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Nesvizh Castle


Nesvizh Castle
Photo from panoramio.com

Nesvizh Castle or Niasvizh Castle (Belarusian: Нясвіжскі замак, Niasvižski zamak, Polish: zamek w Nieświeżu, Russian: Несвижский замок, Nesvizhskiy zamok) is a residential castle of the Radziwiłł family in Nesvizh, Belarus. It is situated at an elevation of 183 meters.

From 1921 to 1939 the complex was located in Poland and was considered one of the most beautiful Polish castles in the Kresy region.


The Radziwiłł portrait gallery

The estate was owned by the Radziwiłł magnate family from 1533, when it was awarded to Mikołaj Radziwiłł and his brother Jan Radziwiłł after the extinction of the Kiszka family. Since the Radziwiłłs were one of the most important and wealthy clans of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and the Crown of the Kingdom of Poland, it was there that the Lithuanian Archive was moved in 1551. In 1586 the estate was turned into an ordynacja.

After the Union of Lublin the castle became one of the most important residences in the central part of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.

In 1582 Mikołaj Krzysztof "Sierotka" Radziwiłł, the Marshal of Lithuania, Voivode of Trakai-Vilnius and castellan of Šiauliai, started the construction of an imposing square three-storey "château". Although the works were based on a pre-existing structure of a medieval castle, the former fortifications were entirely turned into a renaissance-baroque house. Construction was completed by 1604, and they added several galleries half a century later. The château's corners were fortified with four octagonal towers.

In 1706, during the Great Northern War, Charles XII's army sacked the castle and destroyed its fortifications. Several decades later, the Radziwiłłs invited some German and Italian architects to substantially renovate and enlarge the castle. Antoni Zaleski decorated its yellow facades with baroque stucco work. The 16th-century castle gates were also reconstructed, and the two-storey gatehouse tower was crowned with a helm. It was at this time that the three separate buildings surrounding the central courtyard were joined into a single structure.

The most important structure in Nieśwież is the Corpus Christi Church (1587 to 1603), connected with the castle by a dam over a ditch and containing coffins of 72 members of the Radziwiłł family, each interred in a simple coffin made of birch and marked with Trąby Coat of Arms. Designed by the Italian architect Gian Maria Bernardoni (1541 to 1605), the church is considered the first Jesuit temple patterned after Il Gesù in Rome, the first domed basilica with Baroque facade in the world and the first baroque piece of architecture in Eastern Europe.

Apart from elaborate princely sepulchers, its interior features some late baroque frescoes from 1760s and the Holy Cross altar, executed by Venetian sculptors in 1583.

The castle in the 19th century.

In 1772, following the third and last partition of Poland, the castle was seized by Russian forces and the Radziwiłł family was expelled. Soon afterwards the Lithuanian Archive was transferred to Saint Petersburg (where it still remains today), while the majority of works of art gathered in the palace were distributed among various Russian and Polish nobles in support of Catherine the Great. Abandoned both by the original owners and by the Russian army, the palace gradually fell into disrepair. However, it was restored by the Radziwiłłs and between 1881 and 1886 the castle's interiors were renovated by Prince Antoni Radziwiłł and his French wife, Marie de Castellane. They also designed a landscape park in English style. With an area of more than one square kilometre, the park is one of the biggest such facilities in Europe.

After the Polish-Bolshevik War of 1920 the surrounding area and the castle complex became part of the newly established Second Polish Republic.

During the invasion of Poland in 1939, the Radziwiłł family was expelled from the castle by the Red Army. In Soviet times, the castle was used a sanatorium, while the park gradually fell in neglect.

A bird's eye view

In 1994, the castle complex was designated the national historical and cultural reserve. In 2005 the castle complex was listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.


The ongoing reconstruction has drawn sharp criticism for its "unjustified reconstruction" of several long-demolished structures, notably a bell-tower. In 2002, the upper storey of the residence was destroyed by fire. Six years later, the Belarus edition of the Komsomolskaya Pravda reported that a substantial section of the castle, dating from the 18th century, had been entirely demolished on account of "rotten brick" (see photo).

