Litomyšl - The Cradle of Czech music

Surrender yourself to the sounds of classical music giants that will open a path into the world of the brilliant Czech composers Bedřich Smetana and Bohuslav Martinů, whose lives are inextricably linked with the region around the historic city of Litomyšl and nearby Polička. And while you're in this cultural region, you definitely should not miss the famous opera festival Smetana's Litomyšl.
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Can you delve into the fabric of bizarre tones that form musical pieces, in whose depths you discover dramatic and playful musical compositions? Then your fate is sealed and there is no choice but to go to Litomyšl. You will discover the life of the great Czech writer of classical music Bedřich Smetana, his person and work will really be in reach to you here. Not only through his native home in the vicinity of the unique Renaissance chateau, but especially on account of the unforgettable encounter with the beauty of classical music during the famous Smetana's Litomyšl International Opera Festival.


© Jaroslav Horák

However, your journey to the classics of classical music is far from over. The fact that this region was really generous to musical genius, will be revealed to you in the nearby historic town of Polička, which is the birthplace of another of the great Czech composers, Bohuslav Martinů. Climb the steep stairs to the room of his birth in the tower of the Church of St. James. Let yourself be taken away by the beauty of centuries, Renaissance and Baroque buildings surrounded by medieval fortifications, which also bears comparison with the famous French city of Carcassonne.

Interesting thing

However, there’s not just classical music in Litomyšl, as it might seem, all genres thrive there. Are you looking for an alternative to Smetana's House? Litomyšl was the first city to establish a rock club after the fall of the communist regime. For more than 20 years the renowned Music Club Kotelna (the boiler room), where a number of great shows are held till today, has been in operation there.

Day 1

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The journey to the musical mammoths and the places associated with them begins in the historic city of Polička, with a morning stroll tour of its sights through the medieval fortifications encircling almost the entire original town. Stroll through the streets of the city, notice the historic houses and the palatial plague column at the square Palackého náměstí, which is next to the exhibition hall. Full of the atmosphere of the city you will then head towards the Church of St. James, where the fate of the famous composer Bohuslav Martinů began to be written. Go to the Centre of Bohuslav Martinů,  where you can fully learn about his life and work and then visit his birthplace in the church tower. Around noon a trip to nearby Litomyšl  awaits you, where you can choose lunch in one of the great restaurants. After lunch passing through the square Smetanovo náměstí where you will notice the monument to Bedřich Smetana, you will head towards the former castle brewery, where you can visit the exhibition in the Family home of Bedřich Smetana. You can relax in the nearby Monastery gardens, where classical music quietly sounds at the pool. From there, you will move to the Smetana Family House, a beautiful neo-Renaissance building whose lofty spaces are used for cultural events. If you are in Litomyšl at the time of Smetana’s Litomyšl, you can finish your day by visiting one of the concerts of the International Opera Festival, which are held throughout the city, including the castle.

Common Tips

It has already become a tradition that floral objects are exhibited in the area of the monastery garden during Smetana's Litomyšl music festival. Students at the Faculty of Horticulture in Lednice in cooperation with the Horticulture and Technical High School in Litomyšl create unusual floral installations dedicated to Czech musical giants. 

Transportation

Litomyšl is about 170 kilometers from the center of Prague. The journey by car takes about two hours. By train or by bus the journey takes 2-3 h. The train station is located within walking distance of the city centre.
Litomyšl and Polička are divided by 19 km, which can be traveled by car in less than half an hour. With regular bus connections, you can cover the distance in 25-60 minutes. Polička is about 190 kilometers from the center of Prague. 

Day 1

km
5
hrs
10
sights
11

Polička

In the Middle Ages, when most large settlements had walls, no one would care very much, but today’s “fortifications tourism” is flourishing. In Polička, a town on the Czech-Moravian border near Litomyšl, you can even walk along the walls!

