Destinations

The Royal Treatment

Six Oktoberfest-Ready Castle Hotels

The way we see it, you've got two options: you can go to Germany and drink in a tent (we're not judging); or you can go to Germany and drink in the shadow of one of the country's more spectacular castles. Out of all the manses that made the cut, here are the ones where you should set up your throne (or at least a bed).

Schlosshotel Liebenstein
THE BREWERY

Schlosshotel Liebenstein

One perk of castle living is having everything you need on the grounds—you know, a haute-Swabian restaurant, a champagne brewery and, most important, a beer garden tucked into the drained moat. Not that you're above downing steins with the commoners.

Hotel Schloss Waldeck
THE LAKE

Hotel Schloss Waldeck

In case a castle isn't a large enough playground, you can always look for a little water. Luckily, this fort is perched on a rock overlooking the massive Lake Edersee, and offers both the perfect opportunity for sauna-fueled skinny-dipping and, we hear, the most authentic banquets this side of Medieval Times.

Schloss Cecilienhof
THE DIPLOMATS

Schloss Cecilienhof

This Potsdam palace played host to an historic postwar summit, and while the Churchill, Truman and Stalin suites have since been transformed into a museum, one of the wings is still devoted to the hotel business. You can even try your luck with a nearby horse-riding outfit…if you aren't too busy negotiating your way into Churchill's old bedroom.

Burghotel auf Schoenburg
THE RELIC

Burghotel auf Schoenburg

The only castle on the list with more than 1000 years worth of peasant-repelling behind it, this fortress boasts hidden rooms and an imposing tapestry-equipped dining room. Head to the upper terraces and you can see the same spectacular Rhine views the Holy Romans enjoyed… give or take a few barbarians.

Dornroschenschloss Sababurg
THE LEGEND

Dornroschenschloss Sababurg

This 14th century stronghold was the basis for the Brothers Grimm's "Sleeping Beauty," a good fit given its fantastically spiral-staircased tower suite and the enchanted-looking forest outside. It's also next door to one of the world's oldest animal reserves, in case you want to try your hand at a little chivalrous stag hunting. (Fair warning: the game wardens might not see it that way.)

Parkhotel Wasserburg Anholt
THE MOAT

Parkhotel Wasserburg Anholt

A castle's only as good as its moat, so this fortress (effectively built on top of a pond) has two distinct advantages: the golf course has some pretty spectacular water hazards, and if you get in a little phrasebook-related trouble at the festivities, all you have to do is raise the drawbridge…

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