Bivouac at Ruins of Pajštún Castle or How I Turned Into a Queen For One Night

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Me and my boyfriend craved some little adventure around Slovakia before his summer departure to Canada and thus we decided to cross out one of our bucket list activities – staying overnight at some castle. Yeah, I know, we have kinda rare bucket list activities. ? And therefore, one Sunday evening we set off towards Pajštún castle ruins and stayed overnight in a style of “bivouac”.

What a word “bivouac” means

I have heard the word “bivouac” only recently. It is generally known as “sleeping under stars” or simply said it is overnight stay in nature, however, without using a tent. More professional dictionary claims that bivouac represents overnight stay at lower level of comfort without using any shelter. The main difference between camping and bivouac is that while you can camp in forest only at designated spots, you can bivouac almost anywhere.

How to get to Pajštún castle

Pajštún castle ruins are located in Little Carpathians mountains in Western Slovakia and can be accessed by various ways. Our option was to get to a village Borinka (around 30 min bus ride from Bratislava) and from there we followed red hiking trail mark. Total elevation was only a bit above 200m and we got up to the ruins within 30 min. Easy peasy.

The other option is to get to a village Stupava and follow yellow hiking trail mark. What we did was that we set off from Borinka village and we returned from Pajštún to Stupava from where the buses to Bratislava are more frequent.

How was our bivouac experience at castle ruins?

We arrived to Pajštún shortly after 8pm. It was a nice warm July evening and sunset was ineffable. Since the surrounding of Pajštún castle was rewarded by unbelievable dense greenery, it took us a while to find THE spot for sunset watching. We actually had to climb to the ruins of castle window from where we were offered magical views all over the place suffused by warm colours of sun setting down.

Shortly after the sunset, we found THE spot for setting the fire so we could prepare our dinner and at the same time set up our sleeping “chamber” which consisted of only sleeping mats and sleeping bags. In order to add extra vibe and already amazing atmosphere, I brought Christmas lights which illuminated our “bedroom” as well as our “kitchen & dining room”.

It was just two of us. Alone. We felt like King and Queen of this castle.

We were falling asleep while watching thousands of bright stars and having our usual never-ending chats about life. It was like from a cheesy romantic movie. Perfect setting. Perfect moment. Perfect company. However, as it is already a usual thing in my life, nothing is perfect and this perfection was interrupted by a weird noise in the middle of the night.

It took us a while to realize that we were not alone in those woods. We were surrounded by wild forest animals. Fortunately, only by peaceful yet curious deer which didn’t allow me to sleep all night. I stayed alert the whole night thinking what if this friendly deer was replaced by less friendly wild pigs, boars. Thanks God, my worries weren’t fulfilled and we managed to get up for sunrise without any injuries or unpleasant accidents.

So do you ask whether I would repeat such a bivouac experience? Hell yeah! Although next time more (mentally) ready for a company of wild animals. If you have some nice or crazy bivouac experience, feel free to share it with me in the comments below.

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2 Responses

  • Pri poslednej navsteve Pajstuna som nasiel mnozstvo zakazovych znaciek suvisiacich so zavedenym 5. pasmom ochrany prirody. Uz ziadne stanovanie, ohniska, ani nic podobne :(. Mam na tento hrad viacero spomienok ake popisujete v clanku, uz to zial bude len “muzeum”. Na jednej strane sa to dalo cakat, hrad uz bol prilis frekventovanym navstevnym miestom, ale smutno z toho je.

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