Medieval Castle in Cesis

by Arūnas
Cēsu pils
Cesis Castle in the Vidzeme region is one of the medieval castles and notable cultural tourism objects in Latvia. Like most other fortresses of that time, the castle has survived to this day in the form of ruins, which, nevertheless, give a good idea of ​​the scale of the structure.

The Livonian Brothers of the Sword built the castle at the beginning of the 13th century. It was originally small, only nine brothers of the order lived there with their squires, servants, and grooms. The fortress reached its heyday under the next masters – the knights of the Teutonic Order – in the 16th century: three new towers were built and old fortifications fortified. The oldest part of the castle was built of dolomite, later boulders and bricks were used.

Cesis Castle (Cēsu pils) was partially destroyed during the Livonian War, later rebuilt, then suffered in the Northern War, and was completely abandoned at the beginning of the 18th century. After Latvia gained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991, the castle was among the first to be restored.

Today, tourists can climb the Western tower and look at the town from a height, stroll through a large castle courtyard and visit ancient smithy, where they can get acquainted with the works of  Latvian jewelers, as well as buy a nice copy of an ancient Latvian piece of jewelry. In the summer, on weekends, various theatrical performances and excursions for the whole family are held on the territory of the castle. 

The vast majority of the approximately 13,000 antiquities found in the excavations of the castle are stored in the nearby Cesis History and Art Museum.

The present is great, but the past fascinates me much more. I enjoy visiting old castles, palaces, and churches as this is the only real way to travel back in time (we can watch movies or read books about the old past, but it is like “licking honey through a glass”). 

Cesis Castle
With an ancient lantent in the inner staircase of the Western Tower

Although Cesis Castle is not architecturally so attractive, it fascinates me with its medieval age and beautiful location. It was fantastic to wander with an ancient lantern in hand around the dark labyrinths of the castle and realize that knights once lived here. I would love to come back here someday, especially since I liked the town of Cesis itself so much. Well worth a visit.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.
Useful information
Pils laukums 9
4101, Cesis
10:00 – 18:00
10:00 – 18:00
10:00 – 18:00
10:00 – 18:00
10:00 – 20:00
10:00 – 18:00

3 € (full), 1.5 € (reduced).

Cesis map

The medieval castle is located in the center of the town of Cesis, approximately 90 km (56 mi) northeast of Riga, in the Vidzeme region, northeastern Latvia.

I hope you enjoyed my Medieval Castle in Cesis post. If you are interested in history and like visiting historical sites, here are a few more posts that I recommend you read next:

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