Jul262018

Colors of České Budějovice on a summer Sunday

Architectural color is one of the most appealing aspects of travel in the Czech Republic. On a summer Sunday late afternoon I walked streets of the historic city center of České Budějovice photographing brilliant colors seen all around.

České Budějovice Náměstí Přemysla Otakara II – Old Town square

Old town České Budějovice is located at the confluence of the Vltava and Malše rivers surrounded by a somewhat circular green belt walking and cycling path around the center of the old city. Vltava River is the same river flowing through Prague, about 150km downstream to the north.

Paddle boarder on the Malse River about 300 meters before confluence with Vltava River.

Black Tower (1577) České Budějovice 

Antique shop České Budějovice 

We never saw a České Budějovice tourist t-shirt in any shops during our 4 days in the city. Perhaps more appropriately for the home city of Czech Budweiser-Budvar, we purchased souvenir beer steins. České Budějovice was historically known since medieval times as Budweis and a brewing center in Bohemia.

Plaque commemorating some event of 1467

České Budějovice old town alley

There are probably some 60 or more restaurant pubs within the old town center. Old town takes less than 10 minutes to walk across. My estimate is there were about 25 pubs just along the town square and the 50 meters of neighboring streets near the square.

On Sunday morning I met Jan, a Czech pensioner. He wanted to spend time talking to an American and share stories about his life in Czech Republic. We spent over two hours chatting in Hostinec U Tří Sedláků.

Masné krámy restaurant – ‘meat market’  (1954) was originally the site of butcher shop stalls since 1364. Current building foundation dates from late 1500s.

Church/Temple of the Sacrifice of the Virgin Mary

What is not seen in the church photo above are the four pubs in buildings surrounding the church courtyard. One night we talked with a local college student working at one of the pubs who told us his travel dream was to visit Vienna some day. Travel is something not to be taken for granted by those of us with financial and time opportunities for mobility.

Samson’s Fountain is the centerpiece of the main square Náměstí Přemysla Otakara II.

Samson’s Fountain and the Black Tower.

České Budějovice Baroque Town Hall (1727-30)

The Town Hall is one of the prettiest buildings on the square, however, late afternoon is not the time to photograph this part of the square when the sun is shining on the opposite side of the square. I never made it to the square in the morning when the Town Hall received direct sunlight. The lighted facade at night makes for another photogenic moment.

One of my favorite buildings reflecting brilliant sunset color in late July is opposite Town Hall on the square. Google Maps indicates it houses a financial company.

Lovely architecture on the square

České Budějovice is a city of nearly 100,000 in southern Bohemia. This is a place that gets a mention in tourist guides as worthy of one day or a hotel night stopover on your way to the far better known UNESCo World Heritage Site and medieval town of Český Krumlov about 20 miles south of České Budějovice. We stayed four days in the city and could easily have stayed longer. For us, Český Krumlov was a fine one day trip.

As I write this piece sitting in a hotel room in Prague, a city I have spent a cumulative three weeks visiting in several trips over the past 18 months, I feel that my first time visiting České Budějovice offered an urban city environment with plenty of restaurants, hotels, pubs and services to accommodate me as a tourist, while simultaneously giving off a small town vibe and cozy environment.

České Budějovice offers many of the best parts of Czech life, local culture and beautiful architecture without being a place on every foreigner’s radar. Prague and Český Krumlov are places that are often inundated by hoards of tourists.

Best of all for a visitor, České Budějovice prices are significantly lower for lodging, restaurants and beer compared to heavily touristed Prague and Český Krumlov.

Ceske Budjovice Radnice – Town Hall

 

 

 

About Ric Garrido

Ric Garrido of Monterey, California started Loyalty Traveler in 2006 for traveler education on hotel and air travel, primarily using frequent flyer and frequent guest loyalty programs for bargain travel. Loyalty Traveler joined BoardingArea.com in 2008.

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  1. I managed to find out what the plaque was for: in the lead up to the Bohemian War, the mayor of the town, Ondřej Puklice, refused to spread the papal bull against Hussite King George of Bohemia and he was murdered for it.

    Thanks for these photos – we’re doing a Czechia trip in October and were debating how much time to spend here.

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