Main Fortress

Historic Site in Terezín

From the ground, the sheer scale of the maze of walls and moats that surrounds the town of Terezín is impossible to fathom. Take a peek at the aerial photograph in the town's Ghetto Museum, or wander past the walls en route to the Lesser Fortress, however, and a very different picture emerges – that of a massive 18th-century artillery fortification.

At the heart of the Main Fortress is the neat grid of streets that makes up the town of Terezín, with a central square that looks no different from a hundred other old town centres. There’s little to look at except the chunky, 19th-century Church of the Resurrection, the arcaded former Commandant’s office, the neoclassical administrative buildings on the square, and the surrounding grid of houses with their awful secrets. South of the square are the anonymous remains of a railway siding, built by prisoners, via which loads of further prisoners arrived – and departed.