15 Best things to do in Ostrava (Czech Republic)

Ostrava, the third city in the Czech Republic, is historically known for its heavy industry due to its large coal reserves. Here at Landeck Park, carbon is even pushed up through the topsoil, with evidence of human coal use dating back 25,000 years. In modern times, this has turned the city into an industrial hub, and it remains a city proud of its mining heritage. Ostrava will appeal to those who want real industrial tourism, with two mining sites, as well as the Vitkovice region, which combines coal mining and metalwork, unique in Europe. Let’s see the best things to do in Ostrava!

1. Witcovis

vitkowice

If you need proof of Ostrava’s pride in its industrial roots, the vast industrial remains of the Vitkovice metallurgical district have been cherished and transformed into modern attractions. The huge gas meter is a concert hall, and the 19th-century blast furnace is part of the tour, which includes a 60-meter-high observation deck, accessible by industrial elevator. The entire region is on the European Heritage List. One of the many factors that makes Vitkovice different is that the entire steel manufacturing supply chain can be found in one place. There are coal mines, coke plants, and steel plants, all next door.

2. Landeck Park

Landeck Park

It is only fitting that Ostrava has one of the Czech Republic’s premier mining resorts, as the mines of Landeck Park have been exploited since time immemorial. Landek Park allows you to experience the good and the bad of industrial mining in Ostrava over the past two centuries. Browsing the museum you’ll learn about the history of mining rescues, and entering a mining cage simulated descent into the tunnels, you’ll be fully immersed in the sights, sounds and smells of the coal mine.

3. New Town Hall

new town hall

Located on the left bank of the Ostravis River, this functionalist building is the largest and tallest town hall in the Czech Republic. What this means for tourists is the best view of any part of the city, and a guided tour every 30 minutes pointing out everything you need to know. The viewing platform is 72 meters above the ground, and on a clear day you can see Poland as well as the Beskydy and Jeseníky Mountains, as well as some of the highest peaks in the country. Above all is the view of Ostrava itself; you will be amazed by how green the city is.

4. Masaryk Square

Masaryk Square

This is the highlight of the urban heritage area of ​​Ostrava in Moravia, and the pedestrian zone helps preserve the architectural beauty of central Ostrava. Surrounded by charming and colourful 20th-century buildings, Masaryk Square is a convivial place for friends to gather in good weather. Two monuments stand in the square: the Marian Plague Column, commemorating the end of the epidemic in 1702, and the recently restored historic statue of Saint Florian, patron saint of firemen. If you visit Ostrava in winter, check out the traditional Christmas market on the square.

5. Ostrava Castle, Silesia

Ostrava Castle in Silesia

The fortress is the main historical landmark of Ostrava. The Ostravis and Lucina rivers meet nearby, and the border with Poland has always been nearby, so the building from 1280 has played an important strategic role for centuries. Originally designed in Gothic style, it was converted into a castle during the Renaissance. Then, in 1872, it was razed to the ground. reason? mining! Underground tunnels weakened the foundations, causing the building to sink 16 meters. Today, it has been faithfully restored and is very stable, showing exhibits about the history of Ostrava and the methods of torture that were once carried out in the castle dungeon.

6. Zoo

Ostrava Zoo

This is the second largest zoo in the Czech Republic and has EEP and EAZA membership, which means it meets European ethical standards. Not an attraction for people who just want to stare blankly at the animals in their cages. Ostrava Zoo has made a real effort in terms of education. Take the New House of Evolution, which traces the evolutionary history of West Africa through a multi-environmental exhibit of more than 200 species, including invertebrates, reptiles, birds, mammals, and primitive sarcoid. Other areas include the Safari Park, Amazon Hall, Botanical Garden and Farm, where kids can meet domestic and farm animals.

7. Miniuni Miniature Park

Miniuni miniature park

It’s a fun pastime for families with young children. In a 1.5-hectare landscaped park, there are around 30 models of famous landmarks from around the world. The Brandenburg Gate, the Eiffel Tower and London’s Houses of Parliament are all here, meticulously built to a 1:25 scale. A recent update brings the wonders of the ancient world to this corner of the Czech Republic. Children will marvel at the miniature railroads and ships sailing on the park’s waterways. For adults, it’s a relaxing place to take a walk on a sunny day with lots of greenery and water features.

