27 Of The Best Things To Do In Bucharest

Well, after about 3 months in the Czech Republic, it was sad to have to leave. We had such an awesome time with lots of fun and memorable experiences.

Yet, it was exciting to be going to our next destination… Bucharest! Now, we haven’t even been to Romania, let alone Bucharest. So, this was something to look forward to. 

Now, having done some research on how to get there. We didn’t want to spend hours… and we mean like over 15 hours getting from Prague to Bucharest. Although it was cheaper, in the end we were happy to spend the money to fly.

So, to cut a long story short… we flew Business Class with the Romanian airline carrier, Blue Air. We did plan to write a blog about our “interesting” experiences with Blue Air. Yet, as they have been forced to shut down operations… no point in giving you irrelevant info!

Even so, we did make it to Bucharest. And boy, it sure is a striking and surprising place in many ways.

Now, come on the journey with us as we share with you… 27 of the best things to do in Bucharest, Romania.

Let’s kick off with this…

1. Unirii Fountains

We have seen some tremendous fountains on our travels. Yet, when we were in Bucharest the fountains that we were told to see by locals… is not what we were expecting. You ain’t seen nothing yet, until you see the Unirii Fountains. 

It’s said that a mind-blowing 7 million Euros was spent to re-develop Unirii Square… which is one of the largest squares in Bucharest. Woah, that’s a jaw dropping figure by any standards! 

Even so, if you want to witness t sound and light Unirii Fountains extravaganza… come in the evenings to see a grandiose display like this.

2. Bucharest Old Town

Now, we don’t want to destroy the magical impressions you may have of Bucharest Old Town. Yet, it wasn’t until we got there to learn more about Bucharest… that is was shocking to discover this… 

Unlike many “Old Towns” around the world… the Bucharest Old Town is not not old! What? We felt deflated… like someone popping a balloon, and all the air was being sucked out. Yet, we do have to clarify something.

The history of the Old Town area in Bucharest dates back to the 1400’s. So yes, the area is ancient. Yet, many of the buildings you see were built in the 21st Century! 

Don’t let this deter you though. It’s one of the ultimate places for tourists and locals alike to gather in. As there’s something for everyone to enjoy in this city hub… from restaurants, shops, ancient landmarks, to the vibrant nightlife.

3. Calea Victorei (Victory Street)

In Bucharest, one of the most significant roads you’ll have to wander down, is Calea Victorei. Its history dates as far back as the 16th Cenutry. And, spanning almost a length of 3km, as you stroll through here… there are many magnificent sights to see along the way.

And, that includes this striking place…

4. Palace of the Deposits and Consignments

When traveling throughout Europe, there are so many magnificent buildings to see. Plus, it blows us away at how institutions like schools and banks… have some of the most breath taking architecture. And, one of the places in Bucharest is the 19th Century Palace of the Deposits and Consignments …

You may see signs out the front showing CEC Bank. And, that’s because this Renaissance-style palace was originally built to house a bank. Now, opposite this remarkable building is another architectural delight…

5. National History Museum of Romania 

How eye-catching and magnificent is this building? 

This majestic National History Museum of Romania was built in the late 1890’s. And, the architect Alexandru Săvulescu had a vision for the design… basing it on the Federal Post Palace from Geneva, Switzerland. 

And, if you’re eager to see hundreds of historical and cultural artefacts on display… there are various exhibitions held throughout the year. At the time of writing this travel blog… the ticket prices for adults are 20 RON (about USD $4.20 / 4.05 Euros / GBP 3.50). Plus, discount prices apply for seniors and students.

6. Stavropoleos Monastery Church

When you’re in the Bucharest Old Town area… you must go and see the astonishing Stavropoleos Monastery Church.

While its history dates back to the 1700’s… due to ravaging fires the original building was decimated. Thus, in the 19th Century, it was rebuilt in the majestic Brancovenesc style that you see today… that came from the South of Romania.

The Stavropoleos Church incorporates a mixture of striking designs… from Baroque through to Oriental. And, the level of detail that makes up its exterior and interior is captivating.

Now, this is one of the unique and best things to do in Bucharest Old Town…

7. The Macca-Villacrosse Passage (Pasajul Macca-Vilacrosse)

When exploring Bucharest, there’s an exquisite arcade that you need to see. And, if you only wander the main streets of Bucharest you will miss it. Tucked away in Bucharest Old Town is, Pasajul Macca-Vilacrosse.

This U-shape arcade with its fascinating glass roofing, was built in the late 1800’s. And, it was to connect the National Bank of Romania to Calea Victorei. Take a look at how awesome it looks…

And, you can take a break in the delightful surroundings, enjoying coffee or a bite to eat… in the many cafes that line this arcade.

