There are many gorgeous castles in the Czech Republic, let alone in Europe.
There are magnificent and imposing castles of huge historical and architectural importance, in pristine condition or beautifully restored, with all the lavish furnishings and décor, as they were in ancient times, while others lie in ruin but somehow still hold interest for locals and visitors.
And then there are some that are small, insignificant-looking from the outside, but oh so beautiful when you step inside.
Below is a small example of such castles in the Czech Republic. We think you’ll love them all.
26 Most Beautiful Castles in the Czech Republic
Here are the most beautiful Czech castles in no particular order.
1. Prague Castle
Prague Castle is not only the largest ancient castle in the world but also encompasses one of the most historically significant churches in the Czech Republic.
Constructed between the 9th and 17th centuries in Romanesque, Gothic, and Renaissance styles, this castle in Prague has been home to Bohemian kings, Holy Roman emperors, and Czechoslovakian presidents.
Prague Castle consists of military fortifications, extravagant palaces, grand churches, and historical buildings, all surrounded by courtyards and exquisite gardens filled with elaborate fountains, sculptures, and monuments.
You can spend days here ambling through royal palaces and grand halls, taking in splendid views of the beautiful complex from the high towers, while the old-fashioned Golden Lane will transport you to the Middle Ages.
The St Vitus Cathedral is a treasure all on its own, being dedicated to the young Sicilian boy who somehow survived being boiled in oil in 330 AD for refusing to denounce his Christian faith.
Decorated with colorful stained glass windows, historical paintings, and semi-precious stones, it also houses numerous religious artifacts and replicas of the exquisite Bohemian Crown Jewels.
No visitor to Prague should miss this place, the largest of all Czech Republic castles.
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2. Karlštejn Castle
Originally built to house and protect holy and royal treasures and the Imperial Crown Jewels during the mid-14th century by Charles IV, King of Bohemia and Holy Roman Emperor, Karlštejn Castle has remained in royal hands for centuries but now belongs to the state.
This beautiful medieval castle near Prague was renovated in a Renaissance style in the 16th century and then into Gothic in the 19th century.
Upon its three-terraced layout stand the heavily fortified two-story palace, the Great Tower, and Holy Cross Chapel, which houses magnificent artifacts, holy relics, paintings, royal furnishings, and, of course, replicas of the Crown Jewels.
Panoramic views from the walls and towers of the dense forests and picturesque village spread out and far below are absolutely mesmerizing.
It’s certainly one of the most beautiful Renaissance-style castles in the Czech Republic and is only about 20 miles from Prague.
3. Zvíkov Castle
Strategically situated above the joining of the Vitava and Otava Rivers about 60 miles south of Prague, Zvikov Castle is one of the most important Gothic castles in the Czech Republic and is also known as the king of Czech castles.
Built and extended throughout the 13th century by the Kings of Bohemia, it changed hands and was besieged several times, first by the Hussites in 1429 and then by the Habsburgs in 1618, before being ransacked and damaged.
Having suffered two fires, it fell into disrepair before being reconstructed during the 19th century and again in the 1970s.
Zvíkov is one of the most beautiful castles in Bohemia. It’s a magical place to wander around and admire the beautiful architecture, frescoes, historical statues, and a small museum.
Not spectacular as other castles, but the views from the 105-foot castle tower of the rivers and the surrounding green countryside are epic. It is best visited by ferry boat.
4. Lednice Castle
Situated in the southeast corner of the Czech Republic, close to the Austrian and Slovakian borders, and about 2½ hours’ drive from Prague, Lednice Castle is one of the most beautiful castles in the Czech Republic.
Starting off as a Gothic fort in the 1200s, it was bought by the Austrian aristocratic Liechtenstein family before undergoing numerous extensions and was renovated into an English Neo-Gothic style in the 19th century.
The chateau complex comprises stately apartments, grand halls, and rooms decorated and furnished with elaborate wooden ceilings and furniture, reflecting the opulent lifestyles of past European nobility.
