Palace Nymphenburg - Visit one of Germany’s most beautiful and impressive Castles

Categories: Sightseeing, Cultural and History

Schloss Nymphenburg, Munich
Schloss Nymphenburg, Munich

[ source: Wikipedia]

Palace Nymphenburg is without a doubt one of Germany’s most beautiful and impressive castles. The history of the palace along with its splendour and beautiful surrounding park are definitely worth a visit.

Unlike many castles in Germany, Palace Nymphenburg has survived World War II almost unharmed, which makes the palace one of Munich’s main sightseeing attractions. Next to the palace and the park, tourists can also visit the Marstallmuseum in the former royal stables, home to one of the most important collections of carriages and sleighs from the 18th and 19th centuries. On the upper level of the stables, the porcelain collection is displayed. The bedroom of Ludwig’s birth is located in the south pavilion.

Castle Nymphenburg History

Ludwig II. was born on August 25th, 1845 in the Baroque Palace Nymphenburg in the west of Munich. The palace was the summer residence of the family of Wittelsbach and commissioned by the electoral couple Ferdinand Maria and Henriette Adelaide of Savoy to the designs of the Italian architect Agostino Barelli in 1664, after the birth of their son Max Emanuel. The central pavilion was completed in 1675 and from 1701-1704, elector Max Emanuel commissioned the two pavilions in the south and north, along with the court stables and the orangerie as significant extensions. The Spanish War of Succession forced Max Emanuel to spend time outside Bavaria until 1715. However, Max Emanuel returned with many renowned French artists, such as Joseph Effner, Dominique Girard and Jacopo Amigoni, who decorated the interior with beautiful paintings (stuccos). Under Max Emanuels reign, Munich (Munich vacation rentals | Munich travel guide) developed into one of Europe’s foremost centers of the arts and Nymphenburg evolved into one of the big palaces of Europe. After 1715, the park was also redesigned in the typical French Baroque style and extended to its present dimensions, following the plans of Dominique Girard and Joseph Effner.

Max Emanuel’s son, Holy Roman Emperor Charles VII Albert, completed the Schlossrondell between 1728 and 1758. Five pair of mansions were symmetrically arranged in a half circle in front of the palace and fused to form an “ideal town” around the palace. This setting was considered to be an architectural sensation at its time. The mansions were residences for court officials and household.

Elector Maximilian III Joseph (reigned 1745-77) commissioned the ostentatious decoration that visitors can admire today. Johann Baptist Zimmermann and François Cuvilliés the Elder created a major work of Munich court Rococo. Max III Joseph also moved the Nymphenburg Porcelain Manufactory into its present quarters at the front of the palace. The park was decorated with statues of Gods of Olympus. The main building and the Great Hall received its exterior flights of steps that formed a suitable entrance.

Under elector Karl Theodor, (ruled from 1777 to 1799), little changes have been made to Palace Nymphenburg. Karl Theodor only redesigned some of the rooms with noble Neoclassical furniture and opened the royal gardens to the public in 1792. The palace remained in its important function of residence to the royal family. Bavaria turned into a kingdom in the early nineteenth century, with Maximilian I Joseph being the first King of Bavaria. Between 1804 and 1823, the park underwent significant changes under Friedrich Ludwig Sckell, the superintendent of the royal gardens, who transformed the French park into a landscape garden in the English style. Since then, the grounds have remained unchanged until today.

After the revolution in 1918 in Germany, Palace Nymphenburg became the property of the Bayerische Verwaltung der staatlichen Schlösser, Gärten und Seen (The Bavarian Administration of State-owned Palaces, Gardens and Lakes). The family of Wittelsbach still has a right of abode which is currently used by the leader of the house of Wittelsbach, Franz von Bayern.

About this Article

Anita Irujo

This travel guide has been written by Anita Irujo.

My name is Anita and I was born in Graz, Austria. In 2006, my study abroad brought me to the US for the first time. I left the US after spending almost a year in Savannah, GA, and decided to return to work on my thesis for a few more months. During this time I met my husband and faith has it that I now share the same destiny as many other foreigners I have met since then. They come to study and find themselves staying for good. In my case, for the very best reasons :) Last year, we moved into the Boston area for job opportunities and found ourselves in an environment rich of good food, art and culture. We love dancing (especially Salsa) and enjoy diving into the diverse communities of Boston and Cambridge. German of course is a big part of our lives, I teach my husband German (with a Styrian dialect), we visit a Stammtisch, cook Austrian/German food and indulge in the beer made by the local micro-breweries of Massachusetts.

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Location, Map, and Driving Directions

Location: Eingang 19, 80638 München, Germany

[ view larger map ]

Opening Hours

  • April-15 October: 9 am-6 pm (open daily)
  • 16 October-March: 10 am-4 pm (open daily)

Closed on: 1/1., Shrove Tuesday, 12/24, 12/25, 12/31

Contact Information

Phone: +49 (0) 89 - 1 79 08-0
Fax: +49 (0) 89 - 1 79 08-6 27

Related Links

Schloss Nymphenburg - Official web site

Wikipedia: Nymphenburg

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