For many tourists, visiting a castle or chateau is an essential part of a trip to the Czech Republic. But some visitors may be disappointed this year, as castle wardens around the country are warning that they might have to close their doors earlier than usual. The reason: a lack of money. On Tuesday castle wardens from around the country handed in a petition to the Senate, drawing attention to their plight. I discussed the issue with Jana Sedlackova, a conservationist at the popular Konopiště castle near Prague.
There are a number of different curious stories covered by today's press, one of the most interesting the re-emergence of a legal battle involving the Church vs. the State to determine ownership rights of Saint Vitus' Cathedral. The cathedral, whose foundation stone was laid in 1344, but was only fully completed in the early 20th century, is the most dominant feature in the Prague skyline rising above famous Prague Castle, recognisable to anyone who has ever spent more than five minutes in the Czech capital.
Music lovers in Prague will be sad to hear the news that the annual Respect ethnic world music festival will not be held at Prague Castle. President Vaclav Klaus announced this week that he no longer wanted to support the music festival. But, the festival will still go ahead this year, Prague City Hall has come to the rescue.
And now, moving on to something lighter, but still connected - albeit tenuously - to the elections. As you've just heard, Czechs went to the polls a week ago, in an election which saw the Communist Party clinch their biggest share of the vote since 1989. Just four hours after the polling stations closed, however, a bell in Prague's St Vitus cathedral fell silent - which the more superstitious people of this country saw as an omen of impending doom. Dita Asiedu has more:
Few foreign tourists come to the Czech Republic without visiting that gem of Czech castles, Karlstejn, just 30 km west of Prague. The castle was built in the second half of the 14th century by Bohemian King and Holy Roman Emperor Charles IV, with the castle's Chapel of the Holy Rood intended to house the imperial coronation jewels. After 19 years of restoration work, the chapel has once again been opened to the public and consecrated. reports.