The fairytale-like Prague has always come on top of my winter traveling list. She’s subtle and elegant, her beauty makes me gasp every time I’m standing in the old town plaza, admiring the details of the astronomical clock, or stunt by the misty scenic of the whole city from Petřín hill. Despite it is a tourist destination, yet I still manage to find a secret ally away from anyone else that make Prague belongs to me for a while.
What’s more romantic to spend the year-end with your loved one, cuddle up in the winter air, sharing a freshly baked cinnamon chimney cake while waiting for the town plaza to lit up? I couldn’t think of a better plan, but I’m not going to describe it any further since you must have heard or even seen Czech is well known her fantasy vibe from sources of travel guides or tv show. I’m here to take you an alternative day trip from Prague.
I and my boyfriend decided to look for something more adventurous and hidden to explore after spending 2 days in Prague center. The little town Kutná Hora catch our eyes with its Gothic background and we were tempted to visit the mysterious Bone Church there. It is located on the East side of Prague and you can get there easily by bus from Prague Haje station for a 1 hour 40 minutes ride.
Kutna Hora is a medieval Goth town and known for the two UNESCO World Heritage Sites After getting off the bus, you can find yourself surrounded by gothic architectures already. Ticket can be purchased at the tourist information center and they’re offering a combo ticket for the entry of the Ossuary, the Cathedral of Assumption of Our Lady and Saint John the Baptist, the Church of St. Barbara and the Gallery of Central Bohemia. They are all within walking distance, and there are lots of interesting shops that you can explore on the way from one attraction to another.
After a short walk from town plaza, we reached the bone church Sedlec Ossuary. It is estimated to contain the skeletons of between 40,000 and 70,000 people. In the 13th century, the cemetery is blessed with the pledge from the Holy Land and became a desirable burial site throughout Central Europe. And the numbers of skeletons increased sharply after the spread of Black Death. This may sound a bit uncomfortable at first but I’m sure you will be blown away when you see the how bones can be artistically arranged to form stunning decorations and furnishings for the chapel.
I’m impressed by the number of details on how they fit different types of bones into different content. Spines are used that gave a natural arch as the arm of the enormous chandelier and finger bones as crystal droplet; even animals bones are added to become a royal sign.
We head to the UNESCO world heritage site Cathedral of Assumption of Our Lady and Saint John the Baptist locate right next to Ossuary. You can spot all the symbolic gothic featured in the cathedral: pointing roof, an extremely high ceiling and the spiral stairway to heaven. There’s also a staircase at the side you can enter the interior of the rood and peek of the bell tower.
After grabbing a quick bite at the corner café, we made our way back to the hill beside the town center to the other two sites. Church of St. Barbara is one of the most famous Gothic churches in central Europe and it is a UNESCO world heritage site. It is magnificent from the outside to the inside, especially when it lit by the sunset. The colorful stained glass and symmetric radioactive shapes on the dome ceiling vault gave a bit of modern touch to the church that differs from most of the Roman Catholic Churches I’ve been.
Next to the church is the Gallery of Central Bohemia, a central European modern art museum. It is a highlight for my girlfriend who does art; they have a large collection of artwork from painting to installation. We enjoyed a bit of the sunset outside the museum and walk down to catch the bus back to the Prague.
After a long day walk in the cold air, we settle ourselves to a steakhouse downtown. You can find lots of local restaurant offering decent food for a very reasonable price. Each of us had 2 courses with a cocktail only for around 50 euro!! The perfectly cooked steak and favorable seafood chowder is the star of the night.
Czech is always magical. One moment you’re pampering with the elegances side of nature the other moment you may immerse yourself in the rustic history of wars left-behinds. For me, the best way to discover what the city is capable to offer is to go with a rough plan and open mind, just wander around and make your memories not by checking in on Facebook but engage in the city, the people and the culture; leave a piece of yourself there and found a piece eventually. I’ve found my goth girl where to belong!