Vitturi Castle was built by the aristocratic family Vitturi from Trogir, at the end of the 15th century. Two noblemen from Trogir, Nikola and Jerolim Vitturi, built the castle in order to provide protection not only for the Vitturi family but also for the population of the nearby village of Ostrog. The castle was built in the style of a luxurious renaissance palace and it was completed in 1564. It consisted of a residential building and two defence towers and it was connected to the mainland with a drawbridge. In the 18th century the drawbridge was replaced with a stone bridge. Near the castle there is a classicistic park dating from the second half of the 18th century. The park was also designed by the Vitturi family. In 1968 it was proclaimed a monument of park architecture.
Nowadays, the renovated Vitturi castle has become the cultural centre of Kaštel Lukšić, as a place where numerous exhibitions, concerts and plays are held. In addition to that, the town museum and other cultural institutions are situated in the former residential part of the castle. The Vitturi castle is famous not only for its beauty but also for a legend concerning one of its inhabitants – Dobrila Vitturi.
The legend of Miljenko and Dobrila is a tragic story about two lovers from Kaštel Lukšić, who are often described as the Croatian Romeo and Juliet. The legend was used as a basis for a number of novels, operas and plays. The story dates from the second half of the 17th century, when two noble families lived in Kaštel Lukšić – the Vitturi family with their daughter Dobrila and the Rušinić family with their son Miljenko.
According to the legend, Miljenko and Dobrila fell in love, but they had to keep their relationship secret because of a long-lasting feud between their families. When their parents found out about their relationship, they decided to separate them. Miljenko was sent off to Venice, while Dobrila’s father arranged for her to marry a much older nobleman from Trogir. However, Miljenko found out about his plans and came back from Venice just in time to stop the wedding. As a result, he was banished from Kaštel Lukšić and Dobrila was sent to a convent. However, she escaped with the intention of being reunited with Miljenko and marrying him secretly. When Dobrila's father found out that she had escaped from the convent, he decided to bring her home at any cost. He sent a messenger to find the two lovers and to tell them that he would no longer oppose their marriage and that they could come home. The lovers accepted his proposal, returned to Kaštel Lukšić and got married. But when the wedding celebration was over, Dobrila’s father, consumed with rage, killed Miljenko. Several months later Dobrila died of sadness. Her only wish was to be buried next to Miljenko. Their grave can be found in the church of St. John in Kaštel Lukšić, and it is famous for the inscription ‘Rest in peace, lovers’.References:
Glimmingehus is the best preserved medieval stronghold in Scandinavia. It was built 1499-1506, during an era when Scania formed a vital part of Denmark, and contains many defensive arrangements of the era, such as parapets, false doors and dead-end corridors, 'murder-holes' for pouring boiling pitch over the attackers, moats, drawbridges and various other forms of death traps to surprise trespassers and protect the nobles against peasant uprisings. The lower part of the castle's stone walls are 2.4 meters (94 inches) thick and the upper part 1.8 meters (71 inches).
Construction was started in 1499 by the Danish knight Jens Holgersen Ulfstand and stone-cutter-mason and architect Adam van Düren, a North German master who also worked on Lund Cathedral. Construction was completed in 1506.
Ulfstand was a councillor, nobleman and admiral serving under John I of Denmark and many objects have been uncovered during archeological excavations that demonstrate the extravagant lifestyle of the knight's family at Glimmingehus up until Ulfstand's death in 1523. Some of the most expensive objects for sale in Europe during this period, such as Venetian glass, painted glass from the Rhine district and Spanish ceramics have been found here. Evidence of the family's wealth can also be seen inside the stone fortress, where everyday comforts for the knight's family included hot air channels in the walls and bench seats in the window recesses. Although considered comfortable for its period, it has also been argued that Glimmingehus was an expression of "Knighthood nostalgia" and not considered opulent or progressive enough even to the knight's contemporaries and especially not to later generations of the Scanian nobility. Glimmingehus is thought to have served as a residential castle for only a few generations before being transformed into a storage facility for grain.
An order from Charles XI to the administrators of the Swedish dominion of Scania in 1676 to demolish the castle, in order to ensure that it would not fall into the hands of the Danish king during the Scanian War, could not be executed. A first attempt, in which 20 Scanian farmers were ordered to assist, proved unsuccessful. An additional force of 130 men were sent to Glimmingehus to execute the order in a second attempt. However, before they could carry out the order, a Danish-Dutch naval division arrived in Ystad, and the Swedes had to abandon the demolition attempts. Throughout the 18th century the castle was used as deposit for agricultural produce and in 1924 it was donated to the Swedish state. Today it is administered by the Swedish National Heritage Board.
On site there is a museum, medieval kitchen, shop and restaurant and coffee house. During summer time there are several guided tours daily. In local folklore, the castle is described as haunted by multiple ghosts and the tradition of storytelling inspired by the castle is continued in the summer events at the castle called "Strange stories and terrifying tales".