Address

Město Polička Palackého nám. 160 Polička, 572 01
GPS: 49.7145349896531, 16.263061515055597

The historic center of Polička

Entrust yourself into the protection of solid medieval walls with towers and bastions, discover their strength and antiquity, whilst admiring the picturesque town where historical epochs collide. Discover a city that shaped the musical spirit of the great composer Bohuslav Martinů.

Address

Palackého nám. 160
572 01 Polička
GPS: 49.714512, 16.265314

Birthplace of Bohuslav Martinů in Polička

Trace the footsteps of the world-renowned composer Bohuslav Martinů, whose life is connected with the town of Polička. Until he was 11 years old he lived with his family in a small room in the tower of St. James Church. See the place which, according to the composer’s memoirs written after his emigration, greatly shaped his method of composition, and enjoy views of the town and its surroundings from a height of 36 metres. You can learn more about this famous Polička native at the Municipal Museum, which presents a reconstructed classroom, documents and personal items belonging to the composer’s family, and film recordings of his works for the stage in an audiovisual room.

Address

Tylova 114, 572 01 Polička
GPS: 49.715017697746525, 16.264454345107993

Bohuslav Martinů Centre in Polička

Come and enjoy the fun and instruction in the modern exhibition entitled Colorful World of Bohuslav Martinů, that originally and playfully brings the personality, time and works of famed master of composition to life.

Address

Tylova 114
572 01 Polička
GPS: 49.715137, 16.264397

Opening Hours

Entry fees

Standard fee: 80 Kč

Children fee: 40 Kč

Family fee: 160 Kč

Senior fee: 40 Kč

Student fee: 40 Kč

Litomyšl

The richly decorated Renaissance chateau which is included in the UNESCO List, the historical centre full of colourful town houses, one of the oldest chateau theatres in Europe and the birthplace of the Czech composer Bedřich Smetana. This is Litomyšl, a city whose cultural significance surpasses the borders of the Czech Republic. So why not set out to get to know the story of a city which will delight your eyes and ears.

Address

Informační centrum Litomyšl
Smetanovo náměstí 72
Litomyšl 570 01
GPS: 49.87252352286, 16.3159578189168

The square Smetanovo náměstí in Litomyšl

Are you standing in the middle of an elongated square that gives you the impression of a wide boulevard? Yes, the square Smetanovo náměstí really was originally a trade route, which was created around the houses of the rich burghers, often beautifully decorated.

Address

Smetanovo náměstí
570 01 Litomyšl
GPS: 49.872710, 16.309977

Monument to Bedřich Smetana

While walking through Litomyšl it is unthinkable to miss visiting the central historical square Smetanovo náměstí, which is adorned by the ancient Marian Column ancient, historic houses and the town hall with an astronomical clock, as well as the elegant monument to the great native Bedřich Smetana, built for him by grateful citizens.

Address

Smetanovo náměstí
570 01 Litomyšl
GPS: 49.872661, 16.310028

Chateau and chateau complex in Litomyšl

Wonderful sgrafitto decoration, magnificent gables, elegant arcades, romantic gardens and a mysterious underground. These are just some of the reasons to visit the chateau in Litomyšl. This representative seat of the Pernštejn family is one of the most beautiful examples of the Renaissance style in Bohemia and is balm for the soul of all those who appreciate the purity of top quality architecture. All of these qualities have led to the chateau complex being included on the UNESCO world heritage list.

Address

Jiráskova 93
570 01 Litomyšl
GPS: 49.873495, 16.312615

Entry fees

Standard fee: 240 Kč

Children fee: 160 Kč

Senior fee: 160 Kč

Student fee: 160 Kč

Birthplace of Bedřich Smetana in Litomyšl

If you come to Litomyšl, your path will certainly lead to the former castle brewery, where the famous composer Bedřich Smetana was born in 1824. An exhibition engagingly acquaints you with his childhood in Litomyšl and the life of his family, who steered young Bedřich towards music from an early age. It also presents important events in Smetana’s life and how they were reflected in his works. You will also learn about other important places in Smetana’s life – Prague and Gothenburg, Sweden. During June and July there is an exhibition of works by selected painters in connection with the international music festival Smetana’s Litomyšl.

