An amazing baroque architectural complex expressing the story of Jesus' last journey
The Banská Štiavnica Calvary goes beyond the usual representations of the Stations of the Cross. This is because there are three churches, the Dungeon and the Holy Sepulcher. It is the most impressive Calvary in Central Europe, one of the oldest in Slovakia and, together with the town of Banská Štiavnica, is inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
The most impressive Calvary in Central Europe
The Baroque Calvary complex contains a total of 22 sacred buildings – the Lower, Middle and Upper Church, the Dungeon and the Holy Sepulcher and 17 chapels. The building dominates the entire Banská Štiavnica and its spiritual significance is extraordinary. The foundation stone was laid on the hill Ostrý vrch on September 14, 1744. The whole complex was completed and consecrated in 7 years. The building was also visited by Emperor Francis of Lorraine.
The tour usually starts at the Infocentre in „Pod Kalváriou“ street. Here you can get tourist information, buy souvenirs and refresh yourself in the adjacent restaurant or use the toilet. Opening hours are 9.00 – 16.00. From here it is also possible to raise your head and admire the impressive appearance of the whole complex. Then it is necessary to set off along the first stop uphill to the top.
The story of Jesus graduates in the left part of the complex along the entire slope to the Upper Church.
Lower Church (Church of the Last Supper)
This largest building of the Calvary was completed in 1751 and a complete reconstruction was completed in 2013. Now the church is also used for liturgical ceremonies and there is an exhibition dedicated to the history and present of the Calvary. Entrance to the Lower Church is possible from 10.00 to 16.00 in the period May-October. Behind the Lower Church there is also a toilet for visitors.
Central Church (Holy Stairs and Chapel of the Holy Trinity)
The stairs have 34 wooden steps, in which the relics of saints were originally placed. The model for their position was the stairs at the Lateran Basilica in Rome, which were transported from Jerusalem and were allegedly followed by Jesus Christ during his last journey. The building is currently inaccessible, because the entire building and the preserved frescoes are being reconstructed.
Upper Church (Church of the Holy Cross)
This main landmark of the entire Calvary was built in 1745. This peak of the entire Stations of the Cross is dominated by a sculpture of the crucified Christ and life-size thieves. The church was completely renovated in 2018. On the plateau in front of the Upper Church, in addition to great views of this extraordinary area, you can also enjoy unique views of the surrounding countryside, hills and scattered mining villages and consider the harmony of man with the landscape. There is also a unique opportunity to go back in time and appreciate the work of our grandmothers and grandfathers.
Return on the right
The return path on the right side of the complex is lined with 7 chapels depicting the seven pains of the Virgin Mary.
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