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One of Lviv Citadel Towers

Overlooking Lviv from a high hill in the very center of the city, Lviv Citadel is often off the list of tourist destinations by most of Lviv’s tour guides. Lviv Citadel is the Austrian Fortification complex from the 1850s consisting of the four defensive towers and a large building of the former barracks. By constructing a fort on top of a hill above the capital city of Lemberg, the Austrian government strengthened its presence in Galicia. Understandably, the construction of the Lviv Citadel followed a series of European revolutions of 1848.

Three of the four towers of the Lviv Citadel are preserved in its almost original form. Their weathered red brick walls are pockmarked by bullets and shells of the past wars. Around the perimeter of the hill there are several more recent German-built concrete bunkers from WW2.

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German WW2 Bunker at Lviv Citadel

Several dilapidated structures that once were part of a Soviet military base can also be seen here. During WW2 Lviv Citadel was transformed into a German POW camp Stalag-328 where many prisoners died. The slopes of the Lviv Citadel hill are overgrown by old maple and ash trees. Their branches provide a resting place for thousands of birds that fly here from their winter feeding places outside Lviv for the night.

Lviv Citadel – Forgotten Fortress in the Heart of Lviv