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Pilsen

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Center of Pilsen with the St. Bartholomew Cathedral

Pilsen (Czech: Plzeň) is in Bohemia, in the Czech Republic in Central Europe. It is the home and birthplace of the Pilsener (or pilsner) beer variety which is derived from the city's name.

It is the 4th largest city in the country and the largest city in West Bohemia, being a convenient base for exploring this region of the Czech Republic.

Get in

From Prague, bus and train are the easy options of getting there. Trains leave from Prague's main train station (Praha - Hlavní nádraží ČD) on an hourly basis during daytime. Buses leave frequently from Prague's terminus metro station Zličín (line B). The trip takes approximately an hour and 40 minutes by train and about an hour by bus.

From Germany, Pilsen is easily accessible by train, being located on the Prague - Munich track.

Pilsen's main train station (Plzeň - Hlavní nádraží ČD) as well as the main bus station (Plzeň - Centrální autobusové nádraží) are both located within walking distance of the very center of the city.

For information on schedules and rates, visit the official transport website [1].

Get around

To get around the compact city center, it is best to walk. To get around the whole city, the services of the public transport operator PMDP are recommended. The PMDP operate trams, buses and trolley-buses in Pilsen.

For information on lines, schedules and rates, visit the PMDP's official website [2].

See

Sights

  • St. Bartholomew's Cathedral - the Gothic St. Bartholomew's Cathedral was founded in the late 13th century, its tower (102.26 m / 335 ft) being the highest in the Czech Republic.
  • The Town Hall - this Renaissance masterpiece was built in 1554-1559, based on the designs of an Italian architect, Giovanni de Statia.
  • Historical underground network - a sophisticated system of cellars and tunnels of up to three levels under the whole Old Town area. It is accessible from the house in the street Perlová 4.
  • The Great Synagogue - the second largest synagogue in Europe and third largest in the world (after synagogues in Jerusalem and Budapest).
  • Pilsner Urquell Brewery, U Prazdroje 7, +420 377 062 888, [3]. Daily from 12:30PM. Founded in 1842, home to the Pilsner Urquell, the original Pilsener. Tour: 150 Kč.
  • Pilsen Zoo - home to over one thousand species of animals in natural conditions without bars.

Museums

  • West Bohemian Museum (Kopeckeho sady 2) - regular exhibitions
  • Ethnography Museum of the Pilsen Region (nam. Republiky 13) - regular exhibitions
  • Brewery Museum (Veleslavinova 6) - history of brewing in Pilsen

Galleries

  • Pilsen City Art Gallery (Dominikánská 2)
  • West Bohemian Art Gallery "Masné krámy" (Pražská 18)
  • Jiří Trnka Art Gallery (nám. Republiky 40)

Events

There are several events during the year that are even more suitable for visiting the city than others.

  • The Liberation Festival [4] - around May 6th, when the city of Pilsen was liberated from Nazi Germany by the George Patton's 3rd Army in 1945. The city is full of music and other culture.
  • The In The Streets Festival - generally in the first half of August. Small stages around the city center, a big stage on the Square of Republic. Music, theater and street performances.

Do

  • Walk in the city parks, circumfusing the historical city center from two sides
  • Enjoy the view of the city and its surrounding from the church tower of the St. Bartholomew's Cathedral
  • Enjoy a drink of the Pilsner Urquell in the city that gave name to all the Pilseners of the world

Eat

  • Na Spilce, U Prazdroje 7, +420 377 062 755 (), [5]. M-Th, Sat 11AM-10PM. F 11AM-11PM. Sun 11AM-9PM. The biggest restaurant in the Czech Republic with 550 seats. Within the grounds of the Prazdroj brewery
  • Potrefená Husa (Martinská 1) - a big restaurant, good selection of meals and drinks
  • Plzeňská bašta (Riegrova 5) - a stylish Czech restaurant, good meals
  • U Salzmannů (Pražská 8) - the oldest beer restaurant in Pilsen serving Czech traditional cuisine
  • Jadran (Bezručova 9) - both Czech and international (especially Mediterranean) cuisine
  • Slunečnice (Jungmannova 4) - healthy bio cuisine including vegetarian and vegan cuisine
  • Vegetka (Americká 13) – vegetarian dishes, vegetable salads and soups
  • Anděl Vegetarian Restaurant (Bezručova 5) - a creative and stylish vegetarian :)restaurant
  • La Tartelette (nám. Republiky 18) - French fast food (soups, salads, quiche ...)
  • Stará sladovna (Malá 3) - Middle-Age-style restaurant
  • Na Parkane (Veleslavinova 4) - the pub to get unfiltered Urquell

A detailed list of places to eat and drink in Pilsen is available at Pilsen's website [6].

