Ruins on the outskirts of Mala Fatra
If you go, for example, to the High or Low Tatras and drive through Žilina further to Rožumberok, you will certainly be attracted by the massive ruins on a high rock on the left side of the road about 10 km behind Žilina – Old Castle. If you are in no hurry, take a short walk to the castle. The walk will take less than 2 hours and you will certainly not regret it.
The easiest way is to park your car in a paid parking lot right next to the main road at the end of Strečno under the castle of the same name, which can be another attractive destination. However, a slightly longer and perhaps more romantic walk to the Old Castle awaits us. From the parking lot, follow the red tourist sign upstream of the Váh. After a while, it will take us to a footbridge for pedestrians and cyclists, after which we will reach the opposite bank, to a village called Nezbudská Lúčka. From the footbridge there is a nice view of Váh and the beginning of the swell of the Žilina reservoir.
After the footbridge, turn right and you can continue either on the red road or on the 5442 cycle path (which is perhaps a better option). The cycle path leads first between the houses, then approaches the river, underpasses two railway bridges and at the edge of the forest again connects with the red hiking trail. For a large part of the journey we have the huge castle Strečno behind us.
The road has so far led along the plain, at the edge of the forest begins to climb slightly. A slightly steeper ascent awaits us only in the last part from the Podhradská crossroads. We still follow the red signs, after about 10 minutes we reach a turnoff, which after a while will lead us to the ruins. The old castle was probably built in the 13th century and was originally called Varín. It was only after the construction of the neighboring castle Strečno that it became known as the Old Castle. Admission is free. The most significant remains are the remains of the castle tower.
Remains of the palace
The relatively large remains of the palace in the western part, including the remains of the cellars, have also been preserved.
There are variously trodden footpaths between the remains of the walls, some of which lead only a short distance from the edge of a steep slope, so it is necessary to pay very good attention to the path.
From the ruins is a beautiful view of Váh winding about 150 meters below. In some places, you may easily feel dizzy. Behind the road on the opposite bank is the Domašín Meander Nature Park.
If you need to return to the car, there is nothing left but to return to the parking lot below Strečno along the same route. However, if you are not limited by car or time, you can continue along the red mark to Plešel, Suchý and the main ridge of the northern part of Malá Fatra. And then either descend along one of the marked turns or cross the red ridge to Malý Rozsutec (approx. 3 days).
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