Have you heard of the charming Czech city called Olomouc? When travelling to the Czech Republic, everyone knows and visits Prague. I come from the Eastern part of the Czech Republic called Moravia, more precisely from the agricultural region called Haná.
A few historical facts
The first written record of Olomouc dates back to 1055, but the city is much older. It’s even rumoured that Julius Caesar founded the city, which is why you will find Caesar’s Fountain in Olomouc’s Upper Square. It is the largest and most artistically elaborate fountain in Olomouc.
Olomouc’s Palacký University, where I studied Czech and English philology, is the second oldest in the country, founded in 1573, after the Charles University.
The Upper and Lower Squares (Horní a Dolní náměstí) form the centre of the town. It’s confusing for some. The main one with the town hall is the Upper, the Lower is the smaller one.
7 tips from a local girl:
- We are not wine drinkers because we are not in South Moravia, we are fertile Haná. We drink beer and shots, homemade slivovitz.
- Olomouc is famous for tvarůžky which is a smelly cheese. Have them fried, it is delicious.
- There are cobblestones everywhere in the centre (in Czech cat heads – kočičí hlavy), classic old pavement. Apparently, even loose women do not wear high heels in Olomouc.
- Grammar: Olomouc is feminine (ta Olomouc), although this is confusing even for Czech speakers.
- They have the best vanilla ice cream in a cone in the Lower Square (Dolní náměstí). Sold from a small window, which has been there since my childhood.
- No need to rush! People from Haná are slow; we like to sit, chat, drink, take it easy. We walk slower than Prague people. It takes me about an hour to slow down in Olomouc, after all I have lived in Prague for over 20 years. Even the traffic lights and escalators are slower.
- Don’t compare Olomouc to Prague, even though we also have an astronomical clock on the Town Hall in our square. We Hanaks know which city is more stunning.
I truly recommend visiting Olomouc and Haná. The fast train ride takes just over two hours from Prague and you can spend an unforgettable weekend there. Did I mention that beer, pubs, and bars are much cheaper than in Prague? And Moravian girls are stunning.