Of special mention are the Turquoise Room, Red Smoking Room, Dancing Hall, and the famous spiral staircase, intricately carved out of one solid piece of oak.
The complex forms part of an exquisite landscaped garden and park, a great place to spend the day meandering on the walking and cycling trails, enveloped only by nature and medieval ambiance.
Read next: 42 Of The Most Beautiful Places On Earth
5. Křivoklát Castle
Just a few miles west of Prague stands one of the oldest royal castles in the Czech Republic.
Built during the 13th century, Krivoklat Castle was home to several Bohemian kings and also served as a prison. It was damaged by fire and rebuilt a number of times, the last one in 1826.
Today it’s a popular tourist attraction, drawing visitors to marvel at the Great Tower, Gothic Chapel, the Royal Knights’ Halls, and stunning library, housing 52,000 volumes of historical books, furnishings, hunting weapons, and a huge collection of Gothic paintings and artworks.
6. Hluboka Castle
Located in South Bohemia near České Budějovice, Castle Hluboka is considered to be one of the most famous and prettiest castles in the Czech Republic.
Initially built during the 13th century, it was reconstructed into a Baroque castle in the 18th century, until the 19th century when it was rebuilt in the style of England’s Windsor Castle.
As romantic as it is from the outside, the castle interior is equally superb. Each room is extravagantly decorated with dark wooden panels, gold ceilings, sparkling chandeliers, colorful stained glass windows, and various exquisite furnishings, reflecting the wealthy owners’ tastes.
A walk through the beautifully manicured gardens reveals more opulence with golden pillars, ornate sculptures, a labyrinth, and an art gallery.
A climb to the 165-foot-high tower offers panoramic views of the lush countryside. With the first dustings of snow in winter, it becomes a photographer’s dream.
It’s all too gorgeous to miss! No wonder it was seized by the German army during WWII.
7. Český Šternberk Castle
This castle near Prague stands as one of the most historically fascinating of all Czech Republic castles.
It was built as a Gothic castle by the Sternberk family around 1241, overlooking the Sázava River and a small town.
Despite being seized and destroyed by various armies and rebuilt over the centuries, it remains in the hands of the same family some 20 generations down the line!
In 1949 the communist government nationalized the castle allowing the owner to become a tour guide in his own home. With the fall of communism, it was returned to the Sternberk family in 1992.
A tour through the chateau’s interior reveals the lavish décor and furnishings from the different historical periods of its 800-year-old history. A joy and education of note.
Also on display is a unique collection of copper engravings from the Thirty Year War during the 17th century, one of the most vicious wars in the history of human conflict, resulting in eight million casualties.
8. Konopiste Castle
A few miles west of Český Šternberk Castle stands Konopiste Castle, which is intricately linked to another of Europe’s most tragic events.
This castle was the last residence of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, whose assassination in 1914 triggered WWI, resulting in over 20 million deaths.
Konopiste Castle was initially established around 1294 as a Gothic fort before changing hands several times over the centuries and being rebuilt in Baroque style.
The interior is lavishly decorated with wall and ceiling frescoes, hundreds of historical paintings, artifacts, and furnishings to boggle your mind.
With the Archduke being an avid hunter, many antlers, trophy bears, and hunting weapons adorn the castle walls.
The museum holds an impressive collection of medieval armor, including the bullet that killed the Archduke on that fateful day in the streets of Sarajevo.
9. Loket Castle
Situated in the northwestern corner of the Czech Republic near the German border, Loket Castle lies perched high up on a rock, almost surrounded by the Ohre River.
As beautiful as it is, it becomes more scenic during the fall when the foliage of the surrounding forest explodes in a blaze of color.
Despite its peaceful looks, it’s one of those Czech castles whose history is steeped in war and violence.
Built in stone around the 13th century, it has been attacked, besieged, destroyed, and rebuilt many times, serving as a fort, prison, and residence to various administrators.
