Many people prefer to travel around Belarus on their own, planning the route according to their own tastes and interests. This is justified if you want to see different sights, both iconic and not the most famous, which are rarely included in the sightseeing tours of certain areas. Nesvizh castle belongs to quite an important historical and architectural sites, is included in the list of UNESCO, how to get to it from Minsk, will prompt guides, locals and clear scheme in the tourist map.
Why is it worth visiting Nesvizh Castle?
This is a real palace and park complex, which is difficult to see in one visit. It is much more interesting to discover it piece by piece, while learning about its rich history. It is in no way inferior to Western examples of this style of architecture. The fortification complex was built according to all the canons, on a hill, which is considered the dominant height.
It was thanks to the construction of this complex, which became the residence of the Radziwills, one of the richest clans, that Nesvizh acquired the status of cultural and educational center of the principality of Lithuania. The hill and moat around the castle were created artificially, the gardens are segmented, oriented to different styles. Originally a small military fortress was supposed to be built, but as construction progressed the project expanded and a full castle complex was erected, surrounded by a high wall and consisting of 10 interconnected structures. The layout was so successful that the fortress withstood several sieges, including the troops of Swedish King Charles XII. It could not be taken, the decision to surrender was made when the entire garrison was left with 200 completely exhausted defenders. The Swedes took their revenge in full by throwing cannons into the moat and destroying some of the walls and buildings.
Reconstruction of the complex began in 1758. The interiors of the restored castle were described as strikingly luxurious and with a fine sense of style. The painted vaults of the halls were complemented by carpets, furniture, corresponding to the latest trends of the era, skillfully decorated with carvings fireplace. Napoleon’s brother, Jerome Bonaparte, lived in the castle for a time. That was also where his headquarters was. In the 1860s the castle complex returned to the Radziwiłłs’ possession.
After World War II it was turned into a sanatorium of national importance. In the last decades of the XX century began the restoration of the castle, which is recognized as a historical and architectural monument. Since July 2012, the museum complex opened its doors to tourists. There are many ways to travel from Minsk to see the castles of Mir and Nesvizh, and all you need to do is choose the most convenient one.
Nesvizh was repeatedly rebuilt and reconstructed by masters all over Europe, which clearly affected its appearance. It is a mix of several styles, but it looks quite organic. From the Gothic we inherited the pointed towers and spires pointing upwards, from the Baroque – the luxury of interiors, from the Classics – the strict lines of the facades.
In the halls of the castle are more than 1,000 unique exhibits. Paintings by European masters decorate the rooms, as do antique frescoes, murals and decorative elements.
The name of the halls indicates their purpose:
It is impossible to see all the splendor at once, so you should come to Nesvizh for a few days if you want to fully immerse yourself in the atmosphere of bygone eras.
Surrounding the castle is a true masterpiece of landscape art. It is divided into several segments with their own names:
In the warm season you can take a horse-drawn carriage ride, which moves leisurely and allows you to immediately explore the impressive territory, without missing a single interesting corner, including small man-made lakes, sculpture groups and simply picturesque alleys.
How to get to Nesvizh from Minsk?
The easiest and most inexpensive option – to join a tour, which often includes in one program Nesvizh and Mir, how to get to the sites, in this case will determine the tour operator, travelers can only enjoy the process and follow the daily routine. Lunch and transportation to the site, as well as an extended tour accompaniment are provided. For those who are not enough to get vivid emotions, you can advise an independent travel. But you need speed of reaction, full possession of information and optimism.
- buses run quite often, but tickets are sold without regard to seating capacity;
- The electric trains depart not only from the station, but also from the station “Institute of Culture”, there is a high probability of confusing them with the train, and this is a completely different fare;
- The schedule changes frequently, so the information must be constantly updated;
- there are few places around the castle complex where you can have a snack or a full meal, you will have to take care of this issue as well.
There are several options for traveling to Nesvizh on your own.
They go often, you can leave every 40 minutes. But the timing is very conditional. At the same time, the occupancy of the cabin is unpredictable. You can ride on an almost half-empty bus or get into a real pandemonium. Places are not marked, it is impossible to foresee in advance how many people will be hitchhikers. You can buy tickets at the ticket office of the bus station.
Here the situation is much better, they run as they fill up and much more often than the buses. The fare is almost equal to the city transport. Travel time is approximately 1.5 hours. They stop often, you can not go to the final stop, and take off from any convenient point in Minsk. Disadvantages include the lack of a tour guide and the difficulty for those who wanted to still get to Mir along the way. This mode of transport is advantageous for those who are going only to Nesvizh Castle.
The route is just made for lovers of complex combinations. A large number of electric trains run from the capital to Gorodeya. Fare is inexpensive, the advantage is the ability to buy a ticket with an open date. In this case you can leave at any time. The journey lasts about 2 hours. Then you need to find a bus going from Gorodei to Nesvizh. The distance between these settlements is insignificant, only 15 minutes away.
The bus and train station are in the same building, which is very convenient when combining routes.
When you arrive in Nesvizh, you don’t even have to ask for directions to the main attraction, all roads lead there. An independent trip is not a reason to refuse an interesting tour, it is quite possible to join one of the groups, paying only for admission to the museum complex, and enjoy all the benefits of an organized tour of the exhibits.
If you decide to devote several days to sightseeing in the city, it is inconvenient to return every day to Minsk. It is better to settle in Nesvizh to save time on the road. It offers travelers 3 hotels with a guaranteed level of comfort.
In addition to the Nesvizh castle in the city should visit the Benedictine monastery, the tomb of the Radziwills, the town hall, the park with wooden sculptures.