Britt & I have saved the more “tourist-y” things to do with our visitors, and this past weekend we had a whopping 3 guests, so we all went on a tour of Turku Castle (until this time Britt & I had just ridden around with our bikes on several occasions. Surprisingly, there isn’t a fence or any type of security around the building so anyone is able to walk around or graze on the lawn.). Our tour was very informative and LONG. About halfway through the tour we dubbed the building as the Never-Ending Castle. We spent a total of about 3 hours roaming the halls, including a guided tour, and only saw about half of what there was to see. Nevertheless, we were all exhausted (a lot of steep steps) and hungry after a while so we headed back to town. Here is a short overview of what we did see…
Inside the castle is one of Finland’s last remaining Catholic churches. (The majority of the country is now Evangelical Lutheran)
St. Sebastian along the walls of the Catholic church, as he is commonly depicted as tied to a post and shot with arrows (hence the holes)
The King’s celebration hall
A view out of the top window onto the front lawn, the sea and the islands. Interesting note, the castle was originally it’s own island. Over the years the sea-level has dropped and the land and risen, joining the castle to the mainland.
Our tour guide explaining the hatch marks on the wall next to her. This was in the women’s room, and the hatch marks were to ward off evil spirits that could come in through the window.
A church located in the Renaissance floor. The castle was built (and re-built due to fires and invasion) in stages from the ground up & each ruler that did any type of construction was sure to keep up with the times. You start out on the first floor and it’s very medieval and rustic feeling, then there is a floor that (as seen in this picture) is very detailed with a lot of color and prints. The top floor almost feels like it could belong in a 19th century home.
A view of the inner-courtyard.
Turku Castle built out of legos.
Dungeons (however, these seem a heck of a lot nicer than my college dorm!)
Cell No. 3
The candle-stick maker’s office.