8. Romanian Athenaeum

This grand building that you can find while strolling on Victory Street… is the Romanian Athenaeum. It’s a monumental part of Bucharest’s history… being one of the oldest and most cultural institutions.

Within this building is a main stage and halls, whereby artists would perform and flaunt their talents. And, this would include artists such as famous Romanian composer, George Enescu.

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9. Carol I University Foundation

Remember how we were saying earlier… that even educational instituions were in some of the most amazing buildings? Well, this one is no exception! This is the Carol I University Foundation.

And, in front of this fascinating building is a statue of King Carol I. He was adamant about improving the education of students. Thus, establishing this University Foundation… which primarily houses the Central University Library.

10. Pasajul Victoria (Victoria Passage)

Wouldn’t you agree that there’s a captivating feeling that is brought about… when it comes to seeing a kaleidoscope of rainbow colors? Well, when you head on over to Pasajul Victoria, take a wander down this alleyway, as you’ll see this magical display…

The best part is, there are a few cafes and restaurants in the Victoria Passage. So, you can admire the view and surround yourself in this wondrous setting… while having a drink or bite to eat.

11. Arcul de Triumf

Did you know that Bucharest is also known as, the Little Paris of the East? 

It was given this nickname back in the 1900’s… as some of the buildings had the resemblance of French architecture. Plus, there was a population of local Romanians who also spoke the French language… due to the influences of the time. 

And, one of the popular French inspired landmarks in Bucharest… is their gigantic Arcul de Triumf…

Now, the traffic going around it… was nowhere near as crazy as that around the Arc de Triomphe in Paris!

12. Cișmigiu Gardens

When you’re looking for a place to chill amongst the greenery in a peaceful environment… head on over to Cișmigiu Gardens.

From our perspective… it’s one of the prettier and better maintained gardens near the Old Town area. And, not only that, this gigantic 16-hectare garden… is the biggest and oldest in Bucharest.

Now, even if you’re not religious, we believe this is one of the top things to do in Bucharest…

13. Mitropily Hill (Dealul Mitropoliei)

When venturing just outside of the Bucharest Old Town Area… make your way to Dealul Mitropoliei, which in English is Mitropily Hill. And, as you walk up a winding path… it will astonish you when you get to the enclosed complex at the top.

Here is the 17th Century Patriarchal Cathedral of Saints Constantine and Helena, one of the most sacred Romanian cathedrals…  

When we were there, plenty of tourists were flocking to this monumental landmark. And, surrounding this are other landmarks including the Patriarchal Palace and Bell Tower.

Now, there are signs showing that photos cannot be taken. And, there were several security guards roaming around the complex too. 

Yet, there were many people taking pics in the complex. So, we guess that as long as you’re considerate and respectful… you shouldn’t have any difficulty with the guards. 

14. Palace of the National Military Circle

If you want to see a double-whammy of awesome historical Bucharest attractions in the one go… then head on over to the Palace of the National Military Circle. 

And, instantly you can see in front of this grand building, is a fountain. And, this is the Sărindar Fountain… which got its name from the Sărindar monastery that used to occupy this area.

15. Experience the Vibrant Nightlife in Bucharest

When you’re in Bucharest, make sure that when the sun goes down… you make your way to the Old Town. You need to experience how entertaining the nightlife gets in this area! There are bars and even nightclubs booming music out onto the street.

There are many choices of where you can go. And, if you’re not sure, as you walk towards many of the places… there’ll be staff in front of the establishments, trying to lure you in. Otherwise, go without a plan and bar hop, in the happy and upbeat atmosphere.

16. Constitution Square (Piața Constituției)

There are many open squares in Bucharest… where you can take a break and enjoy the surrounding jolly atmosphere. Yet, there is a square in Bucharest… where it isn’t the best  environment to sit around drinking beer! 

And, that place is Constitution Square. Here, there are many government-type premises. 

Yet, one of the main reasons we recommend you come here… is to see the colossal Palace of Parliament… 

17. Go Vego 

Bucharest, let alone Romania has a hefty amount of meaty meals. Yet, when we were in Bucharest… it was surprising to see some places that did offer tasty vegetarian meals.

And, one of the top places we recommend is, Aubergine. It’s in the heart of the Bucharest Old Town area. While there are plenty of seats inside… there are also seats in front of the restaurant to soak up the surrounding joyous atmosphere. 

So, to kick off our meal we got a local bottle of 2017 Merlot… which was only 120 RON (about USD $25.40 /  24.40 Euros / 21 GBP). Plus, we had a vegan platter with an assortment of local breads. Look at the tremendous colors within that gourmet platter!

