Spis County

Spis Castle

Spisska Kapitula (Spis Canonry)

Spisska Kapitula (Spis Canonry)

East of the High Tatras lies the territory of the historical county of Spis (Szepes in Hungarian, Zips in German). From the Middle Ages until 1945 this area had a large German population, and can be regarded as one of the art-historical treasuries of Slovakia. We can find here medieval churches with precious Gothic altars and wall paintings. The city of Kezmarok holds a remarkable Lutheran wooden church, a castle and the mausoleum of Prince Thokoly. At the beginning of the 16th century the renowned craftsman Master Paul was active in Levoca, where he created a set of unique Gothic altars. Spis Castle is the main tourist attraction of the region. It is one of the largest fortification compounds in Europe and was one of the few castles to withstand even the Tartar attack of 1241. In the vicinity of the castle is the fortified settlement of Spisska Kapitula (Spis Canonry), home to the bishops of Spis, which includes the Cathedral of St. Martin. The Castle, Canonry, Podhradie (town under the Castle) and the early Gothic twin-nave church in Zehra have together been listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. The impressive landscape with its medieval monuments forms the so-called Gothic Route.