The 17 best places to visit in Czech Republic

 

Built in 2015 in the north east of the country, close to the border with Poland is the unique viewing platform known as the Dolní Morava Sky Walk. Situated at a height of 1,116 metres (3,661 ft) above sea level, the 55 metre (180 ft) wooden viewing platform gives visitors fantastic views of the Králický Sněžník mountain and the picturesque valley of the Morava River.

17. Dolní Morava Sky Walk

 

In the north of the country, directly north of the capital, Prague, hidden among the forest paths above the village of Zelizy are two enormous rock faces carved from stone. Standing around 9 metres (30 ft) high, the faces known as Čertovy Hlavy, meaning 'The Devil's Heads', were created in the mid 1900's by Václav Levý, one of the countries pioneering sculptors. Damaged by time and weather, they remain visible today in what has been deemed the creepiest place in the Czech Republic.

16. Čertovy Hlavy

 

Erected in 2012, directly south from the capital, Prague, located in Lipno in the extreme south of the country close to the border with Austria is the Lipno Treetop Walkway, described as the first walkway of its kind in Czech Republic. Accessed by a 675 metre long walkway through the treetops and standing 40 metres (131 ft) high, it offers visitors amazing views of Lipno lake, the Novohradské Hory mountains and the distant peaks of the Austrian Alps.

15. Stezka Korunami Stromů

 

In the southern centre of the country, directly west from the city of Brno is the small town of Jindřichův Hradec, a place of cute cobbled streets, many old churches and chapels, a pretty Peace Square and the third largest castle in Czech Republic. Built in the early 13th century in a Gothic style, it was gradually rebuilt into a Renaissance château in the 16th century, containing 320 rooms and more than 10,000 works of art. The district museum is one of the oldest regional museums in Bohemia, with the most well known item on display being the Kryza, the largest mechanical Christmas manger scene in the world according to the Guinness Book of World Records.

14. Jindřichův Hradec

 

In the south east of the country in the South Moravian Region is the city of Brno, the second largest city of the Czech Republic.​ Notable attractions include the 13th century castles of Špilberk and Veveří, along with the 14th century Cathedral Of St. Peter And Paul. Dominating the skyline from Petrov Hill, the enormous cathedral with its 85 metre (275 ft) towers is a national cultural monument. From the towers high vantage point it offers visitors the finest view over the entire centre of the city.

​The bells of the cathedral are rung every day at 11am, rather than the usual 12 noon. Legend has it that during the Thirty Years War the invading Swedish army had promised to call off their attack if they had not succeeded in taking the city by midday on the 15th August. On that day with the battle underway the bells were rung an hour early, fooling the Swedes into abandoning the attack. This tradition has remained ever since.​

13. Brno

 

In the east of the country, east from the city of Brno is the city of Olomouc, an ecclesiastical metropolis that was once the historical capital city of Moravia, before having been sacked by the Swedish army during the Thirty Years War. Home to numerous historic religious buildings, the most prominent church is Saint Wenceslas Cathedral founded before 1107 AD in the compound of the Olomouc Castle. Other highlights include the panoramic view from the tower of the Church of Saint Maurice and the 15th century Olomouc Astronomical Clock, reconstructed a number of times over its life it remains one of the few heliocentric clocks in the world. Within one of the cities main squares lies the Holy Trinity Column, built between 1716 and 1754 to celebrate the Catholic Church and faith, partly caused by feelings of gratitude for ending a plague, it is the biggest Baroque sculptural group in the Czech Republic, and has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

12. Olomouc

 

Founded around 1285 AD to the north west of the countries second largest city, Brno, is the beautiful and unusually shaped Pernštejn Castle, the most well preserved castle in the Czech Republic. Having been completed in the early 16th century, the building still holds its wonderful Gothic and Renaissance style of the period. Known as the marble castle due to its marble like stone used to frame the windows and doors, Pernštejn Castle is one of the most unique fortifications on the continent.

11. Hrad Pernštejn

 

In the southern centre of the country, south east from the city of Brno and straddling the border with Austria is the 63 square kilometre (24 square mile) Podyjí National Park, protecting near natural forests along the deep Dyje River valley. Defined by forests, grassland, shrubland, rocky areas and inland wetlands it is one of Czech Republics most beautiful natural areas.

One of the most striking man made structures in the park is the Vranov nad Dyjí château. Dating from 1100 AD, this Baroque, Gothic and Renaissance castle sits imposingly on a cliff edge, making for a striking sight among wonderful natural surroundings.

