One of the significant sights of the Grodno region, and indeed of the whole of Belarus, is Castle of the Grand Dukes in Kreva, which not so long ago began to be restored from the ruins. The town of Krevo itself, and today it is a large agro-town of the Smorgon region, was mentioned in the annals as early as the 13th century. Over the course of its long history, the region has seen both strong ups and downs and complete destruction.

Ancient castle in Kreva

Krevo Castle rightfully considered one of the most significant, historically important objects. It was built before the middle of the 14th century by order of the Prince of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania Gedemin for his son Olgerd, who arrived in new possessions in 1338. There is another version that the construction was originally carried out by Olgerd.

What did the castle in Kreva look like?
this is how the castle looked at the end of the 19th century, drawing by J. Kamarauskas, 1893

The castle in Kreva witnessed many significant events for our lands. For example, it was here that the famous Union of Krevo - an alliance between the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and the Principality of Poland (Prince Jagiello married the Polish Queen Jadwiga and was thus recognized as the head of the two powers).

What the ruins of the castle looked like before the reconstruction
2015 year

This union was aimed at strengthening the borders of the two states, protecting them from enemies. At the same time, it led to the expansion of Catholicism in the lands of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and became a kind of first step towards the Union of Lublin, which laid the foundation for the Commonwealth.

Castle in Kreva before reconstruction
2017, before reconstruction

Outwardly, this castle was a fortified fortress of a trapezoid shape, made of stone and red brick. On the sides there were two powerful defensive towers: Princely and Northern. The height of the walls was also inspiring - in some places it reached 11-13 meters (the height of a 3-4 storey building).

The beginning of the reconstruction of the Kreva Castle in 2019
The beginning of the reconstruction of the Kreva Castle in 2019

The ancient castle of Olgerd was one of the six most powerful outpost fortresses of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania for several centuries. However, at the beginning of the 16th century, it began to lose its positions - numerous sieges and constant wars aggravated the situation. In 1519, he was even captured by the troops of the Moscow principality, who held him for quite a long time.

Ruins of Kreva Castle in 2015

Castle in Kreva
2023 year

Despite the loss of its defensive status and an important stronghold, the castle in Kreva remained in relatively good condition until the First World War. Those years finally destroyed the once mighty and impregnable walls and structures of the fortress.

Kreva Castle old photo from 1906

Parts of the walls and the tower that survived after heavy fighting were mothballed in 1929. But there was another war ahead, new troubles and destruction. In the middle of the 20th century, the building finally fell into disrepair, its walls began to collapse, brick and stone were taken away by local residents for their needs. Periodically, excavations were carried out and plans for reconstruction sounded, but the process was delayed. In 2018, in the autumn, conservation began with partial restoration, which gives hope to see this place in a different guise.

Krevo Castle

Recently, an observation tower was built near the fortress walls, which offers an excellent view of Kreva.

Observation deck in Krevo

Observation tower near Krevo Castle

As expected, this castle has its own ghost - girl with a dog. According to legend, a beautiful girl once lived in this place, who was liked by two princes from the fortress. Then, to decide who she would stay with, they decided to duel. But the stubborn girl refused the winner. He got angry and ordered to immure the girl along with her beloved dog in the castle wall. Since then, her ghost has been walking along with her four-legged pet along the fortress.

The beginning of the reconstruction of the Krevo Castle

In fact, terrible conspiracies and terrible murders have repeatedly taken place within the walls of this fortress, which could be the basis for novels or TV shows.

Finding this attraction is not difficult, the fortress is located in the very center of the agricultural town of Krevo, below is a point with a mark on the map:

look and other castles on the territory of Belarus. If you are in the area, I advise you to visit Church of Saints Peter and Paul in the village of Boruny.

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