It’s Halloween and I would like to share some content that is not as scary as Halloween should be.
I like fairy tales and I always believe in that kind of fantasy. Maybe it is too good to be true and just like in every fairy tale story, life is always good. It is even better when we experience hardships and trials.
I know that those fairy tale moments are not only present in bedtime stories or movies, but also in real life. So, if you want to visit fairy tale spots, this list can take you to places that can make you feel like you’re in a fantasy world.
Loire Valley, France
I got a feeling of deja-vu when I first saw Usse, one of the famous castles in the French Loire Valley. Spiky black roofs at the top of round towers contrasting with the white walls… It straight away reminded me of Disney’s Cinderella Castle.
Excited like a kid, I crossed the bridge, entered the gate and ventured in the spiral staircase of one of the towers to jump in a storybook. But I got surprised from the introduction. There were more than one fairy and no trace of mean step-sisters. Each room actually told an episode of the Sleeping Beauty’s life with mannequins, costumes and accessories. The author Charles Perrault himself spent time at Usse Castle, and the place is known for inspiring him this story.
And if I don’t believe in fairy tales anymore, I easily believe one can create fables while sojourning at Usse. When looking back at the charming castle from the beautiful garden, my imagination was firing on all the cylinders. The forest in the background and the mist from the early morning were adding a touch of mystery to the scene. Had I been a Princess living there, the story would have been about getting lost in the woods. What kind of creatures could I have encountered? My Prince Charming woke me up from my daydream: the clock was ticking, my carriage was ready and we had more adventures waiting for us at other nearby castles.
– Eloise from My Favourite Escapes
Vaduz Castle, Liechtenstein
Visiting Switzerland was a dream come true which I have been seeing for ages. I was to proceed to Austria after Switzerland but before that had a visit planned to the town in between the borders of these two countries and i.e. Vaduz the capital city of Liechtenstein. One of the smallest countries in Western Europe. A bridge of 200 meters over the Rhine River connects Switzerland and Lichtenstein.
As I entered the town of Vaduz I felt like I was in a fairy tale kingdom. All the building including schools, houses, universities, hospitals, restaurants, cathedral, museum were small which were located on the varying hilly slopes of the town. I opted for the tram ride of 30 minutes which took me through various parts of the town showing its beauty. Vaduz also has multiple winery fields and produces its own wines which can be bought at any local shops. The most interesting place I loved about this town is the Vaduz Castle which is at the highest point of Vaduz. It is an official residence of the Prince of Liechtenstein. The castle is amongst the woods giving you the feel of the castle of the Disney Princess – Rapunzel.
Overall a visit to this fair kingdom was fun and you can still do a lot in just few hours you spend here.
– Mitali from Mitali’s Travel Diary
Watersprite Lake, Canada
When I think of fairytale locations, the top local place that comes to mind is the gorgeous Watersprite Lake near Squamish in British Columbia. Reaching this fairytale location does take a bit of effort. You need to drive up an incredibly bumpy logging road, and then hike for 8.5 km, but I promise your hard work is totally worth the beautiful views! Watersprite lake is surrounded by spiky mountains in all directions and has ridiculously pretty bluey-green water. It is very easy to imagine fairies or nymphs would love it here!
It’d be the perfect location to make a film of fern gully. It could also work as the home of the Lady of the Lake (from King Arthur stories). I can totally picture the magical sword Excalibur being given to Arthur in front of Watersprite Lake…even if it’s in the wrong country!
– Josy from A Walk and A Lark
Warsaw’s Old Town Market Square, Poland
Poland might not come to mind when you think about fairy-tale locations, but it has quite a few up its sleeve. One of them is Warsaw’s Old Town Market Square which is one of the most beautiful places to see in the Polish capital.
The square was destroyed during the Second World War along with the entire old town, but it was restored right after it to look like its original appearance. Today, after a full reconstruction, it is a magical place that you have to visit when you’re in Warsaw. What I loved about it was the medieval architecture, the weather vanes, the bright colors, and the embellishments on the buildings. They were all combined so perfectly together that I felt like I had stepped into a fairytale even though I was in the middle of a big city.
If you travel to Warsaw in high-season, I recommend getting there in the morning before the crowds start to arrive. That way you can fully enjoy your time in the square and the colorful streets around it.
– Or Amir from My Path In The World
Schoorl, The Netherlands
Schoorl, The Netherlands is not well-known, but it should be. This town in The Netherlands has the highest and widest dunes region of my country and is beautiful to visit. You will feel like you’ve entered an oasis and will immediately be in peace with your mind.
