Advertising
Advertising

Top 10 Best Castles In The World

Top 10 Best Castles In The World

Whenever we hear the word ‘castle’, a large structure with great walls comes to our mind. Particularly, if you are a fan of the ‘Game of Thrones’ series, you might visualize the boisterous castles of Westeros, Bravos, and all around the mythical land, being guarded by armored soldiers. From ‘Dragon Heart’ to ‘Resident Evil’, many historical movies and games have their stories begin and end in castles.

Basically, a castle is a private, fortified residence of the nobles. However, the scope of the castle is highly contested. But contests aside, if you ever wonder visiting the world’s best castles, here is the list of the ‘Top Ten Best Castles in The World’.

1. Edinburgh Castle

1

    Edinburgh Castle is situated in Edinburgh, Scotland. The name Edinburgh is derived from ‘Din Eidyn’, which basically means ‘the fortress of Eidyn’. It was built in the extinct volcanic crag.

    Many buildings in the castle can be dated back to the 16th century. Margaret’s Chapel, the oldest surviving building of Edinburgh, which can be dated to the 12th century is also located here. It covers an area of 35737 square meters. In present day, it is a tourist center and one can take a guided tour of the castle.

    2. Citadel of Aleppo

    2

      Citadel of Aleppo is one of the oldest castles of the world. It covers an area of 39804 square meters. It is situated on 50 meters high hill in center of Aleppo in Syria. It is found that the hill has been in use since the middle of the 3rd millennium for various purposes.

      Advertising

      The majority of its construction was completed in the 13th century. It has stood on the crusader era fortification and has served as stronghold for crusaders. Various civilizations including the Greek, and the Byzantine had occupied this partly conserved fortress. It spreads on 39804 square meters area.

      3. Trim Castle

      3

        Trim Castle is located in Trim County on the southern bank of the River Boyne in Ireland. It was built in the 12th century during Norman rule by Hugh de Lacy and is one of the largest among Norman castles, which is spread over area of 30,000 square meters.

        The castle was built in three stages, the later 2 of which were done by Walter de Lacy during his time. It was used as the administrative center of Norman administration for the Lordship of Meath. The castle is also referred in “Song of Dermot and the Earl”.

        In present day, you can access the castle with a small admittance fee. Ireland is the perfect place for castle tours as there are many outstanding castles in Ireland which are sure to leave one awestruck.

        4. Himeji Castle

        4

          Himeji Castle is one of the most beautiful castles of Japan, situated in the Himeji, Hyogo prefecture of Japan. It is a sample of prototypical oriental castle architecture which was built in the 14th century and expanded throughout the century.

          Advertising

          The construction was completed in 1609 A.D. Since then, it has survived many civil wars, bombings and earthquakes. It occupies 41648 square meters area. Presently, it has 83 buildings; each equipped with defensive system. One of the noticeable features of the castle is its complex, which looks like a bird that is about to take a flight.

          5. Buda Castle

          5

            Buda Castle is located in the southern tip of castle hill in Budapest of Hungary. After the attack of Mongols, Buda’s citizen built the castle to defend themselves against the Mongols.

            Despite the effort, the castle has been invaded numerous times. This effect can be seen in the styles of buildings in the castle, which ranges from Baroque styles to Gothic styles. The castle took several years of construction. Its present day form was completed in 1266 A.D. It covers an area of 49485 square meters. In present day, it is a museum and also includes National Gallery of Hungary.

            6. Spis Castle

            6

              Built in the 12th century AD, Spis castle is one of the largest medieval castles in Central Europe. It is located in the countryside of eastern Slovakia. Unfortunately, it was destroyed by the tectonic quake.

              Stone wall was used to fortify the main building during the first half of the 13th century for anticipated Tartar incursion. Lower courtyard was fortified in the middle of the 11th century. The fortress was changed into homes for the noble families of Hungary later on.

              Advertising

              In 1780, the castle caught fire which destroyed most of it. In present day, it is one of the sites listed in the world heritage by UNESCO.

              7. Hohesalzburg Castle

              7

                Hohesalzburg Castle is one of the largest castles in Europe. It is situated in the city of Salzburg in Austria. It was actually built in 1077 AD, but further works of expansion were done from 1495 A.D to 1519 A.D.

                It is the best preserved and one of the biggest medieval fortresses in Central Europe. It covers an area of 54523 square meters. This castle is believed to have never been captured by any enemy. In present day, it stands as fortress museum and displays a wide range of ancient weapons, coins and many musical instruments.

                8. Windsor Castle

                8

                  Windsor Castle is one of the largest and oldest inhabited castles in the world. It is located in England and spreads over an area of 54835 square meter. It is one of the various official residences of Queen Elizabeth II where she has spent many weeks and weekends.

                  The castle is also used for various state functions. The notable structures in the castle are Queen Mary’s doll house and State apartment. The castle has also served as the burial site of some monarchs.

                  Advertising

                  9. Prague Castle

                  St Charles Bridge Prague

                    Prague Castle was built in the 9th century and now stands as one of the largest and majestic castles in the world. Although it was built in the 9th century, its expansion can be dated back to the second half of the 18th century.

