Štanjel is one of the oldest settlements in the Karst Region, known for its old village centre. It was named after the patron saint of the church, Saint Daniel. Due to its strategic location, the hill was already populated in prehistoric times and was fortified in antiquity. The first written mention of the area dates back to 1402. The characteristic defensive wall from the 15th century protected the inhabitants during the Turkish invasions. The settlement reached the peak of its development in the 16th and 17th centuries, as most of the architectural features of the buildings originate from this period. Between the two world wars, the architect and then mayor of Štanjel Max Fabiani left his mark here. During World War II, the settlement was partly destroyed by fire and the castle was heavily damaged. The revitalization of the village centre started in the 1960s and has continued to this day. After World War II, a new part of the settlement developed on a plane below the old village centre.
In the village works association ŠKUD Biser Krasa Štanjel, which organizes Grajsko poletje.
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