Can Central Bohemia be a paddler’s paradise? Thanks to the Berounka, Sázava and Jizera rivers, unequivocally yes! Enjoy the movement in the nature and beautiful views of the surrounding scenery, discover a rich history thanks to the countless monuments in the area.
Getting out on the water is always a good choice, because you meet a lot of relaxed people along the way. Live like a tramp and sing a few songs around the camp fire. Make sure to take your tent with you – to really enjoy your paddling trip, you need to go for at least a long weekend. Ready? We are setting off!
Sázava River: Golden and not only consecrated to tramps
The Sázava River in Central Bohemia offers over 100 km of boating experiences. And what’s more? You don’t have to worry about transport to the start or end, the legendary Posázava Pacific will take care of it along the entire length of the river. The name was given to the railway by the tramps who liked the river and its surroundings very much.
Take a boating trip on the Golden River, as the Sázava is called, from Zruč nad Sázavou. If you stay in a tent or a cabin the day before, for example, in the Rákosí camp site by the river, you’ll have time for a themed tour of the Boating Museum near the local château. You will see historic and modern kayaks, a model of the river with a safe and dangerous weir, a historic boating camp site and much more. Within the château you will enjoy the interactive Story of the Sázava River exhibition. You can get a beautiful view of the region you will drift through from the nearby Babka lookout tower.
Now let’s get in the boat. Set sail towards Kácov. This section is perfect for starting, it is also suitable for beginners and children. Three weirs await you along the way. You can take a well-deserved refreshment break by the one called the Posadovsky Mill at the Omaha camp site. You can then sail at ease to Kácov, where you can either camp just below the weir at the U Kouzelníka camp site or in the boating hostel near the train station. Directly from the camp site you can enjoy the view of Kácov château and the brewery. The history of both buildings dates back to the 15th century, making the brewery one of the oldest in the country. Are you also in the mood for a beer?
The next day you will float to the magical Český Šternberk Castle. The route is again livened up by three weirs, passable in good water conditions. Just always properly check them out before each crossing. Right by the first weir at Pelíškův Bridge you will come across a refreshment stand. There is also a small kiosk behind the third weir in Soběšín. Before visiting the castle, set sail to one of the camp sites at the end of the village of the same name. If you are not an experienced boater, it is better to carry your boat around the weir behind the bridge. And where can you spend the night? You have a choice between the classic U Karla camp site and the original Mongolian tents in Mongolian Yurt Camp.
The next day you will paddle through the beautiful landscape of Posázaví without weirs to Rataje nad Sázavou. In the Na Břečkárně camp site behind the unique arched railway bridge, or a little further on in front of the weir, pull up your boat and head to the castle Pirkštejn. The voyage, this time with several weirs, continues to Sázava with its breathtaking monastery dating back to the 11th century. Glassmaking also has a long tradition in Sázava: discover it in the Centre of Glass Art, which was created from a decaying technical monument, the František smelter.
Berounka River and all the beauty of the world
The Berounka River flows through the territory of Central Bohemia with a length of 80 km and its valley beckoning you to a picturesque landscape where meadows turn into forests and dramatic rock massifs. Important monuments hide within the surrounding area. The river encourages fishing and water delight. The writer Ota Pavel admired this beauty, and it will surely enchant you too.
Start your boating trip in Skryje. You can arrive a day earlier and stay at a local AHOJ camp site – you will have enough time to walk to the stunning Skryje Lakes and castle ruins Týřov. A visit to the Joachim Barrand Memorial, a museum dedicated to the eminent naturalist who studied trilobites and other fossils of the Bohemian Palaeozoic era, also awaits in Skryje. You can also start sailing a little further upstream in Zvíkovec, where there are several camp sites and boat rentals.
Get on a boat and set off straight into the heart of the Křivoklátsko Protected Landscape Area. The breathtaking Týřovice Rocks and Devil’s Rock spread out behind the castle ruins of Týřov. You will also sail past the Kouřimec fish restaurant – a rural timbered farmhouse that used to be inhabited by a ferryman. It was this landscape that enchanted the Czech writer Ota Pavel. An exhibition in the memorial hall in Luh pod Branovem is dedicated to his life and work. Before your visit stop for lunch on the left bank in Nezabudice at the U Rozvědčíka Inn. Next you will find the first weir Nezabudický Mill, which is usually portaged. You can choose from several camp sites for overnight stays in the Višňová locality near the royal castle Křivoklát. boaters by the camp
Where can you stop first? At the royal castles, Celts or for a nice meal?
