Augustinian Monastery in Vrchlabí

Komensky Trail

Vrchlabí - Horní Branná - Hostinné - Vlčice - Janské Lázně - Černý Důl - Vrchlabí

This track will take us back to the times when our mountains were remote and distant from any events in the country and provided shelter to all those who came into conflict with the rulers, i.e. to the beginning of the 17th century. Conflicts between Catholics and Protestants emerged and culminated in the Battle of Bila Hora in 1620. Many non-Catholics left the country for Silesia, crossing the border mountains to seek protection from their Protestant masters.

Among those who decided to leave their motherland because of their beliefs was also the bishop of the most well-known Czech Protestant church - the Czech Brethren’s Union, Jan Amos Komensky (1592-1670), one of the greatest European pedagogists and humanist philosophers, writer and reformer. The revenge of the Catholics only slowly approached the mountains, remote from the country’s capital, and Komensky found temporary asylum at the Bila Tremesna chateau in 1626-1628. In the reputed local library, he found inspiration for his most well-known pedagogical work, Didactica Magna.

He also visited other places in the submontane region during his stay. In winter 1627 he visited the palace of his supporter, Vaclav Zaruba of Hustirany, in Horni Branna. Vaclav Zaruba was spending the last years of his life in his confiscated demesne, already held by Albrecht Valdstejn. The palace today also houses a small museum which reminds us of Komensky’s stay and work. His journey to exile started here. He left his motherland in Cerna Voda near Zacler, where a simple memorial on the Rose Yard reminds us of this sad event.

From T.G. Masaryk Square in Vrchlabi, take cycle track 22, starting down Krkonosska Street to the north. Turn left by the Church of St. Lawrence and turn left again after the Augustinian monastery. Continue past Vejsplachy fishpond and join the main road to Jilemnice. Turn left for Horni Branna. Near the chateau in Horni Branna, where J. A. Komensky also used to stay, turn left again. Continue via Dolni Branna in the direction of Studenec and turn left for Horni Kalna. Before the village, turn left onto an unmarked dirt track and continue via Predpekli hill heading southeast to Na Lanech hill. At the hill above Slemeno, join cycle track 4294 to Hostinne. Take cycle track 4300 via Cermna to Vlcice. Turn left for cycle track 4299. After Javornik go right for the green-marked hiking trail. After Hladikova vysina, continue along the yellow-marked hiking trail on the left to join cycle track 4301. Continue via Cerny Dul, the quarry there and Horni Lanov to get to Vrchlabi.


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Explore the Krkonose by Bike
Explore the Krkonose by Bike

Don’t be afraid to take your bike to the highest Czech mountains. More than 900 km of bike trails will take you through landscape that you can’t see elsewhere.

Holidays with children in the Krkonose Mountains
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