Bratislava Castle, Slovakia

Bratislava Castle is the main castle of Bratislava. The massive rectangular building with four corner towers stands on an isolated rocky hill of the Little Carpathians directly above the Danube river in the middle of Bratislava.

Walking up the hill to the gate of Bratislava Castle.

Walking up the hill to the gate of Bratislava Castle.

Because of its size and location, it has been a dominant feature of the city for centuries.

Map of Bratislava Castle

Map of Bratislava Castle

West terrace of Bratislava Castle

5. West terrace of Bratislava Castle

Past the front of the West terrace I went up the hill.

Main gate

Main gate, baroque winning gate with stone sculptures of trophy

A Gothic castle which is known from the 10th century, but the castle hill was inhabited also in the Celtic and the Great Moravian era. In the middle of the 16th century, Bratislava became the official coronation town for Hungarian Kings and at the castle there was a residence of the king. Later, the castle was rebuild in a Renaissance style. The south-west tower – also known as the jewel’s tower – housed the Hungarian coronation jewels for two centuries.The last large reconstruction in Baroque style took place under the reign of Maria Theresia (1740-1780). In 1811, the castle was burnt down and only ruins were left. It was reconstructed in 1956-68. Bratislava Castle is an important landmark and a National Cultural Monument.

Bratislava Castle

1. Bratislava Castle Palace

2. Honorary Courtyard with a statue of Svätopluk I

2. The Yard of Honour (Honorary Courtyard) with a statue of Svätopluk I

Svätopluk I, also known as Svatopluk the Great was a ruler of Great Moravia, which attained its maximum territorial expansion during his reign (870–894)

 3. Main entrance of the castle

3. Main entrance of the palace

Local young family

Local young family

I met a local young family, they looked not so wealthy but they were happy.

4. Vienna Gate

4. Vienna Gate

Vienna Gate is the main entrance to the Castle complex provides Viennese Gate, which stands next to today’s headquarters Slovak Parliament. It was built in 1712 to mark the coronation of Charles III., Father of Maria Theresa, a Hungarian king.

6. Leopold Gate, named after Moravian King Leopold 1st.

6. Leopold Gate, named after Moravian King Leopold 1st.

During the Renaissance and early Baroque eras, the castle was further developed with a regular quadrilateral ground plan around the main courtyard. Leopold’s Gate was added in 1674. Leopold’s Courtyard, inside the Sigismund Gate and below the Court of Honor, is the Leopold Yard with bastions, constructed in the 17th century.

8. House in the Southern Bastion of Bratislava Castle

8. House in the Southern Bastion of Bratislava Castle

9. Sigismund Gate

12. Sigismund Gate in the southeast– the best preserved original part of the site, built in the 15th century

During the Middle Ages the castle was greatly modified to meet prevailing standards, though the Sigismund Gate is the only preserved portion of that medieval structure that can be seen by visitors.

10. Foundations of Great Moravian Basilica

10. Foundations of Great Moravian Basilica

Reconstruction of the Great Moravian buildings foundations of 9 up to 12 century.

11. St. Elizabeth Statue of Bratislava Castle

11. St. Elizabeth Statue of Bratislava Castle, Andrew II and Gertrude’s daughter, Elisabeth was born here.

Elizabeth of Hungary (17 November 1231) was a princess of the Kingdom of Hungary, Landgravine of Thuringia in Germany and a greatly venerated Catholic saint. Elizabeth was married at the age of 14, and widowed at 20. After her husband’s death she sent her children away and regained her dowry, using the money to build a hospital where she herself served the sick. She became a symbol of Christian charity after her death at the age of 24 and was quickly canonized.

13. 14. St. Nicholas Gate

13. 14. St. Nicholas Gate

St. Nicholas Gate in the south-west was built in the 16th century.

14.Luginsland Bastion

15. Luginsland Bastion

Luginsland is a German word meaning “guard tower.”

Bratislava Castle Museum

Bratislava Castle Museum

Bratislava Castle Museum

Bratislava Castle Museum documents the development of society in Slovakia from the Middle Ages until the present day. It holds extensive collections of coins, furniture, visual arts, clocks, historical weapons, glass items, porcelain and ceramics, fashion accessories and silver articles.

Model of Bratislava Castle

Model of Bratislava Castle

Furniture of Bratislava Castle

Furniture of Bratislava Castle

Bratislava Castle Museum

Bratislava Castle Museum

The location provides excellent views of Bratislava, Austria and, in clear weather, parts of Hungary. Many legends are connected with the history of the castle.

Danube

Danube

The view of the Danube from Bratislava Castle.

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