Turku castle is a national monument and one the most remarkable medieval castles in Finland. It's also one of the largest existing castles in Scandinavia. A history of Turku castle begins from the year 1280. The Swedish conquerors of Finland intended it originally as a military fortress.

During 15th and 16th centuries its defences were strengthened and living quarters were added. The castle served as a bastion and administrative centre in Finland. It was also a residence for kings of Sweden, when they visited in Finland. During the struggles for power of Sweden in 14th and 15th centuries Turku castle was several times under siege. Probably the longest one occured in 1364-65, when German lord Albrecht von Mecklenburg besieged it over eight months before Swedish troops surrounded.

The heyday of Turku Castle was in 1556-1563, when King John III of Sweden lived there. During this castle was enhanced to Renaissance fashioned living palace. John III married Polish princess Catherine Jagellon who also lived in Turku short period in 1562-1563. In 1614, when King Gustav II Adolf visited the castle, a tremendous fire destroyed the wooden structure of the main castle almost completely. After this the main castle was abandoned and used partly as a store, partly just stood empty. In the 19th century castle was used as a prison. The last accident beset the castle in the summer of 1941 soon after the Continuation War had begun when an incendiary bomb hit the main castle.

Today Turku castle is Finland's most visited museum, with attendance reaching 200,000 in some years. In addition, many of the larger rooms are used for municipal functions.

References:

Comments

Your name

Website (optional)



Address

Linnankatu 80, Turku, Finland
See all sites in Turku

Details

Founded: 1280
Category: Castles and fortifications in Finland
Historical period: Middle Ages (Finland)

Rating

4.4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Conny Stiernborg (19 months ago)
An amazing castle with great tour's, truly recommend visiting and especially during Halloween and their ghost tour
Serkan Ergul (2 years ago)
Well i visited this place twice :) It is very good and wonderful mid-age castle.While you walk you feel the reality.. You must see it.
Alan Pembshaw (2 years ago)
Easy to spend half a day in this castle museum. Very informative and well-organised. Well worth a visit
Momodou Semega-Janneh (2 years ago)
A great place to spend a couple of hours seeing a castle that has been renovated and maintained to a very high standard. There is plenty to see and keep you occupied especially if you are with children. Would highly recommend that you wear comfortable shoes to cope with the long walk and many steps May not be totally suitable for those with restricted mobility as there are many steep narrow stairs to manoeuvre.
Lindsay Lake (2 years ago)
Hands on experience at a beautifully restored and maintained medieval castle. We happened to visit on a "medieval day" where there were many people dressed for the time period and "playing parts" throughout the castle. These "actors" were super knowledgeable about their "profession" and seemed genuinely invested in and actually aware of the history and background they were conveying. It was amazing. The children's activities were also very well presented and fun for my 5yo. Definitely recommend visiting.
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Narikala Castle

Narikala is an ancient fortress overlooking Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia, and the Kura River. The fortress consists of two walled sections on a steep hill between the sulphur baths and the botanical gardens of Tbilisi. On the lower court there is the recently restored St Nicholas church. Newly built in 1996–1997, it replaces the original 13th-century church that was destroyed in a fire. The new church is of 'prescribed cross' type, having doors on three sides. The internal part of the church is decorated with the frescos showing scenes both from the Bible and history of Georgia.

The fortress was established in the 4th century and it was a Persian citadel. It was considerably expanded by the Umayyads in the 7th century and later, by king David the Builder (1089–1125). Most of extant fortifications date from the 16th and 17th centuries. In 1827, parts of the fortress were damaged by an earthquake and demolished.