Cesky Krumlov is a small town 170 km south of Prague. It has preserved its buildings so well that there is no new construction in the surrounding area. UNESCO recognized the beauty of this charming town and added it to the World Heritage List in 1992.
The Czech word Cezky Krumlov means something like Czech Meadow or Sloping Meadow. The city, which was on an important trade route in the Kingdom of Bohemia, was founded in the 13th century. In the 14th century, the Rosenborg family founded the city together with the castle.
In the 15th century, with the discovery of gold mines near here, German miners flocked here, increasing the population of the town. In the 18th century, when the Schwarzenberg family took control, baroque architectural structures began to be built.
The city is so clean and beautiful that we can even clearly see the reflections of the Vltava River that surrounds it. The water is crystal clear, and so is the air as there is nature everywhere. During the summer months you will see many tourists canoeing on the Vltava River. You can rent canoes and enjoy the magnificent view.
Cezky Krumlov Itinerary: Day 1
If you go early in the morning, especially in winter, you will see that some museums or cafes are not open. In the meantime, you can walk around the city and have breakfast. That’s what we did, we toured the city until 10:00, walked the streets and arranged ourselves to start from the castle gate at 10:00.
Cesky Krumlov Castle
Cesky Krumlov Castle offers one of the best views of the town and contains important buildings, as dukes and kingdoms have lived here throughout history. You should definitely go up to Cesky Krumlov to see the large courtyards, gardens, stone rooms and items used by the kingdoms. Your castle tour will take you a few hours.
Egon Schiele Art Gallery
At the end of the castle tour, we go down the big bridge, cross the wooden bridge and continue on our way on the right. If you like painting, you can visit the Egon Schiele Art Gallery in Cesky Krumlov, where the works of the famous painter Egon Schiele are on display. The gallery also features contemporary artists of the 20th century such as Picasso, Dali and Klimt.
Cesky Krumlov Mirror Labyrinth
Just across the gallery at Sıroka 52 is the Cesky Krumlov Mirror Labyrinth. When you enter, you get lost, you may have difficulty finding your way out. In addition to the mirror labyrinth, there are also twisted mirrors here that can change the shape of those who come across them.
The houses are vibrant and colorful and we come to a small square. What attracts our attention in the square are the buildings with decorative paintings on the walls. This shows us that art has been present in Cesky Krumlov for centuries.
Cesky Krumlov Wax Museum
The red building across the picture house is the Cesky Krumlov Wax Museum. There are wax sculptures of artists living around the Czech Republic such as Egon Schiele, Mozart, Bedrich Smetana, as well as pop musicians such as Michael Jackson and Tina Turner.
When we continue to the right, we come across a bridge again. At the bridge named Benet Most, we take a photo break and watch the surroundings for a while.
Seidel Photography Museum
Our next stop is a photography studio. The photography studio where the Seidel family both stayed and worked is now the Seidel Photography Museum. This studio is about 100 years old and has rooms such as a dark room, costume room and shooting room. You will also see memorabilia, photographs and books of the Seidel family.
St. Vitus Church
In the city skyline of Cezky Krumlov, we see St. Vitus Church, which stands out with its slender and pointed structure. Located next to the Vltava River, the church is 44 meters long and 20 meters wide. Before this structure was built, there was a smaller church here.
As the city’s population grew, it was necessary to build a new church with a higher capacity on top of the original church infrastructure. Today it is used not only for religious purposes but also for classical music concerts.
After St. Vitus Church, we go to the square located on a back street of the church. In the square there is a monument to the plague, which became an epidemic and took the lives of hundreds of people. It was built both to remember the disease and the lives it took and to mark the end of the plague. On the opposite side of the obelisk is a museum. It is called the Museum of Torture.
It exhibits various instruments of torture, which were probably used in the Middle Ages to make criminals talk or punish them. Among the tools such as handcuffs and pliers, there is a chair with nails and a cage in which criminals were kept until they died.
We are in the Puppet Museum where about 200 historical puppets are exhibited. One of the rooms in the Puppet House, where various stage reenactments take place, allows visitors to practice the art of puppetry. Thus, we discover how difficult it is to play puppets, especially with strings. It is a must visit for families with children.
You can also get to Cezky Krumlov by train, but it is also possible to get there by bus, which is a cheaper way. Although the prices vary between bus companies, we preferred to travel with Student Agency, the Prague bus company, where the ticket prices are more affordable than others. Their buses are mostly yellow to orange in color.
If you are visiting Prague and have time, spend 1 day here. If you try to arrange half a day, you may not get much taste. If you can make the return trip around 17:00, it will be a very sufficient trip.