Trakoscan Castle, Croatia

If you’re in the Croatian capital city of Zagreb and have a day to spare, be sure to visit the lovely Trakoscan Castle. Located about an hour’s drive from the city, this 13th century structure was originally a small part of the Zagorje principality defence fortification. And while little is known of the original fortification, the castle rose, both in size and prominence over the years. Several influential, aristocratic families have claimed ownership at one time or the other; each family added and accessorized to the original structure leading to the form we see today.

Trakoscan Castle

Sitting on a hilltop, Trakoscan’s distinct yellow-white walls and red turrets are visible from a distance. Peeping out from a cover of rich green, it makes for quite a picture. The view is equally spectacular from the top. Along the twisting gravel walking path that leads to the castle gates, you can admire the well manicured landscape below, complete with an artificial lake and a fairytale chapel.

Trakoscan

The castle has four levels, including the dungeons. Converted into a museum in 1953, it allows for authentic period exhibits – a small courtyard, an equipped kitchen, dining and entertaining halls, bedrooms, a knight’s room (with a fascinating collection of weapons from the 15-19th century), a lavish music parlour and even a hunting room. The rooms are fully furnished. You’ll come across some amazing antique furniture here. The rooms are also adorned with family portraits, memorabilia and the elaborate family coat-of-arms; so neat is the set up, that you can’t shake the feeling that someone still lives here.

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