We sure did go to flavortown at Aubergine… as with each bite it was mind-blowing at how delicious the food was. And, for the great quality of food we had including the wine… the total bill only came to 182 RON (about USD $38.60 /  37 Euros / 31.80 GBP). Plus, the service here was outstanding. So, make sure you check it out!

18. St Nicholas Church

You may have heard of the saying, “All that glitters is not gold.” Yet, when you’re in Bucharest, you will see gold. And, what we’re talking about is the majestic, St Nicholas Church. 

Now, when we were there… a large part of the church had scaffolding covering its beauty. That was sad as it is a remarkable looking church. Yet, we did use our imagination so you can see how magnificent it is… 

We hope that when you visit Bucharest, you’ll have the chance to see St Nicholas Church… in all its golden glory from top to bottom, without any obstructions.

19. Walk in the Middle of Major Streets

Yep, you read that correctly. No, it’s not a dare or some creepy challenge! 

On our first weekend in Bucharest, we set out to explore more of this capital city. And, when we did, it was very odd. We were curious and thought that there was a major event happening… as we saw people walking down the middle of the usually busy Calei Victorei. 

Yet, something we found out was that on the weekends… over 30 streets are blocked off so traffic can’t pass through. So, they become “Open Streets” for pedestrians only! Please take note though, that it doesn’t happen all year round.

20. King Mihai I Park (Herăstrău)

Now, speaking of things that are gigantic, the biggest park in Bucharest is Herăstrău. And, it’s that huge spanning over 180 hectares, you could spend a day out here. So, whether that’s enjoying a relaxing picnic… through to cycling around to explore what this beautiful park has to offer.

21. University Square

Nearby St Nicholas Church is University Square. And, when you’re here, whichever way you look… you’ll have stunning views all around. Marvel at the magnificent buildings including Sutu Palace, the National Theatre… as well as the Intercontinental Hotel. 

Plus, as you stroll through the tremendous University Square… you’ll wander past giant statues of key icons, such as Ion Heliade Rădulescu, and Gheorghe Lazar.

22. Strada Lipscani

This is one of the oldest and most significant pedestrian streets in Bucharest. Because back in the 19thCentury… it was a bustling place for traders to undertake their commercial activities. Thus, becoming an active wealth building hub. 

Yet, one of the astonishing things is this street was going to be demolished… under the rule of the Communists! Yet, this didn’t happen. And, instead work was put into the area to revitalise it. 

So, while you wander down this pedestrian street… you can check out some of the restaurants, bars, shops and landmarks that line it.

23. Monument of the Romanian Infantry

When exploring Bucharest… there are many statues and monuments that line the streets and city squares. Yet, nearby Victory Square in Kiseleff Park, is this captivating monument…

This 10-metre high column, is the Monument of the Romanian Infantry. And, the figures that are in this column… represent the Romanian infantry who lost their lives in WWI and WWII. 

And, what makes this monument even more striking is when you look closely at the figures. Each body is different, yet the main similarity is that the figures are disfigured… portraying the sacrifices that they suffered in battle. 

24. St Anthony’s Church (Biserica Sfântul Anton)

When you first look at St Anthony’s Church, its design is so quaint and stunning. And, it does look smaller than many other churches, covering a size of about 25m x 8m. Yet, its said to be the oldest surviving religious complex in Bucharest… dating back to the mid 1500’s.

25. The Linden Tree Inn (Hanul cu Tei)

The Linden Tree Inn is one of the few Romanian Inns that is still standing in Bucharest Old Town. Plus, it’s said to be the only inn of its type where it still has the old world shape as it was built originally, way back in the 1830’s. 

Nowadays, the “Linden Tree Inn” hosts one of the biggest art galleries in Romania. Here you can find vintage art like furniture, paneling, tapestries and rugs, paintings, photos, albums, old documents, watches, cameras and gramophones, coins, medals, and icons.

26. Odeon Theatre (Teatrul Odeon)

This stunning place is the Odean Theatre, which sits along Calea Victorei. Founded in the mid 1900’s, it was then known as Giulesti Theatre… until 1990 when it had a name change to the Odeon.

Although smaller in comparison to others we’ve seen… this is one of the leading theatres in Bucharest. And, to this day, there are performances held here, if you’re eager to be cultured.

And last, but not least is a predicable thing we recommend you do in Bucharest…

27. Drink Romanian Beer

Whether you go to a bar, pub, café or restaurant… why not taste the different Romanian beers. Now, we were spoilt for choice in Prague with so many beers. Yet, we always enjoy trying the local brews. 