One of its famous prisoners was the three-year-old Wenceslas, who later became Emperor and King Charles IV.
A tour through the complex evokes a medieval feel as you view collections of furniture spanning over 300 years, magnificent porcelains, ancient relics, historical documents, weaponry, and of course, the dreaded dungeons. If you’re squeamish, do not go down there.
They give torture demonstrations with life-like figures giving chilling cries of pain. Not for me, thank you very much.
10. Pernštejn Castle
Situated in the eastern Czech Czech Republic, 25 miles northwest of Brno, Pernštejn Castle is another of the Czech castles built high on a rocky hilltop and surrounded by dense forest.
Strategically placed towers, ramparts, dikes, drawbridges, barbican, and its defensive design ensured this formidable fortress was never captured in its entire history.
Originally built in the 13th century, it has changed hands and undergone several reconstructions over the years.
Guided tours through the palace complex and Baroque chapel trace its architectural transformation from a medieval military fort, through Gothic, Renaissance, and Baroque, to the Romanticism styles of the 19th century.
In true medieval castle tradition, legend has it that the dark corridors are haunted by the ghost of the White Lady. It is said that if ladies look into any mirror in the castle, they will lose their beauty. You have been warned.
11. Trosky Castle
Situated in the north section of the Czech Republic, about 70 miles from Prague, the ruins of Trosky Castle stand as stark reminders of this territory’s violent past.
All that is left are two tower ruins high up on two basalt volcanic plugs with more ruins of residential buildings between them, leaving one wondering how spectacular this castle must have been during its heyday.
To get to the top, one needs to negotiate a series of steep staircases, but the amazing views of the surrounding countryside will take your breath away.
Built around the mid-14th century and owned by several kings, it was thought to have had stolen religious treasures hidden in its cellars.
It was besieged and burned down in the 15th century and then again during the Thirty-Year War in 1648, and apart from the 19th-century staircase, it has been left in its present state.
12. Orlík Castle
Located on the edge of the Vitava River and surrounded by a wooded park 50 miles southwest of Prague, Orlik Castle stands among one of the prettiest settings of all castles in the Czech Republic.
Originally built as a castle/palace complex in the 13th century, it was burned down and rebuilt, changing hands several times through the centuries.
Initially, it was 200 feet above the river, but after the completion of the Orlik dam in 1962, it now stands a few feet from the water.
The most impressive rooms are the two Knights’ Halls, Hunting Hall, the Blue and Empire Saloons, and the Gun Corridor, all beautifully furnished and decorated, reflecting the wealthy owners’ lifestyles.
Beautiful views of the castle can be enjoyed from the opposite side of the dam, which can be accessed by boat. One of the most beautiful Czech castles, certainly worth seeing.
13. Český Krumlov State Castle and Chateau
Situated alongside the Vitava River on a rocky outcrop high above the picturesque Bohemian town of Český Krumlov Castle in the southern Czech Republic, this is the second-largest castle complex in the Czech Republic.
Within this massive complex, you’ll be mesmerized by numerous Baroque and Renaissance structures and elegant palaces dating back to the 13th century.
There are moats with bears wandering around, bridges, one of which is five stories, expansive courtyards and beautiful gardens, water fountains, a golden carriage, and a theatre with its unique revolving auditorium.
Climbing the high Chateau Tower provides scenic views of the countryside and a colorful town spread out below.
Walk along the river for different views of this Bohemian castle and town. Night tours of the castle are truly unforgettable.
14. Kost Castle
Just an hour’s drive northeast of Prague is one of the best-preserved Gothic castles in the Czech Republic.
Although built high up on a rocky outcrop in Northern Bohemia, Kost Castle is somewhat hidden in a valley, and unlike most other Czech castles, it’s not easily seen from a distance.
Originally built in Gothic style during the 14th century, it has suffered fire damage and restoration over the centuries but retains most of its original designs.
Its main feature is the White Tower, strategically positioned with its corners facing the most likely points of catapult raids, so the missiles glanced off instead of hitting the walls head-on.
