Cesky Raj in one day

Discussion in 'Travel Tips & Advice' started by Lilac, Jan 9, 2007.

  1. Lilac

    Lilac Member


    During my stay in Prague I am thinking about visiting Cesky Raj, but I don't know if it is reasonable to do it in just one day. I did some researches and my plan is to catch a train from Prague to Turnov, then walk through some trails (by the way, I read about these coloured trails in a book, are they easy to follow?) that pass in Trosky Castle, Hruboskalské Skalni Mesto Rock formations and Prachovské Skaly, then catch a bus to Jicín and from Jicín back to Prague by train. So, is it possible to do this in one day or sould I think of an alternative?

    I really want to see Trosky Castle, Prachovské Skaly and Hruboskalské Skalni Mesto Rock formations and I would rather walk than take a turistic bus, but seeing the paths in a map doesn't give me the exact idea of how it is, so if anyone who's been there could give me some advices it would be very helpful.
  2. mbm

    mbm Well-Known Member

    I know Český ráj pretty well, my family are from there. I spent some of my childhood there, and still go there most summers. It's the absolute best place on Earth, let me congratulate you on your choice! ;-)

    But the itinerary you have in mind is a bit much for one day, I'd say. You couldn't probably walk the whole thing in a day anyway, you'd have to take the bus. And even then, I'd suggest that you keep a whole day for Prachovské skály, they're huge and fascinating and you won't want to leave. Then another day for Hruboskalsko and Trosky, maybe.

    The coloured trails are extremely easy to follow, just choose a colour and look out for signs with that colour as you go along. The tracks go almost always along easily walkable paths, there is no need to scamble up steep slopes or anything like that. And the signs are usually quite easy to spot and are in a good state of up-keep. This is a very popular area for walkers.

    I hope you enjoy your time there. Don't forget to have a glass of Svijany (the local brew)!
  3. Sova

    Sova Well-Known Member

    Might I also recommend mountain bikes? I did a tour of Český ráj on a mountain bike, and found it an exhilarating experience. It's absolutely gorgeous country. I hope to take my family back there sometime in near future. Definitely, however, you need more than one day to see all that you have mentioned (even on a bike). Two days, at least. Preferably three.
  4. Lilac

    Lilac Member


    Thanks for your suggestions, I will surely follow them :wink:
    I was thinking: is Turnov worth a visit? Because I was watching the map I have here and I can go by train to Karlovice-Sedmihorky and then walk to Hruboskálské Skalní Mesto Rock formations and Trosky Castle, but I don't know if I should spend some time in Turnov. Between Turnov and Jicín, which is more interesting and apealing?
    Then the next day I will visit Prachovské Skaly Rock formations and Jicín.

    As I will spend two days there, I'm thinking of staying there for one night, because it's a waste of time to return to Prague at the end of the day and then come back again the next day. Do you suggest any particular place where I should search for accommodation? I can see in the map that there are some Camp Sites, but I would have to take the neccesary equipment for that, and that wasn't in my plans, so a nice and simple hotel/pension would be a better choice.

    I liked the idea of mountain bike, but are there any places there where I can rent it or I would have to take it by train from Prague?

    Thanks again.
  5. Sova

    Sova Well-Known Member

    There are places to rent bikes all over the region. See a previous thread entitled Travel in the Czech Republic Countryside for details. The link for bike rentals is in Czech, but hopefully the contact information is more or less understandable. I'm not sure if any of them speak English either. The first link is for a place in Turnov does allow online reservations with the option to pick up the bike(s) in either Turnov, Malá Skala, or Jíčin, although again that webpage is only in Czech.

    The administrators of this site have some arrangement with a bike tour company, but unfortunately as of yet, do not include Český Ráj on any of their itineraries (Hint, Dana, Jeff! ). :wink:

    Turnov is a nice town. It will depend on what you are most interested in: the wide open spaces of nature, or perhaps more a cultural experience.

    Here is a link to some hotels in the area (in English).
  6. Karel_lerak

    Karel_lerak Well-Known Member

    There is also Museum of "Český Ráj" in Turnov:
    In the surroundings of Turnov the Czech garnets are found. There is a long jewellery making tradition ín the area.
  7. Lilac

    Lilac Member


    Now that I have returned from CR I can tell you that I absolutely loved the day I spent in Cesky Raj, it was wonderful!

    We took a bus very early in the morning from Prague to Turnov and then a train to Ktova. From there, we followed the green trail to Trosky Castle (the trails are very easy to follow, nice work on that), going uphill through many trees and with amazing views. There was some kind of Medieval festival at Trosky, it was very nice to spend the morning there. You don't find many places to eat in that area, so the food stands from the festival were very useful.
    Then we continued to follow the green trail, heading to Prachovské Skaly, walking in plain and beautiful fields. There are many maps of the area along the way, with all the trails, so we didn't have any trouble with the way. Then we followed a red path that took us to the rock formations town. We had to stop once in the way because at some point we were tired and it was very hot, but the amazing landscapes (forest landscape, plains, lakes) that we were finding at each step were very encourage to keep us moving.
    Finally we got to Prachovské Skaly and, after a stop for a nice refreshing beer, we went inside that amazing labyrinth of giant rock formations. We spent hours there! It was even more beautiful than I'd imagined! And everything is so well preserved.
    We had something to eat in a small terrace near the road in Prachov and then we went to Jicin by taxi, as there were no longer any buses. I think we overpaid for it, but after that great day I wasn't worried by that.
    From Jicin we took a train to Prague and we arrived there at about 11 pm.

    It was one of my favourite days while my staying in CR. We walked about 18 km, according to the indications and a distance-meter that we had. I would have liked to see Hruboskalsko too, but I guess I will have to come back for it at another time :wink:
    I recommend a trip to Cesky Raj to anyone who loves nature (and doesn't mind walking or biking), it is really an amazing place.
  8. Sova

    Sova Well-Known Member

    Glad you enjoyed your trip! And even better, to have an excuse to come back!

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