Royal castle above Laugaricio (1. part – arrival)

In today’s TripTip, we’ll answer the question, where you should go on your next trip and together we’ll visit a castle situated in a town which lies on the river Váh. You probably already know that I am talking about Trenčín – the town which used to be known as Laugaricio.

Where and when?

The castle is located on the castle rock and it proudly stands above the town Trenčín on the left side of the river Váh. Thanks to its location in the middle of the Trenčín fold, it can be seen from a long distance.

We started our trip at about 10 a.m. It’s the time when there are not many people visiting castles, but tour guides are already very talkative and you’ll receive many interesting information from them. Tour guides will also appreciate the fact, that you didn’t come for the first entry which is soon in the morning, so they don’t have to walk around the whole castle when they are still half asleep.

By train or by car?

If you decided to travel by the train, you chose cheaper and easier mean of transport. The only thing you have to do is check the train schedule and then you don’t have to worry about anything else. The biggest advantage is that you don’t have to pay for parking and if you have also the train for free, you won’t pay anything for your journey at all! It takes just from 5 to 10 minutes to walk from the railway station to the hill on which the castle is situated. If you choose to travel by car like we did, you will see the Trenčín castle welcoming you somewhere in the distance. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to get by car right in front of the entrance to the castle, because the museum doesn’t have it’s own car parking and you’ll have to use one of the payed parking lots in the town. We chose the parking house, which wasn’t too far from the castle and also from the Roman inscription itself. To have a better knowledge of historical context, I recommend to see the inscription first.

The legacy of the ancient Rome

On your way to the castle, from the railway station as well as from the parking house, you’ll see the yellow builidng of the Elizabeth hotel. To see the inscription, you’ll have to enter this building, but no panic. You don’t have to stay in this hotel to see this historical treasure, in fact, seeing the Roman inscription is free!

When you get to the reception you’ll see an elevator by which you’ll get to the 1st floor. Boards with directios will tell you where to go next. You’ll get to the terrace, from which you can see the whole inscription. After that you may be a little shocked. Pictures in the magazines or History books won’t tell you, that this inscription isn’t monumental engraving spreading on a large area, but it’s size is little different. In fact, the insciption is about one meter heigh and two meters wide, but despite that, it’s very interesting place and also one of the oldest and most valuable monuments of our country.

The message is engraved to the rock in Latin and its original version is: „VICTORIAE AVGVSTORV EXERCITVS QVI LAV GARICIONE SEDIT MIL L II DCCCLV MAXIMIANVS LEG LEG II AD CVR F.“ For regular person it is nothing but a bunch of words and letters with no meaning, but for those who speak Latin this inscription means: „To the victory of emperors, dedicated by 855 soldiers of II. Legion of an army stationed in Laugaricio. Made to order of Marcus Valerius Maximianus, a legate of  the Second Auxiliary legion.“ This writing was dedicated to victory of the 2nd legion, which fought against German tribe of Quads in the territory of Slovakia in so called Marcomannic Wars. Marcomannic Wars took place at the time when the emperor of the Roman Empire was Marcus Aurelius. Before this wars, the Danube river had been the northern border of the Roman Empire. Behind the river there was a barbarian land which wasn’t part of the empire. During the wars, Romans built bridges over the Danube and Roman troops with the emperor Marcus Aurelius entered the territory of the present-day Slovakia.

Finally, the castle!



After you see the inscription and you come out of the hotel by the main entrance, you turn left and that’s the spot from which your journey to the castle starts. The way up leads through a relatively narrow aisle, lined by various restaurants. On the way, you’ll see the church and the museum of executioner’s house and after about t10 minutes you’ll find yourself at the entrance to the entire castle complex, which consists of two oval towers and in one of them you can find a cash desk. Here, I recommend to take the map of the castle which is placed next to the cash register, because it’s one of the biggest castles in Slovakia. You can choose from two types of a tour. Tour A is the tour without the guide, where you can see the courtyard of the castle and some of the adjacent buildings such as the barracks, the cannonball bastion or the oubliette and also the entry to the Matúš’s tower is included in the price of your ticket. The price is 5€ for adults and 3€ for children and students. More detailed price list can be seen on the picture and you can find more information here: My advice for you is to pay 1 extra € and have also tour with a guide and possibility to see all of the castle’s premises.

Information about that can be found here.

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