Would you like to find an alternative way to relax and would you like to leave your hectic lifestyle behind at least for awhile? Visit any of the religious pilgrimages or church monuments. Recently, many churches have been renovated in the Czech Republic and monasteries not only offer pilgrimage tours but also accommodation and refreshments.
Pilgrimages and Spiritual Meetings
This year we are commemorating the 1150th anniversary of the arrival of the apostles St. Cyril and Methodius to Great Moravia. Celebrations of this significant anniversary will reach its peak during the pilgrimage on Velehrad from July 4th – 5th (within the state holiday) with a traditional display of the Days of the people of the Goodwill. A rich spiritual and cultural programme is prepared even for this year.
Other significant pilgrimage locations, which you can visit during this year’s pilgrimage period, include Pribram Svatá Hora near Příbram, Svatý Hostýn or the Church of St. John Nepomuk on Zelená Hora. From 1994, this church has been entered into UNESCO as a monument. The National Pilgrimage to St. Wenceslas to Stará Boleslav will be held on September 28th and will commemorate the patron of the Czech Republic, St. Wenceslas.
In cooperation with the Evangelical Church of Czech Brethren, the 400th anniversary of the final issue of the Holy Bible in Czech language will be held from September 13th – 15th. The main programme will be on Saturday, when the theatre choir will perform and the entire celebration will be accompanied by songs and concerts.
Prague is also full of church monuments, which are worth visiting. St. Vitus Cathedral is among the most visited structures of the Czech Republic in general, whereas the Břevnov Monastery, on the other hand, is the oldest male monastery in the Czech Republic. People from all around the world visit the Church of the Virgin Mary the Victorious to pray to the Child of Prague. The masterpiece work of art of the Middle European baroque architecture, St. Nicholas Church in Lesser Town, is certainly worth mentioning.
Rest in the Shadow of the Monastery Walls
Even though the Czech Republic is a landlocked country, where only a minority of its citizens claim to be members of an organised church, spiritual heritage is an inseparable part of this nation. Here, you will find tens of monasteries, in which nuns and monks, devoted to serving God and others, still live today.
The Prague Strahov Monastery, the oldest Premonstratensian monastery in the Czech Republic, is located directly in the centre of Prague, visible from Prague Castle. Here you can admire one of the best preserved historical libraries. If you are thirsty after the tour, refresh yourself at the local monastery restaurant of St. Norbert Brewery.
Another significant and still functional monastery is the Premonstratensian Teplá Monastery in West Bohemia. You can stay at Hotel Klášter Teplá and take advantage of not only the silence behind the monastery walls, but also visit the nearby spa cities of Karlovy Vary, Mariánské Lázně and Františkovy Lázně.
The monastery in Vyšší Brod is part of the Cistercian Order. From the middle of the 13th century, it is part of the main spiritual centres of South Bohemia. Following a tour of the monastery grounds, you can finish off your day at the nearby Lipno Dam or stay at the nearby fairytale romantic city of Český Krumlov.