Coursing through the protracted Šumava hills on cross-country skis is a classic Czech sporting pursuit. You, too, can glide through this beautiful landscape cloaked in glistening snow and revel in the joy of movement in locations where Czech Olympic cross-country ski champions regularly train. In the area around Kvilda, you’ll find dozens of kilometres of perfectly groomed and marked trails which will convince you that cross-country skis and the Šumava were simply made for each other.
The village of Kvilda is situated in the very heart of Šumava, below the 1,253-metre peak of Sokol Mountain. There are around thirty romantic cottages scattered across the plateau along with moors and wetlands. At the time of year when autumn slowly comes to an end and winter arrives, the local hillsides become blanketed in snow, which due to the high altitude can remain for many long months. This is the time of year when those who love the feeling of cross-country skiing through the countryside flock here to discover amazing pieces in the beautiful mosaic of the Šumava National Park.
Ski for your snack!
Where to go from Kvilda? You can choose any of the marked trails, which will take you through the most beautiful scenery that the area has to offer. If you feel like taking an easier route, an ideal destination is Horská Kvilda. You will proceed along undemanding flat terrain around one of the jewels of the Šumava, the Jezerní slať peat bog. But don’t forget to reward yourself for your effort! Head to the acclaimed Hones guest house, where you can taste a local blueberry “koláč” – these pastries simply have no competition in the region. From Horská Kvilda you can continue to Churáňov or Zhůří, and on the return leg you will go through Filipova Huť, where you will have a magnificent view of the second highest mountain in the Šumava, Roklan.
A view of the Alps …
A glimpse of the Alps from Šumava? Why not?! On a clear day, you can see them from the 6-kilometre route between Kvilda and Bučina. The trail is not at all difficult, and you can make it more pleasant by turning off at Knížecí Pláně, a charming settlement lying directly on the Czech-German border. Also popular is the 18-kilometre circuit from Kvilda to the source of the Vltava River, which is one of the most important tourist attractions in all of Šumava. From the Vltava spring, a white trail leads you to Stráž and Bučina and then back to Kvilda.
Criss-cross Šumava on cross-country skis
Groomed and marked cross-country trails are offered not just in the Kvilda area. From here you can link up with trails that will take you to other corners of the Šumava, including such popular destinations as Churáňov, Modrava and Borová Lada, where you can enter onto the renowned Věžecká magistrála (meaning Věžecká Cross-Country Route). Excellent conditions and surroundings are also offered in Železná Ruda, from which trails lead to the Špičák Ski Resort and to Pancíř Mountain. Also beautiful is a route leading from Prášily through Nová Hůrka to the Laka glacial lake.