8. Ostrava Museum

Ostrava Museum

Opened in 2009 in the lovely old town hall building, this museum is well worth your hours. Here, you’ll learn how to take advantage of the coal fields beneath the city. The natural history section tells about the geology around Ostrava, and you’ll also gain an in-depth look at the social aspects of the coal industry by viewing the mining exhibits, where various mining-related artifacts are displayed. Families and institutions in Ostrava have donated art and furniture to the museum, the best of which is a stunning astronomical clock that is over two meters high; it has more than 2,500 moving parts and was built by the city in the 1920s Designed by steel mill technician Jan Masek.

9. Michal Coal Mine

Coal Mine Ostrava

Dating back to 1843, the Michal mine was created by the Austrian Empire when two shafts were sunk at the site. The coal mine and its surrounding buildings will appeal to tourists keen on industrial history, as it has never been modernized since 1915, although it operated until 1993. The buildings above ground are well preserved and will give visitors an idea of ​​the electrification of the earliest mining lifestyles. You can follow in the footsteps of the last miners in Ostrava and spend their days in lounges, lamp rooms, engine rooms and mine cages. Heavy machinery on display includes dump trucks, cranes, compressors and transport lift trucks.

10. Ostrava Brewery

Ostrava Brewery

Ostravar is available in pale and pale ales (Original and Premium) and is not a household name outside of Upper Moravia, but has a large local market. Beer is, of course, the national drink of the Czech Republic, and at this 19th-century brewery, you’ll learn about the brewing process, from the brewery with its large copper barrels, to the cellar where the beer is developed in depth. There are antique paraphernalia to peruse, such as historic barrel heads, and shipping glasses from the early 20th century. A real highlight is the brewery’s 1940s tap bar, where you can sample Ostrava varieties at the end of the tour.

11. Hemp waste heap

Hemp slag heap

OK, so Slag Heap may not be the vacation spot everyone thinks it is, but Ostrava is a city that attracts those who embrace the gritty things in life. Located on the right bank of the Ostravice River, Ema Slag Heap is a real oddity. It is piled up to an altitude of 315 meters above sea level, but what is really strange about this pile is that it has a subtropical climate that can support some unusual plant life. That’s because the waste from the ore extraction process is still burning under your feet, and you realize it when you see the white smoke seeping from the ground.

12. Sareza Water Park

Sareza Water Park

During July and August, daytime temperatures can exceed 30°, making this well-equipped leisure centre a must, especially if you’re visiting Ostrava with children. There are play areas, mini golf, volleyball courts, walking trails and soccer fields, but the best part for the kids is the family-friendly slide and splash pool area. Elsewhere, die-hard swimmers can venture into the main pool, watched by lifeguards, and it’s absolutely massive. It is almost a lake, 380 meters long and 220 meters wide, with a 50-meter waterslide. Snack bars and cafés provide needed refreshments in summer.

13. Seth Arena

Seth Arena

If you’re a hockey fan, or don’t realize you’re a hockey fan, it’s a great day, the Cez Arena has a great reputation in the hockey world, hosting the World Championships in 2004 and 2015. It has a capacity of 10,000 and is the home rink of HC Vitkovice Steel, a team that dates back to 1928 and plays in the Czech Extraliga. The season runs from fall to spring, so if you’re in town at this time, head to Cez Arena for the lively home support. In the offseason, it’s turned into a tennis venue to watch Fed and Davis Cup games.

14. Ostravis River

Ostravis River

Another seasonal attraction, the riverside is one of the most relaxing places in the city where you can take a relaxing walk or just watch the water and the world go by. On the banks of the river, you can take a bike tour that leaves the city along the river and meanders into the countryside. If that’s too much work, then you can park yourself on a bench to read a book or admire the birds. The water and the river are clean, so if you’re in the mood, don’t think twice about renting a paddle boat or canoe.

15. Antonin Dvorak Theater

Anthony Dvorak Theater

Opened in 1907, this neoclassical opera house has seen dramatic changes in times. In the years between its founding and the First World War, only German performances were held here. From 1918, the building was nationalized until the Velvet Revolution was named after the Czech composer Antonin Dvorak. Reserve a seat for an opera or ballet in the theatre and enjoy both the performance and the ornate Neo-Baroque interior; the extensive use of gold leaf, sculptures, the huge chandelier in the main hall and ornate paintings depicting cherubs, etc.

Where to Stay: Best Hotels in Ostrava, Czech Republic
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