We really enjoy exploring the suburbs of Prague and one fine May day we set off for Brandis nad Labem. We share our impressions and bright spring photos in a new article.
On the way we went by bus from the Vysočanská stop. There is a direct bus number 375 to Brandis. Travel time is 35 minutes. The bus makes several stops along the way, most of which are on demand.
Near the bus stop we noticed a whole alley of cherry blossoms, and I could not resist taking a photo.
In Brandis we got off at a stop at the town hall.
It was a weekend morning, and there was a liveliness in the central square: there were tents selling Czech and Hungarian cheeses and sausages, seedlings, homemade pies and household items. We did not pass by and bought juicy large tomatoes.
I was especially struck by the number of grilled chickens on sale. I got the impression that all the people in the square ate this chicken after shopping!
In addition to food, the market sold special food for dogs and signs with pets, which are installed on the gates of houses. On one of them you can see the Czechoslovakian wolfdog.
I was amazed by the blossoming tulips of all shades of the rainbow, planted in the flower beds. It is impossible to stop admiring this beauty of nature and the general grooming of Masaryk Square. In honor of the first president of Czechoslovakia - Tomas Garrigue Masaryk - the squares and streets of many Czech cities are named. For example, in Ostrava, Brno, Jihlava.
Separately, it is worth telling about the Renaissance town hall of the 16th century. Currently, this old building houses the city hall, and in the modern annex to the town hall - the tourist information office.
The town hall was built during the heyday of Brandis nad Labem, thanks to the frequent visits of Emperor Rudolf II. The fresco on the façade depicts the moment when the emperor handed over the rights of the city to Brandis nad Labem.
From the center of Brandis, we walked along a quiet street in the direction of the main city attraction - the castle in Brandys nad Labem. The castle can still be seen from the road.
The castle in Brandis nad Labem enjoyed special attention of representatives of the Habsburg royal dynasty, which attracts history buffs to this day. Emperors Ferdinand I, Maximilian II and Rudolph II stayed here. Emperor Charles VI came to hunt in the surrounding forests rich in game. And Ferdinand I was even visited here by the Russian Emperor Alexander I and King of Prussia Friedrich Wilhelm III before the battle of Leipzig. Until 1918, the castle belonged to the Czech king and emperor Charles I.
The real treasure of the castle will be revealed to you if you look into the courtyard. Here you can observe powerful walls decorated with sgraffito paintings. If you wish, you can go on a guided tour of the castle for a fee, where you will be shown the restored halls and expositions, and you will learn about the life of the royal people in the castle. Of the interesting - the library of the Habsburg family on the Tuscan line and the exposition of the imperial cavalry. The castle is open all year round.
You can admire the local sgraffito painting for hours. This photo of the castle wall with the image of an elephant may be a reference to the Indian campaign.
Attention was drawn to the unusual sculpture of the mistress of Emperor Rudolf II in the wall.
A visit to the castle grounds is free. Chickens, goats, roosters and handsome peacocks walk along it, and you begin to feel comfortable and at home. If you're lucky, the peacock will appear to you in all its glory.
I was amused by the cocky cocks walking around the territory with a businesslike air.
There are benches on the territory where you can take a break. But people, despite the day off, are not observed at all.
The castle stands on a hill above the city, and offers a picturesque view of the tiled roofs and greenery. All in all, the Brandis castle can definitely be included in the list of the most impressive castles in the Czech Republic.
From the park next to the castle, we decided to launch a drone to show you its greatness in all its glory. This is one of our first flights, so there was a little fear while driving. You can see the result of the flight in the main photo for this article. Of course, bright pink sakura and tulips also bloom in the castle park.
Then we had a short walk across the river to the second part of the city called Stara Boleslav. The fact is that two towns - Brandys nad Labem and Stara Boleslav - have merged to form the city with the longest name in the Czech Republic. They are separated by the Labe River, on which the dam is built.
From the bridge over the river, you can take the best photo of Brandis Castle, which shows the entire castle.
We cross the river and find ourselves on the right bank - to Stara Boleslav. This town is the oldest pilgrimage site in the Czech Republic. Stara Boleslav was founded 400 years earlier than Brandis. He was glorified by the death of St. Wenceslas, who was killed here in 935 by his brother Boleslav. This happened next to the Basilica of St. Wenceslas in the photo below in the distance. Every year, on the Czech national holiday on September 28, locals make a pilgrimage to this basilica.
Once in Stara Boleslav, you immediately feel the religious power of this place - the maximum number of cathedrals per unit area is collected here: the Cathedral of St. Clement, Cathedral of the Virgin Mary, included in the List of Cultural Heritage Sites of the Czech Republic.
As in any other Czech city, it was not without a neat and well-groomed main square with a plague pillar and a town hall. The total population of both cities is just over 19. Mostly elderly people and couples who are looking for housing in the suburbs with good transport accessibility from Prague live here.
Our walk did not end there - we took a bus to the nearby cemetery of Soviet soldiers. On this day - May 8 - Europe celebrates the end of World War II, and fresh flowers were laid on the grave of the soldiers. Last time on May 8 we spent in the town of Lidice and wrote an article "Lidice - a Czech village destroyed by the Nazis."
There was an incredible cherry blossom alley near the stop, where I really wanted to take a photo. By the way, this suburb is called Vinorge.
That was the end of our walk through the town of Brandys nad Labem-Stara Boleslav. I recommend this place for a leisurely stroll and a day trip from Prague, not only to hikers, but also to cyclists. The fact is that in the vicinity of Brandis nad Labem there are many bike paths surrounded by green forests and ponds. Czechs come to the local artificial canal to do rowing slalom. The spa town of Lazne Touseni is also nearby, where you can relax in the spa. All in all, Brandys nad Labem, Stara Boleslav and its surroundings will be of interest to lovers of history, nature, walking and cycling.