Whenever I visit the dunes of Schoorl I’m in awe of this nature reserve in the province of Noord-Holland. No matter what season you arrive you will think that you’ve landed in a fairy-tale. High dunes, fields filled with heather and beautiful foliage. These are only a few of many the gorgeous natural things you can see here. Schoorl and nature reserve of the dunes of Schoorl are located very close to the North Sea. So besides walking, cycling or mountain biking your way through the area, you can also go for a swim in the sea. And when you’e enjoying the nice, cool seawater on your evening swim, you will witness the most beautiful sunset you will ever see. All this makes visiting the dunes of Schoorl an incredible place to relax.
– Manon from Visiting The Dutch Countryside
Moorish castle, Portugal
When I think of a fairy tale, I automatically think of a palace or a castle. If this is you too, then Sintra is a place you have to visit! It’s straight out of a fairy tale with five different palaces all located in gorgeous rolling hills over the ocean. Sintra is just 30 minutes from Lisbon and a world UNESCO heritage site making it an easy place you must visit while in Portugal. Easily take the train that only costs 2 euros or go on a small group tour to experience the city. While in town spend some time walking through downtown where you can get great views of the Moorish Castle and visit the inside of the National Palace.
The Moorish castle has amazing views of downtown Sintra looking over the top all the way to the ocean. Pena Palace is one you’ve probably seen all over Instagram and super colorful, but my favorite was Quinta da Regaleira. It’s Gothic style makes you feel like you’re in the middle of a real fairytale. The grounds are huge and you can spend hours walking through all the different gardens. No matter which palaces you visit, even a walk through town will give you a fairy tale feeling!
– Meghan from Meghan the Traveling Teacher
Havasu Falls, United States
Havasu Falls is one of the most beautiful and unique places to explore in the United States, which is why it makes the top of the list for my ideal fairy-tale location. The rugged beauty of the desert landscape in Arizona mixed with the beautiful turquoise-blue waterfalls make it a dream location for anyone visiting the area. I was mesmerized by the color of the water along the Havasu Falls trail the moment I set eyes on it, and the entire adventure left an impression on me that I will never forget. It was more beautiful than Cinderella’s castle and more dramatic than Belle’s yellow dress. Dare to hike down into the beautiful desert canyon, and be forever in awe of its 5 majestic, dramatic waterfalls.
– Allison from She Dreams of Alpine
Sun Valley, Idaho, United States
Sun Valley, Idaho is a picturesque mountain retreat nestled in the Rocky Mountains. During the holiday season tourists flock to this small town to enjoy its beauty and charm. This resort is an ideal spot for a family to escape reality for a winter wonderland. The streets are piled high with fluffy snow and buildings are covered with twinkling lights. Sun Valley becomes something out of a fairy tale. My childhood is filled with memories of winters filled with skiing and sledding. We loved nothing more than a sleigh ride on Christmas Eve through the sparkling fields of powder and a night of endless stars. After dinner would bring the man of the hour, Santa. Children would share what they yearn to see under the tree.
Christmas morning is quiet and the world is still. A blanket of snow covers the ground keeping it warm till spring. The snow sparkles like diamonds have been tossed in a field.
– Sonya from A couple of travel experts
Helen, Georgia, USA
At the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains in the United States, a bubbling river flows through a tiny mountain village that looks more like someplace from a fairytale than a real-life town. Although it houses just 430 residents, Helen is the third most visited city in the state of Georgia, and its popularity is attributed to its Bavarian architecture and quirky charms.
The buildings remind me of the Hansel and Gretel storybooks that I used to read when I was a small child. Horse-drawn carriages carry tourists through the town, and the main plaza is full of shops selling candies and other unique gifts. You can watch local artisans perfecting their crafts through live glass-blowing and pottery demonstrations. You can even shop for handmade wooden toys while watching them being crafted right before your eyes. Mining for gold and gemstones is a popular activity for kids, and the nearby Dukes Creek even helped launch the American Gold Rush. A cozy restaurant named the Troll Tavern sits under a bridge and offers scenic riverfront dining. If you choose to stay overnight in Helen, you can sleep inside an inn designed to look like a castle or a real working windmill that sits atop a hill. You can read more about this fairytale location on this guide to free and fun things to do in Helen, Georgia.
– Jillian from Adventure Dragon
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Have you been to one of these places? Share your experience with me and comment below.