In Romania not only can you quench your thirst with their standard beers… they also have a variety of craft beers too. So, a 500ml beer can be around 10 RON and upwards, of course… depending on where you go. That’s about USD $2.15 / 2.05 Euros / GBP 1.75). Cheap as!

Well, now after sharing 27 of the best things to do in Bucharest, Romania… it’s time to quench our thirst, by having some brews! 

We trust that this We Drink Eat Travel blog… has given you many awesome ideas of where to go when you visit Bucharest. So, whether it’s to see majestic buildings, or surround yourself in stunning unique atmospheres… through to experiencing an upbeat nightlife, or witnessing ancient relics. 

There is lots to do in Bucharest that will leave you with happy memories forever. Until next time… CHEERS!

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27 Of The Best Things To Do In Bucharest, Romania

  • Unirii Fountains
  • Bucharest Old Town
  • Calea Victorei (Victory Street)
  • Palace of the Deposits and Consignments
  • National History Museum of Romania
  • Stavropoleos Monastery Church
  • The Macca-Villacrosse Passage (Pasajul Macca-Vilacrosse)
  • Romanian Athenaeum
  • Carol I University Foundation
  • Pasajul Victoria (Victoria Passage)
  • Arcul de Triumf
  • Cișmigiu Gardens
  • Mitropily Hill (Dealul Mitropoliei)
  • Palace of the National Military Circle
  • Experience the Vibrant Nightlife in Bucharest
  • Constitution Square (Piața Constituției)
  • Go Vego 
  • St Nicholas Church
  • Walk in the Middle of Major Streets
  • King Mihai I Park (Herăstrău)
  • University Square
  • Strada Lipscani
  • Monument of the Romanian Infantry
  • St Anthony’s Church (Biserica Sfântul Anton)
  • The Linden Tree Inn (Hanul cu Tei)
  • Odeon Theatre (Teatrul Odeon)
  • Drink Romanian Beer

7 Awesome Places To Visit In Karlovy Vary For Amazing Views

When we did our day trip to Karlovy Vary… it was surprising to see how even more beautiful it is with our own eyes. It seems like everywhere we went, strolling along the streets and getting ourselves lost… there was always something amazing to look at around the corner.

And, in doing our research, we found out that there are several lookouts… where we could see Karlovy Vary from above. And boy, did we get spoilt with such breathtaking views.

So, in this We Drink Eat Travel blog… we’ll run through 7 places to visit in Karlovy Vary to get some incredible views. Let’s start with this popular one…

1. Deer Jump Lookout (Vyhlídka Jelení Skok)

Many tourists flock to the Deer Jump Lookout, not only for the views, but for this…

Yep, it’s a massive rock on the edge of the mountain. Yet, if you look at the top of the rock, as it tapers at the top there’s the infamous statue of a deer. So, this is a popular attraction as it’s said to be one of the oldest lookouts in Karlovy Vary… having been built in 1804.

Now, one of the common ways to get to Deer Jump Lookout is from behind Hotel Boston… as this is the more direct route. Yet, what you need to know is that it’s a very steep walk up. Plus, the steps are small. So, if you choose to take this path, be extremely careful. 

Instead of taking this route, we made our way to Deer Jump Lookout… as we were walking through the lovely forest, down from Diana Lookout.

2. Diana Observation Tower

Many tourists and even locals, make their way to the Diana Observation Tower area. If you’re keen on walking up through the lovely forest like us… then you can start behind the infamous Grandhotel Pupp. 

There are signs to the Diana Tower and Lookout. Yet, if you’re unsure, when you’re facing the Grandhotel Pupp… to the far right of the hotel is a laneway that snakes its way behind. This laneway is by the name of, Mariánská.

And, at the end of this laneway is its namesake chapel, Mariánská kaple. Or, in English it’s the Marian Chapel.

When you’re in this area, you’ll see painted markings for D1 and D2 hiking trails… which are for the main walks to the Diana Observation Tower. 

We thought it was a gentle hike up, and didn’t feel that steep. 

Then, when you get there you’ll see the huge Diana Observation Tower…

Surprisingly it was free to enter. And, once you walk up the steps, you can wander around the top of the tower, to get views like this…

Now, if you don’t want to walk up to the Diana Observation Tower, there is an easier way…

TRAVEL TIP: An Easier Way to Diana Lookout

If you don’t have the time to walk up to the Diana Observation Tower… or you have an impediment, then the simplest way to get to the top is via the Diana Funicular. It runs every 15 minutes, and takes a few minutes to get to the top. 

