Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Short Walk in the Center of Pardubice

Pardubice, on the Elbe river is one of Czech Republic's most important industrial centers, historically focused on chemistry (this is where Semtex explosives come from), more recently electronics and machinery companies together with an oil refinery have brought new business here.

The city is known internationally for one of the most difficult horse races, the Steeple Chase and the indoor motorcycle race it hosts. But these are not the only attractions, inside the Czech Republic, the renown of Pardubice is linked to the gingerbread made here which saw a rise in production in the 20th century and the cultural life is also booming with music festivals and great theater. Well-known is the comedy theater festival held in the city's beautiful Art Nouveau theater house

If you stop by for an afternoon, start your trip at the information office, right next to the Green Gate, at Nam. Republiky 1. Here you can get your complimentary map and brochure where the main points are highlighted on and you can even follow one of the itineraries suggested there. Since the terrain is so flat, biles are very common with very good bike routes in and around town.

The city of about 90 000 inhabitants  has an old center reminiscent of the gingerbread that made it's fame and an interesting looking castle surrounded by gardens. Noteworthy is also the pedestrian area with cafés and restaurants, one being the Potrefena Husa in the Grand Shopping mall.

Passing the Green Gate, Pernštýnském náměstí the city's main square opens up to the visitor. It is a quiet square on a warm August after-noon but the imposing City Hall provides the background for the many fairs and festivals. A Marian Column and baroque houses complete the décor of one of the mot beautiful center squares in the Czech Republic.

Continuing towards the Castle, one will discover that it is surrounded by beautiful green gardens, a real heart of the city as many families meet here to enjoy the modern playground for children. Many sports events are held on the sports field close by.

The Castle itself is quite unique in Central Europe, a white, imposing Palace surrounded by castle walls, it used to belong to the lords of Pernštejn in the 16th century. Inside, it houses early renaissance murals as well as the Museum and the Gallery of East Bohemia, making it interesting enough for a stop over.

Pardubice is easily accessible by train from Prague or Brno, being an important railway hub in Eastern Bohemia or by car, following the D11 highway linking Prague and Hradec Kralove. Other day trips can include Kutna Hora, where there is a huge ossuaire and Kolin, where there is a Toyota plant. Both of these places are on the way to Prague, following quaint roads through villages.
 More information on www.visitpardubice.com/


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