Bratislava Castle (Bratislavsky hrad) is situated on a rocky hill of the Little Carpathians in the centre of the city and is overlooking the river Danube.
Bratislava Castle also provides an excellent view of Bratislava and Austria. The massive building has four corner towers, reminding an upturned table. Rich history of the castle started in the late Stone Age. It had a very important role in 16th, 17th and 18th centuries, as it was the Main Castle of the Kingdom of Hungary. During the centuries Bratislava castle was ruined by Celts, Romans, Germans, Slavs, Austrians and Hungarians. The castle had to be rebuilt several times. Latest reconstruction started in 2008 and should take 5 years.
Nowadays the Bratislava castle is used for exhibitions and state functions. You can find a Treasury of Slovakia on the ground floor. To other interesting things in the castle belong a collection of archeological findings, branch of Slovak National Museum that covers historical furniture, modern art and history. Gardens of the castle are the most convenient place for pleasant walks, offering beautiful views, looking out onto three countries - Austria, Hungary and Slovakia.
High above Slovakia’s capital city looms austere Bratislava castle - built and rebuilt many times over more than 1,000 years of existence. Starting out as a 10th century fortress, the castle’s “upside down table” design we see today is from the 15th century. This was the residence of Hungarian kings while the Turks occupied Buda in the 16th and 17th centuries. Legend has it that the castle stair are very wide and shallow because Hapsburg Empress Maria Theresa, too heavy to climb them herself, insisted on riding her horse up and down instead. The castle suffered the indignity of being nearly burned down by drunken Austrian soldiers stationed there in the early 19th c. during the Napoleonic Wars. It was reconstructed in the mid 20th c.
Bratislava Castle is now home to the Slovak National Museum. Most notable exhibits: the 22,800 B.C. Venus of Morovany, a fertility figure carved from a mammoth tusk, and the historical furniture collection, which includes fabulous Secessionist (Viennese Art Nouveau) and Art Deco pieces. The Museum of Folk Instruments is also worth visiting.
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