NEWS
22/04/2021 07:52 BST | Updated 22/04/2021 07:52 BST

Stunning Photos Of Castles Around The World

These spectacular sites are sure to inspire royals fans and wanderlusters alike.

PayPal via Getty Images
King Edward I of England replaced an 11th century castle with the current Caernarfon Castle in the late 13th century. 

It’s no secret people are itching to travel the world again. Going abroad may not be advisable just yet, but that doesn’t mean we can’t daydream about spectacular destinations around the globe. 

And given the media frenzy around the British royals over the past year, we’ve got castles on the brain. From the English countryside to the cherry blossom-filled landscapes of Japan, there are countless gorgeous castles to spark wanderlust, inspire royals fanatics and fuel our inner history buffs.

Below, we’ve rounded up 60 stunning photos of castles around the world. There are debates around what technically counts as a castle, but for our purposes, we stuck with sites that include the designation in their names or are often considered to be castles. 

  • Neuschwanstein Castle
    Neuschwanstein Castle
    Frank Bienewald via Getty Images
    Disneyland's Sleeping Beauty Castle was reportedly inspired by this 19th-century German castle in Bavaria.
  • Himeji Castle
    Himeji Castle
    John W Banagan via Getty Images
    Himeji Castle in Japan's Hyōgo prefecture dates back to the 14th century.
  • Frederiksborg Castle
    Frederiksborg Castle
    ClarkandCompany via Getty Images
    Frederiksborg Castle in Hillerød, Denmark, was constructed in the early 17th century as a residence for King Christian IV of Denmark-Norway.
  • De Haar Castle
    De Haar Castle
    DEA / L. ROMANO via Getty Images
    De Haar Castle is located in Utrecht and is the largest castle in the Netherlands.
  • Glamis Castle
    Glamis Castle
    DEA / M. BORCHI via Getty Images
    Glamis Castle in Angus, Scotland, was the childhood home of Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother.
  • Corvin Castle
    Corvin Castle
    Barcroft Media via Getty Images
    Also known as Hunyadi Castle or Hunedoara Castle, the Gothic-Renaissance Corvin Castle in Hunedoara, Romania, is linked to several dark legends.
  • Chapultepec Castle
    Chapultepec Castle
    Westend61 via Getty Images
    Chapultepec Castle in Mexico City boasts incredible views of the city and was the model for other buildings like the 13th Regiment Armory in Brooklyn.
  • Château de Chambord
    Château de Chambord
    DEA / G. DAGLI ORTI via Getty Images
    Château de Chambord in the Loire Valley of France was reportedly the inspiration for the Beast's enchanted castle in Disney's "Beauty and the Beast."
  • Krak des Chevaliers
    Krak des Chevaliers
    Mis fotos de viajes via Getty Images
    This crusader castle in Syria was built in the 12th century. 
  • Castello Scaligero
    Castello Scaligero
    AGF via Getty Images
    This fortress in Sirmione is one of the best-preserved castles in Italy. 
  • Pena Palace
    Pena Palace
    Francesco Pascale via Getty Images
    Pena Palace is a castle in Sintra on the Portuguese Riviera known for its mix of architectural styles.
  • Kalmar Castle
    Kalmar Castle
    LordRunar via Getty Images
    Kalmar Castle in the Swedish province of Småland dates back to the 12th century. 
  • Vianden Castle
    Vianden Castle
    Frans Sellies via Getty Images
    Vianden Castle in the north of Luxembourg was built in the Romanesque style from the 11th to 14th centuries and fell into ruin in the 19th century before undergoing a full restoration.
  • Castillo San Felipe del Morro
    Castillo San Felipe del Morro
    KenWiedemann via Getty Images
    This 16th-century citadel was built in a strategic location on the water in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
  • Highclere Castle
    Highclere Castle
    NIKLAS HALLE'N via Getty Images
    Highclere Castle in Hampshire, England, is famously the filming location for the "Downton Abbey" TV show and film.
  • Prague Castle
    Prague Castle
    lupengyu via Getty Images
    Built in the 9th century, Prague Castle is one of the most iconic sites in the Czech Republic. 
  • Castello Aragonese
    Castello Aragonese
    Walter Bibikow via Getty Images
    The medieval Castello Aragonese sits on an islet that connects to the island of Ischia off the coast of Naples, Italy.
  • Matsumoto Castle
    Matsumoto Castle
    Andia via Getty Images