Other Radziwiłł castles

  • Olyka Castle
  • Lubcha Castle
  • Mir Castle
  • Biržai Castle
  • Dubingiai Castle

Photo (27)

NesvizhНесвиж. Замок Радзивиллов / Nesvizh. Radziwill castleНесвижский замокДворцово-замковый ансамбль князей РадзивилловNesvizh CastleНесвиж. ЗамокНесвижский замок, Niasvižski zamakНесвижский замок / Nesvizh CastleRadziwill family coat of armsInterior of Niasvizh CastleНесвижский замокДворцово-замковый ансамбль князей РадзивилловДворцово-замковый ансамбль князей РадзивилловНесвиж. Замок Радзивиллов / Nesvizh. Radziwill castleДворцово-замковый ансамбль князей РадзивилловДворцово-замковый ансамбль князей РадзивилловДруг друга отражают зеркала... / Mirrors reflect each other ...Несвижский замокНясвіжски замакНесвиж. Замок Радзивиллов / Nesvizh. Radziwill castleНясвіжски замакNesvizh Castle at winterMonument to Yuri of NesvizhCopy of the cannon "Grape" in the Nesvizh Castle arsenalВход в Несвижский замокНесвиж. Замок Радзивиллов / Nesvizh. Radziwill castleНесвиж. Интерьер замка Радзивиллов / Nesvizh. Interior of Radziwill Castle

