The pilgrimage site of Gaboltov has been known for centuries mainly for its respect for Our Lady of Mount Carmel and the St. Vitus tradition.
The village of Gaboltov lies in the north-eastern part of Slovakia, 15 km northwest of Bardejov in the valley of the Kamenec stream below the hill called Busov. About 3 km from the village runs the Slovak – Polish state border.
The origin of the current parish church of St. Adalbert dates back to 1370. The first written record of the Gabolt parish priest Nicolas dates from 1439. The oldest written record of the church is a description of the Makovice estate from 1492. Gaboltov with a stone church, a wooden tower and a cemetery is also mentioned in the list of villages belonging to the estate. The church was built in the Gothic style, later a stone tower was added to it. After the Reformation, at the beginning of the 17th century, evangelical pastors worked in Gaboltov for some time. In the middle of the 17th century, the church was taken over by Catholics (records also mention the Franciscans). After the founding of the Scapular Confraternity of Carmel in 1706, Gaboltov and the church became a place of pilgrimage.
Gaboltov is associated with St. Adalbert, a Czech bishop and martyr who, according to the tradition, stopped here with his entourage and blessed the source from which he drank. This spring is located near the church. The cult of the patron saint are strongly rooted in Gaboltov, as evidenced by the chapel of St. Adalbert above the church, the coat of arms of the village and the seal of the Gaboltov parish.
The municipality of Gaboltov is a part of the Slovak Marian Way (Slovenská mariánska cesta) – a pilgrimage bike route connecting important Marian pilgrimage sites in Slovakia. The route starts in Gaboltov near Bardejov and leads along a couple of routes to the Šaštín Basilica of Our Lady of Sorrows. You can choose from two routes: northern and southern, with the starting point in the village of Gaboltov and its church of St. Adalbert in both cases. The southern route leads along the churches in Bardejov, Giraltovce and Prešov. The entire route of the pilgrimage is designed as a wreath interlinking the places associated with Marian veneration. The journey is also rich in natural beauties and helps improve the pilgrim’s physical and mental fitness.