Historical battles – reconstructions and museums
This historical Battle of Three Emperors occurred in Austerlitz in December 2nd, 1805. Nowadays, every year, a memorial event takes place here. It is to remember the battle against Napoleon as one of the most important battles in the history of Europe, where generals of three Empires fought together – France, Austria and Russia. You will see authentic battle scenes and soldiers in former uniforms. The ambience of the baroque chateau in Slavkov will also take you back to the times of Napoleon. There is a museum in the chateau regarding the battle. This event is an unforgettable experience!
The Battle of Königgrätz, which is also known as the Battle of Sadowa, was the crucial battle of the Austro-Prussian War. The Kingdom of Prussia conquered the Austrian Empire during this battle. The occasion took place in Sadowa near Königgrätz (Hradec Králové) in Bohemia in July 3rd, 1866. To remember this decisive battle, there is a reconstruction of it every year that time. You will see genuine battle as it happened in the 19th century – soldiers in the uniforms, the old-time weapon and lot of unpredictable moments, which don’t let you, stay calm. You will definitely enjoy this moment full of fascinating tension, if you are interested in the history and wars.
Experience the largest battle, which occurred in the 19th century Bohemia and Moravia, at the War of 1866 Museum at Chlum near Hradec Králové. The collection comprises samples of weapons and equipment used by the Austrian and Prussian armies those times. The ambience of the unfortunate occasion is dramatically emphasised by a short film. Visit of the historical battlefield with hundreds of artistic monuments and memorials is a breathtaking experience. These memorials are mementos of over 50,000 killed soldiers. You can also see the whole area from the lookout tower. As the other places commemorating historical battles even this one hosts a reconstruction of the battle.
The Battle of White Mountain was one of the first battles during the Thirty Years‘ War, which happened in November 8th, 1620. The army of 15,000 men under a German general Christian of Anhalt were defeated by 27,000 soldiers of combined armies of Ferdinand II, Holy Roman Emperor, and other generals. The battle signed the end of the Bohemian period of the Thirty Years‘ War and determinate the fate of the Czech lands for the next 300 years. To remember this decisive occasion, there is a reconstruction of the battle every year. Hundreds of soldiers in uniforms, historical cannons and troops on horseback take part in the authentic battle scene in the genuine location.
The Battle of Lipany was led at Lipany, 40 km east of Prague, in May 30th, 1434. This battle was important as it virtually ended the Hussite Wars. The army of Utraquist nobility and the Catholics, who called themselves the Bohemian League, conquered the radical Taborites and Orphans, who were led by Prokop the Great. If you come to Lipany in the end of May, you will have the chance to experience a whole day full of interesting attractions such as the exhibition of the weapon or the school of the swordplay, not only the battle reconstruction, which will culminate the busy programme.
This event is convenient not only for all the admirers of the medieval ages, the history and historical battles, but also for fans of the theatre or the fire. The chateau arcades in Vimperk dresses to the medieval garb for one day in a year to host one of the greatest theatrical performances in this land. The main part of the programme is a performance of the medieval battle, but during the day, there will be a lot to see such as the swordplay or the games with fire. If you get hungry, you will refresh yourselves in traditional stands, where you can also buy the contemporary souvenirs.
The Battle of Sudomĕř was led in March 25th in 1420 near Strakonice, between Catholic and Hussite armies. The Hussites with Jan Žižka in the front proved the victory. This was the second major battle of the Hussite Wars; the first battle. On the day of the anniversary the Hussite carriages persecuted by the Knights of the Cross from Strakonice and Iron masters from Písek will drag to the site, which is in between two small ponds, and they will perform the battle together once again- this time just for fans, but it will be truly realistic! Apart from the battle, there will be a traditional market and music.
„Battle of the Nations“ is the name of a specific championship, which concerns historical medieval battles and takes place in Prague in May. The world of the Middle Ages is still a sensation for thousands of people around the world. For those who come to the Battle of the Nations, there will be the right medieval spirit of clashing steel and group battles. There will be competitors from more than 30 countries challenging themselves to conquer all the enemies and win the last and final battle. During the championship you will also have the chance to go through the authentic medieval camp with a craftsman fair, where you can by contemporary souvenirs.
