Hradec nad Moravicí Chateau, in Czech known as Zámek Hradec nad Moravicí, is a complex of buildings in the small town of the same name in the Silesian part of the Moravian-Silesian Region. It is the main tourist attraction of this Silesian town. Nad Moravicí means “upon Moravice”, as this is the name of the river which flows through this town.
The origins of Hradec nad Moravicí date back to the early Middle Ages. In the 8th century, there was a Slavic fort at the site. In the 11th century, this fort was replaced by a castle belonging to the Přemyslid dynasty. Two centuries later, the future king of Bohemia, Ottokar II, expanded the castle and added fortifications.
The following centuries witnessed many reconstructions and additions. The complex changed ownership many times. Nowadays, the complex is owned by the state and its most important parts are:
- White Chateau (Bílý zámek) is the result of the reconstruction of the former Renaissance castle in the Empire style. The Renaissance castle had been badly damaged in a fire at the end of the 18th century.
- The White Tower (Bílá věž) is the tallest structure in the complex. It was built in 1887 and originally served as a water tower for the chateau complex and nearby houses.
- Red Chateau (Červený zámek) is a 19th century addition to the complex. It is a Neo-Gothic building, which was a popular architectural style at the turn of the 19th and 20th century. It is also known as Gothic Revival. Nowadays it houses a hotel and a restaurant.
- The Clock Tower (Hodinová věž) was built during the construction of Red Chateau and completed in 1880. For a small entrance fee, the tower can be climbed. It is 35 metres tall and 99 steps lead to the top. The reward for climbing are views of the surrounding area. Visitors can borrow binoculars free of charge.
- The rather impressive entrance gate stylistically matches Red Chateau and the Clock Tower with its Neo-Gothic appearance.
- The chateau park is the largest park of its kind in the whole Moravian-Silesian region.
In the past, Hradec nad Moravicí hosted many famous people, for example, great classical composers and musicians: Ludwig van Beethoven, Ferenc Liszt, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Niccolò Paganini. Today, the chateau complex is open to the general public and visitors can see its impressive interiors, with collections of antique furniture, china and paintings.
Getting to Hradec nad Moravicí
There is a train station in the town. Local trains connect it with Opava východ. During daytime hours, these trains run every hour. Opava is a medium-sized town in the Moravian-Silesian Region and it has direct train connections with many cities in Czechia, for example, Prague, Ostrava and Olomouc.
The chateau complex is within walking distance of the train station.
There are also direct buses from Ostrava to Hradec nad Moravicí and the journey takes about an hour. Bus trip from Opava to Hradec nad Moravicí takes about 20 minutes.
The information about where to check timetables is here.
If you are travelling by car and wish to use your navigation, the address is: Městečko 2, 747 41 Hradec nad Moravicí. The GPS coordinates are: 49.86569, 17.87490.
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