Czech Travel: Spa Town-Mariánské Lázně

Location: 2 hrs 3 min from Prague

“Mariánské Lázně is a spa town in West Bohemia, Czech Republic. It’s surrounded by mountain forest, mineral springs and green parks. The central Kolonáda is a baroque colonnade with bronze reliefs and a frescoed ceiling. Nearby, the neoclassical Singing Fountain plays classical music every 2 hours.”

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I’m always happy to go just about anywhere. So when my husband told me we had a weekend planned in Mariánské Lázně, I was excited- even though I didn’t actually know anything about the town.

We live near the Plzeň area, so the drive would only take about 1.5 hour for us and we’d be gone for 2 nights.

Chodovar Planá

So we hit the highway and we we’re off. We took a side stop for lunch in the town Chodová Planá and went to “In the Rock” restaurant and Chodovar Pivovar , a brewery that’s been going since 1117.

The entrance takes you down a long tunnel into the rock. We passed some brewery tanks and displays on our way towards the restaurant entrance.

Brewery tools display

The restaurant is basically a big underground cave. There are no windows, but the place is spacious and well lit. There are a few different dining areas and a stage for entertainment.

The menu was traditional Czech food with a few rogue American and Mexican items thrown in. The food was good, and service was super fast.

The English menu has less items listed than what’s actually available. I ended up ordering from my husband’s Czech menu.

The Chodovar beer was good. They had several styles to choose from. My husband opted for the local mineral water since he had to drive.

After our pit stop here, we were back on the road.

Mariánské Lázně

We stayed at a rented apartment on the main road right above a bakery. It was next to the park and about a 10 minute walking distance to the city center Kolonáda.

Once in the Kolonáda area, we happened upon a local spring event celebrating the opening of “spa season” with markets, food and entertainment.

Without entertainment (left) With entertainment (right)

Natural Mineral Springs

Dotted throughout the city are natural mineral springs where you can bring a cup and fill up for free. Each one has a name and description. I read that there are close to 100 of these springs.

Ferdinand Mineral Spring at Ferdinand Kolonada
Ferdinand Mineral Spring in action
Rudolf Mineral Spring

A little incline walk up from the Kolonáda, you’ll come to a small ski resort called Skiareál Mariánky .

Once there you’ll see a restaurant, a place you can rent bikes and scooters, a spot for snacks and beer and a cabin lift that will take you up and down the hill.

(You can easily walk the hill in about 20 minutes as well.)

We opted to for a one way cabin lift ticket up, and to walk back down. There weren’t any views or anything remarkable on the way up. If we had to do it again, we’d just walk.

Me and the hubby in the cabin lift

Boheminium Park

At the top of the hill are a few buildings, a hotel, restaurant, offices and Boheminium Park, a park that displays miniature versions of many of Czech’s notable and UNESCO sites.

We paid the entrance fee of 150Kč each (Approx $6.00) to enter.

It’s a medium sized park with pathways taking you to each of the miniature sculptures. Each sculpture has a sign with the site’s location, history and scale.

There was a center area with bathrooms, a snack/beer shack, and a cask vendor giving out free Pilsner Urquell wood burnings.

It was cute, but personally, I could take it or leave it. However it was educational and very helpful in assisting us to plot additional places to visit while we are here in Czech.

All in All

We had a great time. The festivities went on all weekend. We stopped by the Kolonáda each day for snacks, food and entertainment.

Tethered hot air balloon rides (left) Night view of the market (right)

The area is surrounded by a lovely green forested area, so we took several walks through them where we found signs and samples of local minerals, and of course several more natural mineral springs. (I was so freaking hydrated)

Mariánské Lázně is a quintessential spa town. It’s easy to find services from massages and nail appointments to complete wellness centers with mineral treatments. There are also hotels for every style and budget. If you get a chance to visit then definitely take advantage of that.

This is a place I would visit again.

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