During the Christmas period and the New Year, the Czech capital attracts hundreds of thousands many of whom want to experience classic Prague over the holidays: mulled wine, romantic walks and more. The same is being appreciated this year, of course, but Prague City Tourism is also putting an emphasis on new hip districts with new eateries, cafes, galleries and other sites people also might want to visit.
Luke Allnutt is a senior journalist at Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. The Englishman’s career will enter a new and exciting phase in early 2018 with the publication of his gripping debut novel We Own the Sky, which has been sold in 30-odd countries around the world. Our tour of “Luke Allnutt’s Prague” begins by the Vltava River, on the embankment known as Naplávka.
This time of year, cities in Central Europe are vying to attract tourists to their Christmas markets, New Year's Eve celebrations, and other seasonal attractions. If you are tired of large crowds and are looking for something more authentic, we might have a tip for you: leave the big cities and head for one of the small towns deep in the Czech countryside. You may get a lesson in living history and even be in for an exotic surprise!
Twenty-five years since the Czech and Slovak republics split in the Velvet Divorce, both continue to share remarkably close ties. Not surprisingly, tourism plays a key role, with Czech visitors, for example, making up for more than a third of foreign tourists in Slovakia a year. While the Czech Republic may have the edge in the number of castles and chateaux, sites such as the Tatra Mountains or Slovak Paradise remain major draws for Czechs.
The Czech Republic and Saxony have submitted their nomination of the mining region of Krušnohoří, a uniquely preserved landscape formed by centuries of ore mining, for UNESCO World Heritage Site listing. The joint nomination was signed on Monday by outgoing Czech culture minister Daniel Herman and Saxony State interior minister Markus Ulbig.
Hundreds of vintage Czechoslovak posters will go on display this week in the new Czech Poster Museum in Prague. Located in a beautiful 15th century House at the Golden Grape at Malá Strana, the museum was established by Prague-based US businessman Glenn Spicker, a poster enthusiast who spent more than twenty years putting together his current collection. I visited the Czech Poster Museum a few days ahead of its official opening to talk to Glenn Spicker and I first asked him how he got the idea to establish the place:
With the Christmas season underway many of Prague’s museums and galleries are offering special events and programs, among them a museum dedicated to the seminal works of the great 20th century animator and film director Karel Zeman - behind films like Journey to the Beginning of Time and Baron Munchausen. The Karel Zeman Museum has plenty planned for each advent weekend, including a steampunk robot photographer ready to snap visitors’ pictures.
Historically, Olomouc used to be the historical capital of Moravia, the eastern part of what is now the Czech Republic. It all changed at the end of the Thirty Years' War when the city was ransacked by invading Swedish armies. All the important institutions were moved south to Brno and Olomouc never regained its previous privileged status. Luckily for the city, being sidelined by ruling regimes helped it to keep its charming rustic character. And now, in the 21st century, Olomouc is drawing young talent and energy.