What a gem of a town!

Trip Start Jan 07, 2012
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Trip End Jun 04, 2012


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Flag of Czech Republic  , Bohemia,
Tuesday, May 8, 2012

I'll admit that I had never heard of Cesky Krumlov prior to planning this trip.  I was completely unaware that there exists an entire town that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that is found between Prague and Vienna.  
 
CK is a town that dates back to the 15th Century.  Unlike many other European towns, it was largely untouched during major conflicts.  During the Communist era, many of the buildings fell into disrepair, but they weren't torn down to make space for modern buildings.  In the Post-Communist era, the potential for tourism was realized and major restorations took place.  This town, nestled in the bend in a river, is absolutely stunning.  On the valley wall, beside the town, is the massive Castle.  Of course, we visited on a Monday, the one day of the week when the Castle is closed to visitors (but the grounds remained open).
 
After a bit of bit of a search for our hotel, we quickly checked in and then headed out for an excellent guided tour of the old town and a little bit of a peek around the shops.  Our tour guide was very good, but let's just say that he has absolutely no love for the Roma.  Aud and I were also quite tickled by his description of his family's Christmas tradition.  "I buy 2 carp and put them in the bath tub.  Because the water is not too hot or too cold, they live for a couple of days.  We let the children play with them.  And then, I KILL THEM.  We make fish soup and other fish dishes..." If you quote him with a Czech accent, it's really quite funny.  We had dinner at a vegetarian restaurant, right next to the river, where we discussed Canadian politics with the owner (who, despite never having been to Canada, knows all about the evils of the Harper government), snuggled in blankets provided, and enjoyed the free dessert (given because we provided "great conversation").  The next morning, after some amazing coffee, we took a shuttle to Vienna.

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