This castle is one of the most beautiful Slovenian castles, which causes a high tourist interest around the town of Celje. The castle is located directly above the city and serves as a symbol of the whole county. The castle of Celje is on the Griska mountain, which offers views of the old town center. In the Middle Ages, the castle served as a powerful defensive fortification and strategic heart of the county of Celje.
The county of Celje itself deserves a separate mention, as it was the only sovereign Slovenian state of those times. For a short period of the county independence, its main symbol (three stars) is included in the national coat of arms of Slovenia. The oldest part of the castle was built in the first half of the thirteenth century. It represented the residential tower and a separate courtyard and was erected by the first owner – the feudal lord Vovbritsky. Then the fortress passed to the other family, the Zhovnetskys. They fortified the castle and expanded its land to the entire area of the mountain summit.
In the middle of the fourteenth century, the castle got the property of the prince’s family of Celje. The Celje family lived in the castle for about a hundred years. After the last representative of the family was killed, the castle got the possession of the local princes. At that times, it was already one of the largest castles in the territory of Slovenia. The castle was abandoned and gradually began to collapse. Count Gaisruk, who owned it in the middle of the eighteenth century, founded a sand pit on the territory of the castle.
The revival of the ruins began in 1846. The castle restoration was the longest and most complex architectural work in the country. During the restoration, some elements of different styles were used: from Gothic to Baroque and Renaissance. After a large-scale restoration, the castle was divided into two parts. The square eastern tower of Frederick was an ancient defensive structure with a two-meter thick wall. It is located in the eastern part of the fortress. In the western tower, there is a household part, protective construction, and a fountain. The castle is accessible for tourists as one of the most powerful fortresses of the Middle Ages. Near the castle itself, there is also an unforgettable panorama platform. On the territory of this castle, you can see the knight tournaments, theatrical shows, and solemn ceremonies.