When you think of castles, what usually comes to mind are Disney movies and period films. But despite the world modernising rapidly, castles are still very much around, and each one tells a compelling story and symbolises tradition that has withstood the test of time.
Majestic, magical, and the stuff of dreams, here is a list of castles that will make you wish you were living in a fairytale.
1. Istana Syarqiyyah
Kuala Terengganu, Malaysia
We start our list of enchanting castles with one nestled in our very own backyard. Designed by Thailand-based internationally-acclaimed architect Ben Bensley, the Royal Palace of Terengganu truly evokes a modern fairytale in the 21st century.
2. Larnach Castle
Dunedin, New Zealand
Have you ever wanted to stay at a castle and pretend you’re living in a fairytale? At New Zealand’s Larnach Castle, you can! Here, guests can have a full-on castle experience as they take in the beauty of New Zealand. Did we mention that Larnach’s garden is also as impressive?
3. Royal Palace Museum
Luang Prabang, Laos
Built in 1904 for a former king, the Royal Palace Museum in Laos looks humble on the outside but houses some impressive exhibits inside. Be enthralled by the 2,000-year-old Prabang Buddha made from solid gold!
4. Schloss Leopoldskron
Looking like something out of a Wes Anderson film, Schlooss Leopoldskron in the quaint town of Salzburg was once a palace that is now a privately owned hotel. It’s also where some of The Sound of Music’s most iconic settings were filmed.
5. Eltz Castle
Aurora, are you in there? Looking like something straight out of a Disney fairytale, Eltz castle is one of the most photographed in the world. Surrounded by lush greenery and resting on top of a hill, this medieval castle is still owned by the Eltz family. And, as you can see, the castle has a very different vibe in the day and at night.
Le Mont Saint-Michel
Standing proudly by the Bay, the Mont-Saint-Michel in France is as magical as it gets. While it’s not technically a castle, this monastery is still as majestic, and visitors can get to it on foot!
7. Windsor Castle
Probably the most famous castle of all, Windsor Castle is home to the British royal family and has been for centuries. This is one of three residential palaces that the Queen of England often resides in!
8. Matsumoto Castle
Formerly known as Fukashi Castle, Matsumoto Castle boasts a mysterious appearance with its dark walls and tall structure. Thanks to the residents of Matsumoto, this castle was saved from modern developers trying to make way for new buildings. It is now one of Japan’s proudest possessions.
9. Burg Kreuzenstein
Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your hair! Or at least it looks like somewhere the long-haired beauty would be living in. Austria is home to some of the world’s most enchanting castles, and this medieval one is no different!
10. Nakhal Fort
Not quite a castle, but impressive nonetheless is Nhakal Fort. As with most forts, this was built to keep invaders away, and we can’t help but be mesmerised by its irregular shapes. Now a museum, it’s temporarily closed off to visitors, but this monument should still be celebrated for its beauty.