Page 1

A region you just can’t miss!

Folk architecture

Europe Czech Republic Central Bohemia Region Prague

Byšičky – unique circular Baroque village From a bird’s perspective, the red roofs of the circularly arranged Baroque homestead appear like a shining star amidst the green fields and meadows. The village chapel between four stately linden trees, several village cottages, but mainly the ring of eight farmsteads form the rustical appearance of one of the best preserved Baroque village squares. The village was founded in 1717 by the generous patron of the arts count F. A. Sporck as part of the Baroque scenery surrounding his château at Lysá nad Labem.

Přerov nad Labem – the oldest ethnographic museum in the Czech Republic Square timbered cottages, barns, wells, fruit drying houses, the old school, a forester’s lodge with a service yard, arrays of ancient fruit breeds or “granny’s little garden”, where flowers, medicinal herbs, and roots are cultivated. The most famous central Bohemian open-air museum continues to grow. Today, on an area of two and a half hectares, we can admire around three dozen unique examples of architecture of the central Elbe region. The oldest and most beautiful is the so-called Old-Bohemian Cottage. Originally a reeve magistrate and smithery, it was renovated into a museum of folk culture as early as at the end of the 19th century at the request of the owner of the neighbouring chateau. The interior arrangement, seasonal exhibitions, festivities, and events bring us closer to village life in the seasonal cycle of the year and to village customs.

Křinec – old-world region around the Mrlina stream The agricultural region north of Nymburk and Poděbrady enchants its visitors with its villages and their old-world magical spell. The Mrlina tributary, flowing in Nymburk into the Elbe, in lowland landscape with ponds, meadows, pastures, and forests is an ideal tip for family cycling trips. The most beautiful village is the historic preserve Bošín (in the photograph) with several typical Elbe region houses; the little town of Rožďalovice also boasts its typical houses (the exhibition gallery Melantrich can be found in one of them).

Budčice – a rattling mill by the brook The uniquely preserved cultural monument serves as a small mill museum. In Budčice nad Sázavou we return for a moment to the old days when the rattling of the mills echoed from every valley. The discrete building of the water mill (today a small private museum) hides away uniquely preserved milling equipment from the turn of the 20th century.

Kouřim – revived agrarian village The impulse for the foundation of the open-air museum in 1972 was to uphold the memory of folk architecture from the flood area of the future Švihov water reservoir, which supplies Prague and a part of the central Bohemian region with excellent water from the river Želivka. Only few remember today what a true smithing workshop looked like, how milk was processed in the villages, or how all the unusual buildings and machinery of our grandfathers were called. Examples of village life, crafts, and products revive folk

agrarian architecture, brought here from all over Bohemia. Folk festivities, processions, markets, exhibitions, and tastings of traditional refreshments are held throughout the year.

Vysoký Chlumec – a village beneath the castle The youngest of Central Bohemia’s open-air museums is gradually growing in the valley right under the castle at Vysoký Chlumec. Endangered historical village architecture that would otherwise dilapidate in their original locations are gradually moved to the area beneath the castle from the vast surroundings (mainly though from the Sedlčany region and Central Vltava area). A picture of the lives of our forefathers is painted not only by living quarters, farm houses and production areas (e. g. a functional water saw, the second oldest in Bohemia), but also the interior of village households, painted furniture, folk garments, various tools and utensils, or even a bee house and dove-cot.

The rocky Sedlčany region – by foot or bicycle The wavy region south of Sedlčany has preserved its ancient spell given by its virtually untouched nature, little villages with folk architecture, and the old balks with bulky boulder dams. As though time has been standing still for centuries. Did you know that precisely here in the poor hilly and stony region we find one of the oldest folk buildings in Bohemia? It comes from the days when this estate was ruled by the famous builder of south Bohemian and Sedlčany

ponds Jakub Krčín of Jelčany and Sedlčany. The late-Gothic mill in Bláhova Lhota is also a part of it. In the surrounding of Petrovice (Porešín, Libčice, Nechvalice) we find timbered buildings of the 18th and 19th centuries.

The Křivoklát region – forests, forests, forests The Berounka River winds through the deep forests of the Křivoklát region in a deep canyon; a number of villages with many beautiful timbered buildings are preserved along the steep hillside. Most of them were preserved in Skryje, its surroundings famed by 600 million year-old fossilized ocean creatures discovered by the French engineer Joachim Barrande. Besides a trilobite museum, his memorial also includes examples of dwelling and kitchen equipment

of our great-grandmothers. Picturesque old village houses can also be admired in the villages of Týřovice, Kostelík, Skřivaň, Branov, and Nezabudice.

