Putting this as a 'must see' is kind of superfluous - if you've come to Spisske Podhradie, it was almost certainly in order to see this, and anyway, it's rather diffficult to miss it, as it grandly stands on a tall rocky peak in the distance.The photos from this are great but it's the sense of gasp-inducing awe that you get from your first glimpse...more
We made a mistake in exploring the Kapitula first as we missed our entry time to the Cathedral. Many buildings in Eastern Slovakia open only at specific times during the day and from what it said on the door we would have to wait another hour. Which might make it difficult to see the castle as well. Luckily a large tour group came along soon and...more
Kapitula lies on a hill overlooking the town and opposite the castle. It was founded in the 13th century and later became the religious capital of the whole Spis area. Most of the residents were clergy until 1948, when they were evicted by the communists. There are still some religious residents here as we saw a group of nuns leaving one building....more
Spisska Kapiutla is a walled ecclesistical settlement dating from the 13th century. It was inhabited as such until the late 1940's. It consists of just one street.We came here from Levoca by bus and got off before it arrived in Spisske Podhradie. Make sure that the driver or another local passenger knows you want to get off here as you'll have to...more
We stopped off in this place as we had an hour more to wait for the bus to Kosice and needed a place away from the cold and to rest our weary backpacks.
We decided we'd chance some food and ordered by hazarding a guess using the German and Slovak menu. The food was really cheap and was really nice. Great spicy sauces and good quality meat.
Maybe don't eat if you are in a real rush though as the service is leisurely. But then to be honest there isn't a whole lot going on in Spisske Podhradie so you'd kind of expect life to go at that pace! Anyway, you'll wolf the food down!!
Favorite Dish: The coffee is more Turkish style coffee - you'll have to wait a while for the grinds to settle!
Spisske tajomstvo 100sk - was meat in a spicy sauce in a pancake.
Belehredsky bravcovy 90sk - was basically a pork schnitzel in a spicy sauce.
We travelled to Spisske Podhradie from Levoca, 15 km to the west where we were staying. There are fairly frequent buses between the towns and if you too are travelling from Levoca you can use the busstop just outside the north-eastern side of town rather than walking all the way to Levoca bus station. I think the fares were 20 SKK each. It's worth...more
You can easily get to Spisske Podhradie by bus from Levoca. Buses also go onwards every few hours to Presov (1hr) and Kosice (1hr 45mins).From Levoca, the buses run maybe every half an hour from Namestie Stefana Kluberta, just outside the gates of the old town. Check the timetable in the Tourist Information Office in Levoca.Buses onwards to Kosice...more
Spisska Kapitula has main street, and that's also the only street there. In the past all that houses were property Roman Catholic church and there were appartments for monks and nuns. Canonical houses were built on both sides of one thoroughfare. They stand upright to the axis of the road, mostly in an L shape. The first houses were built in gothic...more
Spisska Kapitula is more or less part of Spisske Podhradie but it has its own towns walls and gates, making it separate community. That fortifications were probably already built in the 13th century. Wall is one meter wide and 4-5 meters high and have few gates.more
Without a doubt the highlight of the town and perhaps the whole region, Spis Castle is what draws most visitors to Spisske Podhradie.
The castle lies on a hill about 1.5 km north of the town. It's easy to get there. Walk north beyond the cemetery and take the turn left ebfore the train station. The castle lies a further kilometre up a mildly steep hill. The fantastic views of the castle on the way up more than make up for the pain of climbing the hill. I think there is also another approach to the castle by road from the east.
It cost only us a few SKK to enter the castle and we had an hour to explore it until closing time. Getting to the entrance is only part of the climb. The summit of the castle and even the main courtyards are a good bit higher. As you climb to the top you realize just how good a strategic position the castle and also how difficult it must have been to attack from below.
Much of the castle is in ruins though the lookout tower ss still there. Before we reached it we passed the main courtyard where there are toilets, drinks, snacks and souvenir shops. There was also a rather strange sign warning visitors that the castle closed at 6 and it had a picture of dogs and a gun! So we made sure we were finished by 6.
We climbed the tower to take in the views from the top. Inside the tower there are pictures of the Castle and of Pophradie in olden times. It's a fairly narrow squeeze to the top but we made it easily enough. The views at the top are breathtaking but unfortunately I have none of these pictures as I lost my camera in Slovensky Raj the following day.
Fondest memory: But I can still recall the view. We could see all of Pophradie below as well as the Kapitula beyond the town on another hill. In other directions you can see the other towns of the region. This must be one of the highest points of the region and as most of the nearby towns are low lying we could clearly see them. We would also see Tatra mountains in the distance.
From the tower we also got a good idea of the layout of the castle. We could see parts inaccessible orout of bounds to visitors as well as much of the parts we had earlier walked through. They seemed so much lower. This lookout must have been ag great spot in olden times for seeing attackers.
Beneath the tower there was an exhibiton with armoury, some history of the castle and a list of all the UNESCO sight worldwide. We explored some of the rooms in the castle and took in more of the excellent views.