+420 605 366 805 petr.hoska@hoska-tour.cz
+420 605 366 805 petr.hoska@hoska-tour.cz

Castle Valdštejn

The ruins of a castle in the woods on the north edge of Hrubá Skála Rock Town 2,5 km SSE of Turnov. It was erected on three steep sandstone rocks connected by wooden bridges between 1260 and 1270 by Jaroslav of Hruštice, the founder of the family that later acquired its name Valdštein (Wallenstein) from the castle.

Castle Valdštejn

The castle came to Zikmund Smiřický of Smiřice in 1540. A fire at that time destroyed all the wooden buildings leaving only a stone palace, a rear tower and fortification walls intact. The castle was first documented as ruined in 1582. The local estate came to Albrecht of Wallenstein after the confiscations that followed the Battle of White Mountain and his family kept in until 1821. A hermit Václav Holan Rovenský (1668- 1718), the former organ player from Vyšehrad in Prague and the composer of Baroque ecclesiastical music, lived in the ruins of the front castle at the end of the 17th century. His stay attracted pilgrims and the place was enlivened. The castle was repaired in the spirit of the Baroque Romanticism in the 1720s. An octagonal central chapel of St. Jan of Nepomuk was erected in its central part, the rock blocks were connected by stone bridges and decorated with sculptures of nation patrons (1724). The next owners, the Aehrentals who bought the castle from the Wallensteins in 1821, continued rebuilding it in the Romantic style. An inn was built between 1830 and 1840 and an Empire entrance gate was added in 1836. A niche chapel with a painting of St. John the Baptist was built on the site of the former hermitage in the same year. A stone staircase was built between 2nd and 3rd courtyards between 1838 and 1841 and a pseudo-Gothic palace was erected in the 3rd courtyard at the end of the 19th century. Such changes partially damaged the original disposition of the castle, but despite this, the picturesque settings and romantic spirit of Valdštejn attracted more and more visitors. For example, the music composer J. B. Foerster often stayed here and this is where he wrote some of his famous compositions. Only remnants of the walls, cellars, part of the old palace, the prison and walls outside remain of the original castle.

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