Following on from our tour of Neuschwanstein, we decided to take the alpine trail up from the castle to the little bridge that spans the Pollat Gorge, the Marienbruecke. The famous views of Neuschwanstein, seen in many calendars and travel guides, are taken from this iconic bridge. It’s about a 10 minute stroll up from the castle to reach the pretty lookout spot. Despite the fairly steep incline, the beautiful scenery and the crisp mountain air makes for a lovely walk.
We were somewhat taken aback when we found the little bridge – it was certainly rather smaller and more rickety looking than I’d anticipated! Furthermore it was teeming with tourists. Monsieur Le Chic took one look at the rather flimsy looking wooden structure (albeit with metal supports and railings) and flatly refused to set foot on it.
Swaying in the wind and possibly under the weight of all the tourists too, the quaint Marienbruecke did look a tad unsafe. However I’d come a long way to see the view and really wanted some photos from the bridge, so Mlle and I, having waited for a temporary lull in visitors, gingerly set foot on the wooden boards. It did feel a bit wobbly and we tried not to look down at the deep Pollat Gorge below but we were rewarded with some amazing views. Suffice to say I took a lot of shots!
Now there is a postscript to our visit. When I was researching my Neuschwanstein articles, I came across a message on the Neuschwanstein visitors’ information page, which gave details of renovation work being carried out on the Marienbruecke. Work was expected to finish mid November 2015 so I assumed it was routine maintanence work done in low season. However the updated message says that because of major renovation works the bridge is now not expected to reopen until the end of May 2016. In addition the hiking trail through the Pollat Gorge is closed until further notice owing to a rockfall! Monsieur Le Chic may have had a point after all! Fortunately the route up to Neuschwanstein and tours of the castle are not affected. Further information can be obtained from the Neuschwanstein web page here. I also found a good article on the Deutsche Welle website about the bridge repairs (see here), which amongst other things says that once the bridge is reopened the number of people allowed on the bridge at any one time will be restricted!
Hopefully work will finish as anticipated towards the end of spring 2016 and visitors will once again be able to enjoy the breathtaking views from the Marienbruecke, over the Pollat Gorge and beyond!
Copyright © 2015 Rosemary Thomas Le Chic En Rose. All rights reserved