Cultural Heritage of Slovakia in the UNESCO List of World Heritage
UNESCO is an international organisation of the United Nations for science, education and culture. Best historic and cultural sites and one can also say phenomena of Slovakia's cultural heritage has been listed here.
Banska Stiavnica and the Technical Monuments in its Environs
The charming town of Banska Stiavnica was one of the first to be designated as a Town Monument Reserve for its historic structures . This small town in the mining region of Stiavnicke vrchy became famous for gold and silver. Surviving authentic architecture in the middle of a picturesque valley has a unique synergistic relationship with the natural environment. The Old Castle dominates the old town centre, free-standing small miners' houses are scattered across the green fields. Trinity Square with the Church of St. Catherine and the Plague Column is a heart of the town. For perceptive visitors, Banska Stiavnica is a wonderful place of architecture, history and ecology.
Levoca, Spissky hrad Castle and Monuments in its Environs
The Spis region boats perhaps the greatest number of landmarks per square kilometre. Several centres existed here during the Middle Ages. The oldest fo them was Spissky hrad and the settlement below, Spisske Podhradie.
The old town of Levoca, situated only 14 km from the Spis castle, was also of European importance. The town was made famous especially thanks to a native Master Paul of Levoca, Slovakia's greatest and most brilliant medieval artist. The town and its sights is among the most beautiful in Slovakia. Monumental town walls, some parts from 13th century, enclose the historical centre where more than fifty Gothic, Renaissance and early-Baroque houses with arcades can be found.
Spisska Kapitula is an ecclesiastic town, sometimes referred to as the "Slovak Vatican". It has always been an important religious centre, with magnificent sites: Bishopric St. Martin's Cathedral, Bishopric Palace and the Cannon Street with houses decorated with Baroque facades and sculptures.
Village of Zehra also has an important and worldwide-known site: Church of the Holy Spirit built in 1275, with beautiful wall paintings from various periods, depicting numerous scenes from the Bible like the Last Supper or the Doomsday.
Recommendation: Find a weekend accommodation in the centre of Levoca or stop by for a quick walkaround. Make trips to the nearby Spis castle, Spisska Kapitula, Zehra's church and Slovak Paradise National Park.
Monument Reserve of Folk Architecture Vlkolinec
Vlkolinec is a remarkably intact settlements with traditional features of Central European log architecture from the mountainous areas. The ground plan of the settlement remained practically unchanged with completely preserved wooden folk architecture. Vlkolinec is situated near Ruzomebrok, in Velka Fatra mountains. The first documentary record about the village dates from 1376. Look inside the houses like the farmer's house with the exhibition of original furniture and take a peak into the shop and schoolhouse. On the eastern edge of the locality is a barogue-classical Church of the Visitation of the Virgin Mary. Vlkolinec is definetely worth a visit!
Bardejov Town Conservation Reserve
The town of Bardejov is stunning enough to merit an extra trip, yet enough out of the way that it is unspoiled by tourist hordes. It is an exceptionally well-preserved exhibition of a trading town in medieval Central Europe. Located in north-eastern Slovakia in the hills of the Beskyd Mountains, Bardejov offers lot of architectural and cultural gems - town centre in a form of rectangular main square, closed on three sides by 46 burgher houses, the parish basilica of St Egidius, the Town Hall (the first building in Slovakia with Renaissance stone moulding) and Great Jewish Synagogue with ritual baths and a kosher slaughterhouse. 6 km away from Bardejov are the notorious Bardejovske kupele - Bardejovske SPA, valuable source of natural healing mineral waters.
Wooden Churches of the Slovak part of the Carpathian Mountain Area
This phenomena is an outstanding testimony to the traditional religious architecture. The list consists of eight wooden churches built between the 16th and 18th centuries:
- Hervartov, Roman Catholic St. Francis of Assisi Church
- Trvdosin, Roman Catholic All Saints Church
- Kezmarok, Evangelical Articled Church
- Lestiny, Evangelical Articled Church
- Hronsek, Evangelical Articled Church
- Bodruzal, Greek Catholic St. Nicholas Church
- Ladomirova, Greek Catholic St. Michael Archangel Church
- Ruska Bystra, Greek Catholic St. Nicholas Church
These are only couple out of tens of wooden churches all across Slovakia. Some of these (the articled ones) are truly extraordinary: they were built without any metal parts such as nails, and without any tower. Not only is the group of these churches a testimony to the coexistence of different religious faiths in the area, but also show a deep connection between nature and the human's soul.