The castle of Svojanov changes for two days in a year to the venue of the event, which resembles the Thirty Years War and times, when the Sweden armies walked by and also tried to defeat the castle of Svojanov. During those two days you will see performances of the swordplay, exhibition of the weapon, that was used during the war in the 17th century and a genuine market place with the craftsmen, who will for example make you a small sword from the steel for your kids. Not only the open air area is to see, you will have the chance to see the interior of the castle as well.
This battle, which was led in 1757, is a part of so called Seven Years War. It was the conflict of 16 000 of Prussian soldiers against 7 000 Austrian men. After the Prussians won, the way to Prague was open for them. Nowadays, there is a battle reconstruction in Liberec, where 160 volunteers perform the authentic battle in genuine uniforms. The unique battle is accompanied by special effects. You will be definitely drawn into the plot.
Folklore events and other festivities
International Folklore Festival – Strážnice
Every last weekend in June, there are hundreds of people coming to Strážnice in Moravia to enjoy one of the greatest folklore festivals in the Czech Republic. This event shows the traditions, that were common hundred years ago in the countryside, but they haven’t disappeared completely. Thanks to this occasion people can enjoy the atmosphere of the city, the beauty of its chateau park and open air museum, which is dedicated right to the traditions of the former rural life in this region. People sing and play folk music, dance, eat traditional meals and have fun together during whole day.
Every year, in the open air museum at Veselý Kopec, the traditional carnival parade takes place there to celebrate the commons of our predecessors, which shouldn’t be forgotten. This festivity is also on the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage List. During this day, you will have the chance to see many costumes of various colours, materials and tastes. This fascinating parade won’t be complete without the traditional shambles. Eating and having fun while listening to the folk music is truly joyful. You can’t definitely miss this occasion and you should see how our grand- grand-parents had entertained.
It is another parade of the traditional costumes connected to the carnival period and performance of the commons that were created in the countryside several decades later. This is a great opportunity to see how our predecessors lived the rural way of life. During this event, there will be lot of traditional folk music accompanied by the performances of the common dance of people clad in the genuine colourful costumes. Shambles is not any exception!
Carnevale Prague is a new festival, which celebrates the joy of life and the community. This occasion is held during the traditional carnival period in spring. The venue for this event is the public space in the whole city of Prague- in the streets, palaces, gardens, galleries, museums etc. Carnevale Prague is a parade of our unique ideas and skills, taste and creativity. Everyone finds there something interesting as there is many different ways, how the carnival presents itself, from workshops and performances, through busking in the streets to various exhibitions, concerts or balls.
The Ride of Kings – Vlčnov
This event is a folk costume, which is inscribed in the UNESCO World Intangible Cultural Heritage List. These days it is held just in two regions in the Czech Republic, but formerly it was an ordinary religious festivity, which has been held every year in many villages in different regions of the Czech Republic. The parade comprises dozens of young men on horses with the king in the middle of the train. The king is presented by a young boy, who holds a rose in his mouth. They shout, sing and celebrate their new king, who is clad in a woman’s ceremonial dress. They crawl through the villages to recite poems to the people and get some donations.
It is a male folk dance, which is listed on UNESCO World Intangible Cultural Heritage List. It has features of jumping, so it is a very vivid dance style that has been danced during various festivities and event in the countryside. It has no fixed choreography, it is an improvisation and they sing a folk song in the very beginning of the dance. The name comes from the German word Werbung, which means conscription for the military service and the young men told goodbye to their family and friends right this way through the dance. It is very joyful and energetic and worthy seeing it.
It is the biggest folk dance competitions in the central Europe, where dozens of amateur folklore dance ensembles present their choreographies and skills in this very specific king of dance, that have been the ordinary way of celebrating during the last centuries in the countryside. This festival is takes place in Prague in the end of July. You can see there a parade of various traditional costumes and listen to the folk music of different tastes for whole day. For those who are interested in this commons, it is the best way how to meet the history of the rural life, which hasn’t died yet.