Leave Krakow for a while to be taken to an eerie world out of fantasy literature – the Krakow-Czestochowa Upland. Somewhere in the middle of uniquely shaped limestone rocks and valleys, there lie the ruins of Ogrodzieniec Castle. Between April and November, you may climb the hill and be told the story of life led inside the castle back in the Middle Ages, only to find out what made the structure lose its original shape.
Located in the village of Podzamcze, Ogrodzieniec Castle
may be well seen from the distance, while travelling from Krakow
in the north-western direction. It usually takes one hour to reach the place, with an expansive parking lot operating just at the foot of the hill. According to many, Ogrodzieniec Castle is one of the most impressive landmarks of this part of Europe
to visit, despite being (apparently) ruined, or seemingly composed of remains and debris. This romantic place provides everyone with a bunch of facts, legends and beautiful views from behind its defensive walls of heavy bricks – definitely not to be missed while visiting Krakow!
Ogrodzieniec Castle is one of the foremost examples of medieval architecture
as typically erected on the Polish soil. Built by the influential Sulimczyk family
between the 14th and 15th centuries
, Ogrodzieniec Castle would be a heavily fortified stronghold of the Gothic type for the three centuries to come, impressively well-blended with the favourable natural surroundings. Throughout the so-called Deluge
(a name given to the greatest Polish-Swedish war of the era), the castle was subject to a terrible fire which resulted in its much worsened condition and, unfortunately, irreparable damage made to the residential part of it. Once a proud castle, located nearby the remaining and – usually – better-preserved defensive structures, now exemplifies what "the Trail of Eagles' Nests
" was really meant to serve, with its high defensive walls
built to survive outer invasions. In 1949, the long-withheld conservation works were carried out on site – nowadays, it is entirely safe to wander around Ogrodzieniec Castle, with brand-new stairs and platforms placed all around.
Upon visiting, it is easy to see why Ogrodzieniec Castle was immortalised in a series of movies
("The Revenge" by R. Polanski
or locally popular "Janosik" TV series by J. Passendorfer
), music clips (e.g. "Live after Death" by Iron Maiden
) or photographs. Its memorable panorama
and atmosphere felt while sightseeing the place provide each visitor with the impression that the power once present there has not been lost yet. Visiting the inner yard, gate tower, former knight chambers
, prison tower
, enables everyone to hear of the legends concerning the castle and its original inhabitants. The Black Dog of Ogrodzieniec
legend is the one you may be sure to be told – it is said to represent the soul of the Castellan of Krakow, Stanislaw Warszycki
. Apparently, you may not witness its appearance during the daytime.
Interested in exploring more medieval mysteries of Ogrodzieniec Castle? Contact us to have a trip to this picturesque place arranged!