The next day let yourself drift towards Roztoky near Křivoklát. Be sure to portage the impassable weir with the slalom channel. You will be enchanted by the meanders of the river through which you float, as well as the stop in Zbečno. The Riviera Zbečno camp site offers pleasant refreshments. Or stop for lunch at one of the restaurants in the centre of the village near the road bridge. Don’t miss a visit there Hamous Farmhouse to get a glimpse into the way of life of the former inhabitants. Saturday tours are enriched by traditional bread baking. If you are not afraid of altitude and a little physical exertion, climb up the path behind the farm to the Pěnčin u Sýkořice observation deck. It offers a breathtaking view of the landscape, which is intersected by the Berounka River.
At the end of the stage sail to Račice via the Valenta Mill weir. Float down on the right side, where it is lower, and you will have a smaller jump with the boat. A little further on you’ll come across the Račice camp site – U Jezu camp with pleasant conditions for overnight stays.
The last day is just perfect for a relaxing voyage – without a single weir you will reach Nižbor. Disembark on the meadow in front of the road bridge and explore ancient Celtic history thanks to the nature trail leading to the Celtic oppidum of Stradonice and the exposition at the local castle. You can enjoy a great lunch at the railway station restaurant of actor Tomáš Hanák. Here you will also get to know the glass-making tradition in the family-run Rückl Glassworks.
The route continues over two impassable weirs to Beroun. Hand the boat over there and celebrate a successful expedition – perhaps with a good gastronomic meal in the heart of the city on Hus Square. Beroun has a bear in its emblem – that is why you should not miss a visit to the local beararium.
Jizera: relax and a good show
Historical and cultural monuments and natural beauty take on a whole new dimension from the river. And even the snacks actually somehow taste different after a sporty boating performance. Find out for yourself on a boating day trip: master the Jizera!
The trip can start in Mnichovo Hradiště with its stunning Baroque château. The blue hiking trail that will show you the town will lead you to the river, where the boating adventure can begin. There is also a parking lot, but as good paddlers and tramps, do to come by train boldly and comfortably. Do you have enough time? If you arrive in time do not miss a visit to the nearby Hradiště nad Jizerou Monastery village with the remains of the Hradiště Cistercian monastery from the 12th century, later rebuilt into the monastery brewery. An unforgettable experience awaits next door in the brewery restaurant with the characteristic name Rock carved into the rock. You can sail from here as well, just remember to book your boat in time. Most of the rental shops are located in the neighbouring Liberec region, but they will be happy to transport your boat to Central Bohemia without problem.
Do you want to extend your trip? Start at Malá Skála and enjoy the breathtaking natural scenery of the Bohemian Paradise. You can spend the night in Příšovice in one of the camp sites between Malý and Velký Písečák.
Thanks to its calm waters, the Jizera is suitable for beginners and families with children. No unpleasant surprises await you here, and none of the four weirs in the section between Mnichovo Hradiště and Mladá Boleslav are sailed over. You’ll be facing for around five hours of voyage, but allow plenty of time to explore the surrounding area: there’s still plenty to do.
One of the first attractions on the route is the Jizera Rock Log Cabins – an impressive natural formation formed by erosion. Next in line is the Ptýrov weir, next to which you will find refreshments in the kiosk. The route also leads around the Veselá sandpit, where there is also Wakepark Mnichovo Hradiště Merry Lift. Water-skiing and wakeboarding enthusiasts will find something to do here. On the way to Bakov nad Jizerou you won’t know where to look first.
Experience water and tradition
When you arrive in Bakov you will see the fascinating ruins of the château Zvířetice on the horizon. Believe me, such a spectacle as from the river is not seen anywhere else! One of the poets who looked to it for inspiration was Karel Hynek Mácha. Be like him, fall in love with the unceasing energy and divine views. There’s the garden railway right under the château for the little and big ones alike who like gimmicks, and the ceramic tradition is brought to life in the nearby Pottery Yard with a good café and a patisserie. The Michalovice castle ruins should not escape your attention. You can enjoy a real romance on its Putna tower.
At the end of the voyage near the Podlázka weir, discover a beach with refreshments – a popular swimming spot. This is what an ideal summer trip looks like! Roast your sausages on the local fireplace and explore all the sights of Mladá Boleslav, be it the local castle with the Mladá Boleslav Museum, Škoda Museum or perhaps Metoděj Vlacha Aviation Museum.