    Matsumoto Castle in Japan's Nagano Prefecture still has its original wooden interiors and is also known as the "Crow Castle" because of its black exterior.
  • Schwerin Castle
    Schwerin Castle
    picture alliance via Getty Images
    Schwerin Castle is located on an island in the capital of Germany's Mecklenburg-Vorpommern state. The earliest record of a castle on this site is from the year 973.
  • Mont-Saint-Michel Abbey
    Mont-Saint-Michel Abbey
    Ventura Carmona via Getty Images
    Depending on whom you ask, the medieval abbey at the top of Mont-Saint-Michel may not technically be a castle. But it has inspired fictional castles, like the setting of Disney's "Tangled."
  • Leeds Castle
    Leeds Castle
    John Walton - PA Images via Getty Images
    Leeds Castle in Kent, England, celebrated its 900th anniversary in 2019.
  • Nesvizh Castle
    Nesvizh Castle
    Harri Jarvelainen via Getty Images
    Built in the 16th century and owned by the Radziwill family until 1939, Nesvizh Castle or Niasviž Castle is located in Belarus. 
  • Mehrangarh
    Mehrangarh
    Peter Zelei Images via Getty Images
    Built around 1459, Mehrangarh in the "Blue City" of Jodhpur in Rajasthan is one of the largest forts in India.
  • Trakai Island Castle
    Trakai Island Castle
    REDA&CO via Getty Images
    This 14th-century castle is located on an island in Lake Galvė in Lithuania.
  • Eltz Castle
    Eltz Castle
    ullstein bild via Getty Images
    The noble Eltz family still owns this medieval castle between Koblenz and Trier in Germany, where their ancestors lived 33 generations ago in the 12th century. Parts of it are open to the public. 
  • Conwy Castle
    Conwy Castle
    Alexander Spatari via Getty Images
    Edward I build Conwy Castle during his conquest of Wales in the late 13th century.
  • The Swallow's Nest
    The Swallow's Nest
    DEA / W. BUSS via Getty Images
    The Swallow's Nest is an early 20th-century castle in Gaspra in the Russian-annexed Crimean peninsula.
  • Alcázar of Segovia
    Alcázar of Segovia
    John W Banagan via Getty Images
    The medieval castle, Alcázar of Segovia, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Castile and León, Spain.
  • Mamure Castle
    Mamure Castle
    Krzysztof Matusiak / 500px via Getty Images
    Dating back to the 13th century, Mamure Castle is a medieval castle in Turkey's Mersin province.
  • Bran Castle
    Bran Castle
    Walter Bibikow via Getty Images
    Bran Castle in Romania is commonly known as "Dracula's Castle" due to a tourism-driven connection to Bram Stoker's fictional character, who was based on Vlad the Impaler (who likely never set foot in this castle).
  • Olavinlinna Castle
    Olavinlinna Castle
    DEA / D. STAQUET via Getty Images
    Olavinlinna Castle in Finland is also known as St. Olaf's Castle and serves as the site of the Savonlinna Opera Festival.
  • Culzean Castle
    Culzean Castle
    UniversalImagesGroup via Getty Images
    Now owned by the National Trust for Scotland, Culzean Castle on the Ayrshire coast was built in the late 18th century. 
  • Shuri Castle
    Shuri Castle
    - Fotosearch via Getty Images
    In 2019, a fire destroyed much of 14th-century Shuri Castle in Okinawa, Japan, but rebuilding efforts are underway.
  • Hohenwerfen Castle
    Hohenwerfen Castle
    Andres Sanchez via Getty Images
    Located south of Salzburg in Austria, Hohenwerfen Castle overlooks stunning valley landscapes and appears in the movie "The Sound of Music."
  • Bodiam Castle
    Bodiam Castle
    Gareth Fuller - PA Images via Getty Images
    The 14th-century Bodiam Castle in East Sussex, England, boasts an impressive moat.
  • Miramare Castle
    Miramare Castle
    Davide Seddio via Getty Images
    Austrian Archduke Ferdinand Maximilian gave the order to build Miramare Castle on the Gulf of Trieste in Italy in the mid-19th century. 
  • Bojnice Castle
    Bojnice Castle
    Wolfgang Kaehler via Getty Images
    This Romanesque castle in Bojnice, Slovakia, is one of the country's most popular tourist destinations.
  • Predjama Castle
    Predjama Castle
    JayKay57 via Getty Images
    Built in the mouth of a cave, this Renaissance castle in Slovenia is linked to historic robberies. 
  • Chillon Castle
    Chillon Castle
    AGF via Getty Images
    Chillon Castle is an island castle on Lake Geneva in Veytaux, Switzerland. Historians are not in full agreement, but many believe the first written record of the castle is from the 11th century. 
