Havránok is an important archaeological site in northern Slovakia. It is located on a hill above the Liptovská Mara water. The archaeologists unearthed a prehistoric Celtic hill fort and a medieval wooden castle in the 1960s, during the construction of the Liptovská Mara dam. Both objects have been partially reconstructed. During the Iron Age and the Roman Era, the shrine of Havránok was an important religious center of the Celts living in Slovakia.

The Havránok hill fort was an important religious, economic, and political center of the Púchov culture (300 BCE - 180 CE), in which the dominant Celtic tribe of Cotini mingled with the older people of the Lusatian culture. The prosperous oppidum was destroyed along with other Celtic settlements in Slovakia around the beginning of the Common Era either by the Germanic tribe of Quadi or by Dacians.

A medieval wooden castle existed near the remnants of the ancient hill fort from the 11th to 15th century CE.

The hill fort was a religious center of the Celts living in northern Slovakia. Its wooden shrine was built in the 1st century BCE around an exceptionally high wooden column, probably a totem or a statue. Excavation of a ritual pit situated near this central cult object revealed bones of at least seven people sacrificed during druidic rituals. The victims were beaten to death, quartered, and in some cases also burnt. Parts of their bodies were subsequently thrown into the pit. A large number of agricultural tools in the vicinity of the pit indicate that human sacrifices may have served to insure a good harvest.

The shrine also included a number of smaller wooden columns, with burnt offerings (mostly jewels, agricultural products, and animals) buried next to them.

In addition to the shrine, the reconstructed buildings include a fortified gateway of the hill fort with a part of the stone walls (120-50 BCE), farmstead (300-100 BCE), a pottery kiln (300-100 BCE), and huts from various periods.

In the Iron Age and the Roman Era, Havránok was surrounded by several Celtic villages. Some of them were inundated by Liptovská Mara reservoir. The small medieval castle is also partially reconstructed and the whole area of Havránok is now an open air museum. The site was proclaimed the national cultural monument in 1967.

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Address

Bobrovník, Slovakia
See all sites in Bobrovník

Details

Founded: 300 BC-180 AD
Category: Prehistoric and archaeological sites in Slovakia

Rating

4.5/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Misi Teo Zoe (6 months ago)
Nice historical place with loop trail suitable for kids, heaps to see and learn...with possibility to go swimming to Liptovska Mara
Mike van der Eerden (OnTheMike) (7 months ago)
Nice visit if you want to do a short hike while visiting an open air museum. It ain’t big but there are great views. Information is also provided in English and German. You pay 3 euro’s per adult, 1.5 per child but there’s also a family ticket. You can park at the bottom of the road up (only 4 spots) or just a little further down the road, that’s a dead end where a lot of people are parking also for the chapel nearby.
Steven Hupp (7 months ago)
Well worth the time to drive to from Mikulas, only 25 minutes. Plan on some hiking. Not strenuous but still uphill. Fascinating dig and reconstruction of an early celtic settlement in Slovakia. Don't miss the small museum.
David Běhal (2 years ago)
Nice historical place, the guide nicely talked about the exposition
Kacper Tomczyk (2 years ago)
The view on the niskie and wysokie Tatry is spectacular
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