Cesky Krumlov is revered as one of the most beautiful towns in Europe. Once you make it to the top of the hill looking down from the train station, you see why.
With a castle, a river and colorful buildings, Cesky Krumlov has stood on this spot since the 13th century. It is the perfect day trip or quick overnight from Prague and well worth the visit.
We entered through the beautiful yellow Budweiser Gate to discover this lovely little town. A few hours is all you need to see it, but after some delicious meals and excellent music, I’d recommend staying overnight!
Visiting Europe’s Most Beautiful Town, Cesky Krumlov
The direct train takes about three hours from Prague to Cesky Krumlov. We caught the first train out at 8am to have most of the day to explore. The train was very comfortable and there were many others making the day trip with us to see this beautiful town.
The train station is about a mile out of the old town center of Cesky Krumlov. It is a bit of a hilly walk as you come upon the old town and begin the descent down into it.
The best thing to do in Cesky Krumlov is wander around the old town and enjoy the many, many beautiful vistas. The colorful buildings, stone streets, and the church and castle towering above it all – it is a treat.
The town’s strategic position along the river Vltava adds to the beautiful vistas.
Unfortunately, much of the museum and castle were closed during the holidays, but we were able to walk through and around the compound.
The painted buildings of the castle brighten up even a dark, cloudy winter day.
The castle’s location up on the hill also offers beautiful views over the Inner Town of Cesky Krumlov.
Do stop into the St Vitus’ Church. Set upon the top of the hill in the Inner Town, you can’t miss it. The stunning interior is incredibly well-preserved.
We were so lucky to visit during the Christmas markets and to see the town square transformed for the holidays.
It made the town feel even more quaint and beautiful! Also, this little Christmas ferris wheel was pretty exciting.
We explored the Minorite Monastery, which was pretty cool. Parts of it were definitely geared toward kids, but the the chapel and the surviving paintings from the 17th century are incredible to see.
Our trip to Cesky Krumlov was an add-on to our Prague trip, so we booked a cheap hostel for one night. At $30 for the two of us, Hostel Merlin was well-situated for a quick trip, located right on the river and a short walk from the market square.
We loved the food we ate in Cesky Krumlov! Czech food is rich and delicious. There are several restaurants in Cesky Krumlov that capture traditional Czech cooking and feel like you are stepping back in time when you sit down to eat. The cozy old tavern feel of many of the places we visited were perfect for the winter weather.
Krčma U dwau Maryí
The hostel staff recommended a traditional Czech lunch at Krčma U dwau Maryí. Just a quick walk across the Inner Town, this spot really delivered!
The old tavern house felt rustic and cozy. We got Viennese coffees to prepare for a day of touring ahead and they were divine.
The food was fantastic! I basically ate my plate clean. We really enjoyed this restaurant and I highly recommend for a filling winter lunch.
Our dinner was in Tavern Satlava, a fantastic cave-like restaurant serving up Bohemian food over an open fire!
Our meals were fabulous and the ambiance could not be beat. Definitely book ahead, as we did, to ensure that you get to experience this incredible place.
Like Prague, the beers in Cesky Krumlov are excellent and there was no shortage of places to grab a drink or people out to enjoy a couple tipples!
We stopped by this cocktail bar for a drink before dinner. Set in a cave-like room with antique features, Zapa Bar was a nice little spot to get a cocktail. They had a long list of classic cocktails from all over the world.
My tip is to order a tropical cocktail as those came in the coolest glasses! We got there near opening and by the time we left, the entire place was full.
I had a homemade wine they serve on draft at Tavern Satlava. It was served in its own special earthenware cup. It wasn’t the best wine I’ve ever tasted, but it was certainly not the worst and may have been the coolest.
Egon Schiele Cafe
We had noticed a sign out front of this cafe advertising live music that night, so we stopped by Egon Schiele Cafe for a drink and some tunes after dinner. It was awesome! The band was really great and the setting was very relaxed.
We snagged the last table, so get there early!
For more on our trip to the Czech Republic, check out my post on our weekend in Prague.