Saturday, February 18, 2012

2011 SFC Cesky Krumlov

If you haven't figured it out by now, trips with CruiseGran are not lounge-around-all-day-sleep-until-noon vacations. Her interest in seeing the world combined with our wonderful travel agent Teri Crane's research had us up very early to travel three hours outside Prague to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Cesky Krumlov.

Three hours, you say?? Yes- and worth the drive many times over.

Cesky Krumlov beautifully preserves the architecture and atmosphere of the late thirteenth century.

But let's start at the top. The gardens of the palace is where we began our day with a group photo.

Just a short walk led us to the gates of the castle, with its magnificent view.

How old is this sundial, I wonder?

Bears have been kept within the castle moat since the sixteenth century.

Charming lanes and alleys connect streets.

Here's a look up from where the first photo was taken.

Clever way to span to hills, isn't it?

The castle has a series of courtyards. The faux painting on the exterior is wonderfully restored.

Yes, it is paint, not beveled stone.

More decorative manhole covers.

This takes the award for cleverest clock of the day!

The cathedral from the valley.

The Vltava River, the same one that winds through Prague, is much smaller here.

One of the "giggles" of the river system is the weirs. Some rafters do well...

and some, not so.

One of the main squares of Cesky Krumlov. Such charm!

We found a lovely spot for a late lunch before returning to Prague. Outdoors, but protected from the sun, we could overlook the weir and watch for the rafters' misadventures.

I went for the daily special.

It could have fed all of us.

And just when you think you'd seen it all, we came upon an art gallery with a most unusual entrance.

A stunning day.

It was hard to keep our eyes open on the trip back to Prague. A little Redbull aperitif helps.

After dinner, a leisurely walk back to the Palace found us playing with some unusual seating.

Almost time to head home!

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