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Galtene Kaļķlejas Holy Spring (Galtenes Kaļķleju svētavots)

Location
State:
Latvia
Region:
Kurzeme
County:
Talsi
Parish:
Balgale
Other references to the location
About 0.7 km W of the nearby Oksle–Galtene road, in the forest of the Oksle River's left bank.
Coordinates
lat=57.1535, lon=22.8347333333
57° 9' 12" N, 22° 50' 5" E
Description

The Galtene Kaļķlejas Holy Spring is a very popular and

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much visited spring also in nowadays and as an ancient cult site it is one of the most popular in Kurzeme. It is a large and expressive climbing spring, which as a mighty brooklet flows into the little Oksle River. To determine precisely for how long the spring has been used without more thorough research, it is currently impossible. It should be marked still that the oldest coin found by archaeologists in direct proximity to the holy spring was dating back to 1854, but it is presumed that the spring had been used as an ancient cult site already much earlier. They used to bring offerings to the spring, leave coins there and hang pieces of colourful rags in tree brunches. From ancient times the spring water was used for healing purposes. The coins left by it have been passed over to museums.

Narrative

There are several tales about the holy spring, out of which one was narrated by the former inhabitant of the Kaļķlejas homestead Berta Bodniece, "They say about this spring that its water is very healthy, it never turns old, even if you keep it in a bottle the whole year. If your eyes are ill or there is some other illness, when you wash them with the water several times, they will recover. But only each time you draw water from the spring, you have to leave some token, thus in ancient times the fir-tree that is growing by the spring was covered with different belongings. Also nowadays some people go to the spring on Green Thursday to draw water, which they store the whole year. People tell legends about the spring. Once some man's horse went lame. He brought his horse every day there and washed the ill leg; after a while the horse recovered. In ancient times even a priest used to be at the spring and prayed the God. The water in the spring is constantly purling and regularly sending yellowish sand up; the water is very chilly and clean. But the spring, they say, does not purl all the time, only if one can approach it when the spring does not see the human, but as soon as it notices you, it starts purling.” According to tales, not far from the spring there used to be a church hill destroyed during melioration works.

Attraction
Excellent
Availability
Quite easily accessible. There is an indication sign. Reachable by a path, distance from the road is about 150 m.
Infrastructure, management, facilities
From the road side there is the brown tourism indication sign "Kaļķleju svētavots 0,7” ("Kaļķlejas Holy Spring 0.7"). When driving to the forest by the meadow road from the sign, there is a small parking lot in the grass. The direct surroundings of t
Local info
There is no information stand on site
Capacity
10 - 40
Publicity
Known
Legal Status
Private
Comments
Nearby the spring there used to be also a church hill.

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