Prešov is a city located in eastern Slovakia with a population of 92000. It is the third largest city in Slovakia after Bratislava and Košice. It is also a seat of the administrative Prešov Region, Prešov University and Orthodox archbishopric. Buildings standing in the historical center are part of Town Monument Centre.
Prešov is known as an industrial centre; there are mostly mechanical, clothing industry and electric engineering companies.
The city proposed as the European Capital of Culture 2013.
Prešov Town Districts
- Nižná Šebastová
- Šarišské Lúky
First habitants came to the region of Prešov already in Paleolithic period. We know that from the oldest discovered tools which are more than 28000 years old. Further historical information is discovered only from the 8th century and later.
Prešov used to be a part of Kingdom of Hungary in the end of 11th century. The city was founded in 1132 by King of Hungary – Blind Béla and named after strawberries in Hungarian – Eperjes. After the Mongol invasions in 1241, many German settlers moved to the city. Eperjes received its municipal privileges from Andrew III. Later, in 1374, it was declared a free royal town what had a great influence in the development of crafts and trade. In the 15th century, the city joined Pentapolitana – an alliance of 5 towns of north-eastern Hungary (Prešov, Košice, Bardejov, Levoča and Sabinov).
Prešov experienced a Bubonic plague and a lot of great fires during the first half of 18th century where it lost more than 2000 inhabitants. After these tragedies the locals successfully recovered the city, crafts and trades were improved again and new factories were built. Town went through a huge progress in 19th century, when the locals introduced electricity, telegraph, telephone and a sewage system. Unfortunately, the town was destroyed again by fire in 1889. Prešov became a part of Czechoslovakia in 1918.
Public transport (MHD) in Prešov consists of buses and trolleybuses. The main purpose of the City Transport Company Prešov (Dopravný podnik mesta Prešov) is to provide personal transport in urban places of Prešov.
The public transport system ensures the mass transit 24 hours a day. Daily rounds are provided at the following times:
- On working days from 5:00 am to 10:30 pm
- On Saturday from 6:00 am to 10:30 pm
- On Sunday and holidays from 7:00 am to 10:30 pm
The last daily transport goes at 10:20 pm from the city center.
Later the public transport is provided by night public transport when all the vehicles meet together at the stops Na Hlavnej or Železničná stanica (Railway Station), where you can change between them. There are only three night routes in the city which are travelling at approximately 60 minute intervals. At the stop Railway Station there is a guaranteed possibility to transfer at the same platform between line N1 and N3.
The public transport is charged.
Church of St. Nicholas
Parish Church of St. Nicholas (Kostol sv. Mikoláša) is the main dominant of the city. The church was built in Gothic style during the 14th century but its construction was finished in 1515. Its gothic elements – portals, domes, decorated windows – were preserved despite of the huge fire in 1788. The biggest treasure of the church is its main altar built in the end of 17th century. The tower, opened to public, offers a beautiful view of the town.
Greek-Catholic St. John the Baptist Cathedral
Greek–Catholic St. John the Baptist Cathedral (Grécko-katolícka katedrála sv. Jána Krstiteľa), originally a Gothic temple boat was in the 17th century associated with the Minorite monastery and in the 18th century was rebuilt in Baroque style in its current form.
In the first mid of the 14th century a municipal hospital building on the southern edge of Prešov and a smaller chapel was built to it in the same century. In its place was built in 1429 a new hospital church, consecrated to the Virgin Maria. At that time, the church was located outside the first city walls and only later after relocating the city walls the church was located in the inner city area.
After the reformation, the hospital church, mentioned under the name ecclesiae hospitalensis, became a Lutheran church. After regulation of the Monarch Laeopold I., the church was handed over the religion of the minorities in 1673, which arrived in Prešov in the same year.
The minorities church has undergone an extensive rebuilding in the mindle of the 18th century under the leadership of a Prešov architect Gaspar Urlespacher. The sanctuary was orientated to the west, the main entry has been moved to the eastern part (to the street). The newly built main façade was accentuated by a rich Baroque decoration. In the area of the temple boat were built two side chapels, on the north and south side. The third chapel was built in the area under the tower, also on the north side. Above the newly built choirs was maintained the valuable Gothic vault.
Works inside the church continued further and in the year 1757 four large frescoes of life St. John the Baptist were created. They are maintained on the temple boat ceiling.
