Trakoscan castle, Croatia
Location: Northern Croatia, close to the Slovenian border
History: Trakošćan is perhaps the most celebrated and most beautiful Croatian castle. Situated in northern part of Croatia called Zagorje, this castle represents one of the best examples of European feudal fortification systems. Trakošćan was built in the 13 th century as a small observation fortress for monitoring the local roads. According to one legend, Trakošćan was named after a fortification that existed on the same spot. But another legend suggests that the castle was named after one of its first owners who controlled the region in early middle Ages, knight Drachenstein. During its long history, the castle was owned by numerous families but the most famous proprietor was Juraj Drašković. This renowned Croatian ruler and churchman came into possession of Trakošćan in 1584 and his family lived there until the second half of 18 th century, when castle was abandoned. Deserted, it started dilapidating rapidly and it wasn’t until the middle of the 19 th century that Drašković family started to renovate it in the romanticist spirit of returning to nature and family traditions. They turned the castle into a residential manor-house and decorated the surrounding park with artificial lake. Drašković family lived in the castle just until 1944 when the castle was nationalized.
Today, Trakošćan embodies Museum with collections on permanent display since 1953. Of special significance are the knights’ room, the hunting room, the music salon and the study of painter Julijana Erdödy (first Croatian women that achieved the title of academic painter), along with smaller but not less important collections dispersed in various spaces in the castle. Special attention should be paid to the arms collection with specimens of firearms dating from 15th -19th century.
Ticket price: 3 € (adult), 1.75€ (students, children)
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