The castles of Slovakia stand witness to earlier eras:
when the picturesque fortresses formed the last line of defence against various invasions from east and southeast in the middle ages...
when they help troops ready to tear each other apart during the Reformation’s internecine wars...
when the nobility simply wanted to keep its people in line...
when the aristocracy of more recent centuries simply wanted to show off...
Beautiful exemplars of all periods and purposes abound here, some as eerie ruins and others as fully restored museum pieces. Never are you further than an easy day trip from a castle worth seeing. The following gives details on some of the country’s best-known castles.
916 21 Čachtice
Ideally located ruin of "the mysterious castle in the Carpathian Mountains" was made famous particullary because of its last resident, chatelaine Elizabeth Bathory.
Spisske Podhradie, 053 04 Spišské Podhradie
In the lands of Spis, the north-western region of Eastern Slovakia, large castle is standing proudly on the hill above the plebs.
Zámok a okolie 1, 972 01 Bojnice
Romantic Bojnice Castle is one of the most visited and most attractive castles in central Europe.
Oravský Podzámok, 027 41 Oravský Podzámok
One the most beautiful and largest castles in Slovakia, in the northern Orava region, Orava Castle is situated on a high rock above Orava river.
Bratislava, 08001 Bratislava
Bratislava Castle, the landmark overlooking the capital, was built in 9th century. It stands on the hill above Danube river.
Hrad Červený Kameň, 900 89 Častá
Site of a medieval castle that was gradually pulled down, Cerveny Kamen (pronounced CHER-ven-ee KAH-men) retains that castle’s name (from “Rothstein” in German, meaning “red stone”).
Zámocká 22, 064 01 Stará ľubovňa
A large stone castle built in the 14th century to protect trade routes to Poland. It was an important administrative center, as well as a shelter for the Polish crown jewels.
The mansion built at the end of the 19th century by the Palffy family is dominating the village, where people lived since the New Stone Age.
Muránská, 84110 Devín
The well-preserved ruin is noted for a marvellous geographical position, offering terrific panorama views upon the confluence of Danube and Morava rivers.
Kaštieľna 6, 049 21 Betliar
This hunting estate of almost 50 rooms was owned by the noble Bebek family and then Andrássy family for centuries
Trenčiansky hrad, 911 01 Trenčín
The Trenčín Castle is a castle above the town of Trenčín, housing exhibitions of the Trenčín Museum. History of the castle goes back to the age of the Roman Empire.
Krásnohorské Podhradie, 049 41 Krásna Hôrka
Krasna Horka ("Beautiful Hill"), majestic castle in the heart of Slovakia. Now in the reconstruction due to extensive fire in 2012.
Pajštún, 90032 Borinka
Spectacular old ruin from 13th century close to the capital, Pajstun is a popular place among rockclimbers. Wonderful views and nice walk through the beautiful Carpathian woods.
Zámocká 18, 919 04 Smolenice
A wonderful, romantic castle serves as a convention centre, used for conferences, symposia, seminars and weddings. Open for public only in July and August.
Beckov 180, 913 10 Beckov
Standing on a steep high cliff above Vah - the longest river of Slovakia, magnificent ruins of Beckov castle are a dominant feature on the horizon.
Topoľová 1, 010 03 Žilina
At the exit from Žilina to Kysuce, at the junction of the Rivers Vah and Kysuca, there rises the far-visible water tower of the former medieval castle.
Hradná 1, 013 24 Strečno
It's impossible to overlook the ruins of a castle on a rocky cliff above the river Vah on the road from Žilina to Martin. The small castle, defender toll station, has become the best fortified castle of the area.
976 13 Slovenská ľupča
Very preserved castle with bright white walls is standing on the road between Banska Bystrica and Brezno. An important route led here in medieval times - Via Manga.
033 01 Liptovský Hrádok
A special combo of a preserved ruined castle and a Renaissance manor house on the edge of the town of Liptovsky Hradok offers stylish accommodation, restaurant and a very untraditional place for a visit.
Hrad Likava, 034 95 Likavka
History of Likava Castle goes back 700 years. It was once a royal guardian castle, later rebuilt as a sumptuous private residence.