» SK, Bratislava: Horsky Park – Oasis of Peace in the City Center
SK, Bratislava: Horsky Park – Oasis of Peace in the City Center
Are you sick of learning about historic and cultural landmarks? Or just wandering about without a goal in Bratislava’s nooks hiding places of unique atmosphere? Do you have enough of smog and you would go somewhere in nature instead? We have a perfect tip for you! Join us in tour of Horsky Park located almost in geographic center of Bratislava!
Not even inhabitants of Bratislava nor visitors in the capital of Slovakia have to walk a long distance to the nature. Except recreation areas near the city in Bratislava’s forest park (more HERE) people can see many parks in the city. One of the most popular is Medicka Garden almost in the center of historic part of the city. Another popular park is the Garden of Janek Kral on the Danube’s right bank, that is actually one of the oldest parks in Central Europe.
We decided to visit Horsky Park Its unique feature is that it is located basically in the center of the city. Its nature is almost untouched and holds original fauna and flora. Intersting about this park is that the original forest terrain was adjusted. At the first glance it seems rather as a small forest than a maintained forest park.
Lets take a peek into history
The history of the Horsky Park started in 1868. It was thanks to the then mayor Henricha Justi. The city built his memorial in 1908, it had an adjoining terrace that is even today a center of the park. In short, Horsky Park was created by simple adjustment of the existing forest. Then new features were added such as apertures, or vegetation was aesthetically thinned out. Later, benches, summer houses, and pathways were added. In the past, there used to be even a small house for the park guard, or a children’s playground. We cannot forget about water, of course. Lets remember a gloriett which was a small pavilion with bent benches. On Murmansk hill, there was even an iron observation tower. Thanks to Municipal Society for Decoration round benches, some of which have been preserved until today, were added. Also there animals lived there. The Society built there bird houses and feeders. Original oak and beech vegetation mixed with chestnut pine were later diversified with many new trees such as yew, plane, lime, ginko or some foreign conifers.
What is there today?
The area of the park is currently around 22 hectares. The terrain’s diversity, altitude (from 185-260 meters), different sun exposition, and other specific natural features are the features that make this park truly interesting. Besides the Justi’s memorial, there is the memorial to famous botanist J. A. Bäumler. The memorial was also made by Alois Rigel. In the present, you can just walk in the park even with your pets. Or you can take kids to the forest, and I am certain they would love it. Me and my sister have only the best memories of this place. In winter, we used to go there with our parents bobsledging. In summer, we went there with friends from school having lots of laugh.
Today, you can rest on benches in Horsky Park. Many of them were renovated. Also you can have a nice time in historical gamekeeper’s lodge hájovně that has been very popular in recent years. Except for a coffee house there resides the Horsky Park Foundation working to protect the Horsky Park and utilize it meaningfully. The foundation offers a garden with a playground at the Community Center of Hajovna , or it organizes meetings with living animals. Various cultural, charitable, or social events take place there. If you happen to go to the park, you should definitively stop at this center. You can taste great coffee and hand-made pies. I prefer typical Bratislava buns that taste truly great. The Horsky Park Gallery focuses on displaying large scale exterior statues. The gallery is close to 130-year gamekeeper’s lodge. Last but not least I would like to remember Educational Pathway that was opened mere year ago.
Text and photo: O. Maňáková
Překlad: Stanislava Waniová
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