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České Budějovice
Coat of arms
Country  Czech Republic
Region South Bohemian
District České Budějovice
Rivers Vltava, Malše
Center Přemysl Otakar II Square
 - elevation 381 m (1,250 ft)
 - coordinates 48°58′29″N 14°28′29″E / 48.97472°N 14.47472°E / 48.97472; 14.47472
Area 55.56 km2 (21 sq mi)
Population 96,053 (As of 2009)
Density 1,729 /km2 (4,478 /sq mi)
Founded 1055
Mayor Juraj Thoma (ODS)
Timezone CET (UTC+1)
 - summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 370 01
Czechia - background map.png
Wikimedia Commons: České Budějovice

České Budějovice (Czech pronunciation: [ˈtʃɛskɛː ˈbuɟɛjovɪtsɛ]; colloquially: Budějce; German: Budweis or Böhmisch Budweis, often referred to simply as Budweis in English; Polish: Czeskie Budziejowice) is a city in the Czech Republic. It is the largest city in the South Bohemian Region and is the political and commercial capital of the region and centre of the Roman Catholic Diocese of České Budějovice and of the University of South Bohemia. The town is not to be confused with Moravské Budějovice in Moravia.



The city was founded by Hirzo, a knight of King Ottokar II of Bohemia, and was granted its Municipal charter in 1265. The royal city was created as a platform of the king's power in South Bohemia and to counterbalance the powerful aristocratic House of Witigonen and the successive House of Rosenberg. The House of Rosenberg died out in 1611. The city was traditionally a bulwark of the Catholics in the long-lasting religious conflicts in Bohemia.

The city was a German-speaking enclave from the 17th century to 1890. During the industrialization of the city, Czechs became again the ethnic majority. Until the Expulsion of Germans after World War II, the city contained a significant German minority (about 15.5 % in 1930).


Budějovice has long been well known for the beer brewed there since the 13th century. For a time the town was the royal brewery for the Holy Roman Emperor, and Budweiser Bier (beer from Budweis) became,[1] along with Plzeň's Pilsener, one of the best-known lagers. Brewing remains a major industry.

The largest brewery, founded in 1895, is Pivovar Budějovický Budvar (Budweiser Budvar Brewery), which has legal rights to market its beer under the "Budweiser" brand name in much of Europe. The same product is also sold elsewhere under the names "Budvar" and "Czechvar" due to legal squabbles with Anheuser-Busch over the Budweiser brand. The American lager was originally brewed as an imitation of the famous Bohemian original, but over time has developed its own identity and attained remarkable commercial success. Anheuser-Busch has made offers to buy out the Czech brewing company in order to secure global rights to the name "Budweiser", but the Czech government has refused all such offers, regarding the Czech Budweiser name to be a matter of national pride.

The oldest (since 1795) and second largest brewery was renamed Pivovar Samson by the communists, dropping its original German name. It also exported, mostly under the "Samson" and "Crystal" labels. Recently, they reacquired naming rights for Budweiser for Europe while offering "B. B. Bürgerbräu" in the US since last year.


The city is in the center of a valley of the Vltava River, where the Vltava meets the Malše river.


České Budějovice's town square: Naměstí Přemysla Otakara II (Přemysl Otakar II Square).
St. Nicholas Cathedral with the Black Tower on the opposite corner of the square

The old town preserves interesting architecture from Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque and 19th century period. This includes buildings around the large town square, the old town hall with murals and bronze gargoyles, and the town tower "Černá věž" ("Black Tower"). In the new town the Belle Epoque Austro-Hungarian train station is notable. The most valuable historical building in České Budějovice is Dominican convent with Gothic church Presentation of Virgin Mary on Piaristic square. The horse-drawn railroad line connecting České Budějovice to Linz was the oldest public line in continental Europe (after the line St.Etienne-Andrexieux in France), constructed from 1824 to 1832; mere traces of the line can be seen south of the city center.

The ruins of the home castle of the Czech national hero Jan Žižka, Trocnov, are located some ten kilometres southeast from the town. A bit further away (approximately 30 km), the enchanting town of Český Krumlov is another compulsory stop for the visitor of South Bohemia. In 1992, it was added to UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites.


Local bus and trolley bus routes take passengers to most areas of the city. The city itself can be reached from other locations by inter-city buses and by train. Internationally, a direct railroad line connecting Prague to Venice, Italy also makes a stop in České Budějovice.


It is home to the University of South Bohemia and an Academy of Sciences.

It was the birthplace of:

The city is also one of the major settings in the novel "The Good Soldier Švejk" by Jaroslav Hašek.

International relations


Twin towns - Sister cities

České Budějovice is twinned with:


  1. ^ See the entry for Monday, February 4, 2008 on 365 Amazing Trivia Facts (Workman Publishing, 2008).

External links

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010
(Redirected to Ceske Budejovice article)

From Wikitravel

The market square
The market square

České Budějovice (also known as Budweis in German or English) is in Bohemia, in the Czech Republic. The "other" Budweiser beer (not to be confused with the American variety) has been brewed there for over a hundred years or nearly 800 years depending on how you count.

It is the largest city in South Bohemia, and a convenient base for exploring this historic region of the Czech Republic.

Get in

By bus

Buses leave frequently from Florenc, Na Knízecí and Roztyly bus stations in Prague and costs 154 Kc (as of June 2007). The trip takes approximately two and a half to three hours.

The bus hub in České Budějovice is at the Mercury Centrum, a two-story shopping mall with the bus station on the roof, located just outside the city center. It is 300m down the street from the train station.

