The city of Český Krumlov brings a lot of tourists to the area, as it is the highlight of the region and one of the most visited places in the country, of course after the beautiful capital Prague.
South Bohemia is the name of the most southern region of the Czech Republic. The region is divided into the following districts (okresy): České Budějovice, Český Krumlov, Jindřichův Hradec, Písek, Prachatice, Strakonice and Tábor. The roads we drove on revealed beautiful sights everywhere around us. From countryside and rural farms to green forests and perfect hammock spots to lakes and rivers perfect for a quick refreshing swim. The best part about Czechia are the dreamy fairytale castles spread all over the country. Did you know that Czechia is home to more than 2000 castles and it is the country with the most castles in Europe?
Our trip to the country of castles began quicker than expected. Austria kicked us away with terrible and rainy weather, but Czechia welcomed us with warm and sunny days. We crossed the border close to Český Krumlov, and after a good night's sleep, we drove towards the medieval town where the time had stopped.
The city itself
Český Krumlov is a town that you might want to move into or at least visit more than once. Walking on the streets, you feel like you have stepped through a time portal. The pavement and charming architecture surrounding it enhances the feeling of another decade. The town offers a fairytale feeling with fantastic architecture and magical castles rising from the hill. Due to its unique preserved medieval core, Český Krumlov is included in the UNESCO list.
One of the city's highlights is the Český Krumlov Castle and Chateau. Castle or chateau, you might ask. Well, both. The original plan, construction, and interior plan show development from the 14th to the 19th century.
Because of this, we can enjoy a magical medieval castle and a spectacular Renaissance residence at once. In the castle, you will find guided tours and some workshops like the unique experience of working with hot iron in the blacksmith’s workshop, under the supervision of an experienced blacksmith. The castle offers stunning views on top of the city.
Still, for a better experience, I totally recommend climbing up the round chateau tower so you can enjoy the sight of the Šumava countryside.
Last but definitely not least, you can see the three bears in the lower part when visiting the castle. I am not a big fan of animals kept in small areas, but the bears seemed happy, playing with each other, surrounded by enough food and fresh water.
Inner town (center of Český Krumlov)
The city itself has much more to offer than just the magical castle. Spare some time and have a walk in the center. The small streets are a pedestrian area, so if you are coming by car, you must park somewhere before entering. Maybe not all the streets are pedestrian, but I can assure you some are so small that you will need a tiny car to be able to pass through. Walking and exploring the area, we felt as if time had stopped.
The pavements, facades and overall architecture make you forget the year we are living. The meanders of the Vltava River completely surround the inner town, so to go to the other districts, we had to cross one of the three bridges.
The square of náměstí Svornosti looks like a movie set. No surprise at all, during our tour a movie was filmed so unfortunately, we couldn't take many pictures. Still, we got to see some of the rehearsals. The actors were dressed in beautiful costumes, accessorizing amazingly the buildings surrounding them. On the square, we realized there are many different architectural styles. We spot Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque houses.
Take a moment and enjoy the Renaissance town hall and the hexagonal stone fountain, built in the 19th century around the plague column, dedicated to the Virgin Mary.
You will find a torture museum for those seeking a little bit more adrenaline. If you visit the area with children, I am sure they will love the Fairy-tale House.
Fun times in Vltava river
The paradise of water sports crosses the city and makes it a perfect way to enjoy the medieval town from a unique perspective. The river’s bottom stream is navigable all year round and offers peaceful wandering through the Šumava National Park, the Lipno water dam, the torn canyon under the Devil’s Wall and the deep valley of the České Budějovice basin.
The town was built on the river, so the water was used as an essential trading path. For the romantics, the river is the best place for an evening date. At dusk, enjoy the views from a wooden deck illuminated with candlewood while peacefully floating on the water.
After spending half a day wandering around on the city streets where the time had stopped, we gave ourselves time for a deserved break and an aromatic coffee in a nice restaurant next to the river.
Český Krumlov is undoubtedly a city you should visit. If it is not on your travel plan, you must definitely add it and let the area and city itself please your eyes and excite your visit in Czechia.