Trakai Castle

The historical capital of Lithuania is Trakai which is otherwise known as the ‘town of lakes’. Trakai town owns a unique castle which is the only one of its type in the entire Eastern Europe. The castle is surrounded by waters on all four sides and is called the Trakai Island Castle. Though constructed in 1410 just after the famous Battle of Grünenwald as a defense fortress, it was turned into a residence of Grand Dukes of Lithuania Vytautas and Kęstutis. Later on, the Trakai Island Castle was used as a prison. At these times, however, it was almost completely neglected.

The Trakai Island Castle today is the hub where plenty of concerts, events and festivals are held. In Lithuania, the castle is also considered to be one of the most beautiful historical monuments ever. In 1962, a museum was opened here. The Trakai Island Castle is also referred as the ‘Little Marienburg’. It was built by the famous Grand Duke Kestutis and later completed by his son Vytautas, who died in the Trakai Island Castle in 1430. These rulers were very important characters in Lithuanian history thus the Trakai Island Castle had also had an important role in Lithuanian history. Nowadays the Trakai Island Castle is the most important attractions in Trakai town which helps the settlement to be really distinguishing despite the fact it had lost its former political importance. So, the Lithuanian capital  was shifted from Trakai to Vilnius, but Trakai still remained as a very favourable place of residence for most of the royalty and nobles in Lithuania.

Trakai Island Castle is an incredible architectural example of Gothic style. The castle has a high and well-constructed strong wall all around it and also a forecastle which was built for the purpose of protection. According to historical sources, the Trakai Island Castle was also equipped with a mechanism for forced-air heating and had many lovely wooden galleries, paintings of stained glass, murals, secret passages… Visitors now can come and visit the Trakai Island Castle museum which reflects the former beauty and takes everyone many centuries back in time.

The Trakai Island Castle was said to house a number of incredible treasures. Undoubtedly, there were many attempts given in order to restore the Trakai Island Castle to its earlier grandeur. Nowadays visitors can enjoy the result of these efforts while visiting the beautiful castle surrounded by waters.