Gýmes Castle Ruins

Jelenec, Slovakia

A striking dominant feature in the greater Nitra vicinity is the ruins of Gýmeš Castle, lying on the steep, quartzite Dúň hill. The first written mention of the village of Gýmeš was in the Zobor Deed of 1113 as part of the property belonging to the Benedictine abbey. King Andrew II presented the village in 1226 to Ivanko, descended from the ancient Hunt–Poznán family. Ivanko’s son Andrew saved the life of Béla IV in a battle at the Slaná River and became his protégé. Andrew as the patriarch of the Forgáč line, had the stone castle built on the site, replacing an old hill fort that had stood there.

The castle did not escape the interest of Maté Csák of Trencsén and decades passed before the royal army won the castle back from him in 1312. The castle remained the property of the crown until King Louis the Great gave the castle to his queen, Mary, in 1356. The Forgáčs had to wait more than seventy years for the castle to be returned to them. They lived to see the castle and related property returned to them after Blažej Forgáč, on the orders of Queen Mary of Hungary, killed her implacable enemy, Charles II of Anjou.

In the 18th century, the Forgáčs built in the village a Baroque church and also a manor house where the family later moved. As the village grew, the castle fell into decay. When it subsequently burned down in 1833, the iron support structure was used to build the local sugar refinery. The Forgáč family lived in Jelenec until 1919.



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Jelenec, Slovakia
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Founded: 13th century
Category: Ruins in Slovakia

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4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Ivan Bednarik (25 days ago)
Very nice and easy hike to castle gymes ruins from village Jelenec also good for kids. U can choose two roads red or yellow..red is a bit longer and steeper at the end. We chose the red. Ruins are quite large a lot too see also views are amazing...
Piotr Wień (2 months ago)
Very nice ruins, while hiking up don’t miss the Studeny Hrad ruins for a nice view.
Matúš Nerád (4 months ago)
Really nice ruins of a castle. At first it looks small, but it's quite big and you'll find something new behind each corner. It's almost like TARDIS, bigger on the inside!
David Barbora (4 months ago)
Nice view, permanentli under reconstruction
Stephen Prust (2 years ago)
Parking by the trail head with picnic benches, very well marked and sign posted trails make for an easy navigation up the hill. Spectacular views at the top, castle is very ruinous and possibly unstable in places so clamber on the ruins with care, there is a brief notice board at the top in a few languages. Well worth the climb
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