Příbram region – region of miners Little houses on the outskirts of towns show the poor life of miners and local manual labourers. The Příbram region used to be proclaimed as a region of miners and craftsmen. In Příbram and Březové Hory silver was mined, in Nový Knín it was gold; Rožmitál was famed for its local production of nails and rivets – “studding”. Visitors can see the mining cottage in Příbram and the grange museum in Prostřední Lhota. Besides this, we can also find nice rustic farmsteads and cottages – for example, in the villages of Palivo, Drahenice and Tušovičky (in the photograph).

Zbečno magistrate – authentic atmosphere of times past The old-Bohemian magistrate used to be the seat of the village reeve (“rychtář” from the German word Richter), who looked after peace, order, and right in the village. For his services, he took a share out of penalty fees and was allowed to operate a pub. Zbečno is already mentioned in old chronicles as one of the oldest Bohemian settlements. Bohemian princes and kings would start-out from here to hunt and chase in their immense forests. Besides the former Romanesque church, the most significant monument

of the village is the ancient reeve magistrate originating from the 16th century, which belongs to the most valuable and oldest folk architecture monuments in Central Bohemia.

Podbrdsko – a trip to the melancholy foothills The foothills region crouching over the northern edge of the Brdy forests near Prague takes our breath away with villages with beautiful folk architecture. Wide circular village squares in Olešná (in the photograph) or Zaječov, or the foothill meadows in Kleštěnice are decorated with nice timbered houses, reminding us of the famous Brdy area 19th century ironworks. Here also, on the northern side of the Brdy mountains, just as in the Příbram region, residents used to make money with the local production of tools or with “studding”.

Kokořín region – treasury of folk architecture The highest representation of folk architecture in Central Bohemia was preserved in the untouched Kokořín region. The romantic protected landscape full of gorges, valleys, sandstone rocks and forests is decorated with numerous storeyed timbered houses. Not only the individual beautiful buildings are listed, but entire villages (Nové Osinalice, Nosálov, Olešno and Dobřeň) are conservation areas. A good example of them all is the Pension Roubenka in Truskavna (in the right photograph).

Třebíz – fairytale village green Filmmakers could not come up with better fairytale scenery: a village square with a pond, Baroque chapel, a belfry, fountain, and all surrounded by ancient Bohemian settlements. It is not only an open-air museum – people live a peaceful village life here. The village conservation area with its beautiful square is partially the Slaný region ethnographic museum – the western part of Central Bohemia. The wealthy Cífka estate, retired farmers’ cottages, shoemaker’s dwelling, a village

shop, the birthplace of the famous Czech writer Václav Beneš Třebízský and many expositions documenting folk construction, farming and crafts can be admired here.

Mužský – the pearl of the Bohemian Paradise When the spring countryside blooms with the delicate blossoms of the cherry trees in the orchards under the volcanic peak Mužský, there is no need to explain why this place is called Český Ráj (Bohemian Paradise). The surroundings of Mužský hill are mainly known for their rocky castle granaries of which the most famous is Drábské světničky. The little village of Mužský, one of the most beautiful Central Bohemian villages and a conservation area, tucked

away to the side. Its somewhat secret square with the belfry is lined with sensitively renovated timber houses. Nice folk architecture – for example the beautiful mill, which was featured in many filmed fairytales – can also be found in Střehom.

Around Bělá pod Bezdězem – a kingdom of old cottages We can tell that we have arrived in the kingdom of folk architecture as soon as we reach the square in Bělá pod Bezdězem – besides the Renaissance town hall it is also decorated by several timbered houses. The beautiful landscape under the stately Bezděz castle always attracts dreamers and poets. The beautiful and historically valuable timbered houses – for example in Skalsko, Kluky, Březinka; with the nicest square in the 600 yearold village of Víska (in the photograph) – fittingly

represent the national anthem’s patriotic quote “Earth’s paradise on sight”. A number of villages are also decorated with imposing farmsteads with wooden buildings and beautifully decorated arched gates.

This project is co-financed by the European Union and Central Bohemia Region.

Published by Central Bohemia Region, 2008 Information Centre of Central Bohemia Region Husova 19, 110 00 Praha 1 phone: +420 222 222 398,

Folk architecture  
Folk architecture