The gothic castle Vinné was built high above the lake Vinné on a volcanic hill (325 m above the sea level). You can get there from various starting points.
We started in the village with (surprisingly 🙂) same name and took the blue sign in the direction of the castle.
It took us less than an hour to walk up through the forest to top of the hill. It would have been faster if we wouldn’t have taken so many photos on the way.
We came across a very rare Blue or Alpine Longhorn beetle that is a protected species in Germany, Hungary, Poland and Slovenia. I have never seen such a beetle. It had a stunning color!
I have visited this castle almost 20 years ago (time flies) and it was great to visit it again. It looks completely different to what I was expecting.
It used to be just rocks randomly placed around the hill and many thick bushes. Today, there is a castle standing proudly on the hill!
LET'S CHECK IT OUT!
Last time I came here with my school class. It was included in our weekend trip at the end of the school year. I remember it was so hot when we walked up the hill. It was like that road didn’t have an end. We walked and walked and walked, and it was horrible.
This time, we went there with my husband, my brother and two of my cousins. Having my bad memories from my teenager years I was expecting a never-ending path and a lot of sweating.
Well, I was wrong. Yes, it was hot but the hike was quite easy and much quicker than I remembered. I think I was simply too lazy and ‘cool’ (like most of teenagers) when I was there for the first time.
The castle was built in the second part of the 13th century to protect the trade route called Magna Via to Poland. There were several castles in this area with the same function, such as Brekov or Jasenov (I wrote about these two some time ago).
According to the first document mentioning the castle, it included an old gate, a palace, a tower, the chapel of St. Margita and the house of Vavrinec, which stood outside of the structure but in the immediate vicinity of the castle.
It has a long and turbulent history, and there were many won and lost battles happening in this place. It was damaged in the 15th century, reconstructed and damaged again in the 16th century and abandoned by its owners, the family of Sztáray, in the 17th century. In the 18th century it was decided to destroy the castle and it was left in ruins up until a few years ago. The ruins of the castle belong to the National Cultural Monuments of Slovakia.
Nowadays, there is an extensive reconstruction of the castle (since 2014) which is performed in the same way it was constructed back then – no electronic tools, all done manually by hand.
There is a blacksmith preparing the metal parts, wooden wheel to lift heavy pieces and thousands of stones ready to become a stone wall.
The workers are dressed in authentic medieval clothes. There are almost 50 of them! The exterior as well as the main tower have been already partly reconstructed but there is still too much work and it will take several years to complete this reconstruction.
This is the wooden wheel to lift heavy pieces needed for reconstruction. Someone goes inside of the wheel and start walking, the wheel moves and helps to lift the pieces up (there is a mechanism attached to the wheel).
I would have never expected such progress and I was proud of people who started this project and those who did the great job! When I come in 20 years again there might be a 5 star hotel inside of the castle, who knows.
There are reconstructed windows and doors openings, a cellar, and fireplaces. They have also placed the roof on the palace and the work is now progressing on the triangular tower.
(interior of the castle)
During the reconstruction some rings, almost 2000 coins in a clay container and richly decorated tiles were found here. Furthermore, they discovered a vineyard which is about 200 years old and may belong to the variety of Neuburg which is very rare in Slovakia.
(stones waiting to be placed)
(this is one of finished walls)
(view from the tower)
(Part of the wall - look how thick it is!)
(this is how they reconstruct the door openings)
(last but not least - view of the Širava lake)
On the way back we had a great view of the castle with the Slovak flag!
And our trip ends where it started 🙂
I hope that you have enjoyed our trip.
Thank you for joining me.