The medieval village of Štanjel is a masterpiece of architecture and a fantastic cultural monument in the Slovenian Karst that is a must-see in the region. It’s among the oldest settlements in the Karst and offers spectacular views of the surrounding area. The village stands on the terraced Turn Hill and includes a castle with defence walls and the Church of St. Daniel with its iconic lemon-shaped bell tower. The Turn Hill has been inhabited since prehistoric times and boasts the remains of a Roman fortress. The village was first mentioned in 1402 and was walled up in the 15th century to protect against the Turkish invaders. During the 16th and 17th centuries, Štanjel received its signature form of narrow alleys and remarkable stone houses. The renowned architect and mayor of Štanjel, Maks Fabiani, spent 20 years working on the village. His most innovative architecture feat is certainly the renovation of the Ferrari Villa and the design of the Ferrari Garden, which is considered the most prominent piece of landscaping in Slovenia from the period of the two World Wars. During World War II, part of Štanjel was destroyed and the castle was seriously damaged. Restoration works continued well into the 1960s when this incredible place grew in size and new buildings were erected on the Turn Hill. Today, the village of Štanjel hosts a number of cultural and scientific events as an important cultural centre of the Karst region. The castle holds exhibitions and museum collections, where prominent artists exhibit their work.
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