Drink

Pilsen is the city where the pilsner beer was invented. Pilsner Urquell is the famous beer brand of Pilsen. At the brewery itself and in few pubs (Senk Na Parkanu), you can get the unfiltered and unpasteurized version of Pilsner Urquell, which is even better that the common filtered version. Another beer brand, made in the same brewery, is Gambrinus. Gambrinus light (desitka) is probably the most common beer in the Czech republic, it is cheaper and weaker than Pilsner Urquell.


Cafés

  • Měšťanská beseda (Kopeckého sady 13) - a luxurious Art Noveau style café
  • CrossCafe (Jungmannova 5) - good coffee and some small stuff to eat (sandwiches, salads, yogurts ...)
  • Sky Bar Café (Anglické nábřeží 1) - coffee and something to eat as well
  • Kajetánka (Sedláčkova 2) - a winehouse
  • Anděl Café (Bezručova 7) - coffee and chocolate house with music
  • Kačaba (Prokopova 17) - café and teahouse employing people with disabilities as part of a therapy
  • Nebeská čajovna (Sady Pětatřicátníků 2) - a stylish New Age-like teahouse

Clubs

  • Zach’s Pub (Palackého nám. 2) - Irish pub with music club, regular music production
  • House of Blues (Černická 10) - regular live concerts, nice millieu
  • Buena Vista Club (Kollárova 20) - regular live music, movie projections, theater performances
  • Jazz Rock Café (Sedláčkova 18) - a place to chill, live music, groovy-jazzy-funky
  • Anděl Music Bar (Bezručova 7) - good music, projections

Sleep

Budget

  • Ubytovna Zahradní, Zahradní 21 (Slovany neighborhood, southeast of city center), +420 377 443 262, [7].
  • Hotel Slovan, Smetanovy sady 1, 301 00 Plzeň, +420 377 227 256, [8].

Mid-range

  • City, Sady 5. Května 52 (city center), +420 377 326 069.
  • Stará Plzeň, Na Roudné 12 (outer city center), +420 377 259 901 (), [9].
  • Morrison, Thámova 9 (outer city center), +420 377 370 952, [10].

Splurge

  • U Zvonu, Pražská 27 (city center), +420 378 011 855 (), [11]. splurge.
  • Parkhotel Plzeň, U Borského parku 31 (Bory neighborhood, south of city center), +420 378 772 977, [12]. splurge.
  • Central, nám. Republiky 33 (main square), +420 377 226 757 (), [13]. splurge.
  • Primavera, Nepomucká 128, +420 377 237 049 (), [14]. splurge.
  • Marriot, Sady 5. kvetna 57, +420 373 370 100, [15]. splurge.


A detailed list of accommodation in Pilsen is available on the Pilsen's website [16]. You can also compare and book hotels on *Plzen Hotels Directory [17].

Tourist information

There are two official tourist information offices in Pilsen. Start your visit of Pilsen by visiting them (choose the main one on the náměstí Republiky, if possible), finding out about the current events and collecting a free map of the city. Both offices are open daily from 9.00 to 18.00 (until 19.00 between April and September).

  • Informační centrum města Plzně (the main city tourist office), náměstí Republiky 41, 301 16 Plzeň (to the left of the Rennaisance city hall), +420 378 035 330 ().
  • Informační centrum města Plzně Hlavní nádraží ČD (the smaller city tourist office), Nádražní 102, 301 10 Plzeň (at the main train station).

Air

  • Jet fighter flight in Czech Republic, MiGFlug & Adventure GmbH, Badenerstrasse 286, 8004 Zurich, +41 44 500 50 10 (), [18]. Very nice but rather expensive experience. Starting from an Airbase close to Plzeň. The customer can fly the jet under watch of the pilot. €1999 for a flight including all preparations.

Contact

You may find Internet connection in many hotels, so better ask at the reception first. In case of needing an Internet cafe, there are several options in Pilsen.

  • Aréna - Internet Cafe - Františkánská 10
  • Nico - Internet Cafe - Koperníkova 25
  • Marriott - Internet in the lobby - Sady 5. kvetna 57





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