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The Attractions of Cesky Krumlov
Cesky Krumlov Castle
What is the Attraction of Cesky Krumlov
Have you ever looked at one of those scenes on a Christmas chocolate box, where there is a little village with a frozen river snaking through the middle, a dusting of snow sits on the tiled roofs of quaint old single and double story cottages whilst an imposing castle looks down from its rocky outcrop casting a protective shadow over the villagers below whilst daring anyone to disturb this idyllic scene, and wondered if such a place exists?
It does and its name is Ceský Krumlov, a little village snuggled in the Southern Bohemian state of the Czech Republic. A community stuck in a time and place long forgotten, where during Winter you can wander through the narrow alleys and lose yourself in another world far removed from our modern lifestyles.
Here are some of my favourite attractions in Cesky Krumlov.
Food and Drink is Essential
Eating and Drinking in Cesky Krumlov
One of the joys after a days walking in the cold and snow is the pleasure of eating a hot meal with a drink of your choice. Nothing quite gets my taste buds (and drinking buds?) more excited than the thought of some hearty Bohemian feast and some excellent Czech beer and wine. It is the perfect end to perfect day.
Thanks to the number of Germans who come across the border into Ceský Krumlov, there is an array of bars and restaurants catering for every taste and budget. Here is a list of a few of our favourites.
u Dwau Maryi (The 2 Marys in English) A tradition vegetarian take on the Bohemian feats. They also serve mead.
Laibon - Great for vegetarians
Na Louzi - Home to more traditional food and our all time favourites of sweet potato dumplings and fried cheese. Calorific goodness.
Nonna Gina's - Very authentic Italian food in a Czech environment. Even we need a rest from fried cheese occasionally.
Travellers Bar - A smoky, homely place to carouse.
Gorilla - A great place to have a drink and play some pool with locals and travellers alike.
Lonely Planet - The Best Guidebook
I have tried them all and at one stage or another ending up throwing them great distances, however when push comes to shove and you can only choose one guide book, it always ends up being the LP. They just seem to have a knack of telling you just enough in a conversational way, which does make you feel like an 'insider' when travelling to a new town.
Vltava River - Cesky Krumlov
What's to See in Cesky Krumlov
Apart from just wandering around the town and marveling at the sheer beauty of your surroundings, here is a list of other things to see in Cesky Krumlov.
- The Eggenberg Brewery - Tours are available at 11.00am from the front gate, or if you are a late riser and after 12.00pm beer drinker, there is a restaurant come bar attached to the complex.
- Cesky Krumlov Castle - Always in sight as you wander around the village and its surrounds, this magnificent building dates back to the 16th century and is built in the same place as the original 1240 structure. The castle contains a Baroque theatre dating back to 1680 and is surrounded by large landscaped gardens. The complex also contains a castle museum showcasing the buildings history.
- Egon Schiele Art Centrum - Houses an exhibition documenting the life and work of Egon Schiele, a protégé of Gustav Klimt, who was a major figurative painter of the early 20th century.
- St Vitus Church - Consecrated in 1429 this Medieval masterpiece sits gloriously on the banks of the river Vltava and contains tombstones dating back to he 1500's.
As Night Falls
A Few Czech Phrases to Help you on your Way!
Pivo. - Beer
Dva Pivo. - Two Beers
Prosim. (Proseem) - Please
Dekuji. (Dyekooyih.) - Thank you.
Dobrý den. (DOH-bree dehn) - Hello
Ano. (AH-noh.) - Yes
Ne. (neh.) - No
Kde je záchod? (Gdeh yeh ZAHH-khoht?) - Where is the toilet?
And of course the most useful of all
Neumím mluvit Cesky (Neh-oomeem mloovit cheskee.) - I can't speak Czech
Except if you drink too much Pivo then this may be useful.
Je mi spatne. (yeh mee SHPAH-tnehh) - I'm sick .
Wherever You look
Getting from Prague to Cesky Krumlov
Whilst you're in the Czech Republic it would almost be a crime to not travel to Prague. Internationally renowned as one of the worlds most beautiful capital cities it really comes to its fore when covered in a light dusting of snow.
Travelling between Prague and Ceský Krumlov and vice versa is quite easy, you can either catch a bus or train.
A bus ride from Prague to Ceský Krumlov takes about 3 hours. It is a direct trip. Please note that if the bus is crowded (especially on Fridays and Sundays) and you don't have a seat reservation, you may not be able to get a seat and may have to stand for at least a part of the trip (Though the last time I took this journey the modern coach was half empty and very comfortable). From the bus station, it is about a 10-minute walk to the centre of town.
A train ride is nice and more comfortable than the bus but there are no direct trains going all the way from Prague to Ceský Krumlov. You have to change trains in Ceské Budejovice, which is easy enough. It takes 2.5 - 3.5 hours to get from Prague to Ceské Budejovice and then an additional 45 min. to get to Ceský Krumlov on a local commuter train, which will give you the genuine Czech countryside experience! The Ceský Krumlov train station is rather far from the city centre (about a 30-minute walk), so you will either want to call a taxi or be like us and enjoy the walk.