  • Kylemore Abbey
    Kylemore Abbey
    David Soanes Photography via Getty Images
    Kylemore Abbey (formerly Kylemore Castle) is in County Galway in Ireland and was originally a private home for wealthy Brits until it was sold to Benedictine nuns.
  • Hohenzollern Castle
    Hohenzollern Castle
    Rolphus via Getty Images
    South of Stuttgart, Germany, Hohenzollern Castle is the most recent of several castles on this hill, which housed members of the German royal dynasty of the House of Hohenzollern.
  • Peleș Castle
    Peleș Castle
    tytyeu via Getty Images
    Though technically a palace, Peleș Castle in the Carpathian Mountains in Romania is considered a Neo-Renaissance castle.
  • Gripsholm Castle
    Gripsholm Castle
    REDA&CO via Getty Images
    The Swedish royal family used Gripsholm Castle in Mariefred, Södermanland, as a residence until the 18th century, around which time it was also used as a prison.
  • Castel del Monte
    Castel del Monte
    DEA / A. DE GREGORIO via Getty Images
    Castel del Monte was built in the 1240s on a hill in Andria in Italy's Puglia region.
  • Örebro Castle
    Örebro Castle
    Domingo Leiva Nicolas via Getty Images
    The medieval Örebro Castle is located in a Swedish county by the same name and dates back to the 13th century. 
  • Malbork Castle
    Malbork Castle
    DEA / W. BUSS via Getty Images
    The Castle of the Teutonic Order in Malbork, Poland, aka Malbork Castle, has the distinction of being the biggest castle in the world by land area.
  • Windsor Castle
    Windsor Castle
    Chris Jackson via Getty Images
    British Royal Family fans will know Windsor Castle as Queen Elizabeth's preferred weekend residence in the county of Berkshire. 
  • Osaka Castle
    Osaka Castle
    View Photos/a.collectionRF via Getty Images
    This castle in Osaka is famous for its stunning architecture and role in the unification of Japan in the 16th century. 
  • Hearst Castle
    Hearst Castle
    Francine Orr via Getty Images
    Publishing tycoon William Randolph Hearst is responsible for this National Historic Landmark in California famous for its lively parties and opulence. 
  • Spiš Castle
    Spiš Castle
    DEA / W.BUSS via Getty Images
    Built in the 12th century, Spiš Castle in Slovakia is a popular tourist attraction and filming location. 
  • Edinburgh Castle
    Edinburgh Castle
    David Williams via Getty Images
    Scotland's most-visited tourist attraction, Edinburgh Castle overlooks the city and was the site of many significant events in the country's history. 
  • Hue Citadel
    Hue Citadel
    Ho Ngoc Binh via Getty Images
    Much of the Hue Citadel was destroyed during the Vietnam War, but what remains of the compound is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • Hochosterwitz Castle
    Hochosterwitz Castle
    DEA / ALBERT CEOLAN via Getty Images
    Hochosterwitz Castle in Austria is considered to be one of the country's most impressive castles. 
  • Buda Castle
    Buda Castle
    Julian Elliott Photography via Getty Images
    Buda Castle is the historic seat of the Hungarian kings in Budapest. Most of the site still present today was built in the 18th century, though the first residence was completed in 1265. 
  • Caernarfon Castle
    Caernarfon Castle
    PayPal via Getty Images
    King Edward I of England replaced an 11th century castle with the current Caernarfon Castle in the late 13th century. 
  • Cochem Castle
    Cochem Castle
    serts via Getty Images
    Although the original castle was destroyed in 1689, a wealthy German businessman had it rebuilt almost two centuries later. The project was completed in 1890, 11 years after his death.
  • Château de Chenonceau
    Château de Chenonceau
    DEA / W. BUSS via Getty Images
    Château de Chenonceau in France's Loire Valley was a favorite residence of Catherine de' Medici in the 16th century. 
  • Kilkenny Castle
    Kilkenny Castle
    John Wang via Getty Images
    Kilkenny Castle in Ireland was built in 1195 but has been well-restored to the benefit of tourists.
  • Orava Castle
    Orava Castle
    DE AGOSTINI via Getty Images
    Orava Castle in Oravský Podzámok, Slovakia, was the filming location for many scenes in the 1922 film "Nosferatu."
  • Castillo de Coca
    Castillo de Coca
    DEA / W. BUSS via Getty Images
    Constructed in the 15th century, Castillo de Coca in central Spain is an example of Spanish Mudejar brickwork.
Also on HuffPost