8. From Minsk: 4 Main Castles of Belarus In 1 Day Private Tour
Depart from Minsk on a private tour to see 4 of the most famous castles in Belarus: Kosava Castle, Ruzhany Castle, Nesvizh Castle, and the Mir Castle Complex, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Your driver will pick you from any address in Minsk and take you to grounds of each castle where you are free to walk around. If you prefer to go inside, you can buy tickets at each castle.
The tour last 9-10 hours and takes in a total distance of 575 km. During the tour, you can to ask your driver to stop at a local café or restaurant for lunch or dinner. After the tour, your driver will take you back to your destination in Minsk.
Kosava is the smallest town in Belarus and is a typical western Belarusian town with unhurried life, cozy houses, and friendly locals. The 19th-century castle was dramatically ruined during WWII. The castle had 12 towers that symbolized the 12 months of the year and a unique system of internal corridors and windows allowing the sun’s rays to get into all corners of the building.
The next point on the tour is Ruzhany Castle, near the road just as you enter Ruzhany town. The building looks very impressive even in ruins, and is often called the Belarusian Versailles because it was built in the same style as the famous French palace. According to legend, there is a secret underground passage from the Ruzhany Castle to Kosava. The basements of the palace go four floors down. Unfortunately, they are inundated with earth now, but they will be restored in future.
This 16th-century castle is probably the most famous castle of Belarus and once belonged to the Radziwills, the most powerful nobles of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. Nesvizh Castle had long been considered one of the most powerful fortifications in the Belarusian lands, due to the artillery and a large garrison. The most famous ghost of Belarus also lives here. The spirit of Barbara Radziwill appears in the corridors after midnight. Another legend says that the untold treasures were stored in the castle, but they are yet to be found.
Mir Castle Complex
The exact time of the castle’s construction is unknown, but most historians believe that it was built in the 1520s. During the course of history, the castle witnessed frequent changes of owners and was gradually turning into romantic ruins. During WWII, a ghetto was located in the building. After the war, it became home to local residents. A visit in the evening has a charm of its own and the building looks amazing in the rays of the setting sun.