The capital of Moravia – one of the historic Czech regions alongside Bohemia and Czech Silesia – Brno is now firmly on the map of European city breaks. With its neo-Renaissance architecture, story book-worthy castles and the beautiful Brno Lake, Brno has earned romantic nicknames such as ‘Little Vienna’ and the ‘Hidden Heart of Europe’. Here’s our guide to the top things to see and do Brno, Czech Republic.
This sprawling castle was built in the mid-13th century by King Přemysl Otakar II, subsequently becoming a jail for criminals and political prisoners from countries throughout the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Notorious figures locked up here include the poet Silvio Pellico, Czech outlaw Václav Babinský and members of the Italian Carbonari – a 19th-century secret revolutionary society. Today, you can explore the atmospheric vaulted passages and learn about Brno’s history in the City Museum.
Kraví hora (Cow Hill) is one of the most popular family days out in Brno, thanks to its range of indoor and outdoor activities. You could be flexing your sporting abilities with beach volleyball and ice hockey in the morning, then relaxing at the indoor pool, sauna and hot-tub in the afternoon. At nightfall, drop into the Brno Observatory and Planetarium for a journey through space and time, and to look across Brno using the Observation Deck’s portable telescopes.