Tours of its interiors, halls, armory, and torture chamber are taken with a medieval-style restaurant completing a truly unique experience for the whole family.
15. Castle Bezděz
A little to the west but still an hour’s drive from Prague, this 13th-century Gothic castle stands high above everything else, offering sweeping views of the countryside as far as the eye can see.
When the morning mist sets in during the autumn months, this whole scene takes on a mystical, haunted, and yet romantic look straight out of a medieval fairy tale.
This atmosphere at Bezdez Castle is enhanced by the various medieval events that take place here.
Steeped in legend, it is said that treasure was hidden here by the local monks. But we know that the young king-to-be Wenceslas II was imprisoned here too.
16. Rabí Castle
Situated 80 miles southwest of Prague, Rabi Castle is the largest castle ruins in the country.
It was built during the 14th century in the Gothic style to protect trade routes along the Otava River and keep an eye out for any of its gold deposits.
Perched high on a hilltop, the tall tower offered perfect views of the outlying countryside.
Alchemy was a popular pastime as many alchemists were continually trying to turn lead into gold, and one famous alchemist who failed to achieve that was imprisoned here.
This fascinating castle was taken twice by the Hussites in the 15th century and eventually destroyed during the Thirty Year War during the 1600s and burned down in 1720. Sadly, it was never restored.
Nevertheless, the ruins remind us that it was not always as peaceful as it looks now.
17. Castle Blatná
Moving a few miles closer to Prague, Blatná Castle was initially built during the 13th century on an ancient settlement site.
This castle is a classic example of the changing architectural styles over the centuries, with early Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance, and Baroque, all evident in the various beautiful structures.
Guided tours offer an insight into this castle’s history as you amble through the various palaces, viewing the Gentlemen’s Smoking Parlour, Empire-Style Room, armory, chapel, and the Tower, from where stunning views of the surrounding moat, and large meadow with tame fallow-deer roaming freely among the visitors.
A truly magnificent place to visit for the whole family. Kids love it.
18. Červená Lhota Castle
Built on a rocky island with its bright red silhouette reflecting on the lake surrounding it, this could easily be one of the most picturesque Bohemian castles in the Czech Republic.
Situated in Southern Bohemia close to the Austrian border, Castle Cervena Lhota is accessible by a 17th-century stone bridge, and it is also possible to sail around it on a boat hired from the chateau.
Initially built as a fortress during the 14th century by noble families in Gothic style, passing hands several times between aristocratic families and renovated in Renaissance and then later in the Baroque style that we see today.
The interior houses some exquisite furniture, paintings, porcelain items, and various historical artifacts. Also worth visiting is the Holy Trinity Chapel, situated on a hill within the castle park surrounding the lake.
19. Jindřichův Hradec Castle
A few miles to the southeast, in the lovely town of the same name, lies the 3rd largest castle in the Czech Republic.
Thought to have been built during the 13th-14th centuries on an earlier settlement site, it has been the residence of royalty and many noble families through the centuries.
Although this huge complex may not seem inspiring from the outside, the interiors of the numerous palaces, chapel, and various buildings are sublime.
Rooms are furnished in various architectural styles, housing hundreds of paintings, Gothic murals, period furniture, elaborate ceiling carvings, unique artifacts found nowhere else, and a well-preserved kitchen, giving a true sense of castle life in medieval times.
20. Bouzov Castle
Situated deep within a forest in the eastern section of the Czech Republic, a little north of Brno, Bouzov Castle is a national monument and one of the most visited castles in the Czech Republic.
Historical events and knights’ tournaments are held here, regularly evoking a magical medieval atmosphere.
It has everything you’d expect a castle to have. Buildings form a horseshoe around the 190-foot tower, with bastions, battlements, and a drawbridge crossing the dry moat around the castle.
Built in the early 1300s in a Gothic style, it was fortified and expanded later by the Teutonic Knights and then again in the 1900s to its current state.
