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Brno

Brno, a famous city in South Moravia lying at the confluence of the Svratka and Svitava rivers and protected by two strongholds: Špilberk and Veveří. The second largest city in the Czech Republic and the largest city in Moravia. A city that honours history, prides itself on modern architecture and loves the arts. Brno is an ambitious and dynamic metropolis that plays its role as the modern centre of Moravia with dignity. It might not be as adorned as other historical cities, but it has a friendly civil feeling. Brno is simply different, and that’s good.

To fully enjoy the otherness of Brno, go on a tour of its architecture with regular stops at the famous local cafés (the urban hub Skøgthe intellectual Alfa, hipster Art  a Tungsram, Viennese Cosmopolis or Placzek, students’ Spolek and others, such as Savoy, Era, Air…). There’s no need to hurry – Brno is a relaxed place. Your city guide will give you as much time as you need.

Best Guide

The virtual “Brno Architectural Manual” (Brněnský architektonický manuál), also available in print at information centres, will guide you along the architectonical paths of Brno and provide information not only about the architecture – the 400 most interesting interwar buildings in Brno –  but also about the local history.

Most Admired Building

Functionalistic buildings are the most common in Brno. However, none of them come close to Villa Tugendhat. When architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe presented the keys of the new home to the Tugendhat family in 1930, no one guessed that the story of a world famous home had just started. Villa Tugendhat was built after WWI. Its concept of approaching space in a relaxed dialogue with nature and clear simple shapes represents the spirit of that time. A time that abandoned stale imperial orders, eliminated functionless ornament and set out on a journey of purposeful originality. However, times changed in 1933 and the idyll died of Nazi poisoning. The happiest time in the life of the family ended after eight years and the materialized freedom that the house represented quickly turned into a nightmare. Because the Tugendhat family was of Jewish origin and actively supported Jewish refugees from Hitler’s Germany, their lives were jeopardized and they were forced to emigrate. When they left the villa in 1938, it started to dilapidate.

After the monumental restoration, Villa Tugendhat was recorded on the UNESCO List of World Cultural Heritage as the only modern architecture sight in the Czech Republic and is now open again to a rich social life. You can enjoy the magic of the freely flowing space along the curve of the onyx wall and appreciate the purity of the style of this extraordinary building. You can visit the villa from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., from Tuesday to Sunday.  However, book your tickets at least one month in advance; the tours of the villa are very popular.

Most Challenging Clock

From an elegant lady to a cool dandy. Get ready for a huge jump forward in architecture. The local hypermodern astronomical clock  (Orloj) in the shape of a projectile looks like a middle finger in the context of the linear functionalism of Villa Tugendhat. Loved and hated, the six-meter-high obelisk looms over Freedom Square (náměstí Svobody): a clock made of black polished granite. However, only those with excellent observational skills are able to read the time. But telling time is the last priority with this clock. The most important is the idea, the historical link to the significant events in Brno and also the fact that the entrails of the machine release one of their treasures every day at 11 a.m.. If you are really lucky, you might obtain a souvenir in the form of a marble with the symbol of the city.

Concentrated Art

You might not have managed to get the marble, but that doesn’t mean you won’t find anything interesting in the local galleries. The Czech Republic has a rich cultural history and more than 700 museums and galleries. There are also many galleries in Brno and each one of them is unique. For example, the Moravian Gallery is a unique institution in the Czech Republic that focuses on creating collections of paintings, drawings, prints, sculptures, photographs, applied art, graphic design and architecture. A ten-minute walk from the city centre to a 19th-century factory hall brings you to Richard Adam Gallery Brno, specialized in contemporary conceptualism and minimalism. Or, you can visit the Gallery of the Young (Galerie mladých), which mostly shows the works of students and young graduates of schools of art.

Brno in Flames

Fire has always been fascinating. And you haven’t seen the fire of Brno yet, or IGNIS BRUNENSIS, which is the title of a competitive show of fireworks that takes place at the end of May and beginning of June within the “Brno – City in the Centre of Europe” festival. The grandiose fire show lights up the skies above Brno in a spectacular ballet of spherical bombs, fiery waterfalls and glowing celestial flowers. The skies are decorated with magical patterns and the historical city centre gets an unrepeatable charge, multiplied above the surface of the nearby Brno Reservoir.

And Something Extra

If you visit Brno at the beginning of May, visit the students’ festival Majáles. Music from dusk till dawn will stir up your blood and you can celebrate the student life and the upcoming spring. On the other hand, the autumn in Brno is more on the intellectual side. For one week in June, the city changes into the Theatre World (Divadelní svět) full of colourful costumes, smiles, love and tragedy, not only on the Brno theatre stages, but also outdoors.

Transport

Travelling to Brno, for example by bus and train from Prague, meets the most demanding quality requirements. Brno also has a well-accessible airport and reliable public transport, which also runs at night.

Getting from the
and back

Travelling to the Czech RepublicMore transporters

Arriving in Brno

The Brno International Airport is a base for trips to Moravian towns. Take a look at all of the regular and charter flights to the Moravian capital.

Arriving in Ostrava

Fly directly to Ostrava. You can get to Leoš Janáček Airport from locations such as Great Britain, France or Germany. Search for your flight on the map of destinations.

Arriving in Prague

You will arrive at Václav Havel Airport in Prague, and can set off on a journey throughout the Czech Republic. Click here to find out from where and on which airlines you can get to Prague.

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