Talsi Pilskalns (Talsi Hillfort) is the beginning of everything and the soul of the town. It rises 32 meters above the level of Lake Talsi. A legend tells that a father had three sons – Talsis, Telsis and Tāsis. All three went to seek their fortune. Talsis found his here, built a castle, cultivated fields and fell in love with a woman.
In written chronicles Talsi (Talseen) as a place name was first mentioned in 1231 when the Pope Balduin of Alna made a treaty with the elders of the Couronian tribes. 1936 – 1938 archeological research under the guidance of A. Karnups revealed that the Livonians, a Fenno-Ugrian tribe lived here until the 10th century. They named this place “Talusse” that means “a secluded place”. From the 10th – 14th century one of the biggest Couronian castles stood here and it had a castle-front and 4 hectares large ancient town. The 50 building remains and around 4000 artifacts that were found indicate that highly skilled craftsmen lived in the castle.
Song festivals, ethnographic dancing and singing events, brass band performances, St John’s Day bonfires and fireworks have taken and still take place in Pilskalns. During the town festival fabulous candle flowers blossom at the foot of the hill and in the Talsi lake (historically also called Martinelli and Ronne lake).