Stará Bystrica is one of the most visited villages in the Kysuce region. The village attracts its visitors by the Slovak Astronomical Clock, the lookout tower on the Bobovec hill and the regional cycling route. The village can be proud of its unconventional features combining the elements of contemporary and traditional architecture.

Stará Bystrica

The central zone is dominated by the main area - the rebuilt Square of St Michal. Its restoration intended to respect traditions and to enrich the tradition with a modern look. The elements of small architectonic works involve cast iron benches or bicycle stands. The village centre was thus reformed into a relaxing zone for pedestrians. However, there are a few other interesting buildings on the square such as the reconstructed Zbojnícka bašta (Robber´s Bastion), a fountain with a statue of St. Michal Archangel and Bielkov dom (Bielko´s House).

At the end of the square restoration, the largest wooden statue in Slovakia - the unique Slovak Astronomical Clock was built on the façade on the local Cultural Centre. The project was designed by the academic sculptor Loviška. In the niches of the astronomical clock, there are bronze sculptures of the important personalities of the Slovak history and there are two bells in the tower. The astronomical clock has its own “heart”- an astrolabe where the phases of the day are displayed, and the clock hand moves realistically according to where the sun is located.

Zbojnícka bašta representing the architecture of the so-called modern Art Nouveau - based on the use of traditional methods and materials is another interesting place in Stará Bystrica. It is located on the site where the old fire station building was standing in the past. In its upper part, there is a restaurant and a lookout tower.

The renovated park of St. Florian is the next among the spaces ideal for relaxing. There are some small architectural elements and a restored well, fountain, gazebo and a nice roofing over the bench across the stream. Five stone blocks and 17 brass seals embedded in the tiles can be found here to recall the sad events from the history of this village. Finally, there is a bronze statue of St. Florian in the park.

Hiking and biking

When visiting the village, it is worth taking an easy hike to the lookout tower on the hill Bobovec. It stands on the border of the cadastres of Stará Bystrica and Radôstka. Just like other lookout towers in the Kysuce region, this one is built of wood and stone as well. It was designed by the architect Stanislav Mikovčák, the well-known local author whose works with the theme of an angel can be found in the tower. The hike on the yellow path from the Square of St. Michal to the lookout tower takes about an hour.

Cycling on the Bystrica cycling route is one of the excellent ways to get to know the beauties of the nature in the Kysuce Region. The route starts in Krásno nad Kysucou and leads to Nová Bystrica. It is situated along the former forest railway connecting Nová Bystrica to Oščadnica. Information boards, benches and bicycle stands are located all along the route.


Stará Bystrica and its surroundings

There are many interesting places worth visiting in Stará Bystrica. You can see the traditional log houses and farm buildings in the open-air museum in Vychylovka. The open-air museum was created with the intention of rescuing the buildings of folk architecture from the settlements of Riečnica and Harvelka which were artificially flooded for the purpose of the construction of the Nová Bystrica water reservoir. The aim of the open-air museum consists in presenting and popularising folk architecture and life in Kysuce in the past. Except for seeing the permanent exposition of log houses, it is possible have a short train journey on the forest railway.

Another popular place to be enjoyed is the village of Oščadnica and its winter resort Snow Paradise Veľká Rača - the centre for winter and summer sports of international importance. During the summer season, the visitors can enjoy bike rides, scooters, trampolines, a rope park, or a bobsled track. In addition, Veľká Rača – the highest peak of the Kysuce Beskydy mountain range, can be reached from the municipality of Oščadnica. When reaching the top of the mountain, you can enjoy the view of the look-out tower all over the distant mountain ranges and peaks such as the Low Fatra with Kriváň, Babia hora, Ľadonhora or Lysá Hora in Moravia.

In addition, the visitors of Stará Bystrica can benefit from the proximity of the Low Fatra mountain range and its beautiful nature with many hiking paths leading to the most unusual places.

Places of interest and their distance from Stará Bystrica

  • Open-air museum of the Kysuce village in Vychylovka - about 10 km
  • Oščadnica, Snow Paradise Veľká Rača - about 15 km
  • Gographical Museum in Krásno nad Kysucou - about 13 km
  • Water reservoir Nová Bystrica - about 6 km
  • Roman Catholic Church of the Immaculate Virgin Mary in Zborov nad Bystricou - about 8 km
  • Church of St. Andrej Zorard and Benedict in Radôstka - about 3 km

Visit us in winter

During the winter months, the Snow Paradise Veľká Rača resort provides all skiers from the beginners to the advanced with a few slopes of various difficulty levels. In the proximity of Stará Bystrica, there are other winter resorts in Vrátna and Oravská Lesná - both of these and the Snow Paradise are only about 15 km distant from Stará Bystrica. Cross-country skiers can use several cross-country tracks, one of which is located right on the cycling route used in summer.