10. Národní Park Podyjí

 

In the far northern centre of the country, surrounded by the Jizera Mountains is the city of Liberec, the fifth largest city of the Czech Republic. At its centre lies the picturesque town square dominated by its 65 metre (213 ft) town hall. Completed in 1893 AD in a Neo-Renaissance style, the building with its richly decorated facade, intricate artworks and extremely rare stained glass windows is regarded one of the most beautiful pieces of architecture in the country. Designed by a Viennese architect, the building bears more than just a striking resemblance to Vienna's own City Hall.

9. Liberec

 

In the southern centre of the country close to the Austrian border is the town of Telč, known for its Italian Renaissance architecture. With rows of well preserved pastille coloured 16th century Baroque and Renaissance houses within its enormous main square, the entire historic centre of Telč along with the former Gothic castle has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

8. Telč

 

In the extreme north west of the country, close to the border with Germany is the ancient spa town of Karlovy Vary, sometimes known as Carlsbad. Named after Charles IV, Holy Roman Emperor and King Of Bohemia who founded the area in 1370 AD, the town is historically famous for its vast number of hot springs. Set among hills and extensive forests, the beautiful spa town of Karlovy Vary with its grand pastille coloured colonnaded buildings is one of the countries most beautiful urban areas.

7. Karlovy Vary

 

In the far south of the country close to the border with Austria is the ancient town of Český Krumlov, famous for having one of the best preserved medieval city centres in all of Europe. The towns most notable landmark is the enormous Český Krumlov Castle, the second largest fortification in the country dating back to the mid 13th century. Having been updated and added to throughout the centuries the castles present form is one of a Renaissance, Baroque and Gothic style. From its tall tower visitors can witness a picturesque panoramic view over the red rooftops and the colourful houses within the horseshoe shaped river bend. The entire historic centre of Český Krumlov has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

6. Český Krumlov

 

South west from the capital, Prague, lies the market town of Karlštejn, located in a rocky valley surrounded by forests it is most well known for its castle. Founded in 1348 AD the majestic Karlštejn Castle is probably the most picturesque castle in the country. In the late 15th century after the main tower was damaged by fire the building underwent serious restoration works adding a Gothic style. Later in the 16th century Renaissance additions were added, giving the castle its current appearance. Once occupied by The Holy Roman Emperor Ferdinand II, housing the Imperial Regalia, the crown jewels of Bohemia and the coronation jewels of Czechoslovakia, this medieval fortification is steeped in history. One of the most famous and frequently visited castles in the country, it is without doubt one of the most striking castle structures in Europe.

5. Karlštejn

 

In the almost exact centre of the country, south west from the capital, Prague, is the city of Kutná Hora. Its most notable landmarks include the huge St. Barbara's Church. Built in 1388 AD this enormous cathedral with its flying buttresses and medieval frescoes is one of the most famous and exceptionally designed churches in central Europe. Another place of interest is the Sedlec Ossuary, a small Roman Catholic chapel located beneath the Cemetery Church Of All Saints. Estimated to contain the skeletons of between 40,000 and 70,000 people, the bones have been artistically arranged to decorate the interior of the chapel, with the site today being one of the most visited locations in the country. The centre of Kutná Hora and nearby Sedlec have been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

4. Kutná Hora

 

In the northern centre of the country, north east of the capital, Prague, is the 181 square kilometre (70 square mile) protected area of Bohemian Paradise, the countries first declared nature reserve. Made up of large forests and great open plains, the reserve is most well known for its significant number of ancient castles, and the unusual monolithic sandstone rock formations. Places of interest include Valečov Castle, the Rock Town of Hrubá Skála and the symbol of the Bohemian Paradise, Trosky Castle.

3. Český Ráj

 

In the far north of the country​, straddling the border with Germany is the 79 square kilometre (31 square mile) Bohemian Switzerland National Park, also known as the Czech Switzerland. Lying on the Czech side of the Elbe Sandstone Mountains, the landscape is one of rocky peaks, forested valleys and unusual rock formations, the most famous of which is the symbol of the park, the Pravčická Brána, the largest natural sandstone arch in Europe.

 

Pictured is the Pravčická Brána.

2. Národní Park České Švýcarsko

 

Nicknamed, The City Of A Hundred Spires, the historical capital of Bohemia remains to this day the countries capital, Prague, the largest city of the Czech Republic. Steeped in history, the city was the main residence of several Holy Roman Emperors and of major importance during the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Famed for its old town square, the heart of its historic core with colourful Romanesque, Renaissance and Baroque buildings, Gothic churches, a medieval astronomical clock and the largest castle in the world, Prague has become one of the most visited cities on Earth. The entire historic centre of Prague has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

With so much on offer, click here for the Must See Places In Prague...

1. Praha

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