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Kouřim square

On the main square called Mírové náměstí you can find the Church of St. Stephen, the bell tower, the city museum and information center as well as the geographic center of Europe. The square has been preserved in its original state since the foundation of the town and is one of the largest squares of Czech medieval cities. It was paved for the first time in 1536, the current paving is from the mid-19th century. Under the square there are intricate underground passages, the extent of which is still unknown.


The archdeacon's Church of St. Stephen is the main landmark on the square and in the town. It was built at the same time as the town in the 1360s as a three-nave basilica and is an interesting example of the so-called Burgundy style. The three church naves are closed with pentagonal seals and two massive towers rise over them. Another unique feature is the octagonal crypt of St. Catherine, which is considered to be the most artistically valuable part of the Kouřim landmark. Near the church there is a bell tower with its famous and unique inverted bells.


Kouřim´s city walls are very extensive. They were built from the 13th to the 16th century. After the Thirty Years' War, the walls and bastions fell into ruin and (besides the most urgent repairs of the city gates in the 17th century) were never restored. In spite of this, mainly vast sections of the outer fortification with 18 half-cylindrical towers, 4 bastions and a rampart on the west and north sides of the town, have been preserved. Making it the oldest town fortifications in Bohemia to have been preserved.


The small chapel of the Virgin Mary stands in the area of the former medieval execution site "Na Stínadlech". It was built in 1727 supposedly by Jan B. Santini in memory of five monks burned at the stake here by the Hussites in 1421. It is an excellent example of Baroque symbolism and serves as a funeral home today.

Beautiful nature as far as the eye can see


It was originally founded in 1972 as a rescue regional open-air museum of folk architecture from the flooded area of the water reservoir on the Želivka River. The first part of the open-air museum was opened in 1976. The main display later became a selection of regional types of folk architecture from the Czech Republic. The open-air museum is also the venue for ethnographic programs throughout the year.


Lech´s stone is a distinctive rock on the route to the place where Old Kouřim use to stand. According to legend, Lech was giving smoke signals from this spot to his brother Čech on Říp Mountain. A little further along from Lech's Stone is the small St. Vitus Chapel. The remains of Slavic walls are still visible everywhere.


It once served as a water reservoir next to which was the center of Old Kouřim. It is a natural geological formation, that used to be filled with the water from Puklin´s spring. Now it is more or a less dried up small basin, surrounded by several old trees, where there is only water after a lot of rain.


The small Výrovka river also called Kouřimka springs near Uhlířské Janovice and flows into the Kouřim region under Nouzov mill. In Kouřim Ždánický creek merges with the Výrovka. Right next to the city the water used to be held back by four weirs, which once served three larger mills that have been preserved. These are Horní (also Drahonický and later Pášovský), Prostřední (also Vojtěchovský and later Bukačovský) and Velký (called Panský) mills. There used to be around 9 mills all in all around Kouřim, five of which are still here today.


It was built in 1881 from roughly worked granite blocks on the northern slope of the Lipska Mountain, about 4 km northwest of Kouřim. It is a reminder of the Battle of Lipany, the last battle of radical Hussites led by Prokop Holý.


The bridge is listed as a national cultural monument and its five stone arches span the river Výrovka just beyond Toušice, about a 20-minute walk southwest of Kouřim. This romantic spot, which can be found on the hiking path from Kouřim to Zásmuk, is definitely worth a visit.