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Olomouc, Czech Republic for 1 or 2 nights? WHERE to sleep?

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California
posts: 1,090
reviews: 71
Olomouc, Czech Republic for 1 or 2 nights? WHERE to sleep?

I love small towns and am looking forward to 1 or 2 nights in Olomouc, between Prague and Krakow.

Our itinerary is LAX-London-Prague-Olomouc-Krakow-London-LAX. (We live in San Diego, California.)

I'm traveling with my husband and my 2 college-age daughters. A friend of my daughter's may also accompany us.

I'm sure we'll enjoy a 1-night stop in Olomouc as we will be getting from Prague to Krakow by train. I am wondering whether to take another night away from either Prague or Krakow to get 2 nights in Olomouc. Or maybe 1 night in Olomouc is enough? (Will take the train from Prague to Olomouc.)

Hotel u Domu at Domska 4 in Olomouc looks nice to me, and includes breakfast. But I don't see any guest reviews on tripadvisor. (It's listed in Fodors guidebook and in Rick Steves guidebook.)

Any suggestions for where to sleep, where to eat, and how long to stop in Olomouc? Many thanks!

Brno, Czech Republic
Destination Expert
for Czech Republic, Slovakia, Train Travel
posts: 22,883
reviews: 8
1. Re: Olomouc, Czech Republic for 1 or 2 nights? WHERE to sleep?

Olomouc is beautiful - there is the fabulous UNESCO-listed plague column, the cathedral, fabulous large squares and not forgetting the communist version of the astronomical clock on the town hall! If you are into that sort of thing, go and check out the mural in the railway station (unless it has been removed by now).

I don't know the hotel that you mention, but it is right next to the cathedral and is a bit of a walk to the centre from there. Olomouc is not that big, anyway.

As for places to eat, I haven't been for a while and these places tend to come and go but in general, as with anywhere in the Czech Republic, you will not be disappointed wherever you go (unless it obviously looks a bit ropey from the outside) - I always like to take pot luck as other people's tastes don't always match mine!

I reckon one night should be sufficient if you are just passing through.

Hope this helps!

California
posts: 1,090
reviews: 71
2. Re: Olomouc, Czech Republic for 1 or 2 nights? WHERE to sleep?

GCEK, thanks for your reflections on Olomouc. It sounds like a nice place to stop for the night. Maybe we will just enjoy wandering about and have an unplanned afternoon in Olomouc plus an overnight. Sometimes the best way to find good food is to look for a place which seems to be full of locals, and look at their plates and see what they are eating. I do like to have a handy list of recommended places, though.

I didn't think Olomouc is big enough to sleep in a hotel that is too far from the sites. Maybe Olomouc is bigger than I have pictured in my mind.

Brno, Czech Republic
Destination Expert
for Czech Republic, Slovakia, Train Travel
posts: 22,883
reviews: 8
3. Re: Olomouc, Czech Republic for 1 or 2 nights? WHERE to sleep?

No - it isn't a big city at all, but the cathedral is probably a good 20 minute walk from the 'centre' which I know is not much, but in Olomouc terms it is a lot!

I had a quick look and found this one which is right in the centre penzionnahrade.cz/accommodation/guesthouse which is what I would choose if you are only staying for a short while - it means that you can wander around the centre and soak in the atmosphere without having to make the long trek back to the hotel afterwards :)

I remember having one of the best meals I have ever had in Olomouc, but I really cannot remember where it was and it was a while ago - it just looked nice from the outside. You can't really go wrong (unless you are a vegetarian, in which case its a bit more tricky...)

Just one thing, though - I presume you are intending on going directly from Olomouc to Krakow (it would be a waste of time going back to Prague for that - it wasn't clear from your itinerary) - there is one direct train that goeas at 1657, arriving at 2119. Other trains will require at least one change in Katowice, which you don't really want to do. You can buy the tickets easily at the station in Olomouc (and you can check out the mural). Whatever you do, don't buy tickets through raileurope or anything like that - they are horrendously expensive.

California
posts: 1,090
reviews: 71
4. Re: Olomouc, Czech Republic for 1 or 2 nights? WHERE to sleep?

GCEK: Thanks for the great info! For sure we want the direct train from Olomouc to Krakow...thanks for that tip. Since we are only in Olomouc for 1 night, I think a guesthouse or small hotel near the main square would be the most fun, I think you're right about that. I'll have a look at the one you are suggesting...I recall hearing about that one somewhere...maybe in a guidebook.

I am wondering if Olomouc will be closed and deserted on a Sunday in September. I think we will be there on a Sunday in September. Since it's only for 1 night I'm not too worried about it, though. I think we will miss the market I read about as I think they don't have it on Sundays.

Brno, Czech Republic
Destination Expert
for Czech Republic, Slovakia, Train Travel
posts: 22,883
reviews: 8
5. Re: Olomouc, Czech Republic for 1 or 2 nights? WHERE to sleep?

It will certainly be very quiet on a Sunday in September - Olomouc is quiet at the busiest of times as tourists haven't discovered it yet, but that is part of its charm and is a far cry from Prague and Krakow, which will probably still be busy at that time. It will be perfect as a break between the two places.

Just a suggestion - I don't know where your religious affiliations lie, but Olomouc is a very strongly Roman Catholic city, being the seat of an archbishop, and you could always fit in mass at one of the several baroque churches or the cathedral http://www.oldom.cz/Bohosluzby_Olomouc.pdf - the first column,(neděle Sunday), shows the times on that day.

California
posts: 1,090
reviews: 71
6. Re: Olomouc, Czech Republic for 1 or 2 nights? WHERE to sleep?

