Schwerin Castle

Schwerin Castle: A Lakeside Fairy Tale

Seemingly floating over the water, Schwerin Castle in northern Germany looks like the creation of a powerful magician. With turrets, wings, and golden domes gleaming under the sun, it can surely enchant any visitor.

Settled on an island in the main lake of Schwerin – the capital city of the federated state Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania – Schweriner Schloss (Schwerin Castle) is one of Germany’s most profound. The castle has a “storybook appearance”, featuring turrets, golden domes, and a stunningly beautiful garden. And unlike many of its peers, which are grand and impressive, this castle looks rather romantic.

The Castle

Built between 1845 and 1857, Schwerin Castle is considered an outstanding work of romantic historicism in all of Europe. The castle incorporates multiple renowned architectural styles at the time, including Gothic, Slavic, Hanseatic, and even French Renaissance. Inspired by Chambord, the architects intentionally used these elements to accentuate the king-like status of the castle’s owner.

In centuries past, this intimate fortress served as the residence of the Grand Duke of Mecklenburg. But during the 20th century, its role switched back and forth between a Landtag (the seat of the state parliament) and a museum. Today, the castle houses parliamentarians from the federated state, as well as a museum illustrating its history.

Entrance to the castle

Schwerin Castle and the Gardens

Parts of the castle’s attractiveness lies in the surrounding lake and gardens. The beauty of the Neo-Renaissance formal garden landscape can be described in one word “magic”. It cleverly combined statues, flowers, trees, and water, giving the whole area a fairytale impression.

Yet what makes Schwerin Castle extraordinary is the visual connections. Unlike the garden of Sanssouci Palace which has multiple focal points, all the paths and axes in Schwerin’s gardens lead to the castle. It is the pièce de résistance of the entire scenery. Especially, when looking from across the lake, the castle seems like floating over the lake surface.

The garden of Schwerin Castle
The castle seems floating over the water

Tips for visiting Schwerin Castle

  • Schwerin is an ideal day trip destination from Hamburg. It’s located just 70km from the port city and easily accessible by regional trains. The trip takes approximately 45 minutes.
  • Admission fee to the palace is 8.5€, including photography permission.
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15 thoughts on “Schwerin Castle: A Lakeside Fairy Tale”

  1. Mel & Suan – Singapore – Mel works his day job for a living, but lives for antiquities, history and geography at all other times. He enjoys writing and thought sharing and obviously traveling. Suan is a homey person, who like girlie stuff such as cross stitching etc. Enjoys shopping & modeling for Mel. What a match!
    Mel & Suan says:

    Very beautiful and picturesque indeed!
    Have not been to that part of Germany though

    1. Then you should include this part on your next Europe trip 😉 I think Northern Germany is underrated because it doesn’t match the typical image of Germany. There is neither Oktoberfest nor the Alps. Personally, I think it looks more like the Netherlands or Denmark 🙂 But it’s still worth visiting though.

      1. Mel & Suan – Singapore – Mel works his day job for a living, but lives for antiquities, history and geography at all other times. He enjoys writing and thought sharing and obviously traveling. Suan is a homey person, who like girlie stuff such as cross stitching etc. Enjoys shopping & modeling for Mel. What a match!
        Mel & Suan says:

        Oh yes that is probably true. No one thinks about Hamburg or Bremen or cities of the north, least of all in the north eastern end!

  2. Bama – Jakarta, Indonesia – Based in Jakarta, always curious about the world, always fascinated by ancient temples, easily pleased by food.
    Bama says:

    Oh my! What a stupendous castle this is! I love the eclectic architectural styles applied to this magnificent building, and in the golden hours, this surely shines. Since this castle is now used as the regional parliament of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, I wonder if it’s similar with Austria’s parliament building in Vienna in the sense that visitors can visit some parts of the compound during certain times of a year.

    1. Thanks for your compliments, Bama! As far as I can remember visitors are not allowed wandering freely inside the palace. There is a designated route which runs through the most beautiful chambers. However, you can stay in a room as long as you like. I especially like the throne room, but it was difficult to make a human-free photo 🙂

  3. Arundhati Basu – New Jersey, US – The great affair in my life is to travel. I count myself immensely fortunate that my partner shares this passion. We are a team that likes to spend time planning and plotting out places to go. Destination check, flights check, accommodation check, cheesy grins check. Off we go.
    Dippy Dotty Girl says:

    Okay now I rue not choosing Schwerin all those years ago when I was in Hamburg and dithering between Schwerin and Schleswig! Schwerin is so pretty. The palace certainly makes it worth it.

    1. Such a pity! For a romantic person like you, I think you would love this palace (and garden). Now you have a reason to go back there 😉 Perhaps a weekend trip. If I remember correctly, there are countless of flights from the UK to Hamburg each day.

      1. Arundhati Basu – New Jersey, US – The great affair in my life is to travel. I count myself immensely fortunate that my partner shares this passion. We are a team that likes to spend time planning and plotting out places to go. Destination check, flights check, accommodation check, cheesy grins check. Off we go.
        Dippy Dotty Girl says:

        Now how I wish that were true, but we shifted last year across the pond. Those frequent weekend trips are now a distant dream. But hopes are always up for the future 🙂

  4. vinneve – I believe in this quote "Life is a JOURNEY, travel it well." Wherever we may end up so long as there is LOVE we will be happy!
    vinneve says:

    Wow!! that is a very beautiful Palace!

  5. Alison and Don – Occupation: being/living/experiencing/travelling In our sixties, (Don is now 77) with apparently no other authentic option, my husband Don and I sold our apartment and car, sold or gave away all our stuff and set off to discover the world. And ourselves. We started in Italy in 2011 and from there have travelled to Spain, India, Bali, Australia, New Zealand, SE Asia, South America, etc. - you can see the blog archive. We will continue travelling until it's time to stop - if that time ever comes. So far it suits us very well. We are interested in how the world works, how life works, how the creation of experience works, how the mind works. As we travel and both "choose" our course, and at the same time just let it unfold, we discover the "mechanics" of life, the astounding creativity of life, and a continual need to return to trust and presence. Opening the heart, and acceptance of what is, as it is, are keystones for us both. Interests: In no particular order: travel, figure skating (as a fan), acceptance, authenticity, walking/hiking, joy, creativity, being human, adventure, presence, NOW. Same for Don except replace figure skating with Formula One motor racing.
    Alison and Don says:

    What an absolutely stunning place! Magical is the perfect word for it. Gorgeous photos as usual.
    Alison

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