Prague Castle and Karlštejn are beautiful buildings. No doubt about that. But if you have visited the Czech Republic, it is quite likely that you have already seen them.
Or, maybe you are planning your trip but prefer a bit more privacy on your travels and do not want to go where everyone else is going. So, the question is: Where next?
We would like to introduce five castles and châteaux in the Czech Republic that tourists have not yet discovered. Some are beautiful, others have not been finished in centuries, while others are at unique locations.
Let’s be inspired by undiscovered destinations and set off to explore across the Czech Republic.
The Baroque château in Jemniště can be found south of Prague in Central Bohemia. It takes less than an hour to get there by car. The château exposition presents nine halls and St. Joseph’s Chapel to visitors. The guide will take you to interiors furnished with period furniture and collections of the noble Sternberg family who, by the way, still live there. There are also night tours organised at the château from time to time.
Enjoy the château café while waiting for your tour to start, or take advantage of the opportunity to be accommodated in one of the beautiful suites. The specialty of Jemniště Château is that you can order a picnic basket, at least two days in advance, and they will prepare everything so that you can enjoy a true picnic on the château garden lawn with your friends or loved one!
Mnichovo Hradiště Château
The unique Baroque château in Mnichovo Hradiště is situated on the boundary of Central and North Bohemia. You can’t miss the town when you drive from Prague north to the Jizerské Mountains. The tour of the château will take you to the château theatre with original Baroque sceneries, to the library that was managed by the famous seducer Giacomo Casanova, or to the tomb of the famous warrior in the Thirty Years’ War, Albrecht von Wallenstein.
The château interiors hail from the 18th century and you can soak in the atmosphere of past times there. The château picture gallery is very valuable from a historical art aspect. If you decide to visit, it is better to purchase your tickets on-line via the château’s website.
Jezeří Château was once known as the pearl of the Krušné Mountains. Is it still true today? That is up to you to decide. The château had a lot of different owners during the turbulent 20th century, who mostly left it to dilapidate. The open lignite mine that begins almost at the entrance to the château was the final nail in its coffin. Jezeří Château is the first Czech site that is registered on the list of the seven most endangered sites in Europe, published by Europa Nostra, a cultural heritage organisation. There are regular tours of the château interior.
And be warned! The mine will be gone in about thirty years, and the château will then tower above one of the largest lakes in the Czech Republic. So, hurry up!
Grabštejn Castle, soaring high on a rocky hill near Liberec in North Bohemia, has a long history. It was first mentioned in sources from the 13th century. In the end, it was rebuilt into a beautiful Renaissance estate and you can still see it like that today. The castle offers two interesting tours. And when to visit? At the beginning of July! It is when the traditional summer Grabštejn garden festival takes place.
You can look forward to a good helping of music, dance, fencing, the mischief of the local hangman, tour guides in costumes, demonstrations of firearms and other weapons, tasty refreshments in the castle taproom, and craftsmen and stall-keepers who offer traditional meals and other products and souvenirs. Come enjoy history with all your senses!
Another forgotten gem near Olomouc in Moravia can be found above the water reservoir in the village of Plumlov. The construction of the château started in the 17th century and it was supposed to have three storeys and several wings.
However, it was never finished. It has never been inhabited and only four rooms were furnished in haste. In the 19th century, the building was used by the district court and the revenue office, other rooms were transformed into apartments for the clerks.
Since 2001, the château has undergone a full reconstruction. Today, you can go on a château tour that will take you from the basement to the attic (yes, you can also see the attic by appointment).