Best things to do in Czech Republic
Find out more about those top places in Czech Republic
Nestled in two meanders in the Vltava River, Český Krumlov distills the medieval charms of the Czech Republic into miniature form. Founded in the 13th century, the town is dominated by one of Central Europe’s most spectacular castles, which contains a treasure trove of medieval art, architecture and artifacts. Beyond the castle itself, wandering the picturesque streets of Český Krumlov is like stepping back in time. Lined with Renaissance town houses and baroque churches and interspersed by atmospheric squares, the town’s cobbled lanes are an enchanting experience. However, Český Krumlov is not all about the Middle Ages. In the 19th century it was home to the world-renowned artist Egon Schiele and since the 1989 Velvet Revolution the town has gained a host of riverside restaurants and lively bars.
In terms of size, the Krumlov Castle is next in line right after the Prague Castle with both located in Bohemia. A tour of the Krumlov Castle gives you a suitable eye-opening experience into exactly what royal castles look like. This site is visited by tourists from all over the world every year.
According to historical facts, the Marionette Museum once served as the site of the former St. Jošt Church, Latrán No. 6 but is now home to a large display of both ancient and contemporary marionettes. The Marionette Museum also houses full puppet theaters complete with curtains and decoration. Any exhibit termed extraordinary would have to be a complete Baroque theater with props, decoration and functional Baroque machinery.
The Egon Schiele Art Centrum is named after Austrian painter Egon Schiele. It can be found in Cesky Krumlov and a tour of this place exposes you to the exclusive pieces that the museum and the gallery houses.
The Roman Catholic Church of St. Vitus which is located in Cesky Krumlov is one of the architectural landmarks in the town and in terms of ranking, comes just after the castle. Before the Church of St. Vitus was built on the site where it stands today, there used to be an older building there. A tour of the church guarantees that you learn various facts such as the fact that it was built by the parson of Krumlov in the person of Hostislav of Bilsko around 1400.
One of Karlovy Vary’s original fans was Russia’s first tsar Peter the Great and today this typically Habsburg spa town continues to be a favorite destination for Russia’s rich and famous. Throughout the 19th century, Karlovy Vary rapidly expanded from a small village into a gem of a town dominated by palatial art-noveau hotels that catered to Europe’s aristocracy. Visitor numbers peaked shortly before the outbreak of World War One and the town seems to have been frozen in time ever since making it one of Europe’s most enchanting hidden gems. Beyond Karlovy Vary’s spectacular architecture, most visitors refresh themselves in the town’s healing thermal springs, eat the local delicacy oplatky (sweet nut wafers) and hike in the surrounding hills.
The Mill Colonnade is one of the traditional symbols of the town of Karlovy Vary. It is a large colonnade that comprises up to 12 different mineral hot springs all with different temperatures ranging from 40 °C to 72 °C and one amazing fact is that you can taste them on your tour.
Museum of Glass MOSER is well-known for various unique glassblowing demonstrations and also has various historic pieces displayed.
Apart from the Jan Becher Museum is a center of attraction, it is also located in a historic building which makes a tour of this place all the more enthralling. This historic building where the museum is located has the pleasant scent of the local unique liqueur known as 'Becherovka' which is one of the products for which Karlovy Vary is known.
Mariánské Lázne plays host to romantic colonnades, beautiful spa parks, charming pavilions, cozy hotels, and pleasant cafes. This is a perfect place to end your tour for the day. Mariánské Lázne is also one of the eleven European spa towns which are looking to be included in the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Forget what you must have heard about most central European cities being too boring and lethargic – Prague is a city that embodies none of that and is it one of the most popular tourist destinations in its region. Officially the capital of Czech Republic, Prague is situated in the northeastern part of the country of bisected by the river Vltava and is considered to be the largest city of its nation.
As far as tourist attractions goes it is recommended that you start your exploration of the city at the Old Town Square which will expose you to its other gifts such as Astronomical Clock, Sigmund Freud Statue and several others.
Visited by locals and visitors alike, the Charles Bridge is loved by everyone. Formerly called the Stone bridge or Prague bridge its spans over the Vltava river – finally completed in 1402 after taking over 50 years to construct, it was built to replace an older bridge. Made mostly with Bohemian sandstone, the 621 meters is not just a plain bridge but a well decorated one, with over 30 statues and statuaries made by notable sculptures such as Jan Brokoff and Mathias Braun found along it.
Visiting the Astronomical Clock is everyone favorite activity in Prague – installed in 1410 and mounted on the southern wall of the Old Town Hall in the Old Times Square. Made by clock makers Mikulas of Kadan and Jan Sindel, it is the third oldest astronomical watch in the world, and the oldest still working. Intricately constructed the clock itself is more of a work of art than a time piece and it includes several symbols and art work.
You won’t find any other structure as majestic as this in the Czech Republic and many might argue that you won’t find any in the whole of Europe either. Founded around 880 by Prince Bohvoj of the Premyslid Dynasty, it was once the seat of Power for Kings of the ancient Prague monarchs but presently it serves as the official office of the President of the Czech Republic. The castle also features in the Guinness book of records as the largest ancient castle in the world – for visitors it is advisable to come with a proper means of identification in order to be allowed entrance.
