Hmeljnik, Hmelnik, Hopfenbach, Hophenbach, Hopffepach
Litography of castle Hmeljnik made in 1679 by Johann Weikhard von Valvasor.
Region: Lower Carniola
Municipality: Novo mesto
Settlement: Gorenje Kamenje
Object: Hmeljnik castle
First mention: in the year 1217
*Castle got its name after plant hops which once grew in abundance.
* The castle was build by the Hopfenbach knights in the 12th century, who were the vassals of the Weichselberg Counts.
* In old written records there is also a mention of inferior Hopfenbach so there is possibility of another smaller Hmeljnik castle. In my reaserch with the help of Light Detection And Ranging and the help of local legends I may have found the smaller castle Hmeljnik on a hill just 3km away from the main castle. The hill is called Hmeljčič which means small hopfen. There you can see a strange man made anomaly with ditches.
* The castle once had the richest court arcade corridor with a balustrade fence in Slovenia.
* Up until the second World War, black and white Lipizzaner horses were breed in the castle.
* On May 9, 1942 the castle was burnt down and the local people vandalised the interior.
* In 1958 ruins were mined and finally destroyed.
IMAGES before and during World War II
IMAGES made in 2014
Images made by Vigilant Knight
* Castle Hmeljnik is supposed to be connected by an underground tunnel to another castle called Luknja. Distance between the castles in a straight line is 6.75km. On location of castle Luknja there are a lot of carst cave systems and river Temenica comes to the surface after 1.5km underground journey.
Stopar, Ivan, Dr.: “Grajske stavbe v osrednji Sloveniji (I. Dolenjska) – Porečje Krke”, Založba Viharnik, Ljubljana, 2000, ISBN 961-6057-26-X
Kos, Dušan, Dr.: “Vitez in Grad”, Založba ZRC, ZRC SAZU, 2005, ISBN 961-6500-82-1
Latitude: 45 ° 51’46.18 “S
Longitude: 15 ° 9’10.26 “V