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Cesky Krumlov…A Jewel in the Czech Republic
by


Arnie Greenberg

The Old Inn

It is truly a jewel among the towns in the southern Czech Republic of Bohemia and one of the most visited towns, especially since it was listed as remarkable by UNESCO.

Just north of Linz, Austria, the highway north goes to Prague, via Budejovice, the beer town we refer to as Budweiser. At one point the road has a smaller artery going slightly west. This will lead you to the outskirts of a Castle town in a valley below stately mountains. This is Cesky Krumlov, accessible by foot and, aside from fire trucks, ambulances and certain delivery devices, vehicles are not permitted. The streets are generally narrow and the meandering river can be cross by narrow foo bridges. The houses are typical of the country and there are museums, restaurants and stores to supply every wish.

On the main square, you can easily identify one of the city’s most inviting Hotels. The Old Inn. Formerly named Mestrak, it offers 52, 4 star rooms, refreshments, and three restaurants. Specially prepared dishes, cooked on charcoal in their Pilsner beer hall, Plzenska pivince, can be enjoyed within the unique catacombs and the recently discovered vaults dating from the 13th century. Due to the warm atmosphere, we chose to eat out of doors.

For reservations go to Info@hoteloldinn.cz or consult www.hoteloldin.cz. The actual address is Namesti Svornosti, 381 01, Cesky Krumlov.

Other hotels include Traveller’s Hostel (B&B) www.travellers.cz or the Hotel Mesta Vidue, recently renovated right in the center of the UNESCO site. See more on www.hmv.cz

There is an easy walk to the castle and surroundings, but a local guide can point out things you might miss. They operate for individuals or groups. All town information, including guides can be arranged through the Infocentrum. Go to www.ckrumlov.cz/infocentrum or call from your hotel,

This safe haven is from the oldest Neolithic period (6000-5000 BC) and it became the seat of the House of Rozmberk after 1302. It was soon afterwards that Krumlov was first mentioned as a town. The St.Vitas Church was started, a Minorite monastery was established and Wenceslas (Vaclav) IV was imprisoned in what is now the most remarkable castle.
 
Village homes
 
A tour of the enormous castle is a top priority. The vues below are spectacular, while the inside is way ahead of its time. The castle and chateau combine to form one of the most priceless historical monuments of the Republic. No priceless detail was omitted. There are frescoes and graffiti decorating the facades, the sculptured works in the grounds, remarkably decorated halls, ornamented wood ceilings and wooden inlaid floors, furniture and incredibly decorated theatre. There are different vaults, trusses, gables, portals and jambs, stucco ornamentation and more. There are many chimneys and generally, there are no two the same.

This complex is the second largest in the Republic. It was built on high rocks over-looking the valley  of the River Vltava. It now contains 40 different structures of a medieval castle and newly designed chateau with eleven hectares of gardens which gradually merge into the peaceful countryside. It is all dominated by a huge, round tower that looks down on the hills into the tiny town below. Because of the number of workers required, the castle and the town became one large community.
Sightseeing tours of the grounds and rooms are the necessary activities, you can arrange to tour by day and/or night.
 
The re was much to remember. My most vivid memories are of the deep, protective moat, dominated by huge bears for protection and the wonderfully decorated theatre for the family’s entertainment. The artists who decorated the theatre had to have special talent as the walls look as though there are real people watching from all corners of the large room.
Called the Masquerade Hall, the murals date from the seventeen hundreds, and were done by Josef Lederer. The figures from the commedia dell’arte show aristocrats in fancy dress, Turks, and Chinese, a monkey dressed as a harlequin and much more. Guarding the entrance are two Schwarzanberg guardsmen in their typical white uniforms, tall hats and handy sabers.

The musicians played from the balcony which still depicts their age old instruments.

Bear Moat

Add numerous courtyards, sculpture displays, old wine galleries, now open and displaying art, and a renaissance dairy , a golden coach, and ornate chapel. It is one of the great wonders of the Czech Republic.

Story by Arnie Greenberg:  aarnieg@gmail.com

You can Contact Professor Arnie Greenberg at

Email:  Ultours1@gmail.com

Over the past few years, Professor Greenberg has traveled with groups to France, Italy, Spain, Greece, Budapest, Vienna, Salzburg, Prague and both Sorrento and the Bay of Naples plus most of Sicily. His tours traveled to the far reaches of the globe including Italy and most of China (Beijing -Hong Kong) and to Russia where his group cruised the waters from St.Petersburg to Moscow. 

"He took a group to Greece and another to northern Russia. In Nov 07 he took a tour group to much of India and ended his tour groups by revisiting France. He now travels with his wife and friends. They winter in Argentina or San Miguel Mexico.  His newly found spare time is taken up with his painting and writing. "I must write every day." His current work is a cautionary manual for would-be tour leaders..  "So You Want To Be A Tour Leader." 

Arnie now travels with friends. He continues writing Travel articles about unusual places but often concentrates on novel writing. Two books based on French Art will be published this year.  Keep reading his web for travel ideas.  His next novel HELLSTORM'S Folly, will be available this fall. He now lives in British Columbia.

Go to:  www.top-travel-ideas.com or contact him directly at ultours1@gmail.com.

(More about the writer.)

 

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