Embark on a captivating journey to the enchanting town of Kutná Hora, this hidden gem and one of Prague’s finest day trip destinations. Immerse yourself in its rich history, indulging in local cuisine while being captivated by UNESCO-listed landmarks. Don’t underestimate the charm of Kutná Hora; it promises a short but unforgettable experience.
This post provides all the essential information for your visit to Kutná Hora.
How to get there
You can also get there by bus from Prague’s main bus station. The ride by bus takes around 2 hours. Another option is to take a guided day tour.
Kutná Hora, founded in 1142, became the second-richest city in the Kingdom of Bohemia. Moreover, below the town lies kilometers of exhausted silver mines, which in their prime, played a pivotal role in Kutná Hora’s economic and political competition with Prague.
Notably, Bohemia’s Royal Mint was located here, converting Kutná Hora’s abundant silver into coins that were widely circulated throughout Central Europe. However, as time passed, the mines became depleted, some succumbing to flooding. The once-thriving town, a favored residence of Bohemian kings, quickly began to dwindle.
Despite its decline, Kuntná Hora’s historical significance earned it a well-deserved spot on UNESCO’s list of World Heritage Sites in 1995. This recognition highlights the town’s enduring impact on human history.
The history of Sedlec cemetery starts in 1278 when the abbot Henry returned from Jerusalem with a jar of earth from the Holy Land and scattered it over the cemetery. This made Sedlec a popular place where burial was an honor.
The mid-14th century was not a happy time for the Czech Republic, because of the plague and Hussite Wars, which resulted in many deaths, more than the local cemetery could contain.
Also, at that time, a new chapel was built on the site, and many bones had to be dug up because of the construction and later were stored inside.
A legend says that in the 16th century, a half-blink monk started arranging the bones. It is said that after he completed his work he got his sight back.
When the Schwarzenbergs purchased Sedlec monastery in 1870 they allowed local woodcarver Frantisek Rint to get creative with the bones in the crypt resulting in this remarkable Bone Church.
The Bone Church is open daily from 9 am – 6 pm from April – September, from 9 am – 4 pm from November – February, and 9 am – 5 pm in March and October.
The entrance fee to the Bone Church costs 90 CZK, but if you plan on exploring more of the area you can opt for a more budget-friendly option and buy a combined ticket for 220 CZK. This ticket includes entry to the Bone Church, Cathedral of the Assumption of Our Lady Saint and John the Baptist, and also the Saint Barbara Church.
You can’t buy tickets at the Bone Church itself, or online. You can buy tickets on the day itself at the info center before the Bone Church. Also, bear in mind that photography and filming are not allowed inside the Bone Church.
You can get to the Bone Church from Kutná Hora’s train station, you can walk to the Bone Church in around 15 minutes, or take the local 802 bus to Sedlic Kostnice.
The Cathedral of the Assumption of Our Lady and Saint John the Baptist
The cathedral is very bright and simple inside. It has a high vaulted ceiling, beautiful frescoes on the ceiling and the walls, and a unique wooden spiral staircase which was the highlight for us.
The cathedral is open from Monday – Saturday from 10 am – 5 pm from April – September and from 10 am – 5 pm from October – March. On Sunday the cathedral opens at 11 am.
The entrance fee to the cathedral costs 50 CZK or 220 CZK if you buy the combined ticket for the three attractions, including the Cathedral of St. Barbara and the Bone Church.
You can easily get to the cathedral from the Bone Church. It’s a 5-minute walk.
The Cathedral of Saint Barbara
The interior of St. Barbara is rich in frescoes, vaulted ceilings, statues, paintings, and colorful stained glass windows.
The cathedral is open from Monday – Sunday from 10 am – 4 pm in January and February, and from 10 am – 5 pm in March, November, and December. And from 9 am – 6 pm April – October.
The entrance fee to the cathedral costs 180 CZK or 220 CZK if you buy the combined ticket for the three attractions, including the Cathedral of the Assumption of Our Lady and Saint John the Baptist, and the Bone Church.
You can walk from the Bone Church to the Saint Barbara Cathedral in around 40 minutes. Another option is to take a local bus to the city center of Kutná Hora. There is a bus stop near the Cathedral of the Assumption of Our Lady and Saint John the Baptist. Take bus number 802, they run every 30 minutes. Tickets cost around 60 CZK (1 euro). You can pay by card or with cash.
Explore the city center
Some interesting buildings are The Stone House, Palacky Square, Sankturin House, Tyl House, Plague Column, Stone Fountain, and the Italian Court. Exploring the city center is best done on foot since everything is nearby.