As the funicular only takes up to 40 people, you may need to wait patiently to get on board… especially during peak times. 

Now, at the time of writing this travel blog… the one-way price of a funicular ticket for a per person over 15 years of age is 100 CZK (about USD $4 / 4.10 Euros / 3.50 GBP). And, a return ticket is 150 CZK (about USD $6 / 6.10 Euros / 5.25 GBP).

So, this may be an option if you walking up to the Tower isn’t an option. 

3. Wolf’s Ruhe

Now, when you’re hiking up the mountain to Diana Lookout, here’s one of the different places to visit in Karlovy Vary…

This seat is Wolf’s Ruhe. When we saw it, we thought it’d be a great spot to take a seat. Plus, when you sit down, check out the view you get…

Be wary, if you think you’re going to have it all to yourself, think again. Yes, it does look inviting and peaceful, with beautiful views. Yet, it’s a popular place for tourists to take photos too!

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4. Jean de Carro Park

Now, we’d say that many tourists miss out on these views of Karlovy Vary. When we were there only a handful of tourists were in the area. Then, after they left, we had the entire lookout point to ourselves for a while. 

So, the way that we went to get to the lookout point in Jean de Carro Park… was going on the path next to the Wellness Hotel Jean De Carro. And, after walking past this hotel, we kept walking along the cobblestone street path. 

Now, if you’re trying to find the exact lookout point where we were, say via Google… then look for the landmark by the name of, Socha Kočky. And, this is what that landmark looks like…

Then, when you look out beyond this, you see marvellous views of Karlovy Vary…

Now, having done a lot of walking, hiking up and down different hills… we’d seen many different beautiful views over Karlovy Vary. Yet, we’d have to say that this next lookout, gave us some of the most breathtaking views.

5. Peter’s Height Lookout

You’ll know when you’re at Peter’s Height Lookout area when you see this monument…

This monument is of Peter the Great, a victorious Russian Tsar… who in November of 1712 atop his horse, rode up this hill from Karlovy Vary town. And, while there are man-made paths to this area now… imagine it back then without any smooth paths, instead with rocky terrain. 

And, as you make your way past the monument, there are steps leading up to a huge cross. It’s said that there was a cross there back then, and Peter the Great had carved his initials into it. So, what you see today is a replica of that cross

Then, once you’re at the top, here are the most breathtaking views to get of Karlovy Vary…

Now, here’s another amazing place to see nearby Peter’s Height Lookout…

6. Mayer’s Gloriette Lookout 

If you take a look at our previous photo from Peter’s Height… you can see a gazebo with a red roof. And, that structure is the Mayer’s Gloriette. It looks like a quaint place to be, especially from a romantic viewpoint.

Yet, when we were there… unfortunately there were constant streams of tourists. So, we had to share the Mayer’s Gloriette with others. 

Even so, once there, take in the amazing views of Karlovy Vary…

Now, this next place doesn’t give bird’s eye views over Karlovy Vary. Yet, we had to put this one in… as you can see on ground level, just how magical the town of Karlovy Vary is. 

7. Mlýnské Street to Stará Louka

There are many pedestrian-only streets in Karlovy Vary. Yet, the stretch between Mlýnské Street and Stará Louka is one of the most picturesque. Bordering one side of the Teplá River… we spent a lot of time taking photos while strolling up and down these streets. 

You’ll pass by many charming, tall colorful buildings… with rows of windows as far as the eye can see. And, as you walk on the wide spacious path… you’ll also witness the beauty of the majestic Mill Colonnade, built in the late 1800’s. 

Plus, after wandering past many shops… we were wandering along Stara Louka. And, we had to stop along the way for some drinks and local foods. We could’ve sat there for hours admiring Karlovy Vary’s beauty. 

We trust that this blog has given you ideas for places to go in Karlovy Vary… so you can see different and amazing views of this town. And, with many walking paths through the forests, we’re sure there are plenty more.

Having had the experience to explore Karlovy Vary… we know for next time that we need to spend much more time here! For us, a day trip is not enough to enjoy all that this town has to offer.

If you’ve been to Karlovy Vary… which place do you think was the best to get breathtaking views?

And, if you’re looking at some unique experiences in Karlovy Vary… check out this guide.

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7 Awesome Places To Visit In Karlovy Vary For Amazing Views

  • Deer Jump Lookout (Vyhlídka Jelení Skok)
  • Diana Observation Tower
  • Wolf’s Ruhe
  • Jean de Carro Park
  • Peter’s Height Lookout
  • Mayer’s Gloriette Lookout 
  • Mlýnské Street to Stará Louka

20 Of The Best Things To Do In Karlovy Vary

When it comes to visiting the Czech Republic… there are so many amazing places and things to do. When we were there, we made our base in Prague. And, if you’ve been to Prague… then you’ll most likely have been gob-smacked by its beauty and history. 

