I am looking for a little insight. Would you recommend the train, tour group or private driver? There will be 4 or 5 of us and the main sight we want to see is the Sedlec Bone Church - but could certainly be talked into more. Thanks in advance for the help.
Hi Squid - Myfamily...3 adults and 1 teenager....went specifically to Kutna Hora to see the bone church. We were very disappointed. I wouldn't specifically go out of my way to go there. Go to Terezin instead. It's has a very interesting history...it's also near Prague. A sight also near Prague is a town no longer there.....Lidice. Both have humbling holocaust history.
Howdy Squid, Personally, money not being a concern, I would choose going to the Sedlec Bone Church by private driver. It would clearly be the most direct, comfortable, and easiest option. If the bone church holds significant meaning for any or all of you, then I would add a tour guide to get the most out of the experience. On the other hand, if there were any budgetary considerations then going by train is not expensive nor difficult to navigate and we'd be happy to lay out your options here. So I guess it boils down to why you are asking, for instance, because one or more in the group have ambulatory issues, or concerns about taking public transit, or are looking for an in-depth experience due to a personal connection, etc.? Are you leaning one way or the other?
Thank you guys for the replies. Angela - I checked out the travel suggestion in Rick Steves (mike's chauffeur) in it looks like it would be about $140 for the private driver. Money is not a huge concern but value is. If I can save a hour or two by hiring a private driver then that is money well spent. If it is more about not having to ride a train or go wit a tour group or buy a ticket - then I would want to save the money. Thoughts?
I think the best thing is to describe the train ride so you have an understanding of how it works. Note that the Ossuary isn't in Kutna Hora itself, it's in a neighboring town called Sedlec, which is just a few kilometers away. Also note that KH has 2 train stations. All train schedules can be found on the Czech Rail website at: http://www.idos.cz (English option on right, middle of page) 1) Buy a round trip ticket from Praha hl.n (main train station) to Kutna Hora Mesto. No need to purchase in advance, just show up at train station. 2) Train takes about one hour and will arrive at Kutna Hora hl.n station (not Mesto). Disembark and board a one-car tram that will be waiting (it's timed with the big train arrivals). 3) Take the one-car tram one or two stops (can't remember exactly - it only takes about 5 minutes or less) and get off at Sedlec stop. Oh, and mention to the conductor you would like to get off at Sedlec just to make sure it stops there. If it's during high/shoulder season, you likely won't be the only tourists doing this. Ossuary is just up the road a short walk. (FYI, the tram will then continue on to the Kutna Hora Mesto station.) 4) Since you are at the Ossuary you might as well visit the town of Kutna Hora while you are there. You can walk into town, it's about a 25 minute walk, OR there may be a shuttle from the Ossuary into town. I think it still runs but is seasonal, so you will want to Google around to see what you can find about that. We walked into town, it wasn't a bad walk at all, just get a map online before you go so you have an idea of which way to walk. We didn't have a map and still managed to make it. I don't recall seeing any taxis, but there is a good chance they are available so that might be an option, too.
5) Once done seeing Kutna Hora (St. Barbara's Cathedral, etc.), find the KH Mesto train station right in town and board the one-car tram for a ride back to Kutna Hora hl.n (you will pass the Sedlec stop again), transfer back onto big train and you'll be back in Prague in an hour. Notes:
- There are direct trains from Prague to Kutna Hora hl.n, looks like they are every 2 hours in the morning and then hourly in the afternoon/evening. There are also trains that make one connection, in Kolin. For ease of the operation it would be better just to get a direct train, but it's also not hard to do the connection. - Make sure to have a list of the return train times, too. - We paid 135 Czech crowns each (about $7) a couple years ago for the round-trip train tickets. I think it has gone up but not by much (think it's $8-9 each/round-trip now). It actually is a very easy process to get to the Ossuary via train and then into Kutna Hora, in spite of how confusing I may have made it seem. Of course, a private driver will take you there directly, although I'm not sure you would save much time in transit. It'll still probably be about an hour-long drive (same as train), but you could go on your own schedule and not have to wait for the train. Plus, you could arrange for the driver to wait for you at the Ossuary and then drive you into Kutna Hora, too. Is the $140 round-trip? And does that include the driver's wait time while you were sightseeing? With us, $140 would have been more than we were willing to spend because the train was so inexpensive and easy. But with 4-5 people, assuming you are splitting the cost, then it might be worthwhile. Sorry for the length of these posts, but hope it helps break down the situation so you can make a decision!
I did a New Prague Tour to Kutna Hora - disliked my guide (she was inexperienced) but thought the price/value of the tour was pretty good. I chose the tour option because it was my first jet-lagged day in Czech Rep. and I wanted a no-brainer activity. Tour used local train to Kutna Hora, provided a quick tour of the Ossuary, a mini van ride to the cathedral (beautiful) and a quick walk around town. We also had lunch (you pay for your own, not well explained or advertised) and they chose a RS endorsed eating venue (Pivnice Dacicky)by happenstance. 30 euros per person, they have one tour a day Tues/Thurs/Sat/Sun, includes transport and entries but not food. Side note: I agree the bone church is just ok (not nearly as cool as the one in Rome). The rest of the town is charming and I really loved the cathedral and the views from there. I am glad I went. If you have limited time in Prague though, I'd opt for more Prague time over a trip out there.
Like some of the others said, the church is interesting but not exceptional. It also is a little outside of the town so it is more walking or public transporation, so more time. My sister and I took the train and did the town by ourselves. Things were logistically easy to figure out but I think it took more time than it was worth. So by the end of the day I was little disappointed. If you want to do things in the most time efficient way possible, I would hire a driver.