Trenčin is located in the western part of Slovakia, on the bank of the Váh River. Trenčin Castle is one of the largest castle complexes in Slovakia. It is the dominant landmark of the town of Trenčin and the whole of the river Váh valley.
It was built in the 11th century on the site of a Great Moravian hill fort. It acquired its characteristic silhouette in the 13th century, during the reign of Máté Csák, known as the “lord of the Váh and Tatras”.
In 1790 a fire spread through the town, which also engulfed the castle. After the fire the buildings in the lower castle were partially rebuilt, but extensive reconstruction and conservation work were begun on the castle only at the end of the 1950’s.
The grounds of the castle contain a group of palaces (Zápolsky’s, Barboras’s, Ludovit’s) and the striking tower 39 meters high, known as Matusova veza, whose ground plan covers 12×12 m and the thickness of the wall at the foundation is as much as 4 meters.
An interesting feature of the castle is the Roman inscription from 179 AD, cut into the rock on which the castle stands. It states that the troops of the second Roman legion spent the winter here.
The visitors’ attention is also drawn to the castle well, which according to the legend, was dug out by a young Turk, in order that the lord of Trenčin would free his beloved one. The castle houses exhibitions of the Trenčin Museum and there is an interesting family gallery of the Illésházy family, former owners of the castle.
Several interesting historical buildings, churches and monuments have been preserved in the town: the Parish Staircase Mary from 1568, the Headsman’s House, the Parish Church of Nativity of the Virgin Mary from the 14th century, the Town’s Tower with the Town Hall from 1543, the Illésházy Houses, the early gothic Church of St. Francis Xaversky and the Synagogue from 1911.
More photos: Trenčin Photo Gallery