Piešťany - it is not only the best known Slovak spa specializing in the treatment of the human muscular-skeletal systems, but the Piešťany Spa also offers a variety of ways to spend your free time - with relaxation, recreational activities, colourful as well as varied cultural, sports and social events. Piešťany, thanks to its location, has ideal conditions for hiking and biking. You find plenty of tracks and paths in the town and its surroundings ideal for cycling, hiking and in-line skating. The surroundings of Piešťany also offer a variety of interesting places to visit. Whether your are interested in taking a step back through time or merely becoming better acquainted with the beauty of nature, we can provide you with numerous suggestions
There are large ruins of the massive border guardian castle (already mentioned in Anonymus chronicle from the end of the 12th and the beginning of the 13th century) on the hill just above the village Beckov. Although each of the castle's owners (Matúš Čák Trenčiansky, the Ctibors, the Bánfis) did some substantial constructional renovations of the castle, today we can only admire their remains in the conserved ruins, damaged by fire in 1729. Visitors can decide, from the castle's cliff, which sightseeing tour of Beckov they prefer: the late renaissance mansions, the Franciscan church and monastery, the Evangelic church and monastery, Ambrov mansion (museum), or the Jewish cemetery.
After a short sightseeing tour of the village Čachtice, where tourists can visit, for example, Draškovič castle (museum), the gothic church with a parsonage (the place of the Tatrín members' meeting in 1847), the castle is an opportunity for a pleasant walk. Its history goes back to the 13th century when the castle belonged to the family of the boarder guardian castles. The castle was extended and developed by each of its owners (Matúš Čák Trenčiansky, the Ctibors and the Nádašdis). During the corporative uprising in 1708, it was conquered and burnt down by the František Rákoczy's troops. Since then it has been becoming deserted. Čachtice castle was made famous by bloodthirsty countess Elisabeth Bathory (1560-1614).
The cave is situated at the foot of the Nad Lipovcom peak, which rises 253 metres above sea level. The cave was inhabited by Neanderthal man and is believed to be the oldest occupied cave in Slovakia. The cave is 27 metres long and is accessible from both sides. It was formed by the karstification of dolomite limestone.
It will definitely be an unforgettable experience to visit the large area of the castle Červený kameň, which is stretched at the rise of the village Častá. There were already references to this royal castle in the 13th century. After the Turzas, the castle became a property of the notable business family, the Augsburg Fuggers, from 1535. They rebuilt the castle to the massive renaissance fortress with the large warehouses. The fortress was reconstructed by the Pálfys. Its most important rebuilding is considered to be the baroque reconstruction in the 17th century. Apart from the interesting architecture of the castle, visitors can also admire the rich collection of historical furniture and the styles of historical living.
The ruins of the castle can be found in the bramble bush north of the village Dobrá Voda. The castle was originally built as the boarder guarding castle, situated above the business road across the Malé Karpaty crest at the end of the 13th and in the beginning of the 14th century. It used to be an early gothic fortress with the oldest top castle. It belonged to the Abos, Ctibors and Pálfys in the past. Tourists can also visit the memorial room in the village, dedicated to Ján Hollý.
The classicistic manor-house in Dolná Krupa will certainly be an attraction for all music lovers. It was built as a representative residence of the Brunswicks' family at the end of the 18th century. The manor-house gained its current shape after its reconstruction, carried out according to A.P.Rigel, at the beginning of 19th century. The manor-house is surrounded by a large English style park. It is assumed the music composer Ludwig van Beethoven used to go for walks in this park. A part of the museum's music exposition is dedicated to this genius.
Everyone who ascends the Kostolec hill, towering above the village Ducové, will enjoy a beautiful view from this place. From the half of the 9th to the 10th century, the hill was a residence of the Great Moravian magnifico. The conserved walls of the rotunda, residential and farm areas, encircled by the renovated tambour, still remind us of those times.
Following the road across the large and uphill stretched English style park, with a glimpse at the Empire style theatre from 1802, visitors will approach the baroque manor-house built at the place of the old Slavic roost and the mediaeval castle. The castle had many owners, it was taken by the Hussites and later by the Turks. From 1720 it belonged to the Erdödys who reconstructed it into the four wings manor-house with an irregular courtyard and a chapel. In addition to the "manor-house" area, visitors can admire many other sights of the gothic style origin in the town Hlohovec (the parish church, the church and the Franciscan monastery, or the historical town hospital).
