Thursday was a national holiday here, in the Czech Republic. It was Liberation Day--the day when the Germans surrendered and the Russians liberated Prague in 1945. Typically, everyone makes this a long weekend and heads out of town. My husband and I and some friends decided to take a day-long hiking trip. The Czech Republic has one of the most developed system of hiking trails in Europe. It is interesting to note that these trails are all maintained by volunteers from the Czech Tourist Club, which was first started in 1889. Currently, this club maintains more than 40,000 km of hiking trails in the Czech Republic!
Our hiking lead us first to a village called Krepnice (see map). The trail head in this village sits next to a small fortified castle. The castle is private, so it was not possible to take a tour. But it was still very impressive just to see it from the outside. After consulting our hiking maps, we decided to try a different trail head. This trail head was out in the country, and was called U Krizku (at the cross--see map). We followed the yellow trail, and then turned off onto the green. This trail is a beautiful windy trail that follows along the upper bluffs of the river. You do a lot of climbing on this trail, but the views make it worth all that hard work! The views are spectacular--it is possible to see for miles around--with many ridges off into the horizon.
After finishing this trail, we followed it back, and then where it joined the blue, we turned off and followed that one round about till we finally hit Radich. This trail is also pretty--it follows the river, but also takes you over farm land, marshes, and along side forest streams with burbling waterfalls. It was so relaxing after the first part of our hike! This was very easy going--just walking, not much climbing. The scenery is just as pretty, but not quite as dramatic as that first trail we took along the river bluffs. It is amazing what you find on these hikes--everything from the ruins of 500 year old castles to lizards, deer and wild flowers. The wild flowers were especially pretty. We saw so many different kinds of flowers and many different colors.
We had a great time on our hike, which also included a picnic of klobasa cooked over an open fire. The smell was wonderful...the klobasa tasted like a bit of heaven! Everyone was tired by the end of the day...we had fun together and saw some beautiful sites--and all not too far from Prague! If you get a chance, and are tired of the city, then spending time on some of the Czech Republic's hiking trails will really work wonders at helping you to relax and unwind as you walk through what you will think must be the Garden of Eden.
That's all for now...you all have a great weekend!
(c) 2008 by czechoffthebeatenpath
All photos property of S. A. Vacik