 

Address

Jiráskova č.p. 9, 570 01 Litomyšl
GPS: 49.872872067026506, 16.313764075637778

Opening Hours

Entry fees

Standard fee: 40 Kč

Children fee: 20 Kč

Family fee: 80 Kč

Senior fee: 20 Kč

Student fee: 20 Kč

The Monastery gardens in Litomyšl

The sprawling Monastery gardens, sandwiched between two Litomyšl churches, are located in the vicinity of the castle. Discover the peace and grandeur of this place, with wonderful views over the dreamy city.

Opening Hours

The Smetana House in Litomyšl

For more than a century the connection between the great composer and Smetana House, which is the undisputed cultural sanctuary of Litomyšl, has been recalled. Allow yourself to be swept away by the noble spirit and beauty of the interior and the monumentality of the building, which is peak-Renaissance in Litomyšl.

Address

Komenského nám. 402
570 01 Litomyšl
GPS: 49.872855, 16.307518

Kavárna Na Sklípku, Penzion Paseka

It points out by its name on former pub Na sklipku, which Josef Vachal have been visiting with Hosef Portman during his stays in Litomysl. Literary cafe offers at its present days nice place to rest with cup of first-rate coffee Lamborghini, or with fine beer Pilsner Urquell or glass of czech or foreigh wine. 

Address

Smetanovo náměstí 127
570 01 Litomyšl
GPS: 49.872011, 16.310713

Restaurace, Penzion Pod Klášterem

Our restaurant can cater for parties and wedding celebrations. In the summer months a terrace is open to all guests. We are open daily.

Address

Pension - Restaurace
Pod Klášterem
Boženy Němcové 158
570 01 Litomyšl
GPS: 49.871480, 16.312369

Zlatá hvězda Hotel

Zlatá hvězda Hotel in the centre of Litomyšl has already played host to several important personalities from cultural and political life. Its restaurant is also renowned, offering pleasant surroundings as well as Czech and international cuisine. Whether you choose traditional roast duck with dumplings and cabbage, roast sirloin garnished with cranberries or beef goulash, you will certainly not be disappointed. 

Address

Zlatá Hvězda ****
Smetanovo nám. 84
570 01 Litomyšl
GPS: 49.86905333, 16.3126235179

Antik Hotel Sofia

It features a peaceful garden, an art gallery and free Wi-Fi in the guest bedrooms. All guest bedrooms at Antik Hotel Sofia have a private bathroom and an LCD TV with satellite channels. Some of the suites feature private balconies with views across the garden.

Address

Antik Hotel Sofia***
Lidická 113/1
570 01 Litomyšl
GPS: 49.869879, 16.315363

Penzion Lilie

The guest house provides free WiFi and a children’s playground. The UNESCO-protected Litomyšl Castle is 1.4 km away. All rooms have a seating area and are fitted with wooden floors. You can overlook the garden from each room. Some rooms come with a sofa. A bathroom with a toilet and a shower is standard in every room.

Address

Penzion Lilie
Na Řetízku 1170
570 01 Litomyšl
GPS: 49.861967, 16.314619

Zlatá hvězda Hotel

Zlatá hvězda Hotel in the centre of Litomyšl has already played host to several important personalities from cultural and political life. Its restaurant is also renowned, offering pleasant surroundings as well as Czech and international cuisine. Whether you choose traditional roast duck with dumplings and cabbage, roast sirloin garnished with cranberries or beef goulash, you will certainly not be disappointed. 

Address

Zlatá Hvězda ****
Smetanovo nám. 84
570 01 Litomyšl
GPS: 49.86905333, 16.3126235179