About 50 kilometres west of Prague, in the beautiful wooded valley of the Berounka River, lies the village of Krivoklát with its historic 12th century castle. Whilst it is slightly further away from Prague and somewhat less accessible than the much better-known Karlštejn Castle, I was still surprised at the relatively small number of other visitors there were when we visited on Thursday 19th July.
The original castle was completed in 1109, just over 900 years ago. As with so many castles, over the following centuries it has been altered, extended and re-built after being badly damaged by fire. Once through the main gate, there is a large courtyard surrounded by buildings of different architectural styles. These house various artistic exhibitions and shops as well as providing some residential accommodation, presumably for staff who help maintain and run the castle today.
In the centre of the courtyard is the well which in times past, would have been the only source of water for the castle residents.
On one of the walls within the courtyard is the inevitable sundial
It is possible to explore the castle ramparts and then climb to the top of the round tower for this spectacular view down to the village in the valley below and across the nearby countryside. The beautiful forested area surrounding the village is designated as the Krivoklátsko Protected Landscape Region – a UNESCO ‘biosphere preservation’ area.
This was a most enjoyable day trip to a place and surrounding area which was completely new to us. There is so much more to tempt us to return in the not too distant future.