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Stadt Kouřim

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Monday 22.04.

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Tuesday 23.04.

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Wednesday 24.04.

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Explore On Foot

The Trails of the First Slavs Around Kouřim

The route, suitable even for your youngest ones, takes you through ancient Slavic hillforts and a once significant royal town.

In Kouřim, you stroll through the ages. Winding streets from the ancient Slavic hillfort lead to the rare Romanesque-Gothic St. Stephen’s Cathedral. Unique medieval fortifications guide you to Santini’s Baroque chapel. The square echoes the First Republic’s atmosphere and is enriched by folk traditions in the open-air museum.

Start your journey at the square, dominated by the St. Stephen’s Church and a distinctive freestanding bell tower. This tower, one of only two in the Czech Republic with inverted bells rung using pedals, adds a unique charm. Follow the nostalgic lanes from the church to the former Panský Mlýn, where the Old Kouřim educational trail commences. Along the way, encounter the unmistakable Lechův kámen, tied to the legend of Čech’s ancestor’s brother, a picturesque St. Vitus chapel, and Libuše’s Pond—all integral to the ancient hillfort, still marked by visible ramparts. From this vantage point, enjoy captivating views of the royal town of Kouřim and its scenic surroundings.

  • Interesting fact: Take a moment to appreciate the wire globe with parallels and meridians in the square—it’s a monument representing the astronomical center of Europe. This unique spot marks the intersection of the 50th parallel and the 15th meridian. Its significance goes beyond aesthetics; it serves for precise time determination and various astronomical calculations, including sunrise, sunset, and lunar phases. Central European Time is exceptionally accurate only at this specific point; elsewhere, there are subtle variations. For instance, at the westernmost point of the Czech Republic, it’s 12 minutes less than Kouřim, while in the country’s east, it’s a full 15 minutes more. The square hosts a memorial, but the actual point is located in a field just beyond Lechův kámen rock formation.

As you return to the town, stroll past the medieval fortifications enveloping the city center. For the best view, veer off from the church into Na Hradbách park or, after passing through the only preserved gate, Pražská, follow the path along the rampart’s summit. At its conclusion, marvel at the Chapel of Our Lady of Unceasing Succour, a creation by Giovanni Santini-Aichel. These fortifications, remarkably intact and the sole national cultural monument of its kind in our country, offer a unique historical experience.

At the town’s southern edge lies the Museum of Folk Buildings, a must-visit. Throughout the year, the structures in this open-air museum come alive. Ethnographic events showcase old crafts, baking traditions, and inhabitants in period clothing engaged in traditional activities.

  • Tip for you: For refreshments in Kouřim, head to the square. Try Steak & Salad or Jenom tak for a meal, and for coffee, VOTOM Kafe is a great choice. Enjoy wine at Vinotéka čp. 47, where you might even have a jam session with the owner. For an original souvenir, check out LIKERII, known for crafting and selling delightful alcoholic beverages. Before exploring the town, verify the opening hours, as some places operate seasonally.

While on the square, be sure not to miss the Old Town Hall building, now housing the Kouřim Region Museum. Dive into a captivating exhibition with an interactive 3D model of medieval Kouřim, explore archaeological and historical artifacts, and step into a bourgeois room to experience 19th-century city life. The museum also offers a guided tour of St. Stephen’s Church.

Trip start:

Kouřim

Trip length:

4,6 km

Trip duration:

1,5 hours

Trip end

Kouřim

Altitude profile:

+56 m

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