Day 11 - Kutna Hora to Nachon - Fri 16 May
Cold! Ann emails its 8 degrees in Munich with a blanket layer of hail. Opted for warmer breakfast of bananas on toast rather than cold muesli and yogurt.
What a revelation was Kutna Hora! First stop was the UNESCO listed 1320 Cathedral of the Annunciation and St John Baptist. Funded by the Cistercians and silver merchants, it was first Bohemian, then rebuilt in Baroque Gothic style. In the shape of a cross, it remains richly decorative, with impressive soaring arched ceilings.
|Creepy mehod of showcasing reliquary.....|
The 14C Sedlec Ossuary, the bone church, is decorated with the bones of 4000 people originally buried there (most died from plague, so we were glad to see they were washed and disinfected first). Skulls and bones from all parts of body were fashioned into chandeliers, pillars, portals, crests. How macabre to let loose their architect (Rint a Czech wood carver) in this way....
|Rook thru eye symbolised victory over Turks|
Silver mining ceased in 1700's but there are many remnants in Old Town including the mint and the opulent Cistercian St Barbara's cathedral (patron saint of miners) with its mining frescoes and exotic painted windows. A very solemn piece was being played on organ whilst we were there. The plague column in the square was sculpted by a Jesuit.
|Mining frescoes remain....|
Drove on into a bleak afternoon, bypassed Prague and headed towards Polish border. A combination of rain and grey overcast, a traffic jam around Hradec Kralove, and then finding highway 303 closed, sealed the decision not to drive up into the darkening misty mountains towards Teplice Rocks and Broumov.
|No way Ozzie can fit between these barriers...|
Found a damp campsite in hills on lake with brave fishermen – even they were forced inside their tents in the freezing winds (but rods were left outside shackled to stands, neon lights on the ends). Boy Rob sat warmly wrapped in doona chuckling over “Moron to Moron" book’s graphic descriptions and the reminder of our (mis)adventures in Mongolia last year.