time!
Conwy Castle is a medieval fortification on the north coast of Wales considered by UNESCO to be one of the finest examples of late 13th century and early 14th-century military architecture in Europe.
Sitting along the banks of Lake Geneva with breathtaking views of the surrounding alps, Chillon was the residence and profitable toll station of the Counts of Savoy for nearly four centuries.