Not only that, it sure is a vibrant and exciting place to visit.

Yet, you need to make time to explore outside of the city of Prague. And, as we were fortunate enough to spend a lot of time in the Czech Republic… we were able to discover  one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. 

So, this city that we’re talking about is Karlovy Vary. It truly is a picturesque place. And, it’s like you’re in a dream world because it feels so magical.

Plus, this quaint town was put on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2021… marking it one of the greatest spa towns in Europe. Karlovy Vary happens to be the biggest spa town in Czechia… with a tradition of providing spa services for over 600 years! 

And, if taking spa treatments takes your fancy… you’ll be spoilt for choice, as there are hundreds of hot springs and spas to choose from.

Yet, there’s plenty more to do in Karlovy Vary as we found out.

So, in this We Drink Eat Travel blog… we’ll highlight 20 of the best things to do in Karlovy Vary. 

Now, we chose to take a bus from Prague to get to Karlovy Vary. And, after we got there around 9am, we took a stroll to this first landmark…

1. Smetana Orchards (Smetanova Sady) 

Only a few minutes walk from the Karlovy Vary Trznice bus stop… is the beautiful Smetana Orchards. And, this was a great landmark to start our exploration of Karlovy Vary. That’s because when looking down at the lush green manicured gardens, it was an amazing view…

It looks picture perfect. Plus, what makes the area look even more grand is this…

2. Elizabeth Spa (Alžbětiny Lázně)

As we said earlier, there are hundreds of hot springs and spas in Karlovy Vary. And, the first one that we saw was the Elizabeth Spa. This majestic building with its ornate detail is over 100 years old… where its name was chosen in honor of the Empress Elizabeth. 

There are over 50 health and wellness treatments available to choose from here… as well as a swimming pool area. Prices per person start from about 120 Koruna (4.90 Euros / USD $4.80 / GBP 4.20).

Now, one of the others things you can see in Karlovy Vary, for something different is this…

3. Karlovy Vary Flower Calendar

At the opposite end of the Smetana Orchards is this…

This is a floral calendar which is so bright, pretty and colorful. And, it’s said that around the Summer months… the date of this calendar changes every day! So, plan your trip to Karlovy Vary accordingly, if you want to witness this beautiful display.

So, when it comes to architecture in Karlovy Vary, this next incredible building stands opposite the Flower Calendar…

4. Karlovy Vary Main Post Office

Now, when first looking at it… it wouldn’t surprise us if you thought this building was a palace. Yet, no it isn’t! Instead it’s Karlovy Vary’s main post office. Built during the time of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire rule… the detail is truly magnificent.

If you look at the centre of the building beneath the clock… there are 4 large pillars with different figures atop of each. And, these statues are said to represent telegraph communications, railway transport… as well as ship transport, and mail communications.

So, when you’re standing in front of the post office, your eyes must be shut if you miss this next landmark…

5. Karlovy Vary Obelisk

This tall, shiny glass obelisk looks like it’s balancing on top of 3 huge metal balls. Yet, we were given assurance that it is sturdy! 

While a fountain surrounds the obelisk, when the sun is out… it helps to make this landmark glisten even more. Now, if you have a look back in our photo of the Smetana Orchards… you’ll see the Obelisk shimmering right at the end, in the centre!

6. Take a Stroll Up Zahradní Street

If it’s your first time in Karlovy Vary, you’ll discover that there are so many beautiful streets to wander down… to admire the architectural beauty in this place. And, after having seen the main post office… we made the decision to continue our journey along Zahradní Street. 

Along this cobblestone street, you’ll see a collection of many colorful buildings… with their uniform, multiple rows of tall rectangular windows. Yet, it’s so mesmerizing with each building a different pastel color… like, you’re a kid in a candy store trying to choose the different flavors of your lollies.

Then, towards the end of this street, is one of the best things to do in Karlovy Vary…

7. Park Colonnade (Sadová kolonáda)

Karlovy Vary is known for being the “spa capital” of the Czech Republic. And, there are many mineral springs that attract locals and tourists alike. So, when you’re near the end of Zahradní Street at Becher’s Park… you’ll see the Park Colonnade. 

Here, in this elegant cast iron colonnade built in the 1880’s, is the No. 15 Snake Spring. So, this is one of the places where you can taste the mineral water in Karlovy Vary. And yes, we did try the water at every spring that we went to!

