Walking Tour of Kutna Hora, Czech Republic
Kutna Hora, Czech Republic, is a village which had its boom in the 14th century when its silver mines were the source of most of the currency of Europe. When the boom ended in the 16th century, people left and the town was fairly undisturbed until it emerged again as a tourist destination, very recently. It was given World Heritage Site status in 1996. The Old Town is charming.
My walk begins at Palackeho Square, in the very center of the well-preserved, medieval town. The Tourist Office is on the square, so stop and get a map. Leave the square, heading west on Kusova, to see the Plague Column, at the corner of Sultysova. Turn right onto Sultysova and then turn left on Radnicka to visit the Stone House, a museum of local history.
After checking out the museum, walk south on Lierova and then left on Kusova, to Jakubska and turn right. This street ends at St James Church, a Gothic church with a tall tower. Behind the church is the former Royal Mint, now the Italian Court, which houses a mint museum, and is also worth a short visit.
Now, go back to the front of St James Church and walk east on Ruthardska which merges with Barborska. The Hradek Mining Museum is on your left, housed inside a 15th century palace. The best part of a visit to this museum, however, is a tour of the medieval mine shafts.
Continue west on Barborksa. Ahead, on your right, is the former Jesuit College. There are scenic views from the walkways and terraces of the college. Further west is Kutna Hora’s primary attraction, the Cathedral of Saint Barbara. Construction on this important, five-nave Gothic church began in 1388. The interior is positively wonderful.
Next, backtrack on Barborska to its end, and then turn right, heading eastward, past St James Church (again!) to Havlickovo Namesti. From here, turn right on 28 rijna, then left on Rohacova, a street which ends at the Church of Our Lady, another Gothic structure worthy of a visit.
Now, head east, on Na Nameti for about 1.5 kilometers (1 mile), into the town of Sedlec. Pass the Church of the Ascension of the Virgin, to the cemetery, which contains a Gothic Ossuary, housing the bones of tens of thousands of people. In the 19th century, a worker arranged and assembled the bones into many different shapes and figures, creating, certainly, one of the most unique attractions in the world. When your ghoulish activities are concluded, retrace your steps to Kutna Hora, passing the Church of Our Lady again, and then turning right on Tylova, which leads back to Palackeho Namesti, where the walk began.