Another modification of the church was made in 1835, when the church belonged to the Greek-Catholic Bishopric. In 1846 due to the second Prešov Greek-Catholic bishop Joseph Gaganec it was edited for the needs of the eastern rite. The altar was edited and an iconostasis was created. Iconostasis author (1846) is a sculptor George Roman and a Vienna painter Albert Fikas, paint pictures were painted by Joseph Miklóssy and Michael Mankovics. Ignatius Roskovics is the author of the paintings above the entrance to the two chapels. Nicholas Jordan painted the wall picture Simeon Meeting with the Son of God and the image of Christ the Sower on the pulpit.
From the liturgical objects valuable are the calyx from the goldsmith John Szylássy, the gospel-book of the unknown author, the crosier, which Emperor Franz Joseph I donated to the bishop John Valyi. Under the temple is a large crypt, where five bishops, canonists and members of the minorities and Jesuits order are buried.
The most interesting and rare relic is the Turin Shroud. According to the legend Jesus was wrapped up by it after he was put down from the cross. There are only 4 copies all around the world (Prešov, Torino, Jerusalem and Vilnius). The cathedral was visited by the Pope John Paul II. during his official visit in 1995.
Town fortification system started to be built during the 14th century. Well designed structure of the walls, water moats, bridges and trapdoors remained well-preserved until now. Florian’s Gate used to be the historical entrance of the town located on the street with a same name.
Greek-Catholic Bishop’s Palace
Greek-Catholic Bishop’s Palace arose from the former convent of minorities. Its history began after the reconstruction of the urban spital and almshouse to the new monastery (it was the second in the city), which received the minorities in 1671.
After the arrival of the anti-Habsburg uprising army of Imre Tokoly in 1682, the minorities were forced to leave their seat. TThey returned in 1686 and had undertaken the construction of the new monastery at the Lower City Gate, the place where previously four smaller craft stores were held.
Effect of the minorities in Prešov was terminated by the Emperor Joseph II on 12 July 1787, who closed the monastery, despite the wishes of the urban municipalities.
Shortly after the departure of the last religious in 1788, a large fire broke out in Prešov, which engulfed the building of the canceled monastery. The reconstruction secured the city, which placed a permanent military garrison into the corrected building.
In 1791 the Greek-Catholic seat of the vicarate was removed from Košice to Prešov, to the former convent of minorities. The vicar Michal Bradáč came to Prešov. On 22 September 1818 the Pope Pius VII issued a bull Relata simper, which established a Greek-Catholic bishop of Prešov. The entire former monastery complex was then assigned in 1821 to the first bishop of the newly established Greek-Catholic Diocese of Prešov, to Gregory Tarkovič.
Joseph Gaganec, in order the second bishop of Prešov, made an extensive redevelopment of the seat in 1848, so arose today’s two-storey palace building with a classicist façade. Above the main entrance a large triangular shield (tympanum) was placed and the dominant.
Bishop’s Palace together with the church was damaged in the bombing of Prešov by Soviet aircraft on 20 December 1944. The reconstruction of both buildings began immediately after the war. In 1950, when the highest state authorities abolished the Greek-Catholic Church in Czechoslovakia, both buildings – the church and the Bishop’s Palace, were passed to the ownership of the Orthodox Church. The Bishop’s Palace became the seat of the Orthodox Archbishop of Prešov for four decades.
Since 1990, it is the seat of the Greek-Catholic Church in Slovakia and Czech Republic.
Šariš Gallery belongs to the oldest regional galleries in Slovakia. It was founded in 1956 in a city rich in history and cultural traditions.
The gallery bore several names – Regional Gallery in Prešov (until 1961), Art Gallery (in the years 1961-1991) and Šariš Gallery (since 1991). The gallery was opened to the public in 1957 and at this time was housed in the building of former Lutheran College.
In 1981 gallery brought to use two old burgher houses, originally Gothic with Renaissance and Baroque alterations. The house at the Hlavná 53 (Main Street 53) is one of the most interesting Gothic buildings in the city.
Its collections are among the most valuable and interesting in Slovakia. Today it manages more than 40,000 works of art from the end of the 15th century to the present with regard to the Eastern Slovakia, but also with works of the founding figures of Slovak Modernism, important personalities of Slovak art. The collection includes some notable files such as a collection of icons of the eastern provenance, which contains one of the most beautiful Slovak icons. of the eastern provenance, which contains one of the most beautiful Slovak icon, an icon of St. Michael the Archangel (around the year 1560).
