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21 Castles Still Standing Today That Will Make You Wish You Were Royalty

In today's modern world it's hard to recollect the medieval past of monarchs and feudal systems. However, to this day there are hundreds of castles, palaces and towers that remain which almost make us wish we were the royalty who once lived in them.

21. Afyonkarahisar

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Located on a mountain peak in Turkey, Afyonkarahisar, is the place to look down on your subjects from above. The history of the castle itself rivals the storylines in Game of Thrones!

20. Bourtange

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People often forget castles are actually forts most of the time. Bourtange is a "star fort" that was built in 1593. Both the Spanish and the Germans laid siege on the fortress but could not overtake it. Now it's a well-populated village that's incredibly well fortified.

19. Bouzov

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This fortress is located in the Czech Republic and was built in the 14th century to protect a major trade route. It didn't always look this way though, the castle went through some major renovations between 1985 and 1910.

18. Chateau De Chillon

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Located on Lake Geneva, the Chateau was in the inspiration for Prince Eric's castle in the Disney film, "The Little Mermaid."

17. Chateu De Chambord

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Speaking of inspiration, Chateu De Chambord in France was the key visual for the castle in Snow White. We can kind of see the evil queen watching from the tower there.

16. Brézé

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One of the few castles with a true moat! The Brézé castle is actually a lot larger than it looks because it sits on top of an enormous underground fortress and a huge manmade labyrinth. Somewhere there's probably a hidden chest too.

15. Dunster

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Located in "sunny" England, Dunster Castle sits on a steep 200 ft hill. It's survived several wars and peeks out from the trees.

14. Fenghuang and the Miao border wall

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Not so much a castle as it is a wall and city, Fenghuang and its enormous border wall, known as the  Miao border wall, was the center of the unfortunately unsuccessful Miao Rebellion.

13. Hochosterwitz

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Centered in Austria the castle was first mentioned in the 9th century. The only way in is a single, incredibly fortified path guarded by 14 gates. Kind of like the Eyrie in Game of Thrones.

12. Hohenwerfen Castle

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Yet another castle in Austria, the castle has stood for over 900 years. It's also the basis for the Call of Duty 3 Zombies Map Der Eisendrache.

11. Irmelshausen

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Over 800 years old, Irmelshausen managed to avoid being destroyed during the German Peasant's War and the Thirty Years War thanks to its very diplomatic inhabitants.

10. Kufstein

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This castle was made into a fortress during the gunpowder age, and inevitably became a prison for political dissidents of the Austro-Hungarian empire.

9. Laferrière

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This could be considered one of the newer castles on the list, and located in Haiti. Built by former slaves, it was used as a place of safety for those who rebelled against their masters and was instrumental in Haiti's independence from France.

8. Lavoûte Polignac

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This is actually only a small part of what was once a larger castle. The castle originally had four corner towers, three wings and had a double line of ramparts. The south wing is all that's left standing.

7. Mehrangarh

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Spanning over 3 miles in India over the old ciy of Jodhpur, this massive fortress is protected by 7 gates and walls up to 118 ft. high!

6. Mont Saint-Michel

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Not just a castle but an entire town, Mont Saint-Michel is the basis for the town in Tangled. The city also has a quirk, its only road is washed away for part of the year, completely isolating it from the world.

5. Neuschwanstein Castle

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You might recognize this castle as the one from Sleeping Beauty. The basis for the Disney film's iconic castle is located in Germany.

4. Oude Loo

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What looks like your classic sort of castle is located in the Netherlands and was built in the 15th century. It's currently owned by the state and is actually rented to the royal family!

3. Rivalta

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Located in Italy, Rivalta dates back to the 11th century. It was owned by the Orsini, and is accessible only through a stone drawbridge.

2. San Leo

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San Leo is a village and its fortress was initially built by the Romans and has been a hotspot of contention for the Byzantines, Goths, Franks and Lombards.

1. El castillo de Zafra, en Guadalajara

Located in Spain, the Castillo de Zafra is also known to TV watchers as the Tower of Joy from Game of Thrones. Built in the 12th and 13th centuries, the castle had fallen into disrepair and nearly completely crumbled away were it not for recent restoration efforts.

If only one could be a princess without a monarchy!

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