Košariská - Bradlo
Both locations, Košariská and Bradlo, are associated with Milan Rastislav Štefánik- a notable person of modern Slovak history. He was born in the village Košariská, in the Evangelic parsonage in 1880. The memorial plaque and the small museum in Košariská still remind us of this occasion. It was opened in 1990 in the home where he was born. This exhibition of his memorabilia gives the visitor, not only, a closer look into Štefánik's political and military life, but also into his other interests and private life. The hill Bradlo is the place of his last relief. The monumental burial-mound is a work of the national artist Dušan Jurkovič.
Krakovany, Súkromné etnografické múzeum
The exposition of the museum documents not only the life of the inhabitants of Krakovany but also of neighbouring villages. In the exposition of agriculture, there are instruments and working tools which were used in soil cultivation, food processing and various agricultural and domestic duties.
Lokalita Bacchusvilla, Piešťany
Nestled within the beautiful and tranquil surroundings of the Považsky Inovec mountain range, only a few kilometres from the town of Piešťany, is the "landlord's barnyard" Furman. More than anything else, this place is unique for the views it offers and the animal game-park complete with fallow-deer, stags, and mouflon sheep.
Although the history of Smolenice castle is dated back to the 14th century, its current romantic appearance is a result of the extensive reconstruction of the damaged and dilapidated castle, which was carried out by the Pálfys (the owners of the object from the 16th century) between 1864-1945. The only remainder of the old castle is a part of the external fortification with a cannon bastion. The new part of the castle, with a dominant, massive central tower, respects the original mediaeval castle pattern. Visitors of Smolenice castle can now admire part of the castle's interior, visit its exteriors, or go for a walk to the surrounding park.
The high-perched ruins of the castle Tematín, hidden in the hills of Považský Inovec, come from the second half of the 13th century, when the castle was built as one of the boarder guardian castles that are situated above the road leading through the valley of the river Váh. The castle had many owners. It was a birth place of the future top-ranking commander of František Rákoczy uprising army, Mikuláš Bercsényi, and therefore, the castle was destroyed during the corporative uprising in the beginning of the 18th century by the imperial troops. The early-gothic tower and the castle palace still dominate the castle area.
The ruins of Topoľčany castle, some of its parts are dated to the half of the 13th century, are still towering above the village Podhradie. The castle was constantly extended with the new courtyards and its final pattern is exceptionally symmetrical. In the 15th century, the castle belonged to the main centres of the Hussite troops in Ponitrie. The castle tower, a typical silhouette of the castle, is a retrospection of the romantic castle reconstructions in the 19th century. A part of its ruins is conserved.
The large Trenčín castle has towered over the steep rocks, just above the town, for many centuries. The famous sign on the castle rock is a proof that its beginnings are dated to the Roman Empire Age. It used to be a royal guardian castle in the 11th century. Then it was developed by Matúš Čák, who owned it at the end of the 13th and in the beginning of the 14th century. He built the residential palace and Matúš tower, which is still a dominant of the castle. The other important reconstructions of the castle occurred in the 14th, 15th; and in 16th century when it was developed by the Zápoľský family. At the end of the 18th century it was damaged by fire, and it has been restored and conserved since the 19th century. The current castle area consists of the complex of palaces, excluding Matúš tower. In this area, visitors can see the Well of love, emblazoned with legends. There are also numerous collections installed in the castle's interiors. From the castle's cliff, visitors can decide what next sightseeing tour to the historical core of this picturesque town they will choose to go for.
It is definitely worth visiting Trnava, the oldest Slovak royal town (1238). After being destroyed by fire at the end of the 13th and the beginning of the 14th century, the town started to flourish in the 16th century and it became a cleric centre of the country. Between 1635-1777 Trnava was also a centre of Trnava University. There were built many baroque jewels, during these years, in the town - the complex of the university buildings with St. Jan Baptist basilica and the church and the monastery of St. Trinity. Visitors can also see the older objects of the sacral architecture in Trnava (the spital church of St. Helena, the parish church of St. Nicholas, the Franciscan church of St. Jacob with an adjacent monastery building). Some of them were reconstructed in a baroque style and the silhouettes of their towers and turrets brought Trnava a nickname "Small Rome". From the Town tower (1574), visitors can admire the historical core of the town, still encircled by remains of the mediaeval fortification.
In addition to the sights such as the Romanesque-gothic church, the "hanging" bell house tower, or the Jewish synagogue, visitors to this town Vrbové can also admire the aristocratic mansion dating from the end of the 17th century. It was built by the ancestors of the famous traveller and adventurer Móric Beňovský, born in this house in 1746.