Now, the taste is not for everyone. Some of the springs have a sharper earthier taste… as the mineral content differs, and can be more pungent.

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TRAVEL TIP for tasting the water at the Karlovy Vary mineral springs:

Now, as you’re exploring the various mineral springs in Karlovy Vary… many of you will take the plunge to try the different tasting waters. 

And, as they are all thermal, the temperature of the water can be up to around 75 degrees Celsius… (about 167 degrees farenheit). So, if don’t have a suitable container, then there are stalls around Karlovy Vary selling these…

There are so many different styles and sizes to choose from. OK, it may seem touristy… but they do look charming. Yet, if you’re in need of a container… you can get one starting from around 50 Koruna (2.05 Euros / USD $2 / GBP 1.75). 

Plus, if size matters and you want one that looks more manly, there’s lots of options. In fact, there’s a style and size to suit everyone, even the kids… from rabbits, to cats, clowns, through to police cars!

8. Wander Along the Teplá River

Now, you need to take a stroll along the waterfront here… especially if you want some picturesque and memorable photos. And, the side where we believe it’s more remarkable… is on the Mlýnské nábřeží side of the river.

When you’re strolling along the waterfront, it felt like we were in a different. It’s hard to put it into context in a blog. But everywhere we would look… we would be blown away at how exquisite the buildings and environment were.

Plus, one of the most important landmarks in Karlovy Vary is here too…

9. Mill Colonnade

One of the most impressive colonnades in Karlovy Vary would have be this one… the Mill Colonnade.

Built in the 1870’s, this Neo-Renaissance architectural style colonnade is the biggest in Karlovy Vary… and houses several mineral springs. 

And, remember to look up as you see 12 large figures standing on the colonnade. These are said to represent each month of the year. Yet, once you’re within the Mill Colonnade it presents a truly spectacular views…

Now, for a completely different looking colonnade, you need to see this…

10. Market Colonnade

For us, this colonnade stood out in contrast to the others. With its striking Swiss style, and intricate detail that looks like lace… or even doilies! Yes, use your imagination here. 

This colonnade was built from wood in the 1880’s to cover the springs. Yet, one of the surprising things is that it was only supposed to be a temporary cover! Then, after more than a century of the structure still being there… it underwent re-construction in the 1990’s and became a permanent fixture.

Now, only metres away from the Market Colonnade is this prominent monument…

11. Holy Trinity Column

Like many cities in Europe, this Baroque-style monument was built following the plagues… that hit many of the countries and towns. Yet, the town of Karlovy Vary and its people were lucky… having not had the devastating impacts of the plague. Thus, the column represents the gratitude of the people… for protection from the disease. 

So, next up on our list of the best things to do in Karlovy Vary is to see this…

12. Hot Spring Colonnade

While there are several colonnades in Karlovy Vary to see… the Hot Spring Colonnade is popular. We had to patiently wait to take photos and videos… so that we didn’t have any people in them! 

This colonnade has a surround of floor to ceiling windows… allowing natural light to flow through. And, the room has a high ceiling, which it sure needs… as the height as the water shoots out with a blast, to about 12 metres high! 

You can feel the heat and moisture within the room encircling you. So, it’s a great place to be if you want some cosy warm comfort.

13. Relax and Recharge on the Riverfront

While you’re in Karlovy Vary, you’ll want to stop to relax to have some food and drinks. And, one area where you can enjoy amazing views in a wonderful environment… is on Stará Louka. 

This quaint street is lined with a variety of shops and restaurants on one side… and the Tepla River on the other. And, we recommend it as a place to chill out, before continuing on your adventures. We could’ve sat there all day people watching and soaking up the beauty… yet, we were only there for a day trip.

Now, for you James Bond fans, you’ll want to visit this place…

14. The Grandhotel Pupp in Karlovy Vary

The popular James Bond film, Casino Royale features the Grandhotel Pupp. So, for the fans, why not replay the scenes when here in Karlovy Vary!

The history of this majestic and luxurious 5-star hotel dates back to 1701. And, not only does this hotel look incredible it’s also unique. Did you know that each room in this hotel is different? 

That’s right, each hotel had its own unique style and character. Plus, with over 200 rooms, that’s a lot of work to put into each! Can you imagine staying in each room?

15. Witness Some of the Most Breathtaking Views of Karlovy Vary

From our point of view, one of the things you must do in Karlovy Vary is to take a hike! And, if you’re willing to walk up through the forest… you’ll see some spectacular views over Karlovy Vary. And, when you do you can get breathtaking views like this…

Now, in another travel blog… we’ll give you more details on hiking to the lookouts around Karlovy Vary. Make sure you check it out as we give some helpful hints and tips. 

