Prešov Region sees itself as the region with the best preconditions to become a popular tourist destination. It has untouched nature as well as precious historical sites, of which many have made it onto the UNESCO World Heritage list. Levoča, Spiš Castle and the Associated Cultural Monuments are probably the most well-known. Another is the Bardejov Town Conservation Reserve, which is a small but exceptionally complete and well-preserved example of a fortified medieval town. The Gothic Catholic church in Hervartov, the Evangelical church in Kežmarok, and Greek Catholic churches in Bodružal and Ladomirová also bear the label of UNESCO sites. Other architectural gems can be found in Spišská Sobota, now part of Poprad. After the railway bypassed this once wealthy mining city, burgher houses on its square preserved their Gothic and Renaissance forms. And in Solivar, near Prešov, visitors will find a number of preserved technical monuments connected with salt extraction. Of natural sites, Prešov Region boasts the Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians which spread into Ukraine, also on UNESCO's list. These are not the only natural beauties of the region. The High Tatras and Pieniny national parks are also located in Prešov Region. Near Prešov there is a unique area in the Slánske Vrchy mountain, Dubník, known for precious opals. The first written document concerning the extraction of precious opals in Dubník dates from 1597, but the mines went through their largest expansion in the 19th century. The vast majority of mining buildings have been preserved and it is possible to walk through the old shafts or search for opals. As for modern culture, a museum dedicated to pop-art artist Andy Warhol was established in 1991 in Medzilaborce. Warhol's parents came from Miková, a small village near Medzilaborce.
8. Feb 2010 at 0:00 | Compiled by Spectator staff