The Sigmund Freud is an out of the box type of statue and may seem like a man attempting suicide if not closely looked out. Locally known as the “Zavesceny Muz” which when translated means man hanging out, it was created in 1996 by Czech sculptor David Cerny – although the sculpture is still very controversial it is very celebrated and has been able to tour around the world.
Just like the river Thames of London, the Vltava river plays a crucial role in the lives of Czech citizens. Regarded as the country’s longest river covering over 430 km which extends from southeast along the Bohemian forest and passes through several parts of Czech Republic before finally merging at the Elbe at Minsk. The best way to enjoy the river in to go on one of its cruise tours which goes round the city, offering visitors to see monuments and historical buildings from a different perspective.
Rising out of the Bohemian countryside like a scene straight out of a fairy tale, Karlštejn is one of the Czech Republic’s most awe-inspiring destinations. While the town itself has a clutch of rustic taverns that serve hearty Czech cuisine, Karlštejn’s main draw is the imposing castle that sits astride a rocky precipice. Constructed by Charles IV, the Holy Roman Emperor and King of Bohemia, during the mid-14th century, the fortress was designed to protect Bohemia’s most precious relics, including the imperial regalia alongside innumerable religious treasures. Karlštejn’s impressive exterior does not disappoint, as once inside visitors can explore some best-conserved medieval interiors in Europe while the chapel is covered in remarkable frescoes detailing the life of Saint Wenceslas.
Karlštejn Castle once served as a fortress for storing Imperial Regalia and the Bohemian/Czech crown jewels as well as other valuable pieces such as some royal treasures and holy relics. The castle was established in 1348 CE by Charles IV, the Holy Roman Emperor-elect and King of Bohemia at the time. It is designed in the Gothic style and a tour of this castle is one activity that you shouldn't miss out on.
The bike tour from Prague to Karlsrejn Castle is an 8-hour ride that you should totally engage in. While cycling along the banks of the Vltava and Berounka rivers, drink in the view of the Czech countryside and the famous Gothic fortress that King Karel IV built.
Kutná Hora is like Prague in miniature. Indeed, between the 13th and 16th centuries, the town grew rich through vast underground silver mines and competed with Prague to be Bohemia’s political, cultural and economic center. Today, Kutná Hora combines awe-inspiring gothic architecture and a rich history with a laid back provincial attitude that makes a refreshing change from the buzz of the Czech capital. Given the town’s medieval riches, it is no surprise that its old town was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996. However, Kutná Hora’s main draw is the ghoulish Sedlec Ossuary, which was designed by an eccentric 19th century craftsman named František Rint, Containing chandeliers, altars, coats of arms and hundreds of other gaudy decorations made up of over 40000 human bones, the ossuary ensures that any tour of Kutná Hora will be truly unforgettable.
The Sedlec Ossuary is located in a place that is quite unusual - beneath the Cemetery Church of All Saints which is a part of the former Sedlec Abbey. This small Roman Catholic Chapel has been estimated to hold the skeletal remains of between 40,000 to 70,000 people and some of these bones have been arranged artistically to serve as decorations. The unique arrangement of these bones is worth checking out on your tour.
Saint Barbara's Church or the Cathedral of St. Barbara as it is sometimes called is Roman Catholic church located in Kutná Hora. It is referred to as a cathedral thanks to the cathedral-like style in which it was designed. Apart from being a local tourist attraction, St. Barbara's church is a UNESCO world heritage site and remains one of the most popular Gothic churches in Central Europe.
The Cathedral of the Assumption of Our Lady and Saint John the Baptist was constructed between 1290 and 1320 and bears various designs including northern French Gothic cathedral architecture with elements of German architecture as well. It is a convent church of the previously most aged Cistercian monastery in Bohemia which was founded in 1142. The Cathedral of the Assumption of Our Lady and Saint John the Baptist can be found in Sedlec near Kutná Hora.
In 1945, the Kacina has designated a national property although it was not constructed by the Government. A tour of the Kacina which can be found in Svatý Mikuláš in the central region of the Czech Republic exposes it as a unique Empire style palace.
In 1530 the humdrum town of Telč burned to ground in a devastating fire and from its ashes was built one of Europe’s hidden Renaissance gems. A slew of 16th century construction transformed what was once a small and insignificant town into a glorious baroque set piece of pastel colored burgers’ houses bedecked in dazzling frescoes, a romantic chateau and one of Europe’s most captivating public squares. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1992, Telč is rightly recognized as the finest example of Renaissance town planning north of Italy. The town is undoubtedly southern Moravia’s premier attraction and makes an ideal day trip from Brno, the nearby second-city of the Czech Republic.
Telc dates back to 1099 and was established after the Czech Duke Bretislav was defeated by the Moravian Duke Otto II in the year 1099. Tell also has a historic center which has been included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. A tour of this site is in order due to the amount of history it holds.
Located right next to the castle, this site usually has a gathering of hungry locals and tourists and is a way to learn more about the castle and town in general. It's pub-like setting also serves to relax you while engaging in idle conversation or just listening in on the conversation flying around.
Unlike the picture that comes to mind upon hearing this name, climbing up the stairs on your tour reveals the mysteries of a tower that has served as a guardian angel to this town for almost 800 years. Similarly, this tower offers a great view of the Pearl of Central European Renaissance which you would find right in front.