: Grajska 11 2310 Slovenska BistricaPhone
: +386 2 805 53 50Fax
: +386 2 805 53 51e-mail
The west part of the medieval town core of Slovenska Bistrica is dominated by the castle, a fortification with four wings around the inner courtyard and protruding corner towers with different shaped floor plans. The older castle was mentioned in 1311. Later it was repeatedly rebuilt and the Wildenstein Counts encouraged the arranging of the garden. The majority of the rebuilding was done between 1623 and 1651. The castle has been preserved until today with the additions from the times of the Attems (1717-1945). On the north and east sides of the present complex is the redone Renaissance fortification with a defence moat and renovated facades, followed by the outbuildings, and a severely degraded castle park on the other side of the road.
The rarity of the castle is the entrance façade, which was totally crisscrossed with painted pilaster divisions, with its central entrance through the hall. From the inner yard, which is partly decorated with arcades and has a clock tower, there is an entrance into the chapel on the ground floor. The chapel is covered in stuccowork and is painted in Baroque style. From it a straight painted staircase leads to a similarly painted hall on the first floor. The arrangement of representative areas is from the time after the year 1717. There is a cistern under the staircase. A second one stood in the inner yard. The representative areas can be found on the first floor, especially the Knight's Hall, which was painted in 1721 with Hercules' apotheosis by Franz Ignacij Flurer. These are the only signed paintings by him in our territory. The interior of the castle has been redone and most of the museum areas have been renovated. The castle collections are very diversified. A rarity is the collection Kamnine Pohorja, and the archaeological collection is rich as well. Among the many important kinsmen, the writer of fairy tales Jože Tomažič from Pohorje (1906-1970) and the writer Anton Ingolič (1907-1992) are specially introduced with their own rooms. An exhibition of local wines reveals the true hospitality of the Štajerska region.
The garden was arranged in the second half of the 16th century. The geometrical scheme, which was adapted to the narrow valley and the stream by its side, was still Renaissance. Due to the fashion in the beginning of the 18th century the garden was redone in the Baroque manner. Later the opinion was that the grass areas and trees planted in English landscape style would demand less maintenance. Due to aggressive building much of the garden has been lost. The beech tree avenue in the main axis and, to some extent, the peripheral wall have been preserved. The locations of former pavilions and the area of the deserted pond at the end of the garden in the axis of the promenade can hardly be seen. Sculptures of Hercules and Mercury were brought into the castle. Due to the bad condition of the trees, the beech tree avenue in the castle garden was extensively renewed in 1994.
The museum is regulated and is open regularly; it has an arranged tour guide service.