Their hrad is their castle

The exact timing of when the castle (hrad in Czech) in Strakonice was built is unclear. The first records of the settlement from 1243 indicate a palace was already built where the Volynka and Otava rivers join. It has been added to over the years, in 15th century a tower was added, and another time other buildings.

The feeling of a medieval castle remains with cobbled courtyards, narrow staircases, a minstrel’s gallery, and an interesting solution to lighting the courtyard in pre-electric times by having a corner light behind panes of glass.

The castle was renovated from 2018 to 2021 and is now the home to a museum in multiple parts. Interesting features were found in the renovations, including sketches and paintings on the walls, statuettes and individually decorated ceiling panels which have been preserved and are on display in their original location.

In the attic, the restorers found beams which were no longer in use however clearly had been at some time in a prominent location as they were decorated with stencilled patterns. The restoration team is unsure where they had been used and can only surmise that the hall they used to support must have been taken down. The value of strong and long beams having been recognised, they were stored yet never actually used again to construct a replacement.

We took the 99 steps to the top of the tower and admire the views over the city from its main citadel.

Facing the other way, we could see the hangar and windsock of the airfield at which the World Championships in Style and Accuracy Landing were taking place.

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