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Ljubljanski grad (Ljubljana castle)

Grajska planota 1 1000 Ljubljana
++386 1 306 42 93

Ljubljana Castle (Ljubljanski grad) is the most spectacular sight of Ljubljana. There is proven evidence that the hill on top of which it is situated was inhabited back in the 12th century BC Preserved from this early period of settlement are the remains of the Urn Tomb culture.

The first known fortification of considerable dimensions situated on top of the Castle Hill (Grad) was built in Illyrian and Celtic times. A stronghold was most probably located there also in Roman times. A document originating from the period between 1112 and 1125 mentions a medieval castle built in the 9th century, which served as the seat of the provincial rulers of the Spannheim family, who coined their own money in Ljubljana. In 1335 the castle became the hereditary property of the Hapsburg family and the centre of the Province of Carniola. In the second half of the 15th century a new, larger, circular castle was built by Duke Frederick III of Hapsburg, later crowned Roman German Emperor.

Except for the outer walls of the Chapel of St. George (Kapela sv. Jurija), which was consecrated in 1489, all the other main buildings of the present castle were either built or rebuilt in the 16th and 17th centuries. Until 1814 the castle served as a garrison and later a provincial prison. Built in 1848 was the Outlook Tower (Razgledni stolp), the home of the guard whose duty was to shoot cannons to warn against fire and announce important visitors and events taking place in Ljubljana – a duty previously performed by town servants at the Pipers' Tower (Stolp piskačev). In 1905 the castle was purchased by the Municipality of Ljubljana in order to be used for cultural purposes, but until 1964 it mainly served as a residential building. Afterwards it underwent a renovation, which has still been going on. Between 2000 and 2011, the castle was managed by the Festival Ljubljana event management company, and since then by the Ljubljana Castle Public Institution.

Ljubljana Castle is a major tourist attraction and a picturesque venue of numerous cultural events including concerts, theatre performances, exhibitions, congresses and official receptions, which add a special flavour to the lively pulse of life in Ljubljana.


... 13th century BC: the earliest evidence of settlement on Ljubljana's present-day castle hill

... 14-15 AD: the foundation of the Roman city of Emona on the site of present-day Ljubljana; an observation post and possibly a temple were built on the castle hill by the Romans

... 1112-1125: the earliest known mention of a fort referred to as Ljubljana Castle (Castrum Leibach)

... 13th century: the wooden Ljubljana Castle is replaced by a stone fort referred to as Sponheim Castle as it was the property of the House of Sponheim

... 1335: the fort becomes the hereditary property of the House of Habsburg

... between 1415 and 1493, the time of the rule of Frederick III of Habsburg: Sponheim Castle is pulled down and replaced by a new fort

... 16th-17th century: the construction of buildings composing the present-day castle complex takes place

... 18th century: the castle is no longer used for defence purposes; instead, it houses an arms depot, an army barracks, and a prison

... between 1809 and 1813, the time of the Napoleonic Empire's Illyrian Provinces: the castle is home to an army barracks and military hospital

... 1815: the castle is turned into a prison; it continues to be used as one, with a few breaks, until the end of the Second World War

... 1905: the mayor Ivan Hribar, on behalf of the city, purchases Ljubljana Castle from the Austro-Hungarian authorities; due to the housing shortage, the castle is partially converted for use as flats

... 1963: the castle's last resident moves out; a total renovation concept is adopted

... 1969: renovation works begin under the guidance of the architect selected for the project

... 2011: the Ljubljana Castle Public Institute is founded and the mayor Ivan Hribar's century-old vision for the castle to become a centre of cultural life in Ljubljana comes true



Ljubljana castle and funicular:

- january, february, march and november: 10.00 – 20.00

- april, may and october: 9.00 – 21.00

- june, july, august and september: 9.00 – 23.00

- december: 10.00 – 22.00


Information centre, Virtual castle, permanent exhibition of Slovenian history, The Penitentiary, The Chapel, Viewing Tower, Museum of Puppetry:

- january, february, march and november: 10.00 – 18.00

- april, may and october: 9.00 – 20.00

- june, july, august and september: 9.00 – 21.00

- december: 10.00 – 19.00



- july, august and september: daily at 11.00, 13.00, 15.00, 17.00

- may, june: daily ob 11.00, 15.00

- january, february, march, april, october, november and december: saturdays and sundays at 11.00, 15.00


Ljubljana castle on Youtube:

- Ljubljana Castle – the number 1 attraction in Slovenia

- Romance

- History

- Action



Ljubljana - Castle (360°)


Javni zavod Ljubljanski grad 
Tel. : ++386 1 306 42 93 
Fax : ++386 1 232 99 94 
E-mail :  
Web site : 

guided tour
GPS Northing (N) : 46,0485 
GPS Easting (E) : 14,5095 

Ej!KArtica, Urbana, turistična kartica Ljubljane 

Notice of discounts : Cardholders visiting Ljubljana Castle are entitled to a free return funicular ticket, free admission to the Outlook Tower and Virtual Museum, and free admission to the exhibition Slovenian History. European Youth Card: 65% off full combined ticket, 65% off half combined ticket, 40% off guided tour of the castle, 40% off return ticket for Funicular Railway, 22% off one-way Funicular Railway, cca. 44% off guided tour of castle including the funicular railway  
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Administrator : Turizem Ljubljana | ++386 1 306 45 75 | |
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