Top Slovenian castles

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Slovenia has many beautiful castles scattered across the whole country. Explore top Slovenian castles like a true royal.

Slovenia does not have a monarchy even though there are more than 500 castles in the country! That means there is approximately one castle per 25 kilometers. While some of these castles are in impeccable condition, others are now standing as ruins you can explore.  Quite a few mighty buildings survived the test of time; in these, you can now see various exhibitions and shows, listen to concerts, dine, spend the night, or experience the wedding of your dreams. In this article, we discover top Slovenian castles.

Ljubljana Castle

Starting our list in the capital city of Slovenia. Ljubljana Castle stands like a true medieval or storybook attraction on a hill. Ljubljana Castle has been standing strong above the city of Ljubljana for over 900 years.

The castle’s Outlook Tower and ramparts offer some of the most beautiful views of the city, while the castle houses a museum exhibition on Slovenian history, a puppet museum, and a number of historical rooms such as the Chapel of St George, the Prison, and a video presentation room called Virtual Castle. Read more about Ljubljana castle here.

Predjama Castle

Predjama Castle is without a doubt one of the top Slovenian castles and you have to visit it while traveling across Slovenia. This is a unique Slovenian castle that will take your breath away. Predjama Castle was built around 800 years ago. It is situated in a cave-like location.

One of its most famous residents was the rebel knight Erazem Predjamski, who also knew of a hidden tunnel in a karst cave behind the mighty castle, which led to the surface and thence to food. Erazem Predjamski went up the tunnel to get food while the army was waiting for him in front of the castle, thinking he will run out of food. Sneaky guy, right?

Legend has it that his ghost now haunts the castle. Fun fact, Erazem Predjamski was killed while returning to bed from the toilet. What a sad way to go, quite literally.

Bled Castle

Our next top Slovenian castle is Bled Castle, situated above Lake Bled. A picture that won’t easily escape your memory: a romantic lake with an island, dominated by a mighty castle on a steep cliff. 

Bled Castle was first mentioned in written records in 1011. The Romanesque castle wall and the entrance tower have been preserved from that era. Bled Castle will impress you with an astonishing view, a smithy, a printing press, a Knight’s Hall, and a castle chapel. At the castle, visitors can also taste local dishes and excellent wines. You can also get married in this castle. Talk about a romantic location, right?

Snežnik Castle

Snežnik Castle if one of the top Slovenian castles nestled in the idyllic natural backdrop with a forest and a pond, which reflects the image of the stunning white castle.

Snežnik Castle dates back to the 13th century, while the interior inside the castle is from 19th century. This makes Snežnik Castle one of the rare castles in Slovenia with authentic interior elements. The ancient castle in its beautiful natural surroundings is providing a whole day of pleasant and instructive entertainment.

Old Castle of Celje

Across the country,you will come across our next top Slovenian castle. Old Castle of Celje is located on top of a hill above the town of Celje. From the Celje Castle you will be able to gaze upon the Posavje Hills and the Alps. In the summer, there are many open-air concerts, theater performances and standups.

The castle is closely linked to the history of the Counts or Princes of Celje. Celje Castle was supposedly built around 1120 and 1130 A. D. Celje Castle and the town center are surrounded by a green environment where you can take an active break. The nearby hop-growing Žalec is home to the internationally known attraction the Green Gold Fountain.

Otočec Castle

Romance and fairy-tales are words that come to mind when you see a wooden bridge, the broad expanse of the blue River Krka bustling with swans and ducks, mighty trees, and an island surmounted by a Gothic and Renaissance building.

Otočec Castle is the only island castle in Slovenia, and is surrounded by a 200-year old park filled with indigenous and exotic tree species. There are also a golf course and a health resort nearby. The castle houses a world-class restaurant and a luxurious hotel, a member of the Relais & Châteaux chain.

Bogenšperk Castle

Bogenšpekr Castle is one of the top Slovenian castles, which was built in the 16th century. Bogenšperk Castle is popular wedding location. Bogenšperk Castle was the successor to a medieval fortress, designed in the shape of a square with four towers and a large courtyard. The castle had many owners. the most famous castle resident was Janez Vajkard Valvasor, who was a polyhistorian and a member of the British Royal Society. His impressive body of work, which includes a study of the intermittent Lake Cerknica and a history of most of the area that is today’s Slovenia, can be seen at the castle.

Brdo Castle

This top Slovenian castle is mostly known to host presidents, royal family members, diplomats and world-renowned personalities. Brdo Castle is the main protocol facility of Slovenia. In the past, Brdo Castle was the home of Yugoslav royal family of Karađorđević and of President Josip Broz Tito.

Tours of the castle are only possible during European Heritage Days, but it is most certainly a pleasant experience to visit its estate, to play golf and stay at the nearby Brdo Hotel. 

Velenje Castle

Velenje Caste is one of the best  Slovenian Renaissance castles. The nucleus of the castle, the inner arcade courtyard and picturesque walls today house museum collections and a gallery, and the remains of a mastodon are kept in the former stable. Visitors are thrilled with the castle shop and restaurant, and in the summer the castle garden hosts the Youth and Culture Days. This top Slovenian castle looks like a true fairly-tale castle above the city of Velenje.

Ptuj Castle

Our next top Slovenian castle is located in the oldest Slovenian town. Ptuj Castle is located above the town of Ptuj, which lays below.  The castle was built on the remains of a Roman temple. The Castle Ptuj has been settled from the 5th millennium BC on. Settlers of Roman Poetovio built there a fortress and temples; in the early Middle Ages the Hill became the burying ground of the Slavs.

In the 17th century, elegant rooms with exquisite stuccowork were built. These rooms now house the museum artifacts.

Maribor Castle

This top Slovenian castle is located in the second biggest city of Slovenia. Maribor Castle went from mighty castle to administrative building. Maribor Castle has been turned into a museum. Enjoy a stroll down the stunning rococo staircase and observe the beautifully sculptured figures.

The walls of the Maribor Castle are decorated with exquisite stuccowork, and Baroque knight’s halls bearing images of the seasons, horse-mounted battles, and the story of Odysseus. You simply have to visit this top Slovenian castle while visiting Maribor.

Raka Castle

The mighty Raka Castle, one of the oldest medieval castles in Slovenia, sits at the northern edge of the valley of the Krka River between Krško and Novo mesto. You can admire the castle’s authentic interior dating from the period between the 17th century and 19th century. The museum collection features over 450 pieces of furniture and 1600 other works of art. Take a tour of the castle’s 34 rooms and discover treasures from the past.

Source: Slovenska turistična organizacija