16. Karlovy Vary Town Theatre (Karlovarské Městské Divadlo)

While there are so many architectural delights in Karlovy Vary… their theatre sure does stand out. Built in the 1880’s, this Neo-Baroque style theatre is a masterpiece… as designed by various Viennese architects and designers. Unfortunately, while we were there, the theatre wasn’t open. 

Yet, we have seen and heard that the interior is as magnificent on the inside… as it is on the outside. So, make sure you check it out if you have the opportunity. This is a functioning theatre, so why not see a performance if you have the time. Or mingle with the celebrities during the International Film Festival.

17. Church of St Mary Magdalene (Kostel Maří Magdalény)

If you want to see an example of a beautiful Baroque-style church in a quaint town…  then head on over to St Mary Magdelene’s Church. Although it was built in the 1730’s… the history of where this church is dates back to the 1300’s. 

Originally there was a gothic church here with a cemetery surrounding it. Yet, after undergoing a style upgrade in the 16th Century… the church suffered fire damage. And, rather than salvage it… the area was cleared to build the Church of St Mary Magdalene.

We recommend this as another area you should see in Karlovy Vary… especially if you want to view this town from a different perspective.

18. Jean de Carro Park (Sady Jeana de Carro)

Nearby St Mary Magdelene’s Church is Jean De Carro Park. This landmark had less tourists around, which isn’t a bad thing. Yet, you should take a walk uphill along the cute cobblestone street… which is nearby the Wellness Hotel Jean de Carro.

And, while you’re there, check out the amazing views…

Now, for more incredible architecture, you need to see this…

19. Orthodox Church of St Peter and Paul

When wandering around Karlovy Vary… we were catching glimpses of gold in the sky, out the corners of our eyes. We thought we were going crazy in this dreamland, yet thankfully we weren’t! 

Instead, the gold that was glistening was from the Orthodox Church of St Peter and Paul…

How magnificent is it? The church was built in the late 1800’s in a beautiful Byzantine-style, with incredible detail. Plus, when you go inside… you’ll be gob-smacked by its internal elegance too.

Whenever I look at photos of this church… it reminds me of something out of a fairytale.

And last, but not least on our best things to do in Karlovy Vary travel blog, is this…

20. Wander Through Masaryka Street

Masaryka Street is the main pedestrian walking street in Karlovy Vary. There are many pretty and bright colorful pastel buildings lining this street… where you can shop until you drop, or eat, drink and be merry.

And, while we didn’t do any shopping here… we did enjoy some beverages and food, while watching the world go by.

Plus, there are several other pedestrian only streets where you can experience similar vibes… such as

Wow, so that was 20 of the top things to do in Karlovy Vary, from our point of view. Now, there are plenty more things to do and places to see. 

This UNESCO Heritage Listed Site is such an amazing place to visit. It oozes so much charm and everywhere you look there’s beauty. Karlovy Vary is one of our favorite towns. It felt like the locals put a lot of effort in the upkeep of their town. And, that is refreshing.

From incredible architecture, to walking up hills to witness breathtaking views… through to relaxing in a gorgeous environment eating and drinking local cuisine. It sure was mesmerizing with everything Karlovy Vary has to offer… not to mention the health benefits from its hot springs!

Plus, even if you only have time for a day trip… it’s easily do-able, as it only takes about 1.5 – 2 hours to get here from Prague. So, make sure you put it on your list of places to visit when in the Czech Repbulic. And, we trust that you’ll have a great time too in Karlovy Vary.

And, if you’re looking at some unique experiences in Karlovy Vary… check out this guide.

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20 Of The Best Things To Do In Karlovy Vary

  • Smetana Orchards (Smetanova Sady) 
  • Elizabeth Spa (Alžbětiny Lázně)
  • Karlovy Vary Flower Calendar
  • Karlovy Vary Main Post Office
  • Karlovy Vary Obelisk
  • Take a Stroll Up Zahradní Street
  • Park Colonnade (Sadová kolonáda)
  • Wander Along the Teplá River
  • Mill Colonnade
  • Market Colonnade
  • Holy Trinity Column
  • Hot Spring Colonnade
  • Relax and Recharge on the Riverfront
  • The Grandhotel Pupp in Karlovy Vary
  • Witness Some of the Most Breathtaking Views of Karlovy Vary
  • Karlovy Vary Town Theatre (Karlovarské Městské Divadlo)
  • Church of St Mary Magdalene (Kostel Maří Magdalény)
  • Jean de Carro Park (Sady Jeana de Carro)
  • Orthodox Church of St Peter and Paul
  • Wander Through Masaryka Street