Your journey in the footsteps of movie stars does not begin in Karlovy Vary
but in the nearby little town Loket
which boasts a medieval castle. This became a very popular backdrop for film-makers. Visit the T. G. Masaryka Street and Square
where scenes from the Bond movie Casino Royale were shot and, thirty years before that, also parts of the film classic All Quiet on the Western Front. You should also drop by the Loket Castle
, which appeared in Casino Royale from a bird’s eye perspective and due to its highly-preserved state it is very frequently used as a backdrop for medieval festivals and fairy-tale movies. You can rest in the garden in front of the Goethe Hotel
and gather strength for the rest of the trip. Even James Bond himself sat there, accompanied by the gorgeous Vesper.
In the afternoon you will proceed to discover more film-related sites in the centre. Stop by the Mill Colonnade
and take the Lázeňská street towards the Grandhotel Pupp
, just like James Bond did after having landed in Montenegro – or, actually, Karlovy Vary. Notice the Castle Tower
and then take a stroll around the Tržiště
street just like Queen Latifah in Last Holiday. Without stress or haste, on the waves of your imagination, you can then walk along the river all the way back to Grandhotel Pupp
, in which James Bond as well as the heroine of Last Holiday were accommodated. The famous agent sat in a cosy corner of the Grandrestaurant Pupp with a view of the spa colonnade and Gérard Depardieu, another star of the romantic comedy Last Holiday, served his specialties here as chef.
From here it is only a short distance to the casino – or to the Emperor’s Spa (Spa I) – on the other side of the river. Yes, we are talking about the famous Casino Royale where 007 played a poker game with the villain Le Chiffre and where Jackie Chan performed one of his fight scenes in Shanghai Knights.
Common TipsExposition of the IFF: Hollywood Stars
Face to face with film stars
In the premises of the Thermal Hotel
, which regularly hosts the International Film Festival Karlovy Vary
, you have a chance to visit the permanent exposition of photographs devoted to the festival and its famous guests. You will be reminded of the atmosphere of the previous festival years and you can look at various photos capturing celebrities such as Robert De Niro, Robert Redford, Sharon Stone, Gregory Peck, Michael Douglas, Mia Farrow, Scarlett Johansson, John Travolta or Antonio Banderas. The author of the photos is the Slovak reporter Zuzana Mináčová, who has been taking photos of the festival’s stars since the 1960s.
Karlovy Vary is about 130 km away from Prague.
By car you can get here in less than two hours, by bus in about 2 hours and 15 minutes (bus goes every 30 minutes) and by train in more than 3 hours (train goes every two hours). The bus and train stations are in a walking distance from the centre.
It is also possible to get into Karlovy Vary by plane. There are regular flights from Yekaterinburg, Moscow – Sheremetyevo and Saint Petersburg – Pulkovo. The airport is about 4 km away from the city centre. The connection with the city is operated by public transportation, approximately every two hours, or you can take a taxi.
The town of Loket is located 13 km from Karlovy Vary. You can get there comfortably in 15 minutes by car, in half an hour by train with a transfer in Chodov or Nové Sedlo u Lokte, and a bus ride takes about a half an hour too.