Germany road trip of historic mansions
Dukes and grand dukes once owned impressive homes in the patches of land in Northern Germany. There are hundreds, if not thousands of them in Mecklenburg, depending how you count.
Some date back 500 years, some are neo gothic, baroque or even modernist in style. Many you can still visit today. I took a day for a mini road trip to see a select few that I can highly recommend! See 9 mansions and castles in one weekend while driving through tree lined country avenues and along the Baltic Sea beach.
Starting with a comparatively small hidden gem, so there is room for increasing grandness. Mühlenbeck Mansion is neatly restored, but the inside cannot be visited as it is privately owned. Country avenues lead you through fields and woods, in the spring and summer this one is worth it for the drive alone.
The most impressive of castles thrones on an island in the state capital. Some of the rooms not occupied by parliament are open to visitors. I’ve already written about historic places in Schwerin, so check out that post if you want to explore the city more in depth.
The tee house in the park of Klein Trebbow mansion was where von Stauffenberg and von der Schulenburg met to plan their assasination of Adolf Hitler. The castle has changed hands many times and was used for different purposes. Currently it is a home for the elderly.
Nowadays the monastery of Saunstorf offers retreats not tied to any one confession. The spiritual approach is their unique selling point. The house is open to anybody looking for mindfulness, stillness an deceleration.
Despite ongoing renovations there are three guest rooms already available for visitors at Manderow Mansion, furnished in historic style. This stately home is truly off the beaten path, even though a mere 10 kilometers away from the hanseatic harbor town on Wismar.
The mansion in Oberhof is now offing accommodation for over-night visitors. They cater well to families looking to escape into the countryside. Near the Baltic sea, you can hear the waves and feel the sea breeze from Oberhof. It’s a great base for outdoor fans looking to go horseback riding, cycle, hike, fish, sail or windsurf.
300 year old Bothmer Castle is one of the grand historic landmarks in Mecklenburg. The baroque symetry and landscaped gardens are kept neat to this day. The exhibition inside shines light on Hans Caspar who made it to be Prime Minister of Great Britain at the height of his career. Hence, the english country influences of this estate. If you’re going on a road trip in Germany, don’t miss this hidden gem!
Walking up the the great house of Elmenhorst you cross the estate with its barns and a meadow with a donkey and pony. The timbered house itself is set at the end of a winding driveway, amongst indigenous trees. It appears modest compared to the others on this list but is truly authentic to the area and local building style.
A delightful Dutch couple now owns Kalkhorst castle. They encourage visitors to wander in the park and gardens that are filled with trees from all over the world: ginkos, mammoth trees and more. In the summer they have art exihibtions as local artists work in one of the side buildings.
I hope to have given you inspiration for castles to visit on your road trip in Northern Germany. While it is technically possible to see all these historic mansions and castles in one day if you drive yourself, I highly recommend stretching the itinery to at least 2 days.
To take advantage of the many activities offered in the area and to see a sunrise or sunset on the beach and have time to learn about local history in the exhibitions, you may consider a 4 day road trip in Mecklenburg, Germany.
For any questions please comment below!