Tuesday, May 03, 2016

Banská Štiavnica

Banská Štiavnica, a few hours east of Bratislava as the crow flies, is an old mining town that was once very wealthy. Today, it seemed to us that tourism is the biggest economic activity.

When the town was prosperous, many impressive buildings were constructed: castles, a mining academy, churches, synagogue, plague column, and hilltop Chapel of Calvary like no other we've seen. Most have been restored and some also re-purposed. There are also many cemeteries, new amphitheater and an exhibition mine.

We arrived by train from Bratisalva, stayed two nights and left by bus to the High Tatras.

The train from Bratislava to Zloven made just a few stops, one of which was at Surany.
Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

From the train, we spotted more than a few Roma villages like this one.
Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Banská Štiavnica is very photogenic being a mining town in the hills.
Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Town Square with Plague Column.
Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

The Botanic Gardens building.
Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

A villa, with hints of Art Nouveau style, waiting to be restored.
Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Wikipedia says "Calvary Banská Štiavnica is the most important Baroque calvary in Slovakia and in the whole former Kingdom of Hungary – probably even in the whole of Europe." We've seen many Stations of the Cross with Chapels in our travels. This one rates a 10 while among all the others none is higher than a 5. It's been under renovation/restoration for 20 years and more work remains. It's a gem.

Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

The scene inside one of the small chapels; restored.
Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

And another - The Last Supper.
Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Chapels that have not yet been restored have a photo.
Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

The Calvary/Kalvaria Chapel at the top is currently under renovation but we got a glimpse through the scaffolding of the bottom of the Crucifixion painting.
Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Some views from the top of the hill.
Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Around the Old Town.
Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

The old Synagogue is now part of the ERB Brewery.
Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

The New Castle.
Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

One of the old City Gates.
Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

The Old Castle (center with tower).
Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

Looking past the Old Castle Tower to Calvary.
Banska Stiavnice, Slovakia

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