GCEK, my husband and I are Catholic, and I think it would be interesting to attend Mass in Olomouc (and in Krakow). My daughters are college-age and at the age where religion is looked on with suspicion. I must say that after all that has happened this year, I too look on my religion with suspicion! We may also be accompanied by a friend of my daughter's, who is Methodist. It should be an interesting trip. We are a family of democrats and our friend is republican. We get along fine and really don't find ourselves discussing religion or politics with our friend. I am hoping that we can stay out of serious discussions of religion or politics on vacation...I'm thinking we are guests in other countries, and basically I want us to be respectful guests who acknowledge that not everyone agrees with our viewpoints.

So far we've never had a problem on previous vacations. We don't normally find ourselves discussing politics or religion on vacation. But we have been asked on previous vacations what we think of President Bush's policies. I am thinking this will be an awkward question to answer in the presence of our friend who voted for Bush! Well if it comes up, I will try to change the subject. At least it might add some spice to my trip report! Our republican friend is a lovely young woman and a friend of my daughter's. She is a joy to be around, as she has a charismatic personality and brings cheer wherever she goes.

I don't normally worry about political and religious differences as I am basically open-minded. But I do know that President Bush is not exactly popular throughout the world...

Thanks for your tips. Getting back on subject...Olomouc does sound like a great stop between Prague and Krakow! I keep being tempted to make it a 2-night stop instead of 1 night, but I don't want my husband and daughters to feel that there isn't enough to do. We won't have a car in Olomouc. So unless there are interesting day-trips nearby that we could book with transportation, we are just planning to hang around and relax while in Olomouc.

Brno, Czech Republic
Destination Expert
for Czech Republic, Slovakia, Train Travel
posts: 22,883
reviews: 8
7. Re: Olomouc, Czech Republic for 1 or 2 nights? WHERE to sleep?

I know what you mean... :)

As for politics - I think in general people aren't that bothered by it over in this neck of the woods as there are enough scandals, corruption, etc going on in domestic politics. You are right, though - Bush is not too popular! Especially in the Olomouc area, as there is some hare-brained US scheme to station 'anti-terror' missiles or some such nonsense in the region which obviously people are a bit afraid of. In the 'old' days Olomouc was used as a heaquarters for Soviet forces and so now to have the tables turned just makes everyone completely disillusioned with the whole politics thing. The same is true in Poland with their crazy politicians, which has led to hundreds of thousands of their best and brightest moving to the UK, but you have absolutely nothing to worry about. NObody will bother you for your opinion.

And religion - (religion and politics in the same post - I am overreaching myself here...) It might be a bit odd for your Methodist friend to be confronted by high baroque at every turn - we once did a similar thing in Czestochowa in Poland (more Catholic you cannot get - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Częstochowa) with a Methodist friend and she was completely freaked out by all the brutal imagery - we had been brought up Catholics, but that place takes the biscuit!

And back to the original question - There are a couple of trips that you could do from Olomouc, but you would really need a car and someone who knew where they were going - the local trains are great, but slow, and you only have a short time there so all in all you are probably doing the right thing, i.e. 1 night and a couple of part days to look around. If you or your daughters are looking for a crazy nightlife then Olomouc is the wrong place to look for it on a Sunday in September :) There used to be a great place called the Nausea Bar (The name should provide a sufficient description of the joint) but that was when I had a beard and long hair :) You will find it extremely quiet after Prague but that, as I say, is its charm.

Philadelphia...
posts: 349
reviews: 8
8. Re: Olomouc, Czech Republic for 1 or 2 nights? WHERE to sleep?

What an interesting discussion here:) I have it from the other side - being Czech who moved to USA and watching all the terrorist/missile base/Czech corrupted government/US government issues on czech and American news... Czech republic is a "small pond", no-one really knows the fine details in US politics, in fact most will have no idea about differences between republicans and democrats...but president Bush and this whole plan about the missile/radar base is a very sensitive issue. So have the "change the subject" strategy ready:)

In Olomouc a fine Sunday trip would be to Flora exhibition grounds - large city park where the largest flower show in the country is held each spring and numerous other shows throughout the year:

http://www.flora-ol.cz/en/

Or take city public transport to Svaty Kopecek - beautiful large and very "high baroque" pilgrim church, park and small ZOO. Popular Sunday trip for locals.

www.vitejte.cz/objekt.php?oid=1210&j=en

For more local knowledge try Lonely Planet Thorn Tree forum - one of the regulars Greg28 is American expat living in Olomouc and a very fervent promoter of the city.

florida
posts: 51
reviews: 15
9. Re: Olomouc, Czech Republic for 1 or 2 nights? WHERE to sleep?

One night is more than enough..Go to the town center and you've seen it all...NOTHING LIKE PRAGUE

Brno, Czech Republic
Destination Expert
for Czech Republic, Slovakia, Train Travel
posts: 22,883
reviews: 8
10. Re: Olomouc, Czech Republic for 1 or 2 nights? WHERE to sleep?

Yes but that is missing the point, saltydog - when I go to the Czech Republic I wouldn't necessarily want to go to Prague - in fact I try to avoid it as I much prefer Brno and I think Prague is a shadow of its former self, but Olomouc is beautiful, quiet, atmospheric and, most importantly, relatively tourist-free. Yes it is a lot smaller than Prague, but it is perfect for just 'chilling out'.

As I said in a previous post you have to consider the history and culture that the city is steeped in (and this goes for anywhere) - it is not a simple matter of going to the main square and saying 'big deal'.

There is absolutely no point going somewhere with such a mindset - you might as well stay at home and look at it on wikipedia.

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