Countries for travel
If you are a family with little children, surely you look for something that will replace your everyday stereotype and entertain your children for your holidays. There are many ways how to do that. Take your children for a walk around the city; go to a swimming pool or water park where he can enjoy playing in the water. Water parks situated in Senec, Poprad, Bešňová or Liptovský Mikuláš will offer you much more than only swimming in the pool. In Addition, there are many attractions that you and your children will fall in love with on your holidays in Slovakia.
Even a visit of ZOO will guarantee you a great holiday trip in Slovakia. A nice walk around ZOO will strengthen your body and your kids will have fun admiring rare animals and playing in the children’s playgrounds. Cinema might be another good idea, especially if there is some good cartoon on. Visit of a Slovakia castle might be also interesting, even more if there’s any extraordinary exposition or exhibition. We can assure you that a park with an open-air tank exhibition will attract only little boys. Every visit of the nature is important for children and their health. Change the city smog, rush and the noise for the clean fresh air of our forests and the quietness of our mountains on your holiday in Slovakia. There are many interesting places to go to. There are even few hiking routes suitable for little children. You will see that every trip to the mountains will raise your spirit and fill you up with new energy.
Not only children need change and relax. You should think of yourself too. We will help you find destinations and organize the programme for your holiday in Slovakia. There are many places to see and even more things to do in Slovakia. Our precious historical monuments are there to be seen and admired. Several extraordinary sacral buildings will certainly impress you. Equally interesting will be to see Slovakia fortresses and castles, which will offer you an unforgettable walk along the history of the Slovak nation. Some of them have remained only as ruins, some are home to different museums and their expositions. If you are wiling to learn something about other nations living in the Slovak territory, you should not miss some interesting places situated in the western Slovakia. Many centuries ago the famous Roman Empire was extending there and its boundary “Limes Romanus” was reaching as far as today’s Slovakia.
Besides beautiful buildings you can visit botanic gardens or caves in Slovakia. Many impressive historical and modern buildings can be found in Slovakia, not only the sacral ones. There are Lovely cities with nice squares are for example: Trnava, Banská Štiavnica, Nitra, Bardejov, Trenčín,Bratislava, Košice, Levoča, etc you should not miss on your holiday in Slovakia.
Culture and art lovers will certainly not forget Slovak theatres, galleries or museums. Open-air museums usually oriented at the Slovak history and customs of the Slovakia region they lie in are also very attractive and not only for tourists. Memorials are other interesting tracks of our history; mostly we talk about the war memorials. They loom over the territories where important historical events took place, for example the memorial in Nemecká or Dukla.
Even the legendary Slovak hero Juraj Jánošík has his memorial located behind the Terchová Village. Numerous wooden churches lying mainly in the eastern Slovakia have been rousing interest and admiration for many years. Particularly impressive are historical post-mill and water-mills. Visit of buildings that have been inscribed into the UNESCO World Heritage list may be also very interesting as a holiday trip in Slovakia.
Horse-lovers have the opportunity to participate in horse racings; those of you interested in astrology can observe the sky from one of many observatories in Slovakia. You can relax is Slovakia spas; for sports lovers there are sports such as rafting, cycling, fishing, hunting, etc. available in Slovakia.
Castle system in Slovakia has its beginnings in the 11th and 12th centuries. In those times it was necessary to protect the border areas against attacks of invaders and to prevent their entering into the country. In addition to the guarding services a system of castles was used also to guard the most important roads. The seat of the region castles and other buildings were not sufficiently ensured against enemy's attacks (most of forts were fortified with wood in the first half of the 13th century). An exemption was a protecting system of castles in the Považie region-Trenčín, Šintava, Hlohovec, Baňa (at Piešťany) and Beckov-protecting crossings over the Váh river. There are other castles documented for the same period-Levice, Fiľakovo, Starý hrad(opposite to the Strečno castle), Orava, Plaveč, Sariš and Slanec.The most extensive construction of stone castles in Slovakia started immediately after the Tartars invasion in the middle of the 13th century and lasted till the half of the 14th. New stone forts were built in the place of original wooden castles or near them. New castles were built as well: Budatín castle at the confluence of the Váh and Kysuca rivers from1323. It was built or purchased by the Balag family or their ancestors. Previously the castle served for protection of the country border as well as a toll station for merchants passing from Silisia and Poland.
The Balas family was also the first known occupier of the Lietava castle near Ružomberok. Their big enemy Matús Čák Trenčiansky gained form the Balas's and he also occupied the following castles: Budatín, Lietava, Starý hrad and Hričov. After death of Matúš Čák Trenčiansky the castles Hričov, Budatín, Starý were gained back by the Balas family. The Emperor got gradually all the property as all those castles were royal property originally.
Most of the Slovak castles were built before the half of the 15th century. The nobility got the royal property step by step either as advance payment for a loan given to a monarch or for extraordinary and loyal services to the king. This was also the case of the aristocratic family of Zápolský who got more castles from the monarch of Matej Korvín (Matthias Corvinus) in the 15th century (Trenčín, Spiš and Kežmarok) and then they paid for reconstruction and changed the old castles for luxury palaces. At the end of the 15th and the beginning of the 16th centuries Štefan Zápolský had Trenčín, Spiš and Lietava castles reconstructed and enlarged. Only when Turks attacks started again in the half of the 16th century it was necessary to built new fortifications for the castles. The Habsburg monarchs entrusted Italian builders with new tasks. That period seen many ownership changes of castle properties. Ferdinand Habsburg, crowned Hungarian King took the property of the Zápolský family and gave it to the nobility loyal to him. Thurzo family got a large land holdings together with castles. They got a right of succession for the Spiš region, Nitra, Hlohovec, Bojnice and Trenčín castles. Along with the Fuggers they owned the castle Červeny Kameň as well as the Lietava and Orava castles.
The system of the castles gradually lost its military and strategic importance from the l7th and the beginning of the 18th century and aristocratic families started to move from castles to manor houses. In this period lot of castles were demolished, burned and others fell into disrepair after inhabitants moved out.
At present many of the castles are reconstructed and are open for visitors like in the case of the, Čachtice, Beckov, Topoľčany, Trenčín, Budatín,Strečno and many others.