One day trip took us to Karlovy Vary, a spa city situated in the western part of the Czech Republic on confluence of Ohre and Teplá rivers. Karlovy Vary is a rich city and popular celebrity’s destination with lot of architectonical beauties.
Karlovy Vary, also known by its German name, Karlsbad, is the most famous Bohemian spa. It was named for the Bohemian king and German and Holy Roman emperor Charles (Karl) IV who allegedly found the springs in 1358 during a hunting expedition. Already in the 19th century, royalty came here from all over Europe for treatment.
Karlovy Vary acquired its’ international fame thanks to its health-giving springs. The city is really beautiful, situated in a beautiful forested valley. The buildings at the Tepla river promenade are built in the 19th century, in the historicist or early Art Nouveau style.
Our bus stopped near the Grandhotel Pupp, at one end of the promenade. We saw how the visitors of all ages stroll along the riverside promenade drinking the sometimes very interesting-smelling water from specially designed ceramic mugs from the twelve curative springs and nibbling on the round spa wafers. We followed them and did the same. From approximately 100 springs of various yields, twelve of them are captured; their temperature varies from 42°C to 72°C. Every spring has a special illness to be treated.
We had a guide; she took us inside the Grandhotel Pupp. This hotel is very famous because many celebrities have stayed as guests here. Prestigious building from 18th century in neo-Baroque style houses the hotel and its rich history since 1701.
The city is also known for the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival and popular Czech liqueur Karlovarská Becherovka. Becherovka is an herbal bitter liqueur made from water from Karlovy Vary, alcohol, sugar and flavored with anise seeds, cinnamon and approximately 32 other herbs. Becherovka is sold since 1807. It is normally drunk cold, and is often used as an aid to digestion. Its alcohol content is 38 percent.
We had only one day to spend here. As we left the town with very good memories and feelings, I believe that sometimes we will go back there.