Mikulov

Saint Sebastian’s Chapel

This chapel on Holy Hill (originally Tanzberg Hill) is one of the landmarksof Mikulov that cannot be overlooked. Its foundation stone was consecrated on 2 July 1623, a year after a plague epidemic struck Mikulov and the surrounding area.

Sample imageBishop of Olomouc Cardinal Franz von Dietrichstein decided to express his gratitude to God for overcoming the plague by building Saint Sebastian’s Chapel. Construction of the chapel continued until 1630, with the layout of its Renaissance architecture based on Saint Peter’s in Rome. A Way of the Cross comprised of seven chapels was also established on the top of Holy Hill at that time.

Saint Sebastian’s Chapel is now characterised by a central structure on the ground plan of a Greek cross. The building did not, however, gain its present appearance until 1714, with the addition of the Baroque sacristy to the eastern front of the chapel.

The chapel was deconsecrated in 1786 as a result of the Josephine Reforms, and its fittings and furnishings sold off at auction. Around 1802, the building was used as a military store and powder-house; pasturage for sheep was later established on the top of the hill, and the sheep found shelter in the chapel during bad weather. The chapel continued to fall into disrepair, and the last bits of the disintegrating roof were blown away in a gale in 1846.

Efforts to restore the former glory of the structures on Holy Hill only began to grow when Augustin Bartenstein became provost in 1861. Restoration work began the following year, and was completed with the ceremonial reconsecration of Saint Sebastian’s Chapel on 8 September 1865 in the presence of more than fifteen thousand believers. The new tradition of the Way of the Cross on Holy Hill, associated with the tradition of pilgrimages to Mikulov’s Black Madonna of Loreto, began the same year.

Essential repairs, such as repairs to compensate for the damage caused by numerous natural disasters (and by gales in particular), were performed every year. The last comprehensive renovation of the exterior and interior of Saint Sebastian’s Chapel was performed in the years 2014-2015.

Opening hours

July – mid-September
Saturday 10.00 a.m. – 4.00 p.m.
Sunday 10.00 a.m. – 2.00 p.m.

  • the first Sunday after 20 January – Winter pilgrimage to the patron of Saint Sebastian’s Chapel
  • the Friday before Easter Sunday – Ascent of Holy Hill with worship on the Way of the Cross
  • the Saturday before Pentecost – the fiftieth day after Easter Sunday – Evening service on Holy Hill
  • the first Sunday in September – Marian Pilgrimage
  • the second weekend in September – Ascent of Holy Hill – Pálava Wine Harvest