                    It is situated in Czech Republic and covers an area of 66761 square meters. It consists of St. Vitus Cathedral, where the crown jewels are kept. It is full of Gothic structures. The castle has been used as the seat for the Czech monarchs since its construction in 880 A.D.

                    It also served as the residence of many religious leaders and Holy Roman emperors. In present day, it is used as the official house for the head of the state.

                    10. Malbork Castle

                    10

                      Malbork Castle is the largest castle in the world with an area of whopping 143591 square meters. It is located in Poland.  It was founded by Teutonic Knights, which was the Roman Catholic religious order based in Germany.

                      The knights used it as headquarter to defeat the Polish enemy, which also helped to rule the northern Baltic territories. Several expansions were done to accommodate the growing number of knights until they retreated in 1466 A.D in Konigsburg.

                      In 1466, it was home to Polish monarchy. Now, it consists of monasteries and museums. It is also listed in the ‘World Heritage Site’ list by UNESCO.

                      Featured photo credit: Wikipedia via upload.wikimedia.org

                      More by this author

                      Nabin Paudyal

                      Co-Founder, Siplikan Media Group

                      Benefits of Sauna: 8 Ways It Makes You Healthier and Happier 25 Websites Other Than Social Media To Upgrade Your Life Think That Positive Mantras Help a Lot? Try Value Affirmation Instead 6 Successful Entrepreneurs Who Struggle Through Dyslexia Every Family Has Its Problems, This Is How Some Stick Together No Matter What

                      Trending in Culture

                      1 18 Dating Ideas with Breathtaking Scenery in the East of England 2 18 Things You Need To Know Before You Get Your First Tattoo 3 7 Tools to Optimize Your Next Long-Term Traveling Experience 4 What GoT Would Be Like if the Characters Used Social Media 5 30 Free Dating Ideas For Landscape-Lovers In Ireland

                      Read Next

                      Advertising
                      Advertising
                      Advertising

                      Last Updated on January 17, 2019

                      8 Simple Mindfulness Exercises to Bring Peace and Happiness to Your Life

                      8 Simple Mindfulness Exercises to Bring Peace and Happiness to Your Life

                      In life, we all need to be conscientious of what we are doing. You don’t need to live a life of stress if you don’t want to. You can achieve peace and happiness in life by carefully building mindfulness exercises into your life’s routine.

                      Exercising mindfulness isn’t rocket science and as importantly, you can do it. It will, however, take a few tries to get into the groove of things but once you get it, it is like riding a bike, you will never lose it.

                      Trust me. It’s in your best interest to learn and put these mindfulness exercises into practice. In this article, I will share with you 8 mindfulness exercises that will help you to boost your energy, vitality and live a more peaceful and happier life.

                      Why Is It Hard to Live A Peaceful And Happy Life?

                      Our Habitat Has Become Too Technological

                      The world has accepted the idea that technology is often the cure for all evil. We have accepted, as a society, that everything technological will make us live a better life without fully investigating the many side effects that modernity brings.

                      There are a number of technological side effects that have a tremendous impact on your life that the media rarely tells you about.[1] Some of them include self-harm, economic inequality, having less sex, and even suicide. The global community is becoming less happy because of technology.

                      How can anybody live a peaceful and happy life when they are depressed? Technology advancements, ladies and gents, is a major reason for why we are living a poor life because it has infiltrated our lives too much.

                      According to my research, Americans spend an average of 8 hours a day looking at the computer screen — The average screen time spent on smartphones alone is about 20 hours per week. That’s a lot! No wonder why living a happy and peaceful life is so difficult these days.

                      Too Many People Don’t Want to Unplug

                      Americans check their phones an average of 80 times during vacation.[2] Some admit to checking their smartphones 300 times every single day. In countries like Brazil, India and China, the situation is no different.

                      The reality is that people are constantly plugged into technological devices and this behavior is literally making people all over the globe fight an inner war with themselves, which consequently makes them very sad. As we know, war is the enemy of peace which won’t make anybody happy.

                      Listen carefully:

                      We have a global anxiety epidemic because people don’t want to unplug from their smartphones and most people aren’t doing anything to fix it. It is a sad state of affairs but very real. This obsession with technology is turning us into perishable robots who live terrible lives.

                      Advertising

                      The era of anxiety is here to stay. There is little doubt about it. We can, however, fight back with the best remedy of all — We call it mindfulness!

                      Thank God there is an antidote to this whole technological madness. Without further ado, let’s go straight to the mindful exercises.

                      8 Mindfulness Exercises to Start Practicing

                      There are tons of mindfulness exercises available for you to engage with out there.[3] In the paragraphs below, I will include the best ones I’ve personally tried or have seen my close friends and family members try.

                      Are you ready for it? Let’s go!

                      1. Pray Daily

                      You should pray on a daily basis. Why is that you may ask — Well, because science has told us to do so.

                      When people pray, they feel peaceful, almost eliminating anxiety. Worries become secondary, and often gives people energy and hope to cope with the difficulties of life.