The gallery acquired the first part of the wooden sculptures in 1993 and the second part in 2006, which originate in the 15th -19th century. This collection includes eg. Madonna with Jesus (around 1510) from the workshop of Master Pavol of Levoča, St. Anna Mettercia (around 1490) and works from the Renaissance and Baroque period. The complete collection includes 134 pieces of wooden sculptures and icons from the 15th-20th century.
A collection of paintings from the 19th century includes a significant collection of John Rombauer, who worked in the first third of the 19th century in Russia and after his return he settled in Prešov, where he died and is buried in the town cemetery. The richest collection is the collection of works by painters from the turn of the 19th and 20th century, systematically updated with works by contemporary artists.
Numerically the strongest is the art collection of the 20th century. The gallery collects arts of founding figures of modern Slovak art (Martin Benka, Ľudovít Fulla,…), works of important representatives of Slovak and Eastern Slovak art from the first half of the century (Elemír Halász-Hradil, Joseph Bendík, Konštantín Kóvári,…) and works of painters, sculptors, graphic artists of the region.
The gallery offers regular exhibitions of its collections. For the Art Garden the gallery made in the 90s two International Sculpture Symposiums, attended by Slovak and abroad artists. Šariš Gallery in Prešov with its quality and richness of its collection, its exhibitions, cultural and educational work is now the leading gallery facility in Slovakia.
Palace Klobušických is situated in the southern part of the square on the eastern side of the Hlavná ulica (the Main Street).
–› The palace was built in the mid of the 18th century on the former Hungary Street, which Baron Franz Klobušický bought at the end of the previous century. Palace Klobušických was completed in the year 1756.
Valuable is mainly the floor street façade , richly decorated with beautiful stucco scenes and ornaments with the coat of the Klobušický family above the main portal. On the eastern side borders against the palace an extensive park, reaching up to the walls.
Later, a fashion tower was built into it. This Romantic building still stands and completes the scenery of the Lutheran parish garden. The contemporary design of the Palace Klobušických and its complex is truly captured on veduta of leading geodesist Gaspar Caspar, which is in the legend to veduta identified as Castrum Inclytae Familiae Klobusiczky.
A garden of Stephen Klobušický is drawn as its part, located between the Ružová ulica (Rose Street) and the city walls. The garden was built in French style. Before the reconstruction Ladislav Bercéni was born there, later French Marshal, legendary French Duke of the 18th century.
Undoubtedly one of the most important events in the history of this noble residence was the visit of Emperor Joseph II in the summer of 1770, during which he honoured supreme commander of Polish secessionist – pro-Russian opponents of Monarch Stanislav August.
During the 19th century several owners changed off. In the early 19th century the palace was the seat of the first Prešov (German) theater, founded by Prešov physician Dr. Samuel Krieger.
During the 19th and 20th century the palace was used for several purposes, it was given to a permanent garrison in Prešov, so that the premises of the palace were set up barracks. After the cancellation several offices of private businesses were set up on the ground floor, as well as one of the oldest pharmacy in Prešov “Salvator”. There were some Catholic high school classrooms, during the first Czech-Slovak Republic there was a tax office and after the foundation of the University of Pavol Jozef Šafárik (in 1959) the Faculty of Arts was housed here.
Black Eagle In the southern part of the square, on the eastern side of the Main Street is embedded a block of representative urban buildings, called Black Eagle.
The base of the complex was a two-storey burgess house of Thomas Cascher, which the city bought in 1561 and adapted it for a representative inn. In urban writings it was referred to as publicum diversorium (public inn). In 1602 a stall for 28 horses was built, what was very convenient for travelers passing through the town.
In the 17th century the inn was used mainly for housing officers. The same was true during the feudal uprising of Franz II Rakoczi, when in December 1796 the French army under the command of General Corona was accommodated in the city. In 1799 officers of General Suvorov were accommodated here, who was sent with his army to aid the Austrian army fighting against Napoleon. In 1806 the Russian army resided here together with General Kutuzov.
The inn was used for various cultural purposes since the 19th century. Even in the first quarter of the 19th century a reduta large room was established in its premises, where among other activities less costly performances were played.
In 1833 the first theater building for the German theater company was built in the courtyard. It was a small, detached atrial building with a small porch, which had only 46 seats and a few lodges. New Prešov Theater, led by directors Hornstein and Justh, was inaugurated on 21 January 1834.
