Helfštýn Castle is a partly restored but mostly ruined castle, which means you’re able to make your way around the castle at your own pace, unguided. There are guided tours offered but they’re in Czech only.
The castle was built in the 13th century by the ‘black’ knight Friduš of Lindavá who used the castle’s strategic position, guarding the gate to Moravia, to rob passing travellers. The castle walls at Helfštýn have never been breached by an invading army and the complex is one of the largest in Central Europe.
Inside the first walls are the moat and main entrance gate and then the main courtyard. Several times a year (mostly during the summertime) Helfštýn fills with throngs of people visiting for a festival, or it could be invitingly vacant and yours alone to explore. The busiest time in the castle is during the week of ‘Hefaiston’, a festival dedicated to the art of blacksmithing.
One of the highlights of the castle is the restored look out tower which offers fantastic views across the main pass through the valley where Friduš made his plunders. Helfštýn is the perfect castle for anyone tired of stately rooms and expensive baroque furniture you can’t touch.
There's a decent restaurant in the main palace and Helfštýn is open from the beginning of April until the end of October daily except Mondays.
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