Český Krumlov is also called German Krumau or Krumau a der Moldau. It is a city in South Bohemia region of southwestern part of Czech Republic. It is one of the most picturesque cities in Europe and is situated roughly around 15 miles (25 km) southwest of the larger city of České Budějovice. The castle features Gothic, Late Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque elements. Also, the first part of the city’s name, Český, means “Czech”. The second part, Krumlov, was derived from a German description of the tight bends in the river there.
The town grew up around a Gothic castle in the mid-13th century. It was built on the cliffs above the Vltava by Bohemian nobles. In the succeeding centuries, aristocratic occupants expanded the castle. Also, it included members of the House of Schwarzenberg. Renaissance and Baroque elements later added more to the castle. It ultimately led to creating one of the largest castle complexes in central Europe. The street plans and historical buildings can still be found in present.
The city was populated by a mixture of Czechs and Germans from the middle ages. But after the creation of Czechoslovakia in 1918, the Czechoslovak government was opposed to German due to World War. They rejected the German form of the city’s name. They then brought in the present Czech version of the castle’s name. After World War II, the conditions were worse as the government expelled the German-speaking population.
The Historic Centre of Český Krumlov has been able to maintain authenticity. It has not been affected by rapid urbanization or industrialization. It has been able to preserve its original layout as discovered by archaeologists. Any of the restoration activities done are required to maintain proper standards.
The Historic Centre of Český Krumlov is protected by Act No. 20/1987 on State Heritage Preservation. National Heritage Institute (a state organization) and the Municipality of Český Krumlov shares the responsibility of property management. There have been annual monitoring reports prepared at a national level since 2000. It has been of the UNESCO’s World Heritage Site since 1992.
Today, tourism is a major economic activity for the locals. There are hordes of tourists roaming the streets and place. The hundreds of historic buildings attract tourists. Local museums, art galleries, theatres, and festivals also enrich the tourist’s visit to the place. The city can be best enjoyed by staying two nights. Tourists enjoy biking or hiking around the place. In winter, the place is covered with snow giving tourists a magical view of the castle. During the summers, it is more of a picnic spot for tourists. The city provides historical attractions as well as natural beauty. The river meander and rocky slopes of the castle hill are the most important elements making it picturesque place. It is one the priority places to visit for any tourist.