Street view


Website: niasvizh.by
All days at 10:00-19:00


27.11.2017 Denis
Good one, be careful though, during the fall time it closes at 8pm and they stop selling tickets and letting anyone in before 5pm so come in advance
03.08.2017 Matthew
Nesvizh Castle is one of the places that is well worth the trip to visit when in Belarus, it is well maintained and ongoing restoration has rebuilt missing structures. You could spend 1-6 hours here depending on how much detail you wanted to go into. A cafe and restaurant is inside the castle with reasonable prices and there is another one outside. The park that the castle is located in is very peaceful and an easy walk around.
23.07.2017 Albert
An awesome place to go! No wait to get inside the Palace (arrived 14:00) and saw tons of interesting, fascinating elements inside. They have the English guidebook inside the store that explains each room in good detail and provides maps (right next to Exhibition entrance). Biking one hour cost only a couple of BY if you want to sweep the entire property. You will have plenty of time, just watch out for pedestrians, people will always move as you slow down. I would definitely go to the local town south of the Palace, they offer some neat souvenirs.
30.06.2017 Grigorii
Good to be here, so awesome place! Nice and wonderful. This is a place for 3-6 hours min. A lot of things to see! You can walk around, take a bicycle, or boat. There is nice park.
04.06.2017 Chiel
Beautiful castle both from the outside as the inside! Well preserved and maintained. Seems to be one of the popular place to get married during the weekends.
22.05.2017 Mauro
Great place, very beautiful castle. Surrounding area it's amazing as well. Well worth a visit for a day trip.
21.03.2017 Vladislav
Very good place
09.01.2017 Mihail
A very beautiful castle. To visit opened more than 30 rooms. Entrance 15 Bel. RUB
It is better to book a tour, as a lot of interesting talk.
12.12.2016 Andrey
The castle is so beautiful both outside and inside. Just the Palace! Rich and stylish atmosphere, beautiful courtyard. Not far from Minsk
12.11.2016 Asim
Very attractive for tourist and contains many elements which can appeal your brain. A good place for day spent and to learn about the country and its history.
12.11.2016 Olga
Nice place. There is something to see. I agree with the previous visitors that minus food is still there. One option - search for a café in the city, there will be able to see and eat. And for walking it is a great place and the castle and the Park and Church, etc. I all day it had no time to watch, this will come again.
09.11.2016 Elena
Beautiful place, but there is a good restaurant. The castle is very impressive. There is something to see and enjoy the aesthetics. But when hungry realized that this is a problem. Not strange in the area of Belarus food sucks. Maybe this is due to the dead power of place. At the time a lot of the mass killings committed here.
01.10.2016 Aleksey
A very beautiful place. A must to visit not only by tourists but also by residents of Belarus. The high prices of tickets to visit the castle (13 BYN for an adult), poor quality of work of points of public catering (quality, assortment, price)
 Not bad
02.09.2016 Mike
The magnificent castle and Park!!! Outside, however, much more interesting than inside. Inside was left untouched, not so much. In Soviet times, was the sanatorium of the fourth control in the post was long restored. There was a fire. But the architecture is amazing. You need to see.
29.08.2016 Dasha
Looks very beautiful at any side, from any angle and in any season. Interiors have been renovated and don't look old. Great old park is around the castle.
10.08.2016 Asim
Very attractive for tourist and contains many elements which can appeal your brain. A good place for day spent and to learn about the country and its history.
21.07.2016 Jan
a nice castle with picturesque surroundings and an exposition inside, also quite good souvenir shop inside and around
19.06.2016 Pavel
A beautiful castle, near an interesting Park, but: 1) the ticket inside (that is, even the courtyard without a ticket will not fall) 130000 Bel.R., I think it's too high, moreover, the Museum was not particularly interesting; 2) the reconstruction took place not so long ago and it was so noticeable, if you look into the details
17.06.2016 dah2308
Tourist place with large crowds of people. The castle has been restored recently and looks neat. Inside there is a Museum with exhibits. Near the castle there is a Park and ponds, along which you can walk and enjoy the surrounding scenery. But do not forget that in the city too have something to look at, town hall, Church, arch.
17.06.2016 Evgeniy
The place to visit. Special thanks to the coachman, brought the horses around the Park for a small fee. There is a Playground and a snack. Everything is beautiful and at a reasonable cost.
29.05.2016 Vadzim
This Belarusian castle is fantastic. It is more interesting than most English catles, and it is comparable to classical Welsh castles.
24.05.2016 Evgeniy
For all take money, in a court yard entrance fee. Inside, too, nothing is impossible. even accidentally eavesdrop on other people's excursions. only Shoe covers.
17.05.2016 Aleksandr
Surprisingly loved the castle, it is possible to cling to one of the tour groups for free. From Minsk through the app Uber ride cost 1600r., when you split for 4 people - a penny.
Uber code c2df13ruue give a discount of 400 rubles.
14.05.2016 Andrey
The castle is striking for their beauty
13.05.2016 Maksim
Normally you can walk, the place is beautiful. Pofotkatsya the outside, but inside there is little to see.
10.05.2016 Alexey
Stunning Park and pond, beautiful building, interesting premise. Autumn looks fabulous in gold decoration. Suggest a mandatory visit at any time of the year.
07.05.2016 zaits
Museum, Park
05.05.2016 Matthew
20.04.2016 Mohit
Impressive. Nicely restored and maintain.
12.04.2016 Svetlana
Inside is very nice decoration. Recommend to take audio guide tells interesting and to the point.
23.03.2016 R
A nice hotel, beautiful castle!
19.03.2016 Alena
A good place to visit with children of school age
09.03.2016 Victoria
Castle, included in the heritage list #UNESCO ? to spend an hour, but to get a lot of pleasure ☺app
01.03.2016 Ilya
One of the most beautiful castles in the most beautiful place in Belarus. Looks very fresh, but, to be honest, I castle with a touch of antiquity was more plausible.
28.02.2016 Ekaterina
The UNESCO world heritage site. A lot of restoration, but in spite of this, you can see how they lived Radziwill in those days.
28.01.2016 Alexandra
Come to the night of museums!)
24.01.2016 Aleksandr
Wonderful place! Be sure to book a tour - very interesting!
05.01.2016 Alexandra
Wonderful place, well decorated and convenient for tourists. Summer is especially nice Park, ideal for walking and photo shoot. But the winter cold castle is especially picturesque
25.11.2015 Sergey
The whole area in front of the castle, the castle is especially beautiful in autumn. Every Belarus and not only mandatory, even without a guide you just need to visit here.
The castle itself is huge number of artifacts in excellent condition and looking at them, I understand their tragedy and splendor.
Very suggest.
There is an audio guide, very useful thing.
02.11.2015 Eger
Very nicely renovated castle! A large Museum exhibition. RB travelers just have to go here!
25.10.2015 Oksana
This is one of the most beautiful historical places of Belarus!From photography in the castle we just love it!Huge thanks to accompanying my dear Tatiana,I advise all honeymooners to visit here!
16.10.2015 Galina
Perfectly preserved in all its velikolepie old castle! Would recommend, will not regret. Steeper than in Europe.
03.10.2015 Sergey
Great place for hanging out with the whole family
30.09.2015 Ali
Awesome castle and museum! Heritage of The Radzivill family is exhibited here. A must see place!
29.09.2015 Grek
About this castle was a great final in the examination of a series of locks West of Belarus (Novogrudok, Lida, Mir, Nesvegsky)
13.09.2015 Ihar
Gorgeous place for walking and solitude, if you choose off-peak hours and cool (even cloudy!) day.
The peace hotel.
About the catering I will not say.
(In the sense that it is not used.)
Awesome experience, when you walk early in the morning or late at night in the vast territory, and not a soul around!
07.09.2015 strangezu
Closed free admission to the courtyard, now there are turnstiles. Not ice.
10.08.2015 natalya
I want to Express my gratitude to the staff of the castle for their kindness, honesty and responsiveness!!! Went on a tour of the Nesvizh castle family liked it very much, but, leaving the castle, I forgot in the lobby camera. The theft was discovered only the next day, very upset.... But... Went to the site of the castle, left the email...after 15 minutes I got a call from the Information center of the Nesvizh castle and said that we can pick up your camera at any convenient time for us. THANK YOU VERY MUCH!!!
28.07.2015 Alex
Look in the liquor store)
25.07.2015 roma
Wonderful castle. Recommend
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Изменено: 2018-01-22 01:43