These two castles (both UNESCO World Heritage Sites) represent some of the finest historical architecture remaining in Belarus today. Due to being located in the countryside outside Minsk, in two locations not easily connected, visiting these castles in one day without your own transport is tricky. Therefore, we opted to hire a guide for the day.

There are several tour operators that offer this service but most need advanced notice of at least three days. We ended up booking through Andriy who was able to organise a tour at short notice, for a reasonable price of €50 per person. This included travel to and from both castles, a side stop at a small church, and some interesting facts about life in Belarus from the very knowledgeable Andriy.

Nesvizh Castle

Originally constructed in 1582, and heavily reconstructed on several occasions in the subsequent centuries Nesvizh Castle is known as one of the most beautiful in this region of Eastern Europe. The grounds of the castle, including a surrounding moat, and a large lake, provide for a beautiful setting. Additionally, the impressively reconstructed interior shows what life was like during this era. Note that cameras are allowed inside (although the use of flash is prohibited). We realised this too late, after locking our cameras in the security deposit boxes, therefore only exterior photos are included below.

Viewing Nesvizh Castle across the frozen lake
Walking across the lake to the castle
Nesvizh Castle with its impressive fortifications and surrounding moat
Nesvizh Castle Courtyard
Nesvizh Castle Courtyard

Mir Castle

Mir castle was constructed in the early 1500s and also went through several periods of reconstruction. Nowadays, the castle has been heavily restored, containing both a hotel and restaurant within its walls. The interior of this castle is not supposed to be as noteworthy as that of Nesvizh, therefore we opted to instead walk around the nearby lake and just enjoy a short meal in the restaurant located in the basement of the castle.

Mir Castle
Mir Castle from across the lake
Elana strolling through the grounds on the far side of the lake
The nearby Shrine of Sviatapolk-Mirski
Mir Castle courtyard
One last exterior view of Mir Castle

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