Posted by: LM | May 9, 2008

Kutna Hora

I talk a lot about how much I love the Czech Republic and how being there was such a great experience. The truth is that although I lived there for a year, I didn’t get to see nearly as much of the country as I would’ve liked to. I taught classes five days a week, had to run church activities every Saturday, and Sundays were spent catching up on the grading (and sleep) that was neglected during the week. There were plenty of instances where I didn’t see the light of day for 60+ hours in a row. Granted, that’s because the sun goes down earlier and comes up later there during the winger. But the point is, I worked. I worked hard. Still, getting out and seeing the countryside was an aspect of my time there which never dulled and if you’re going to be in the country long enough, getting out of Prague and taking a day trip wouldn’t be a bad idea. If you’re going to take this day trip, might I recommend a favorite of mine? It’s a little town about an hour away from Prague via train called Kutna Hora (koot-naw hor-ah). The trip is cheap, quick, historical, and just plain fun.

I’ve been to Kutna Hora twice and both times I had a blast. The first time I went it was at the suggestion of one of my flatmates who insisted on getting us off our keisters and out into the world. She pointed out a section in her Rick Steves’ guide to the Czech Republic which talked about a church filled with the bones of 40,000 people. This peeked our sadistic interests right off the bat. We checked train schedules and ticket prices on our way to work the next day and the following Sunday we found ourselves in our own private train car (SO cool) on our own private adventure. This was our first excursion outside of the city by ourselves. Talk about liberating. We spoke our broken Czech and found our way to the location we affectionately designated as “the bone church”. Rick Steves wasn’t lying. This place was CRAZY. You have to pay to get in (a discount if you’re a student) and a bit more to be allowed to take pictures (Totally worth it though. You NEED pictures of this place). The chandelier in the picture above claims to use every bone in the human body. I’m still trying to decide whether to say “ew” or “oooh” on that one, but it’s interesting.

After wandering through the bone church we made our way into the center of the actual town. It was a long walk, but those with a larger budget may choose to hail a taxi. We hoofed it into town and found a place to eat. It was mid-November so there were Christmas decorations everywhere and a huge tree in the town square. There’s a GIANT cathedral there (the name escapes me) that I was very sorry to see under construction BOTH times I was there. I could tell even through the scaffolding that it was really gorgeous though. Unfortunately, I didn’t think to take a picture of it, apparently, so you’ll have to take my word for it. Once you finally get to the top of the mountain (“hora” means mountain in Czech, and you realize why when after walking uphill ALL DAY) there’s a great view. It was cloudy and ugly outside when I was there, so the pictures don’t do it justice. Again, you’ll have to take my word for it. The picture above is just one of many that I have of that great view.

All things considered, Kutna Hora is a great escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. It was important for my friends and I to let off some steam and be kids again and outings such as this one let us do just that. By the end of the day our feet were aching and we were half-starved, but getting out of the city for the first time on our own was something that we considered to be a feat. I loved it so much that I went again about six months later, forcing those of my friends who hadn’t been the first time to come along. Oh, and just fyi, Kutna Hora is where Philip Morris chose to set up its Czech Republic headquarters. We took a picture displaying our feelings on smoking. I just thought it was a fun fact.

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Responses

  1. I love all of your blogs :). Next time you go on a trip take me with you in your suitcase!! 😀


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