For rates and schedules, visit the official transport website IDOS.

There is also the Yellow Bus line offered by Student Agency [1]. It's cheaper, faster, more comfortable.

By train

Trains connect from Prague to the north every hour and from Linz in Austria four times a day. The trip from Prague takes 2h 42 min.

The Czech Budweiser
The Czech Budweiser
  • Přemysl Otakar II Square (Czech: Naměstí Přemysla Otakara II), the immense square in the middle of the city. Historical landmarks here include St. Nicholas Cathedral, the Black Tower, Samson's Fountain and the distinct yellow-colored Vcela Palace.
  • Pivovar Budějovický Budvar, Karoliny Světlé 4, +420 387 705 341 or +420 387 705 347, [2]. 9AM-4PM (reservations required). Take a tour of the city's largest brewery and home of "Budweiser" brand beer sold in most of Europe. Call in several days in advance to schedule a tour, or if that's not possible, tours for visitors without reservations take place each day at 2PM. Price of admission is 100 Kc/person, and visitors age 18 or over are also able to visit their beer tasting cellar. Incidentally, this is not the same as the "Budweiser" beer sold in the United States and Canada; due to trademark disputes over the name with US-based Anheuser-Busch, this is sold in the Americas under the "Budvar" or "Czechvar" names.
  • Mercury Centrum, a two-story shopping mall that shares space with the city's main bus terminal.
  • Naměstí Přemysla Otakara II, wonder around the large old square and surrounding streets to find many specialized stores (i.e. butcher, produce, tea & spices, fabric, etc.).

IGY Centrum, a shopping mall which also contains a pool and fitness centre (includes gym, squash, solarium, sauna, kickboxing etc.) located about 20 min. by foot from the train station and is also right next to Hotel Gomel.

  • Maly Pivovar, a really nice little beer hall just off the main town square.


Knock back a pitcher of Budweiser beer, as this is, after all, its hometown. See also Pivovar Budějovický Budvar, above. The best choice for this is to visit one of the pubs operated by the brewery itself as there you can find the widest selection of beers including the specials. Masné krámy and Malý pivovar are located in the old city center nearby the main square. Pick one of these without doubts, the other choice Budvarka pub is located within brewery complex further from the city center to the north. Samson and Crystal brand beers are also brewed here, at the city's second brewery, the Pivovar Samson.

  • Singer, Česká 55 - Irish style pub in the old city center. The name is derived from old school Singer sewing machines on the tables inside.
  • Modrý dveře, Biskupská 1 - Trendy styled pub/restaurant with occasional live jazz music.
  • Potrefená husa, Česká 66 - A branch of another czech brewery Staropramen franchise pubs. Select the place on the roof top terrace during the hot summer days to sip the beer or cocktail while look over the river Malse to Stromovka recreational park.
  • Kotva, Lidická 2110 - Cafe sharing the building with a small cinema where you can get a caffeine dose to "survive" long movie or sip the drink and discuss what you just have seen.
  • Velbloud, U Tří lvů 4 - Small alternative music club near city center. The program contains mainly rock, punk & alternative, but it is regularly mixed with other modern styles.
  • Penzion Restaurant Centrum is located in the Biskupska Street just next to the square of Ceske Budejovice. This south bohemian metropolis was founded in 1265 by the czech king Premysl Otakar II at the confluence of rovers Vltava a Malse. The square of Premysl Otakar II with its dimensions 133x133 m is one of the largest square in Bohemia, with arcades and range of Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque burgher houses. As the other important town monuments there are apart from thers included the originally renaissance Town Hall, the Samson's fountain and 72 m high Black Tower which provides a view of the town and surroundings.
  • Český Krumlov, a UNESCO World Heritage landmark and an extremely popular tourist destination. Buses to Český Krumlov leave every half hour or so from the main bus station at Mercury Centrum and takes about 45 minutes to get there. Don't take the train--it's slower, and more expensive.
  • Kleť - Highest peak in a nearby mountians of Blansky Les with a tower and space observatory on the top. There is a nice overview of the center of south Bohemia from the tower, in case of good wether and clear sky the peaks of Alps can be seen of the horizon. The observatory provides public tours every day in the week during the summer holidays (July and August), otherwise check the availability. To get there take the train from main station to Holubov village, from where you will see the mountatin. Continue roughly 2 kilometers up to the hill through Krasetin village to reach the parking lot where you can take a cable car or start climbing the hard way (under the cable car) or easier way (on the trail trough the forrest). On the way back visiting the ruins of gothic Divci Kamen castle is a few kilometers short trip in the area bellow the mountain.
  • Trebon - a picturesque town with a castle, the Regent brewery, lakes and a lovely town square. Takes about three-quarters of an hour on the bus through some lovely scenery.
Folk Baroque houses in Holašovice
Folk Baroque houses in Holašovice
  • Hluboka nad Vltavou - nearby village with large 'Windsor-style' castle up on the hill and an old church. Follow the path along the Vlatava River north of the city (about 10 km) and it will bring you right into Hluboka.
  • Holašovice is a small rural village which is included on the UNESCO World Heritage List for being the best preserved traditional Central European village. Its square is lined with unique Houses decorated in the 'Folk Baroque' style. There is also a small pond and chapel. Two of the buildings house pubs and there is also a Tourist information office. Buses run hourly from the bus station of Ceske Budejovice taking around 20 minutes. Return buses run approximately 55 minutes after you will be dropped off, which is more than enough time to sample the delights.
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