The town lies in the Revúcka vrchovina highlands at the border of the Slovak Ore Mountains and Slovak Karst, in the valley of the Muráň river. It is a city with rich mining and hardware tradition and craft producing.
It belongs to region of Banská Bystrica, 12 kilometres southeast from Revúca, 100 kilometres from Banská Bystrica. Jelšava has population over 3000 inhabitants.
First written mentions about Jelšava are from year 1243. Jelšava was important town, hosting German and Hungarian colonists. After break-up of Austria-Hungary in 1918, the town passed to Czechoslovakia, which controlled the town until 1993, with exception of years 1938–1945, when it was occupied by Hungary. In 1993, the town became a part of Slovakia.
City Library in Jelšava is city cultural institution. It operates important tasks in culture, education, social-cultural and economic tasks in the city.
Hrad na Hradovisku
This castle was standing on the Hradovisko hill, over the city. Castle was pulled down in 1271. Later, monks built wooden church on its original place. Parts of the foundations are sustentative till now.
Starý hrad the second castle in Jelšava is known as Starý hrad. Starý hrad was built in hills, two kilometres from town, probably at the end of 14th century. Castle was for the first time mentioned in 1421. During 15th century, surrounding of Jelšava was destroyed by war. Probably that is why castle was in 1453 in ruins. Castle was repaired around 1461. According to listing from 1573 is castle in ruins again. Remains of Starý hrad are situated in forest now.
Magnesite factory in Jelšava is the biggest mining and processing magnesite factory in Slovakia. It has over one hundred years old history. Slovenské magnezitové závody s. r. o. belongs to the best producers of powdery alkaline heatproof materials in the world. Deposit is one of the biggest deposits of magnesite in the world. With its specific mineralogy acts as unique source of ironic magnesia, used for producing of one of the best building materials for cement factories in the world. This is why it is spread over four continents.