                      Prayer can make you more confident and focused. Prayer also helps you with self-control, helps to control pain, and can protect you against illnesses and disorders like cancer and high blood pressure. At least, this is what researchers from Harvard Medical School have said.[4]

                      Pray. You won’t regret it.[5]

                      2. Pay Attention to Your Inner Thoughts

                      A lot of people allow themselves to be influenced by their negative thoughts. Be different and resist believing in them. It is a bad habit that can lead to unhappiness.

                      By the way, if you do feel this way, chances are high that somebody other than you put these thoughts into your head.

                      Here is my secret to combat this cancer — look at things objectively. I bet that if you look at things as they are, you will realize that most if not all of your negative thoughts are only inside of your head.

                      Advertising

                      If you pay close attention, you will quickly realize that these voices aren’t worth your time. Believe me — Ignoring them and looking at things with objectivity is often the best course of action.

                      This article can guide you to beat negative thoughts:

                      How to Stop Automatic Negative Thoughts When You’re Overwhelmed

                      3. Smile Often

                      Smiling will slow down your heart. It will also relax your body because when you smile, your body releases endorphins which in itself has a number of positive benefits for you as a person.

                      Smile often! You may want to smile early in the morning, during the day, and late in the evening. It is amazing what happens to you when you decide to smile instead of being grumpy.

                      Surrender your problems to a nice smile. You will notice two things. First, most people just don’t which makes them live a miserable life. Second, if you decide to smile often, you will eventually smile unconsciously which is the ideal.

                      The moment that you smile unconsciously, you then know that you are truly happy.

                      4. Organize Your Working Desk

                      A messy desk will make you less productive and can agitate and overstimulate you. You don’t want that.

                      When you clear your desk, you engage in deep inner-thinking and your systematic decision making ends up becoming therapeutic.

                      Most people realize that they are most creative when their creative space is clean and organized. The former often makes people more aware of what they are doing which lends to less stress and more productivity.

                      Organizing your desk will also make you more energetic and focused because order often decreases chaos which is a condition that often slows down daily progress.

                      Advertising

                      5. Celebrate Your Friend’s Victories

                      I love this mindful exercise. One of the best ways to live a happy and peaceful life is to celebrate the victories of others. When you do that, you automatically make your friends in a better mood which makes you in a better mood, as well.

                      Happiness is contagious! We might as well celebrate others as much as we can. If you find out that your peer has won an award, celebrate with him! If your friend is the recipient of a local charity award, celebrate with her!

                      What is also awesome is that when you celebrate with others, they often celebrate with you in return. This, ladies and gentleman, will make you feel fantastic. You can’t go wrong with this one, period.

                      6. Listen to Your Spouse/Partner

                      God put someone in your life for a reason. You might as well listen to him or her.

                      I listen to my wife everyday. In fact, I often ask the following question to her, “Amanda, what are your thoughts about…” or “What am I missing about…” It is shocking what I hear back from her. Without her having much context and perspective, by the art of observation in my own nonverbal behavior and the behavior of others, she accurately gives me incredible insights which helps me out with living my life to the fullest.

                      I’m a firm believer that spouses are supposed to engage in interpersonal communication every day. I most definitely do and will continue doing it. You should do the same.

                      7. Give Yourself a Break from Technology

                      You can’t be in total equilibrium if your computerized devices control your life. You must get away from technology on a daily basis.[6]

                      How do you do that? This is my formula:

                      First, take this smartphone control test. It is only ten questions but this test will place you somewhere in the human robot cycle continuum.

                      If your score is between 25-30, take a break from the computer (or smartphone, pad, laptop/desktop) every twenty minutes and stop being on a computerized device after 8:00pm.

                      If you score between 30-35, still take a break every 20 minutes but stop being on these devices at 5:00pm.

                      Advertising

                      If you score more than 35, you need to take action immediately.

                      Limit computer use as much as possible throughout the day. Give yourself as many breaks from the computer as possible. Are you ready for the challenge?

                      8. Go Exercise

                      Go exercise at least three times a week. I don’t care if you need to workout early in the morning, late in the evening, on the weekends or during work days. Working out is absolutely imperative for you to live happy and peaceful life.

                      The stresses of the modern world are too much for you to neglect this important mindfulness exercise. When you go to the gym, you burn calories, focus on activities one step at a time, your mind relaxes, anxiety decreases, you sweat and often think about topics unrelated to your work place among many other benefits.

                      You must exercise at least three hours each week for optimum results. Why? Just take a look at all the benefits of regular exercising:

                      12 Benefits of Regular Exercise You Should Know

                      The Bottom Line

                      It’s in your best interest to learn and put these mindfulness exercises into practice. Now that our habitat has become too technological and many people just don’t want to unplug, engaging in daily prayer, celebrate your friends’ victories, and listening to your spouse are among the best ways to be mindful about what you are doing and how you are living.

                      It is possible to live a happy and peaceful life. It only depends on you.

                      Go exercise! Take a break from technology and invest in you! Life is too short for distractions.

                      More Resources About Mindfulness

                      Featured photo credit: Lesly Juarez via unsplash.com

                      Reference

                      Read Next