We are planning a trip for a few days in Prague this July. We have about 3 days, possibly 4, to see one more city. We are thinking of adding Cesky Krumluv, or taking a train to Berlin or Krakow? We have visited Vienna and Budapest recently, so we aren't interested in those. Or is there any other place you'd recommend instead? We are traveling with our 9 yr old and 13 yr old, just fyi.
Don't go to Krumlov - too far away for a day trip - 3 hours each way - and too full of day trippers. Berlin and Krakow are both way too far to be considered - 4.5 hours and 8 hours.
If you want to see somewhere other than Prague, Brno is a nice city to spend a day and a night in, it has some amazing caves just outside, and there is a large aquapark close by too (lots of fun for both kids and adults).
- Kutna Hora - once one of the most important towns of Bohemia, with a wonderful and unique Gothic church, the famous - Sedlec Ossuary, and a nice, small old town with some impressive views
- Karlstejn castle - the best castle of the country
- Saxon/Bohemian Switzerland - the most picturesque mountains of Central Europe
Hi, Amanda, we live in Prague and we moved here when our kids were 11 and 14. I agree with Marcus that Cesky Krumlov is much too far away for a day trip. Our family's favorite day trip from Prague is to Konopiste Castle. This is where Franz Ferdinand (whose assassination started WWI) lived, and the castle is perfect for history buffs as well as for families. It is only about 90 minutes away from Prague, and the tour of the family's private apartments is fascinating. It is a great place for kids, because there are animal trophies everywhere, live bears in the moat, lots of weapons, huge gardens to explore, and a restaurant with an interesting, game-meat-heavy menu. (Rick Steves has a section on Konopiste if you would like more details.) The train to Krakow takes more than 7 hours, so that's not really doable in your time span, and while Berlin is only 4 hours away, you wouldn't have much time to see anything in a single day. If you really wanted to go to Germany, Dresden (only 2 hours from Prague) might be a better bet, but I think Konopiste would be the best of all.
Thank you everyone for your helpful replies!
I would also recommend Konopiste ( I found it fascinating, in spite of the world frisbee-golf tournament) but disagree that CK is too far for a day trip. I did it on a day tour and felt I had adequate time there. The town is lovely, but in hindsight I would have skipped the tour of the castle.
I second the Sedlec Ossuary - with kids that age they will think it's the coolest thing ever! My son loved it when we went a few years back. Konopiste Castle is also great for kids...they often have wild animal exhibits in the summer (when we went it was birds of prey) and they can try their hand at bows and arrows and cross-bows in the castle moat. It's traditional to keep a bear in the moat of many castles in the Czech Republic and this one has a bear in the moat at the back of the castle. Inside the castle take the tour that includes the hallways mounted with thousands of animals hunted by the Archduke...each was meticulously labeled - fascinating! The other thing worth seeing is the armor collection. There's a deer park on the grounds. The castle has lots of funny little nooks and crannies with lots to see!
I will vouch for Brno! Nice city.. Tons of old school type churches and buildings..
I second Brno. Very few tourists, almost no Ricknicks, pssst! it did not make it to Rick Steves book, yet.
Liberec is fine, or Karlovy Vary;-)
If you go to Karlovy Vary, visit nearby Loket. Historical small town with a castle on cliffs. Surrounded by river on three sides. Certain similarities with Cesky Krumlov. Few if any tourists. Not discovered, yet.
I agree that Cesky Krumlov is a bit long for a day trip, but if you have a night you can spare then it's a great 1-night stop. Having the morning and evening without the day trippers was definitely worth the 1 night stay over for me. If you're talking about 3 or 4 days in addition to Prague, then taking the train to Berlin (a bit less than 5 hrs) or Krakow (combo train and bus about 6-1/2 hrs) would be worth it to me. Do you have another destination after this time period or would you be flying home from wherever you decide to spend the add'l days?