In the 40s of the 19th century an exhibition building of the urban reduta was built in the back of the inn’s courtyard. On 3 March 1849 a meeting was held here in which Ľudovít Štúr and Joseph M.Hurban have spoken to the citizens. According to the letter of Joseph M. Hurban of 4 March 1849 the meeting gathered together about 5,000 people.
In 1881 joined the main two-storey inn a single burgher house from the north and from the south side and completed them in the level of the main building. The new urban reduta, as a representative municipal building, was created by an extensive renovation of all three objects and combining them into one large building. Eleven-axial main façade of the building was symmetrically distributed by the entry portal, on the sides of which were placed two massive bossed pillars underpinning the large balcony. All three floors were distinguished from each other by variable size and shaped windows.
After the reconstruction of the Black Eagle complex, the building included reduta, theater and luxury hotel with a restaurant and a café. Reduta was the seat of the Prešov Széchenyi halo.
After the establishment of the Czechoslovakia in 1918 the Hungarian inscription “Fekete sas” was removed from the building and was replaced by the Slovakian translation “Čierny orol” (Black Eagle). A branch of the Czechoslovak Gabfest, a major cultural institution in the interwar Prešov affected in its premises in September 1919.
Soon after that a local branch of Matica Slovenská was placed there, as well as the new Public Library with a public reading room. A big reconstruction of the theatre took place in 1943 thanks to the city council, led by Anton Sabol-Palko, who was also the member of the newly formed Slovak theater in Prešov. In 1954 the theater was renamed the Theater Jonáš Záborský.
Rákoczi Palace is still exempting on the eastern side of the Main Street opposite the Roman-Catholic church. The fate of Prešov was linked to the powerful Rákoczi family in the 17th-18th century.
Originally, two medieval burgher houses stood in its place. At the end of the 16th century, Transylvanian Prince Sigismund Rákoczi purchased them and converted them to an opulent city palace in Renaissance style.
A late-Renaissance treatment of the whole building followed after this conversion at the beginning of the 17th century. The entire façade and the attic are richly decorated with graphite. The Rákoczi family created a genuine masterpiece of Renaissance architecture, regarded as the most beautiful Renaissance palace in the former Upper Hungary.
In 1633 it conducted the negotiations between the representatives of the Transylvanian Prince George I Rákoczi and Emperor Ferdinand II, ended by signing the Prešov peace.
After the 1711 the palace was confiscated and changed several owners. During the 18th century there had been a Baroque rebuilding of the courtyard wing.
In the 19th century the building had several owners or tenants, who have adapted it for business and workshop premises. A careful reconstruction of the palace to its original Renaissance form, completed by the restoration of the graphite façade decoration was in 1950-1956. Nowadays, the palace is housing the Šariš Museum.
Museum Solivar in Prešov is a national cultural heritage and belongs to the most important technical heritages in Slovakia. It is a unique complex of technical facilities for pumping and processing salt from brine from the 17th century.
To the major objects of this museum belong the well Leopold, ceteris (brine reservoirs), smelter, cooker, salt storage (chambers), blacksmith’s workshop and the knocker. The well Leopold should be regarded as the oldest and was sunk in 1571. Originally, the well was called Imperial and was 155 m deep.
The object itself and mechanism required major repairs, first was carried out in 1807 and the second was in 1844. The mechanism was rotated by four pairs of horses. The brine was drawn in a leather-bag of about 5-7 hectoliters. Tanks for storing extracted brine were built in 1815.
On the stone pedestals are eight wooden tanks with the volume of 1,320 hectoliters, overall it is 10,560 hectoliters. All tanks formed a unit and were placed under one roof. The brine was piped into the tanks by wooden pipes from the well Leopold. From the next lowest situated tank, placed in a ceteris niveau terrain, the brine was seduced to the for-heating and next to the evaporating basin. The salt storage was in its original form built in 1825.
Two cookers Franz and Ferdinand were built at the turn of the 18th and 19th century (demolished in 1931). Franz cooker totally burned down in a fire in 1819. The brine was discharging into the evaporating basin and the crystalline salt was resurrected and transmitted to the drip chamber, where the salt was left for 24 hours. Then the salt was moved by wooden pipes to the drier and after eight and more hours was transferred to the store or was shipped.
