FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.
WF awards

4 Fairy Tale Towns and Castles in Germany

by Barbara Rogers

Feb 8, 2020

© Stillman Rogers

Age Specific / Kids

The Brothers Grimm were inspired by the castles, towns and landscapes of the German state of Hess, north of Frankfurt. The German Fairy Tale Route combines some of these places together with modern, themed attractions ranging from houses furnished to look like storybook settings to a castle tower that gives life to Rapunzel. Some of these sights on the Fairy Tale Route are a bit of a stretch, but there are so many, you can pick out the highlights as you travel through the region. Elsewhere in Germany your kids will delight in places where their imaginations can take flight, castles and villages that make perfect settings for their own tales of magic and adventure.


Here are some of our kids’ favorites:


Hohenzollern Castle (Burg Hohenzollern)

Although every kid recognizes Germany’s most famous castle, Nueschwanstein in Bavaria, as the model for Cinderella’s Castle in Disney, ours found more place for their imaginations to roam at the mountaintop Burg Hohenzollern in Baden-Württemberg. They were even more impressed to learn, as they toured its magnificent halls and collections of armor, gold work, royal robes and artifacts of imperial splendor (including an Emperor’s crown), a real royal family still lives there. This sumptuous palace of towers and turrets sits enclosed by a walled fortress, entered through an impressive gate.


The Hohenzollern Crown. Photo: Stillman Rogers


Bad Wimpfen

While in the Black Forest region, stop in Bad Wimpfen and stroll through streets lined by half-timbered houses with steep, pitched red roofs. It’s the highlight of another designated German tourist route, the Burgenstraße, or Castle Road. Two towers and the arcades survive what was once Germany’s largest imperial palace. Climb to the top of the Blue Tower, and let young knights dream in the medieval armor collection in the Red Tower. At the late August Zunftmarkt, artisans demonstrate medieval trades amid street performers and period pageantry.

Bad Wimpfen. Photo: Stillman Rogers


Burg Eltz

Looking just like an illustration in any book of fairy tales, Burg Eltz in Wierschem crowns a 200-foot-high rock crag deep in the forest and is reached by a narrow drawbridge. The illusion is enhanced by the tall stone walls, towers, sharp-pitched roofs and pointed turrets. It not only looks the part, but it’s the real thing, surviving since the 12th century under careful maintenance by the same family for nearly 1,000 years. The inside is just as well kept, with original furnishings and collections of armor and dazzling gold work.



The impressive 13th-century castle rising above the town of Marburg was the real-life inspiration for some of the fairy tales of the brothers Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm. They studied at the university here and its only fitting this should be the highlight of the German Fairy Tale Route. The Grimm Path is a route of fairy tale characters on walls, houses and stairways leading through the town; pick up the free map at the tourist office to follow its route and find all the characters. You might also want to stop in Steinau at the Brüder Grimm-Haus where the brothers lived as teens. It’s a museum featuring their lives and work as well as fairy tales and folk sagas.


It’s admittedly a bit hokey, but younger fairytale fans love the Rapunzel Tower in Trendelburg, north of Marburg, where a drawbridge leads across the moat to a low gate into the fortress’s cobblestone courtyard. High on the tower wall is a window, where Rapunzel herself sometimes appears.


Insta Feed
Destinations / North America
Jul 10, 2024

New Air Routes Make Nova Scotia Vacations Easier

Families living in the Northeast will find travel to Nova Scotia a lot easier this summer with the inauguration of daily service from New York (LGA) to Halifax (YHZ) on American Airlines. The Nova Scotia capital is one of six new cities along the Northeast coast American added in June; other daily flights from La Guardia go to Hyannis (HYA) on Cape Cod, Nantucket (ACK), Martha’s Vineyard (MVY), and to Bangor (BGR) and Portland (PDX) in Maine.

United Continues Its Global Expansion

United Airlines keeps soaring to new heights, recently announcing another expansion of its leading global route network. The airline added new non-stop flights between Newark (EWR) and Marrakesh (RAK), Morocco; Tokyo (NRT) and Cebu (CEB), Philippines; and Houston (IAH) and Medellin (MDE), Colombia. That’s not all: United also plans to increase flights to popular worldwide destinations including Hong Kong (HKG); Seoul (INC), South Korea; and Porto (OPO), Portugal. Following the recent agreement to increase flights between the U.S. and Chinese governments, the airline now adds four weekly flights from Los Angeles (LAX) to Shanghai (PVG).

Destinations / North America
Jul 10, 2024

Enjoy a Taste of North Myrtle Beach’s Dining Scene and Fall Food Festivals

North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, offers foodie family travelers an exciting dining scene, as well as culinary events and festivals to look forward to this fall.

Destinations / North America
Jul 10, 2024

Chinese Lantern Festival to Visit New Locations for 2024/2025 Season

Tianyu, North America’s largest lantern festival producer, recently announced additional locations for its renowned Chinese Lantern Festival for the 2024/2025 season. Family travelers can now enjoy first-time events in Queens, New York, at Citi Field, and Dallas, Texas, at Texas Trust CU Theatre.

Sunflower Accessibility Program Featured at O’Hare and Midway Airports

Travelers with invisible disabilities passing through O’Hare and Midway International Airports can now discreetly signal they need assistance thanks to a new Chicago Department of Aviation partnership that helps create more accessible and inclusive spaces.

Destinations / North America
Jul 9, 2024

Beat the Heat in Galveston at Moody Gardens

This summer is turning out to be a real scorcher no matter where you are spending it, but if you happen to be planning to visit Galveston, one of the best places to beat the heat is Moody Gardens. Whether staying in the hotel or just visiting for a day of fun, there is plenty for family travelers to see and do to help take the sting of the summer heat out of your vacation.