Many people are fascinated by castles. Because of television, movies, and historical books, the term evokes thoughts of romance and adventure.
Castles are filled with narrow winding stairways, secret rooms, and expensive furnishings. The residents of the castles are often described as beautiful maidens in full dresses with narrow waistlines and low bodices surrounded by handsome knights dressed either in armor or britches with tights.
Castles are also called fortresses, citadels, manors, and palaces. Although castles are found around the world, it's those in Europe that we are most familiar with, probably since they are the ones romanticized in literature and movies. Cruise travelers are lucky. We have dozens of castles in Europe that can be seen while on a river or ocean cruise.
Belvedere Palace in Vienna (c) Linda Garrison