It does not necessarily follow that if you book a room in a castle that it will cost more than staying in a hotel. In fact, many castles in Europe that take in guests are the same or less in price than hotels, and they often include much more than a hotel in terms of atmosphere, being hosted by the owners of the castle, and the opportunity to take meals in the dining room of the castle.
In terms of fairy tale castles right out of a book, look no further than Austria or Germany.
For an elegant castle with its own highly rated gourmet restaurant, take a look at the 13th century Schloss Obermayerhofen in Styria. Luxurious and warm, the rooms have canopied beds and exquisite views. Make a spa appointment for two, walk through the surrounding parkland, ask for the horse drawn carriage to take you for a ride, and savor the experience of being in one of the most romantic castle hotels in Austria.
There is actually a castle in Germany that is a hostel which will easily fit a student budget. Jugenderberge Burg Stahleck Hostel is located in Bacharach, is perched on the top of a cliff, and really does look like a fortress castle with views of the Rhine River Valley. It serves great food in a large cafeteria, is clean and fun, with a bar and friendly staff.
Castle ten Berghe in Belgium is so beautiful inside you will be charmed. It even has a moat! This castle is a B&B and it is affordable and absolutely gorgeous. The breakfast room has a huge royal fireplace and wood paneling. Breakfasts include freshly baked breads, sliced meats, cheeses, juice and eggs. Just under 15 minutes drive from Bruges, this castle hotel is an excellent choice for families and couples.
If you are traveling in Spain near Barcelona you are in for a treat. You can book a room at a huge castle called Parador Cardona. The vaulted stone ceilings inside, rooms beautifully decorated with antiques, gym, sauna, golf, museum, delicious food served in a medieval dining hall, huge buffet breakfast, and cafe/bar, make a stay here breathtaking and memorable.
And for great luxury, reserve a room at the castle in Italy called Castelletto Di Montebenichi, which is located in Chianti. It truly has interior furnishings worthy of a king. Antiques and tapestries fill every room. There is a help-yourself-bar in the lounge, buffet breakfast, swimming pool to lounge around, and stunning views to take in. It may be time to rethink staying only in hotels after you have experienced the delight of staying in an ancient castle in Europe!
Alex is a journalist and travel blogger. He loves blogging about exotic destinations and beautiful scenery and about how to get the cheapest online hotel reservations .