The salt was transported from the cooker to the store by tracks in a small wooden truck. Substantially, this was the most impressive architectural building of the entire site. Unfortunately, it burned down on 18 May 1986.
The original area of the former saline was crept by other structures such as salt baths, engine, barn and bell-tower, which in earlier times served as a knocker. The bell-tower was built on a hill – Dumps. Knocking on the board were the miners and employees informed about the beginning of the working time or other extraordinary events (natural disasters). Area of the saline is an exceptional technical monument in Slovakia.
On the eastern side of the square, opposite the Neptune fountain, is a historical building of Prešov Town Hall.
Originally, the Town Hall in the medieval Prešov was standing elsewhere. It was a detached two-storey stone building, built south of the parish church, somewhere on the today’s park with the monument of Red Army. During the 17th century moved the Magistrate for unknown reasons into a building, which nowadays serves as the Town Hall.
The exact form of the original Town Hall is unknown, only a stone coat of arms from the 16th century remained. New Town Hall was a noble medieval burgher house. The building was rebuilt to a city tavern in the early 16th century, led by marble master John Brengyszeyn and was used for this purpose for two centuries.
From the Gothic period retained only few fragments in the interior and lining of the portal. In the second half of the 16th century the tavern was enlarged by extension of the street crossing, linking the two neighborhoods of the square and adjusted in Renaissance style. After subsequent reconstructions of this form only arches and Renaissance linings were preserved.
A careful reconstruction took place after a fire in the year 1768 and was finished in 1788, when it obtained its late-Baroque form with a typical façade with high windows and a balcony.
The last modification took place after another huge fire in 1887, when the second floor was built and the roof was modified in new-Baroque style.
Address: Slovenská 75
Address: Slovenská 80
Tel: 00421/51/772 34 44
Address: Pod Kalváriou 51
Tel: 00421/903 552 721
Babylon Wine Pub
Address: Hlavná 111
Tel: 00421/51/771 56 76
Bella Sicilia Restaurant
Address: Slovenská 82
Tel: 00421/51/748 11 19
Carpe Diem Restaurant
Address: Hlavná 95
Tel: 00421/51/772 30 51
Address: Škultétyho 15
Tel: 00421/51/773 10 13
Address: Pod Kalváriou 50
Tel: 00421/907 951 205
Address: Hlavná 133
Tel: 00421/51/771 37 06
Orient Cafe Restaurant
Address: Svätoplukova 3
Tel: 00421/915 845 916
Address: Požiarnická 4
Tel: 00421/51/773 46 29
Address: K. Nálepku 6
Tel: 00421/51/773 23 51
Address: Sabinovská 1
Tel: 00421/907 885 753
Šariš Park – Restaurant
Address: Železničná 1900
Tel: 00421/51/747 04 22
U Richtára Restaurant
Address: Hlavná 71
Tel: 00421/51/772 32 36
Via Magna Restaurant
Address: Hlavná 27
Tel: 00421/51/772 04 35
Theatre of Jonáš Záborský (Divadlo J. Záborského)
Address: Námestie legionárov 6
Tel: 00421/51/773 39 91
Portál Theatre (Divadlo Portál)
Address: Októbrová 46
Tel: 00421/51/452 06 10
Theatre of Alexander Duchnovič (Divadlo Alexandra Duchnoviča)
Address: Jarková 77
Tel: 00421/51/773 27 00
USAP Theatre (Divadlo USAP)
Address: Švábska č. 27
Tel: 00421/51/770 47 95
Museum of Prešov Region (Krajské múzeum)
Address: Hlavná 86
Tel: 00421/51/759 82 20
Museum of Wines (Múzeum vín)
Tel: 00421/51/773 31 08
Slovak Technical Museum (Slovenské technické múzeum)
Address: Zborovská 2/A
Tel: 00421/51/775 74 27
Address: Hlavná 66
Tel: 00421/907 932 001
Address: Floriánova 4
Tel: 00421/51/758 21 95
Per Spectrum Gallery
Address: Jarková 77
Tel: 00421/902 142 151
Address: Hlavná 51
Tel: 00421/51/772 54 23
Address: ZOC MAX Sekčov
Tel: 00421/918 896 501
Address: Hlavná 121
Tel: 00421/905 702 380
Address: Hlavná 105
Tel: 00421/51/749 58 39
Address: Nám. legionárov 1
Tel: 00421/51/756 42 22
- Address: Hlavná 67
- Tel: 00421/ 51/310 01 25