Český Krumlov (Bohemian Crumlaw) is a small city in the South Bohemian Region of the Czech Republic where Český Krumlov Castle is located. Old Český Krumlov is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and was given this status along with the historic Prague castle district.
Construction of the town and castle began in the late 13th century at a ford in the Vltava River, which was important in trade routes in Bohemia. In 1302 the town and castle were owned by the House of Rosenberg. Emperor Rudolf II bought Krumlov in 1602 and gave it to his natural son Julius d’Austria. Emperor Ferdinand II gave Krumlov to the House of Eggenberg. From 1719 until 1945 the castle belonged to the House of Schwarzenberg. Most of the architecture of the old town and castle dates from the 14th through 17th centuries; the town's structures are mostly in Gothic, Renaissance, and Baroque styles. The core of the old town is within a horseshoe bend of the river, with the old Latrán neighborhood and castle on the other side of the Vltava.
During the interwar era it was part of Czechoslovakia. Between 1938 and 1945 it was annexed by Nazi Germany as part of the so-called Sudetenland. The town's German-speaking population was expelled after liberation by the American Army during World War II and it was restored to Czechoslovakia.
During the Communist era of Czechoslovakia, Krumlov fell into disrepair, but since the Velvet Revolution of 1989 much of the town's former beauty has been restored, and it is now a major holiday destination popular with tourists from Germany, Austria and beyond, as far as China. In August, 2002, the town suffered from damage in the great flood of the Vltava River.
Český Krumlov Castle is unusually large for a town of Krumlov's size; within the Czech Republic it is second in extent only to the Hradčany castle complex of Prague. Inside its grounds are a large rococo garden, an extensive bridge over a deep gap in the rock upon which the castle is built, and the castle itself, which in turn consists of many defined parts dating from different periods of time. After the garden was not adequately maintained during the second half of the 20th century, the site was included in the 1996 World Monuments Watch by the World Monuments Fund. With financial support from American Express the garden's central fountain was documented and reconstructed, and is functional today.
Hrad Rozmberk (Rosenberg castle) one of the oldest castles in South Bohemia, dominates the same village. It was built around the 13th century at the latest. In the years 1840-1857 in the times of John Buquoy there was a detailed reconstruction of the castle in the romantic gothic made. Over the centuries, the castle was held by the family of the Vítkovcis, Rozmberks, Svamberks, Buquoys ... We strongly recommend to purchase a tour with a view from the castle tower, and visit the castle's torture chamber (individual exposure).
Vítkův Hrádek (The Vitkuv Castle), the highest laid castle in Bohemia - 1.053 metres above the sea level with an observation deck with an unique view over the Lipno and its surroundings, the Alps can be seen if there is a favorable weather. It is only about 400 metres from the settlement of of Svaty Tomas, where you can go by car, so the ruins are very well accessible. Personally, I recommend to leave the car in the parking lot "Na Uhlisti" and then to continue along the nature trail for about 7 km to the castle, on way back to use the shortcut directly from Svaty Tomas to the parking lot in about 1.5 km.
Divci Kamen (Girl´s Rock), a gothic castle from the 14th century was owned by the Rozmberks, abandoned since the16th century. Today those are extensive freely accessible ruins. You have the opportunity to explore all the ruins and through descriptive labels on different places you can get an idea of how the castle once looked. You can reach the ruins from Trisov where a parking lot is found, there is a pleasant walk about 3 km to the castle ruins from there. The trail begins at the centennial lime tree, continues around the fields and before it takes you down to the river, you will be rewarded by a wonderful view over the ruins. Tip: On the way to Trisov you can use the train from the Hurka station directly to Trisov, the stop is just at the parking lot - a nostalgic journey by diesel train will please not only your children.
Certova stena, (The Devil's Wall), deeply curved original river bed of Vltava with boulders and bowl-shape pits above the right bank you will see stone sea of glacier origin. A unique display of the power of nature, only here one understands how tiny we are to the nature. The parking lot can be found right next to the road leading to the Vyssi Brod and then about 300 metres to the lookout.
Klet, on top of 1,084 meters above the sea level you will find the oldest stone tower in Bohemia. A beautiful view allows you to see not only almost the entire southern Bohemia, but if the weather is favorable, you can also see the Alps. The top can be reached by cable car from Krasetin or "on your own" I recommend to use marked paths, a path directly under the cable car is quite arduous at the end. I strongly recommend to take an opportunity to go down from the top on scooters – the trail leads directly to the parking lot below the cable car. The route is not difficult and everyone can definitely handle it with a little care including children.
Pohádkový les (Fairytale Forest), in Horice at premises of "Passion Plays" you will definitely find interesting activities in a fairytale reservation. A squad of people around Mr. Ptacek will definitely liven up your stay to you and your children in our region. Your children will not be the only ones to laugh, but the actors certainly make you laugh. Fairytale Characters: Phantom, Waterman, The Devil, The Wild little man .... Little Red Cap and Mr. Bird will guide you through the forest and bring you into a story full of laughter.
Plešné jezero (Lake Plesne), a glacial-originated lake with an area of 7.48 hectares at an altitude of 1,090 meters above sea level with a maximum depth of 18.3 metres. You will find a 6-hectar stone sea, which is also of glacial origin about 200 m from the lake. On the plateau above the lake there is a memorial of Adalbert Stifter from year 1877 located. Above the water level of the lake there is a rock wall rising to 330 meters. The whole scene is overlooked by the highest peak of the Sumava - Plechy with a height of 1,378 meters above sea level. The lake is reachable by bike or on foot, you can leave a car at the village of Nova Pec - Laz.
Schwarzenberský Kanál (the Schwarzenberg Canal), this unique technical masterpiece was built between 1789 and 1791. The idea of this canal was to transport timber from the Sumava to Vienna and Prague. The canal overcomes watershed of the river Vltava and Danube, its length exceeded 80 km, in most places it is fixed and you have the opportunity to see the water tunnel as well as water bridge. Around the canal there is a perfectly made trail for cyclists as well as pedestrians. Best starting point with parking lot - Deer settlement, here you will find a small museum with a design maquette of this technical masterpiece.
Rafting on the Vltava being at Lipno and not to try going down the Vltava river on rafts is almost the same as if you have been nowhere. The Vltava from Vyssi Brod is certainly the most famous waterman´s river, it is not difficult and it is not a problem to go down on a raft for complete beginners including children. Personally, I recommend to get to Cesky Krumlov and here to order a raft that is transported to the starting point and go down the river to Krumlov (in approximately 3-4 hours). For beginners, I would recommend a route from Piskarna to Krumlov (about 3-4 hours), otherwise there is no problem to go down the Vltava River from Vyssi Brod (about 8 hours).