Our 1 day in Bohemian Paradise was one of the parts of our 12-day Czech Republic Itinerary I was most looking forward to. Beautiful rock formations, hiking and nature would be a welcome change from the multiple city trips that are part of our road trip. Furthermore, a famous Dutch TV show was partly recorded near the Parchov Rocks, so I knew I was in for a treat.
After doing plenty of research on Bohemian Paradise and nearby Bohemian Switzerland, we decided to spend 2 nights in both areas. This way, we would have enough time to explore. If you would ask me know: “How much time should I spend in Bohemian Paradise?”, I would answer that 1 day in Bohemian Paradise is enough to explore the two key areas. During your day in Bohemian Paradise, I would in summary advise you to hike the green route in the Parchov Rocks and hike the red route from Hraba Skala to Hrad Valdstejn. This guide explains further how to combine the two and what to expect during 1 day in Bohemian Paradise.
If you are planning on staying in Bohemian Paradise as well, there are plenty of locations that are a little more off the beaten track and in nature. If you would like a bit of a city experience and some good food in the evening, the best place to stay is Jicin. At the end of this travel blog post, you’ll find more details on where to stay in Bohemian Paradise.
The most famous hike in Bohemian Paradise is the hike to the Parchov Rocks. An amazing rock formation with stunning views and nature you might not have seen before. Because of the popularity of the place, we decided to arrive early. Therefore, we entered the Parchov parking lot slightly before 8 am. The best place to park when visiting the Parchov Rocks by car is “Parkoviště Prachovské skály – Turistická chata”. For one day of parking, you have to pay 100 CZK (~€4). Entry to the park is in high-season 150CZK per person (~€6). Since we arrived early, there were no guards/entrance office yet, so we entered the park for free.
From the parking lot of the Parchov Rocks, it is possible to start 4 different hikes. If you want to view them in detail, I would advise you to check out their official website.
Firstly, there is the yellow route, which is the shortest route and is 1,5 km. Next to that, there is a red route of 2.5 km, while the green route is the longest route of 3.5 km. Furthermore, if you have a pushchair, there is the opportunity to follow the blue route.
We decided to get as much as possible out of the Parchov Rocks. Therefore, we decided to go with the green route across the Parchov Rocks. The green route takes you along multiple beautiful viewpoints and allows you to explore the Parchov rocks from different viewpoints.
As has been noted, we started our day early to explore Bohemian Paradise. Since the hike around the Parchov Mountains took less than 2 hours, we had some additional time to explore other areas of Bohemian Paradise. Therefore, we decided to drive up to Hruba Skala and explore the Kruboskalsko area. Because certain routes were closed, it took us quite some time to figure out the best way to explore this area.
First of all, you can park your car at Castle Hill Car Park or at Forrest Car Park to start a trail around Hruba Skala. If you would like to shorten the hike, you can also park at Lázně Sedmihorky – parkoviště.
Moreover, the goal of our hike was to visit Hrad Valdstejn and then head back to the parking lot. However, we wanted to do this with a hike where we could see as many viewpoints as possible in Hruboskalso National Park. To demonstrate, viewpoints to include to craft your route are:
1. Castle View
2. Mary’s Rock Viewpoint
3. Restaurace Koupak (to set your route)
4. Janova vyhlidka
5. Hrad Valdstejn
6. U Radce
7. Lion’s View.
In addition, This route describes the hike we did quite well. Next to that, it is easy to compare to Google Maps and the signs you will find on the way. As an honest review, I liked the hike there were great views and the castle was a great addition. Unfortunately, we had to walk quite a bit on paved roads and didn’t have too much of a view of the majestic rocks. Lastly, the best way is to follow the red route, as this will guide you to Hrad Valdstejn following forest paths.
Bohemian Paradise might not be overflowing with amazing restaurants that you have to try. However, there are some good places to be found. Pod Sikmou has been recommended by the host of our guesthouse and we decided to drive there for a well-deserved lunch after our hikes. The burger was great! It is also possible to book your room for the night at Pod Sikmou (€70-€100). Bear in mind to book early, as this is a popular place to stay.
On top of that, other bars and restaurants in Bohemian Paradise can be found in for example Jicin. For instance, Café Všehochuť, Caffé Bunny, Kozlovna U Anděla or Parkhotel are recommended.
Next to Pod Sikmou, there are multiple other great places to stay for your visit to Bohemian Paradise. Even though 1 day is enough to explore Bohemian Paradise, I would recommend staying over for 2 nights to have an early start and leave enough travelling time to your next destination.
U Zlate Brany Cesky Raj was the guesthouse we stayed and it was amazing. The host was incredibly nice, the rooms were big and the property was even larger. Not needless to say, there is an outside pool as well. Many locals will stop by for a drink, and the host is happy to offer you some beers. Unfortunately, there is no food available. We found this out the hard way, as every restaurant in the area closes early. Fortunately, we managed to arrange some frozen pizzas we could heat in the oven of the guesthouse. All in all, highly recommended. You can book your stay already from €45. Book early, as they also book out quickly.