Bohemian Paradise: 3 must see places
The Bohemian Paradise in Czechia (the Czech Republic) is a place where you become a child again. Or feel like Indiana Jones. You can find rocks of bizarre shape, labyrinths of moss-covered cliffs, lakes and waterfalls in a relatively compact area. And if that’s not enough, history lovers can admire old castles and everyone will enjoy a walk in one of the cute towns of the region.
You can find the Bohemian Paradise in the Czech Republic, or more precisely in the north of Bohemia. It’s around 100 km north-east from the capital, Prague. This land of special natural beauty became a protected area in 1955. It was the first of its kind in the country and its size has doubled since then.
The park (Cesky Raj in Czech) is best known for its unusual rock formations, the thick pine forests and the fairy-tale castles. It has been popular with tourists, artists, rock-climbers and hikers for centuries. Today you can choose from a number of well signposted routes but you can always “get lost” a bit to discover the place for yourself.
It’s a good idea to stay in one of the towns around the park (like Jicin or Turnov) but accommodation at reasonable prices is also available in small villages. I’d recommend this site to look for rooms or houses to rent. It’s in Czech but easy to navigate and understand. We stayed in a farmhouse in Nová Paka and loved it. The natural reserve is not that big so you can easily reach any of the following three areas from your base.
If you stay in Jicin, this is the most accessible attraction. Not surprisingly, what makes the Prachov Rocks (Prachovské Skály) unique is the rocks. You can roam among the outlandish sandstone formations and climb some of them for superb views. There are signposted routes and you will find stairs and railings in the harder parts.
You can start your hike from Prachov itself or from Jinolice, both about 6-7 km from Jicin. There are three small lakes nearby, where a campsite operates. It could be a nice place to stay in the warmer months.
I’m sure one day won’t be enough of these fairy-tale chimneys of sandstone. The Adršpach-Teplice Rocks have all the beauties of the first location plus more. You can squeeze through narrow passages between the rocks and there’s also a pretty waterfall. Or you can take one of the boats that commute on a small lake. The Titanic and the Concordia take you past the cliffs while you take hundreds of photos.
This protected area is not strictly part of the Bohemian Paradise and it is a bit farther off. It’s about 70 km from Jicin. The tourist path is best to approach from the town of Adršpach, where you can park your car for free.
Hrubná Skála has its fair share of bizarre rock formations that can be 30-40 metres high. In addition, you can visit a majestic palace and the ruins of a medieval castle. The views of the plain from Trosky Castle are well worth the effort.
Hrubná Skála is 20 km from Jicin in the same direction as the Prachov Rocks so the two could be visited on one day but spare a few hours for both if you can.
If you are luckier than us and have more than just three days, you can find many other sights in the region. Bozkov caves, for example, have the largest underground lake in the Czech Republic.
Did you like this post? Check out my article about the 4-day hike in the Atlas Mountains!