Kids just love the life-size fairy-tale dragons and dragon slayers exhibited in the cellars. The interior is beautifully furnished with period pieces and medieval weaponry.
21. Kroměříž Archbishop’s Palace
Forty miles east of Brno, in the center of Kroměříž, in the eastern Czech Republic, lies a classic example of architectural beauty, power, and wealth that was enjoyed by certain European royals and the high society.
The palaces date back to the 1400s and are magnificent both from the outside and in. Every room oozes opulence, with exquisite furnishings, historical relics, and one of the biggest collections of paintings and artworks in the country.
And as for the gardens! 130 acres of insane beauty of statues, flowers, and a labyrinth of shrubs and trees, with deer, peacocks, rabbits, and various small animals roaming around to rival the Garden of Eden.
Do not miss this place!
22. Valtice Castle
Tucked away in the southeasternmost corner of the Czech Republic, barely a few miles south of Lednice Castle, is another architectural gem with a long and rich history of war conflicts with the luxurious palace complex we have today.
Originally built during the 12th century as a Gothic fortress, after it was ransacked, rebuilt, and decorated in Baroque style, it became the residence of the powerful and noble Liechtenstein family.
Today it serves as a museum showcasing Czech history, with various tours available through its numerous princely rooms, halls, chapel, cellars, and magnificent courtyard.
23. Kokorin Castle
Hidden from view amongst a rural landscape of dense forest, lakes, and charming villages, 25 miles northeast of Prague, stands the renovated medieval Kokorin Castle.
Originally built in the early 1300s, this romantic castle was destroyed by the Hussites, a religious group that was the forerunners of the Protestant movement during the early 1400s.
It lay in ruins for centuries, and its fate was sealed when Austrian Emperor Ferdinand declared it a cursed castle, forbidding anyone to restore it.
It became a haven for plundering knights and vagabonds until a Prague businessman purchased and renovated it as close to its original plan as possible.
It makes for a wonderful day trip from the capital, with guided tours through the castle. A climb up to the tower offers gorgeous views of the complex and surrounding forests, which provide beautiful walking and hiking trails.
24. Litomyšl Castle
Located in the center of Litomyšl in the eastern Czech Republic, about 100 miles from Prague, stands the 16th-century castle built as a unique and interesting Czech Renaissance chateau, which was originally invented in Italy.
After it was damaged by fire, it was renovated in the late 1800s with several additions, including a theatre and, of course, a brewery. It is immaculately preserved.
This four-story castle has all the elements of the aristocratic lifestyle of that period.
Beautiful paintings, elaborate porcelains, and furnishings in every room, with the neoclassical theatre and courtyard with the fountain and gardens being simply sublime.
A real treasure and UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Czech Republic.
25. Chlum u Trebone Castle
Although not strictly a castle but rather a manor house, it was privately owned by several wealthy families dating back to the 13th century.
Unfortunately, the town’s economy declined when the region ran out of iron ore deposits, and the manor became the summer residence of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria.
It was here where his three children were staying when the Archduke and his wife, Sophie, were assassinated in 1914, an event that triggered off WWI.
Sadly, the house is not open to the public, but there are numerous historical sites, and this region is a magnet for nature lovers, being filled with beautiful forests, parks, lakes, and charming rural villages.
26. Castle Benatky nad Jizerou
Being less than 30 minutes drive from Praque, although not one of the most formidable-looking castles in the Czech Republic, it’s a sheer joy to visit, especially if you have children.
Situated in the center of Benátky nad Jizerou on the highest point of the town, this castle/chateau also acts as the town council building.
It is a three-story building decorated with statues and beautiful frescoes on one façade overlooking the courtyard and adjoining gardens.
Various exhibitions in the museum trace the town’s history, astronomy, and a separate interactive toy museum to keep the kids entertained for hours.
The views from the tower offer scenic views of the surrounding park and picturesque town. It is best to visit it during the summer.
More Czech Castles Worth Knowing
Ledec Nad Sazavou Castle
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