Hluboká Castle is definitely one of the most beautiful Czech manor houses. It’s a place you have to pay a visit during your stay in the Czech Republic! Although it’s quite touristy, especially in summer, it’s absolutely worth seeing!
You can find this romantic castle in South Bohemia, about 15 km north of České Budějovice. It stands on a promontory above the Vltava River, the very same river that flows through Prague. There’re many travel agencies in Prague organizing pricy bus tours to Hluboká. But why not arrange a day-trip by yourself, it’s easy! Read further!
History of Hluboká Castle
Hluboká is originally a Gothic royal castle. Czech king Ottokar II of Bohemia built it in the middle of the 13th century. Later, it passed from owner to owner and was rebuilt several times. The last proprietor of Hluboká was the Schwarzenberg family, one of the most prominent European noble houses. They owned the castle from the middle of the 17th century until 1947. Today, the castle is state-owned.
The current appearance of the castle is not medieval, it comes from the 19th century. The inspiration? Royal Windsor Castle in London!
In 1838, the then owner Johann Adolf II of Schwarzenberg, together with his wife Eleonora, visited Great Britain. They were guests at the coronation of Queen Victoria! After returning back home, they rebuilt Hluboká into a modern residence in a neo-Gothic style. The work took over 30 years and included also landscaping of the chateau park and the castle surroundings.
Why should you visit Hluboká Castle?
Get familiar with how wealthy people used to live in the 19th century! There are four different guided tours of Hluboká Castle, all of them are available in English (and other languages). Interesting fact – the castle interior design supervised Princess Eleonora herself! The rooms are really beautiful and are worth seeing. Their walls and ceilings are richly decorated with woodcarvings and noble wood. Eleonora simply had good taste! For tour details and pricing, check the castle’s website.
If you’re not into the chateau rooms, climb 245 stairs of the 52-meters high chateau tower. From the top, you can overlook the castle and the surrounding landscape.
I highly recommend taking a stroll through the chateau garden. Check the castle exterior from another perspective! A visit to the garden is free. On the eastern tip of the park, you can find a beautiful terrace made of cast iron, which was accessible from the representative rooms of the castle, and two spiral staircases leading down to the garden.
Don’t forget to visit the extensive English landscape park located on the opposite side of the castle. In the hot summer, it’s a place where you will cool yourself!
Did you know that…
Hluboká is a popular place for wedding ceremonies. If you are looking for a romantic location for your special day, visit the castle’s website to find out more!
How to get to Hluboká
If you travel from Prague, the best option is to get on a bus going to České Budějovice, and then change to another one to Hluboká. I prefer traveling by bus rather than by train because it’s cheaper. Another reason is that you don’t have to walk from the train station in České Budějovice to the bus terminal to catch the bus to Hluboká. It’s not far at all, but it’s just more convenient. The buses to Hluboká leave from bay 11 of the bus terminal in České Budějovice.
After you get off the bus in Hluboká, walk slightly uphill to the chateau (you’ll already see it, so you can’t get lost).
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