| Part 4: Ceský Krumlov,
Holašovice, Hluboká nad Vltavou, Ceské Budejovice
2.6: Krakow -> Stramberk -> Roznov pod
Radhostem -> Olomouc
3.6: Olomouc -> Kromeríz ->
4.6: Olomouc -> Litomysl ->
Bouzov -> Olomouc
5.6: Olomouc -> Lednice ->
Valtice -> Mikulov -> Dolni Dunajovice
6.6: Dolni Dunajovice ->
Znojmo -> Vranov nad Dyjí castle -> Telc
7.6: Telc -> Jindrichuv Hradec
-> Ceský Krumlov
8.6: Ceský Krumlov ->
Holasovice -> Hluboká nad Vltavou -> Ceské Budejovice -> Ceský
9.6: Ceský Krumlov -> Munich
-> Holašovice -> Hluboká nad Vltavou -> České
Budějovice -> Český Krumlov
Antik, Český Krumlov. This
morning I realise that there are just two tiny towels in the bathroom
(for four people), i.e. the pension is not providing adequate towels in
the bathroom. In addition, there is just a bathtub, not a shower, which
means that if you want to wash yourself either you take a bath or
somehow sit down in the bathtub and hold the water pipe over your head.
The WLAN Internet connection is so slow and unreliable (crashes all the
time) that it is essentially unusable.
Weather: overcast in the
morning until noon, starting from 1pm the sky opens up, sunny blue sky
We leave the pension after 11am and have some kind of late breakfast at
the cafe Piazza near the pension at 11:15am. We were not exactly in a
rush to leave the room this morning due to the bad weather.
We then walk to the P3 parking where the car is and at 12:15pm start
driving towards the Holašovice folk village. After a couple of stops
(the kids get motion sickness on those narrow and winding roads and the
small one vomits - not a good idea to drive on such roads after a full
meal) we reach the Holašovice folk village shortly after 1pm.
It takes a while to realise that this is really the Holašovice folk
village, the UNESCO world heritage site because the houses are all so
immaculate, clean, not damaged and look as if they had been built
yesterday. For a while I think that this is a copy of the real thing
and that the old, original houses are somewhere else. But after walking
around a bit and checking here and there it turns out that this is
really the place. It even seems that these historic houses are
inhabited. Probably the "new" look is a result of a recent restoration-
Anyway the Holašovice folk village is basically a circle of houses
facing each other over a rectangular square surrounded by the fields.
The square is a grass field with some trees. Beautiful setup, very
picturesque. Easy to understand how this place was chosen to be a
UNESCO world heritage site. Some of the house facades have a year
written on them - perhaps the year in which they were built. The eldest
year I see is from the 19th century.
It's 1:45pm when we leave this place for the next place, the Hluboká
nad Vltavou castle. On the way we stop briefly at one of the countless
lakes of the region. This one is a dammed lake, as is the case with
many lakes in this region. I'm guessing that this must have been a
swampy area in the past and building dams was a step to control the
waters and make the land dry.
Shortly after 2:30pm we are in Hluboká nad Vltavou. It's not allowed to
drive the last 700m to the castle with the car (perhaps only if you are
a guest of the hotel near the castle), so we walk.
Hluboká nad Vltavou is an immaculately clean village, with top-spot
modern infrastructure and shops. Amazing that a small place in Czechia
like this looks like a suburb of Munich. There is a beautiful church
overlooking the main square and some cafes near it. Quite nice and cosy
The reason for this prosperity probably is the castle. The
Hluboká castle is absolutely stunning and beautiful. It is
and is surrounded by beautiful gardens, with flower beds and carefully
choreographed hedges. While there we see two wedding couples doing a
photo shoot, one of these being Asians. This must be a famous place, if
an Asian couple comes from far away for a photo shoot.
Enhancing the beauty of this place, now also the weather is at its
best. Sunny blue sky with a few clouds. Absolutely perfect weather.
We spend well over an hour in this place and I shoot tons of photos.
Then, at 4pm we walk down to the village and settle in a cafe for some
food. At 4:15pm the couple of Australians who were staying yesterday in
our pension join us. What a coincidence.
Chit-chat, where have you been travelling, where are you going next,
what do you think of this place etc. Then it seems I pick the
wrong topic. Turns out
that these people are Jewish (daughter studying in Israel) and we get
locked on a discussion about the Middle East conflict until after 5pm.
When we finally manage to stop discussing the Middle East and
split, I drive with Shirley and the kids to the last place of today,
České Budějovice. On the way we stop in a KFC restaurant for another
snack. The kids are really hungry (they haven't had lunch today). Then
we continue to České Budějovice.
We arrive there on the main square of the old town a bit before 6pm,
right in time for the rain to start. Heavy, heavy rainfall and strong
wind. We wait for 10 minutes for the rain to stop. No way, so we decide
to drive to the Globus mall we noticed while driving to České
Budějovice (about 6km from the main square).
In the mall we shop around a bit, because outside it's raining. Big
modern mall with many shops and a large Globus supermarket. It's 8:40pm
when we get out of this mall.
I drive back to the main square in České Budějovice, just to take some
pictures. The sky has opened up and I don't want to drive back here
tomorrow only to take some photos. I "deposit" Shirley and the kids in
a Chinese restaurant overlooking the square for some dinner and spend
the next hour shooting some photos. The square gets really beautiful
when it gets dark and the lights are switched on.
At 10pm we drive back to the pension. While driving back the Navigon
navigation system sends us through some mud roads in a dark forest, up
a hill. We are back in the pension at 10:25pm.
Home, sweet home.
Overcast and rain the
whole day. In the evening the sky opens up in Munich.
We leave the hotel after 11am and initially put all luggage into the
car. Then we spend some more time in Cesky Krumlov, but quickly
conclude that due to the bad weather it's pointless to spend more time
here. Besides we have already visited all sights. In addition, due to
rain it makes no sense to visit the Sumava national park or spend time
By the way, despite the bad weather also this morning Cesky
Krumlov is full of tourists. Lots of Asian tourists.
We change all remaining Czech crowns into Euro and get into the car.
We'll drive to Passau and spend some time visiting the city and doing
some shopping there.
The road until the border (we choose the route to the northwest of
Český Krumlov, passing by Volary and joining the B12 road in Germany)
is mostly narrow and in not such a good shape. Unsmooth surface, many
curves and lots of gradients/slopes. Once in Germany, the
road improves markedly.
We reach Passau around 2:30pm. The city lies on the border between
Germany and Austria, at the confluence between two rivers. The skyline
is quite photogenic. We leave the car in a parking near the pedestrian
area in central Passau, then proceed to a mall. We'll spend the next
2-3 hours in Passau, having lunch and shopping a bit.
After 5pm we leave for Munich. I choose the shortest route, mainly on
the B12 road with very little motorway usage. According to the
navigation system it takes two hours to get home on this route. In
practice we'll need a bit longer than that because of redirections due
to roadworks which make us lose time. We are home shortly before 8pm,
in time to watch the 2012 European championship football match