Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Praded-the highest peak in Jeseniky Mountain Range


Either on foot or by bus you may get to Ovcarna, a place which is a gate to Praded Mountain-the highest one in Jeseniky Mountain Range. If you’re lucky to rent a room in one of the pricey hotels you may use your car to get up to Ovcarna every single day, if you’re not… like me and 80% other human beings you must cope in other way. The best way is to leave your car in Hvezda parking space and continue by bus. In 2015 the parking fee is 100 kc per day (Hvezda next to the bus stop) and the bus ticket fare is 22kc, which is not much comparing to prices for accommodation up there.

The bus departs every full hour in direction to Ovcarna and it leaves every half past in directions back to Hvezda. The last one leaves at 17:30, so you better don’t miss it, because a 6 kilometer walk seems a wonderful idea during summer, but not necessarily in winter especially after dusk. Well but who knows what makes you tick...

It’s fantastic how the weather conditions change with every kilometer the bus takes. Pines and spruces covered with snow from top to bottom the further and higher we were. Almost like Jack Frost spent his winter break here blowing frosty puff all around. Nowhere else we’ve been during our days off in Jeseniky Mountains was even similar to Praded. The more time I spent outside, the happier I was. One thing I must recommend is to wait for a sunny, cloudless day, so that you can enjoy your stay.

And how is the skiing over there. The higher you are the windier it gets, but it apparently didn’t bother skiers and snowboarders, who climb to 1492 meters above the sea level to enjoy the downhill. Thrill-seekers won’t be disappointed- a black and red tracks are at the foot of the Praded Mountain. There’re also several blue tracks for those, who don’t feel secure enough on slope. It’s a pity the ski resort is not equipped with chair lift, but that would be a paradise then. There’re seven lifts in total in the whole area. As far as I am concerned one ticket is valid for all lifts in Praded-Ovcarna, Svycarna is not included. Prices are a bit higher than in other ski resorts in Jeseniky. All day ski-pass costs 500 kc, 4 hour ticket costs 350 kc. It’s possible to pay by card in the main ticket office, next to Figura Hotel. More info.

Again there’s an alternative for those who doesn’t ski or snowboard. The hike to Praded -3,8 km- should take you about an hour and 20 minutes, but take into account the fact that snow layer is at least 30-40 centimeters thick, so in case you don’t own snowshoe you may be a bit slowed down. Choose the green path if you want to get to the summit. You’ll be proud of yourself if you complete the “task” and the reward awaits of course on top-indescribable beautiful view.

Tuesday, 17 February 2015

Karlova Studanka

Karlova Studanka

Karlova Studanka with its 800 meters above sea level is the highest situated spa village in the Czech Republic. Surrounded by a wild forest, it lays at the foot of the Praded Mountain. It’s believed that air in this area is the cleanest in the whole Czech Republic, comparable even to Alpine environment.

Although we spent only few hours strolling among magnificent wooden houses I felt like I knew this place. Late in the evening yellow bulb lights, visible through the windows glass, brighten up the wooden houses creating magical atmosphere as well as enabling us to take some photos. It’s amazing how those constructions, some of them from XIX century, get by through ages.
It’s also the mineral water’s merit that lures people here, the spa village is well known thanks to them. There’re baths, swimming pools and thermal water on every corner.

Not only fully covered by insurance medical stays to treat any respiratory problems, vascular disease, conditions after oncological disease, joints and spinal problems are popular here. People coming to Karlova Studanka year by year are also attracted by range of “beauty” treatment. Wellness, wraps, tepidarium, thermal salty water, wellness swimming pool, massages with hot stones, vibro-massages are only a part of the complete offer. It’s not cheap, but it’s ok to treat yourself with a relaxing weekend once in a while. Summer or winter-it’s always season to take care of yourself here.

The history of the village dates back to 1780 when the spring of mineral water was discovered and named after Maximilian II Frantisek. Right after that the first wooden houses with tub baths were built. The settlement back then was named Hinewieder(from German hin and wieder). First patients could not stay overnight, they had to accommodate themselves in nearby Ludvikov or Mala Moravka. As soon as a new mineral water spring was discovered and named Karluv, the village name was changed to Karlova Studanka as we know it today.

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Mala Moravka-Jeseniky Mountains

Mala Moravka:

Little village with so much to offer. Besides eager snowboarders, passionate hikers and enthusiastic cross-country skiers, families with kids will find solace here. They can set off for a day trip to surrounding Karlova Studanka, parents can indulge on the slope while their kids are being taken care of in so called Detsky Koutek (Kid’s area) or the whole family can got to a nearby aqua park. Mala Moravka with its 700 inhabitants is very hospitable, almost every home is a guesthouse or a boarding house, not only providing accommodation but also cooking for you traditional Czech meals.


The selection is varied, depending on your budget and preferences from luxury hotels to modest rooms for rent. During a peak season prepare yourself to pay for a room at least 350 kc per night. It’s cheaper to share a room with your friends.

You have different options to choose from while booking your stay:
  • se snídaní: breakfast only
  • polo penze: breakfast+ hot supper, usually around 5-6 pm
  • plná penze: breakfast+lunch+supper

In case you didn’t pay for the meal at the hotel, remember to go for so called denni menu (daily menu). You can get a 2 course menu for 80-100 kc.

Ski resorts:

Mala Moravka and Karlov pod Pradedem are loaded with ski areas. You can choose among the most popular ones in the neighbourhood like Karlov or Koprivna or go for a smaller ones. If you don’t feel like paying for the ski lifts just select one of the slopes without any-there’re plenty of them nearby. You can sledge with your kids or take up your first steps on the board.

If you decide to go on ski lift buy a combo ticket for almost all slopes in the area-Mysak, Kazmarka, Karlov, Avalanche and Koprivna. All day ticket costs 450 kc, it is valid from 8:30 am to 4 pm. Kids younger than 5 years can use lifts for free. In case you are up to night skiing from 6 pm to 9 pm you have to pay 350 kc-unfortunately all day ticket does not include night skiing. If you plan to stay the whole week you should consider buying a 5-day ski-pass for 1700 kc.

Everyone spending their free time in Jeseniky Mountains can find something for themselves from a blue track to black one. Kids will also enjoy their time here, especially at Koprivna ski resort, which has kids’ park and toboggan or Karlov, which is equipped with kids’ corner.

Trips nearby:

  • Observation Tower Nova Ves - follow the yellow hiking path from the parking space between Ski centrum Pawlin and Ski Karlov. Currently open only on weekends until 4 pm.
  • Chapel’s hill (Kaplickovy Vrch) - follow red path from Mala Moravka Rychta, then turn to educational path: Wide Web Museum. The chapel’s is visible from the road.
  • Wide Web Museum educational trail - in total around 30 kilometers, it connects Mala Moravka, Karlova Studanka and Ludvikov villages.
  • Bila Opava educational trail - it goes down the spring of White Opava River. Everyone who follow will get the chance to gaze at beautiful waterfalls, cascades and rock formations.