The most beautiful and the biggest!
The Malbork Castle is undoubtedly one of the greatest treasures of Poland! The title of the largest castle not only in Poland, but all over the world can be a reason of pride. 😛 One of the custodians of the museum estimates that the castle currently consists of 12 to 15 million bricks. My non-mathematical mind can not even imagine it! After such an introduction, I can tell you one thing: One visit is not enough! 🙂 I’m leaving out the fact that not all chambers are available, and you will not be able to see what you can in one day. What’s more, the Malbork Castle is under constant repair! This means that every year new rooms or other treasures are presented. In 2015 we visited the Teutonic castle for the first time, but certainly not the last time!
How to get to Malbork Castle?
Well definitely the best option is your own car, but you can easily get here also by train from Warsaw or even Cracow! If you are traveling from Cracow, you can take the first train towards Malbork and come back in the evening. You even don’t have to book a night in Malbork!
I used to be a student at that time and same year later I was going to U.S. You can easily guess that I didn’t have enough money to go abroad, but still traveling around my home country is a real pleasure. When we visited Malbork Castle during long may weekend it was super crowded. An additional attraction was the Knight’s Tournament, which was hosted by the Malbork Castle. The queue for cash desks cost us 30 minutes, but immediately after purchasing the tickets we went to the castle. On the main page of the castle you can check ticket prices, types of tours and opening hours!
For sightseeing we chosed the classic historical route – the journey through the most important chambers of the castle, along with a guide. I must admit that I was shocked when our guide was a lively grandpa with a better voice than many young mens! 😀 He was able to talk and walk around the castle for 3 hours without tiredness!
The Trail Of Gothic Castles
The Malbork Castle is not the only Teutonic castle in the Polish lands! Of course, it is the largest and most beautiful example of a Gothic fortified castle from that time, but at the same time it is part of 12 Gothic castles, which are located in Warmia, Masuria and Kashubia. So far we have managed to visit Nidzica.
The (very) long (hi)story 😀
As it often happens in our lands, the history of the castle is full of ups and downs. The first rise of the castle took place in the 13th century, when the area of Malbork was chosen to create the largest medieval fortress in the world. Since then, the Malbork Castle has been repeatedly expanded and rebuilt. From 1274 to 1457, it was the seat of the masters of the Teutonic Order and the capital of the Teutonic State. The uniqueness of this amazing building is confirmed by the fact that it has not been gained even once. Although Polish knights besieged it for up to 6 months! It was not until 1457 that Kazimierz Jagiellończyk proudly entered its area. However, in this case, the Teutonic Knights were guilty of such a fate, because they didn’t pay their mercenaries money. And those, having received payment from the Polish king, gave up further defense of the castle! 🙂
Fall of the castle
In the 18th century it was taken over by the Prussian rule and since then the devastation of the greatest treasure of the Teutonic Knights began. The castle was in a deplorable condition, but at the turn of the 18th and the 19th centuries its historical value was appreciated and its reconstruction has started. Unfortunately, during the Second World War, the castle fell into the hands of the Nazis, with the whole city of Malbork. Along with other monuments of this amazing city, the Malbork Castle was almost completely destroyed. Fortunately, just after the war, a great reconstruction began, which continues to this day. The Malbork Castle was rebuilt following the example of the old Gothic castle, thanks to which in 1997 it was submitted on the UNESCO list.
What to look for during sightseeing?
Your guide will take care of it, but I will tell you one thing: Great Refectory! 🙂 Some scholars include this part as the palace. This verdict should not come as a surprise, because it is the most representative hall in the whole castle. A beautiful vault supported by three columns adds the dignity of this hall, in which certainly the most-loved feasts took place!
Besides, also pay attention to the decoration / frescoes on individual walls. Some decorative elements are placed in showcases or simply on shelves. It is also worth to pay attention to them.
On the other side of the Nogat
I know that after a 3-hour tour you can have enough of everything, but be sure to go bridge over the other side of the Nogat! From this place photographer hunt for the best shots of the Teutonic castle! 🙂
A walk around the city
If you still have some time after visiting the castle, you must go around the city! You can still find here a few Gothic buildings that perfectly fit into the city’s atmosphere. Even the local Main Railway Station reminds us that we are in the land of the Teutonic Knights. 🙂
Thanks for attention! That’s all what I’ve prepared for you. I hope you enjoyed and learned something new. Let me know if you have already visited the castle! Feel free to share your thoughts! 🙂
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