Bled Castle

Bled, Slovenia

Bled Castle is built on a precipice above the city of Bled in Slovenia, overlooking Lake Bled. According to written sources, it is the oldest Slovenian castle and is currently one of the most visited tourist attractions in Slovenia.

The history of the castle reaches back to 1004 when the German Emperor Henry II gave his estate at Bled to Bishop Albuin of Brixen. At that time, only a Romanesque tower protected by walls stood in the place of the present day castle. The first castle was built in approximately 1011 but the Bishops of Brixen never resided there. This is precisely why the castle has no luxurious halls as the greater emphasis was placed on the defence system.

In the late Middle Ages more towers were built and the fortifications system was improved. Can you imagine entering through the outer walls with the Gothic arch and walking over the drawbridge above the moat. Today, the moat is filled with earth, but the sight is still able to stir up your imagination.

Castle Chapel

The distinctive feature of the castle is its double structure – the fortified centre part was intended for the residence of feudal lords, whilst the outer part with walls and buildings was intended for the residence of servants. In 1511 the castle was heavily damaged by the earthquake. Later on, the castle was restored and given its present appearance. The castle buildings are decorated with coats-of-arms painted in the fresco technique or carved in stone.

The most interesting of all the preserved buildings is most certainly the Gothic chapel on the upper coutyard, which was consecrated to the Bishops St. Albuin and St. Ingenium. It was built in the 16th century, and was renovated in the Baroque style around 1700, when it was also painted with illusionist frescoes. Next to the altar there are paintings of the donors of the Bled estate, the German Emperor Henry II and his wife Kunigunda. Their portraits can also be seen in the Church of the Assumption on the Bled Island.

Today

The Bled Castle is now arranged as an exhibition area. Display rooms next to the chapel present the ancient history of Bled from the first excavations, and the castle in individual stages of its historical development with furniture, characteristic of those times. Although these pieces are not originally from the Bled Castle, they are important as an illustration of the style of living in the historical periods presented.

During the warm months, the castle courtyard hosts numerous cultural events, from which the Medieval Days, when knights present the medieval life to visitors, are the most appreciated.

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Address

Bled, Slovenia
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Details

Founded: c. 1011
Category: Castles and fortifications in Slovenia

Rating

4.4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

LYNDA FRIDA (8 months ago)
Always wanted to go here. Best moment of my life. The stairs to the top had me breathing like a pregnant cow but it was worth it. There are however, other options to get to the top so you can explore that. You need tickets (which are affordable) to get in and there have audio guide qr codes throughout the castle to help you listen on your phone. An awesome way to wrap my year!
sushmitha kalluri (8 months ago)
We visited here during November, it has breathtaking fall view. It’s a little bit of hike on to the hill. You will get an amazing view once you’re on the top of the hill. The view of the island, lake and the mountains is wonderful. There is a cafe if you need a drink or something to eat as well. Parking is available and a little walk uphill to the entrance.
Lily L (8 months ago)
Awesome place! I like how it's looks now, super accurate and cleaned, and people taking care of the castle. It's respectful! Here is the perfect view on a lake, mountains, and villages around. Nature makes it unbelievable! Also here is a small cafe on a territory with good coffee and an amazing view. And a big restaurant inside the castle. Good and clean toilets and whole territory.
Kaitlin Maurer (8 months ago)
We came here in the fall and had a wonderful time, the exhibits in the castle were very informative about the culture and area. We also had so much fun in the wine cellar learning and tasting of course, bought a couple bottles. The view of the lake is absolutely stunning. Parking was easy and a little walk uphill to the entrance.
Aisling Hathaway (8 months ago)
It is a lovely place, a wet and misty day but still beautiful. There's some lovely shops and restaurants. I went to the castle and it's interesting. There's wine tasting, a few lovely little shops. Different rooms showing the history
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Kakesbeck is one of the largest medieval fortifications in Münsterland and the oldest castle in Lüdinghausen. The imposingly grown complex originated in 1120 as a motte, a small hilltop tower castle. After numerous changes of ownership, the castle was extended onto two islands, but it was not until the 14th century that it underwent significant alterations and extensions under the von Oer family. The estate experienced its heyday in the middle of the 18th century, when it covered an area of almost one square kilometre and consisted of five further outer castles in addition to the core castle, which were secured by ramparts and moats.

The well-maintained condition of the castle today is thanks to the late Wilfried Grewing, the former lord of the castle. The foundation named after him has been particularly committed to preserving the property since 2020.