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Having snow time in the Czech Republic

When I was a child, having snow (lots of it) every winter and enjoying it in a way like sledging, making snowmen, throwing snowballs at my peers and skiing was nothing unusual to me.

But living now in England and raising my 8-year-old son here who has never experienced such snow rituals, made me think how lucky I was then.

I, therefore, decided to do something about it, especially after I got inspired by my friend’s Facebook posts where they were with their children having some wonderful snow time and I no longer wanted my son to miss it, so I contacted our lovely friends in the CZ and started a hunt for some plane tickets. Unfortunately, tickets during the kids’ holidays are so ridiculously expensive so I chose to travel by coach instead, for half the price of a plane ticket. 😉

Our journey started on Monday 12th February 2018 at 8.35 am by taking a train to London Victoria and at 11 am boarding a Czech Coach (yellow bus RegioJet by Student Agency) and travelling via France, Belgium, Luxembourg and Germany and arriving in Prague, CZ at 6.30am the following day.

Once in Prague, we had to continue our journey by subway (metro) across half of the city and taking another yellow bus to Hradec Kralove at Aupark to a new shopping mall, where we spent a few hours for some playtime and lunch.

 

 

 

We then continued to travel taking two other local buses to our friend’s little village near Chrudim. You can imagine how tired and excited we were, but it did not stop us going for a walk with our friend, also called  Lenka☺ and her two little gorgeous daughters to explore their village – around the pond, cow farm, climbing on stacks of straw, old tires and running in a muddy field – the kind of fun that town kids do not experience that often as the children in the village do. So, our kids returned muddy,😉 tired but happy. They slept well that night.☺

The next day, Wednesday the 14th February, we woke up and saw little snow outside! After a lovely breakfast, vegan oat banana pancakes with homemade jam and herbal tea, my friend Lenka (very common Czech name) prepared for us we then went for a day trip to enjoy some more snow! Yuppie! 😉

First, we visited a former village Ležáky. During the German occupation of Czechoslovakia, the village was completely razed to the ground by Nazi forces during the reprisals for the assassination of Reich Protector Reinhard Heydrich in the late spring of 1942. Ležáky was a settlement inhabited by poor stone-cutters and little cottagers. 

How sad this was to see. How lucky we are to now live in peace. To see something like this makes us appreciate our lives even more, hopefully.

Our next stop was in The Folk Buildings Collection Betlém which is a unique urban unit containing timber houses situated in the town centre of Hlinsko. Doing a bit of yoga there too. 😉

It was started in the first half of the 18th century together with the spread of crafts. Craftsmen, potters and weavers, started to build their homes there. In 1731 there were only two houses and herds of cattle. In the course of the century, it was built up completely, with narrow streets among houses. People built small houses of wood that was easy to get and use. Bricks were used only around fireplaces. Ground timber houses with saddle roofs used to have one large sitting-room, a hall with so-called black kitchen and a closet, sometimes also a pig-sty. Gradually there appeared sheds and barns as the demands of the families were increasing.

It is possible to see the way of life, traditional crafts and workshops as there are regular traditional events throughout the year.

We went to a lovely gift shop there to see a large variety of herbal tinctures, teas, soaps and skin care products. I bought some lovely herbal teas.

And a quick stop in the playground next to the Betlem.

After having a light lunch in the car, we headed to the higher grounds of Hlinsko to the skiing area. Thanks to its location and favourable conditions, Hlinsko is the ideal place for winter recreation. Two slopes with artificial snow and evening skiing are much sought-after by fans of downhill skiing and there are treated cross-country runs near the city.

Having a great time, trying all kinds of sledges, my son Lucas did really well, considering that was his first time in the snow. 😉 Not to forget, here are some yoga poses in the snow, as yoga can be done anywhere. 😉 Doing a bit of yoga with my son. What a fabulous day we had!

On Thursday the 15th February our day started very slow. After a light breakfast consisting of freshly squeezed red orange juice, fruit salad and banana spelt pancakes, kids were playing nicely with Lego and later we did some kids yoga.  

After our nutritious lunch, rye bread with beetroot hummus, bulgur salad and veggies we went for a few hours walk to see some nature. We walked through fields to the nearest town called Luze where we first stopped by The Pilgrimage Church of the Virgin Mary on Chlumek (Czech: Poutní kostel Panny Marie na Chlumku), a baroque church created around 1700, there was a playground just next to the church where our children played a little. We then continued walking up the hill seeing some lovely deer and sheep along the way. Košumberk Castle (Czech: Hrad Košumberk). Nowadays Košumberk is the property of the town of Luže. There is a historical exhibition of the castle and town.

Right next to the castle is located the Arboretum in the Hamza Sanatorium area where we stopped for some mint tea and refreshments and our children played in their beautifully crafted playground for a while.

The Hamza Sanatorium which was founded in 1901 by professor Frantisek Hamza, M.D. was the first sanatorium in Central Europe for children suffering from tuberculosis. In 1962 the treatment of tuberculosis patients stopped and Luže focused upon the rehabilitation of patients with mobility impairments. The present-day spa town Luže attracts tourists to its many monuments and beautiful nature in peaceful countryside.

The following day Friday 16th February we woke up to find the weather had turned to heavy snow! It was beautiful to us, but unfortunately not to those who had to drive in such dangerous conditions. Kids had one last hour of a snow fun before saying goodbye. Time of departure and lots of travelling to consider again. Leaving after 11 am and via a combined bus/train transportation we arrived back home in the UK on Saturday afternoon.

I was glad that my son’s basic Czech was sufficient enough to communicate with our friends. I was quite amazed how much he improved since last year as he was talking Czech most of the time and I was not needed to interpret anymore. 😉

We had a great time and are already looking forward to our next holiday! If you ever wanted to visit the Czech Republic, I would highly recommend you some of those tourist places I mentioned here.

 

Lenka Pagan
Helping those who are ready to lose weight and re-balance their lives by creating healthy habits through can-do attitude, healthy eating and yoga. Read more about Lenka here: https://lenkapagan.com/about-lenka/

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