Yes, it is not a mistake... There are castles and fortresses in Ukraine! Please be sure that Ukraine is a tourist country and we have a lot of things worth to see!
Firstly– the castles and fortresses of Ukraine, secondly – palaces, town halls, towers. The researchers of the world religion do not even need to go anywhere: you will find the Orthodox churches, Catholic temples, mosques, synagogues and even Buddhist temples in one place – in Ukraine!
We have many unique environmentally protected sites: preserves, national parks, botanic gardens and recreation parks – the people who love nature and animals would never be bored there! There are a lot of museums and monuments – to any taste and interest. Even of you imagine something unthinkable... Like the newly opened museum of lard (Svobody avenue 6/8, Lvov), or a museum of toilets’ history (Rybolovetskaya street 22, Kiev)! We have open air museums and you can visit the old windmills and salterns! We are sure that everybody will find their own pleasure...
A lot of castles and fortresses survived in Ukraine (see detailed information about some castles and fortresses in Ukraine on our website: Olesko castle, Medzhybіzh castle), which attract thousands of tourists annually.
Ukrainian castles are one of the most interesting historical places in Ukraine. The scientists say that in general there were more than 5,000 fortresses in Ukraine. However, only one hundred has been survived till nowadays... Despite the fact that most castles of Ukraine are neglected, it is worth to see each of them. Since long ago the castles and fortresses in Ukraine performed defense and housing function. They were built in the areas best suitable for defense and in the most beautiful landscapes with wonderful views, on the banks of water reservoirs, in the forests or among the rocks. They were built like the re-enforced structures or a group of buildings, which also served as the houses for the feudal lords and around which the houses for the ordinary people were constructed. As the castles were built by the rich people, all of them are the real masterpieces as for the beauty and greatness. Almost every castle is related to the famous Ukrainian personalities or families, which left their mark in the global history. They were rich Lithuanian, Polish or Ukrainian princes or magnates.
Historically the most part of the castles and fortresses of Ukraine are built in the western part of Ukraine under the influence of the culturological features of the countries which owned the western part of our country at different times. One third of all Ukrainian castles are located in Ternopol region. At first the castles were built from the wood, which is considered to be unreliable material, as the enemy was able to burn such fortifications. So later they started to build the constructions from stone and brick.
Most castles and fortresses of Ukraine are dated by the 14th – 17th centuries. The oldest castle is the romantic mediaeval Nevitsky castle of the 12th century located in the Transcarpathian region on the mountain, on the right bank of Uzh river, at height of 125 meters, 12 km from Uzhgorod city. People say that the first wood fortress was built there by the Slavic princess as a shelter for women and children at time of the enemy attacks. The name of the castle - Nevitsky castle – tells about it, as it is related to the word “fiancée” or “girl” (‘nevestka). They also say that in this castle the brides of the rich families were hidden from the guys. On the west side of the mountain there is an igneous column, which by the legends has a unique capability to give children. Nevitsky castle has irregular elliptic shape of the walls (their thickness is 2.5 meters) which are attached to the hexagonal tower. The scientists say that the Hungarians, Italians and even a general from Transylvania owned Nevitsky castle for a few centuries. There are a lot of legends about the castle! The road to the castle brings you to Vagner garden (named after Carl Vagner, a gardener from Hungary), founded in 1879, with an amazing fountain which is not frozen even in winter due to natural pressure of water.
The territory of Nevitsky castle is being restored (the opening is scheduled in 2015). The entrance is free. You can get there by your own car or by bus from Uzhgorod (Uzhgorod-Perechin or Uzhgorod-Kamenets) – the bus leaves every half an hour from the bus station. You should get out at Kamenets stop and then walk via pendant bridge upwards along the path. The most popular castles (due to the developed tourist infrastructure) include – Lutsk castle (Lubart's Castle,), Kamenets-Podolsky fortress, Zolochevsky Castle, Olesko Castle and Podgoretsky Castle, which are a part of the Golden Horseshoe tourist route, Palanok Castle in Mukachevo, Zbarazh Castle, Uzhgorod Castle, Shenborn Castle. Every castle has its own history and its own legends.
The Carpathian Shenborn castle (14 km of Mukachevo town) located in the village which is called Carpathians, was a hunting palace of Shenborn counts. It was built in 1840 in the valley of Latoritsa river in the foothills of the volcano ridge of the Ukrainian Carpathians. It impresses people with its beauty. You can get to Shenborn castle by the car or by train. The railway station looks like a fairy mini-castle. A wonderful park is located around Shenborn castle. It is decorated with 40 types of the trees, a tower, an old clock and family emblems of the counts, lion statues with the crowns, concrete female bear and bear cubs, and the deer – like real ones. There were a lot of deer at those times in those forests and that region was famous with the excellent hunting. The aristocracy from all other regions came to hunt there and they stayed at the hunting palace of Shenborn counts. The local inhabitants still tell about the insatiable avarice of the local counts and about their unprecedented cruelty towards the animals.
The Shenborn castle has some definite symbolism. There are 365 windows (like the days in a year), 52 rooms (like the weeks in a year) and 12 entrances which symbolize 12 months. The castle resembles the French Renascence castles by its architecture. There is a lake in the territory of Shenborn castle. Its shape resembles the borders of Austria-Hungary.
Today the “Carpathians” health resort is located in the territory of the castle (area of 50 hectares), it is a place recommended for the patients with cardiovascular disorders.
Address: “Carpathians” health resort, Chinadievo, tel.: +38 (03131) 7-33-07, 7-32-88, 7-32-24. You can stay at “Rose of Carpathians” hotel.
A lot of historical and architecture monuments are damaged including the castles and fortresses of Ukraine. They require the restoration works. The other castles and fortresses of Ukraine are located far from the tourist routes and are seldom visited.
If you still have any doubts about visiting Ukraine please review the UNESCO list of the objects of the world heritage located in the territory of Ukraine:
Here are the pretenders to be entered into the list:
You can read the information about many interesting places of Ukraine which are worth to visit and which can be called a miracle of Ukraine on our website in the article Interesting places of Ukraine.
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