Very few regions can pride themselves on having the sort of atmosphere that Chodsko has. After all, it is here, in the dense forests of Šumava, that you will find the traditional seat of the guardians of the Czech borders – the Chods. And this was also where their uprising, often mentioned in Czech literature, took place. In addition to its romantic character, Chodsko is a charming and clean region that beckons tourists to take long walks in its forests, meadows and hillocks. It is no wonder that Czechs consider Chodsko as the best region for their second holiday! Visit Chodsko and you will see that this is not by chance…
In the fields of natural science and tourism, the unbroken strip of dense woodlands comprising the Bohemian Forest, Šumava, the Bavarian Forest, and Hornofalck Forest is known as the Green Roof of Europe. It is indeed the largest continuous stretch of forested ground in Europe. Over a third of the Green Roof of Europe’s expanse are national parks.
Today’s recreational and touristic region of Chodsko sprawls over a cross-border expanse along the length of the Czech border with Germany from Chodské Úhlavy by Nýrsko in western Šumava to the middle of the Bohemian Forest to Bělá nad Radbuzou and the village of Železná. The jagged and, for a thousand years, cultivated landscape of dense forests, the far stretching mountainsides, picturesque groves, golden fields, hillsides that blaze with colour in autumn, and an abundance of monuments offer plenty of opportunities for unforgettable trips to the countryside. These features are also why we also consider Chodsko to be the “kingdom” of distant panoramas. The charming landscape offers a variety of outings through forests and fields and over plains and mountains, and has a favourable effect on the nerves, as well as the soul and one’s entire state of mind. You will meet very hospitable people, the descendents of the ancient Chods, everywhere.
The Chods from Domažlice were a family with a peculiar standing among the residents of Bohemia. For centuries they guarded the border against invading bandits and foreign armies. For this service, the Bohemian kings granted them many privileges, the most significant of which was their personal freedom. They were not the subjects of feudalists, but directly of the monarchs. Most of the events involving the Chods that have been recorded in the written word and on film took place towards the close of the 17th century. The Chodovs and their traditional battle with authority, specifically with Laminger (in Czech tales known as Lomikar), the owner of the chateau in Trhanov, ended with an insurgency that Laminger crushed violently. Three Chodovs earned renown for their leadership, one of whom was Jan Sladký Kozina of Újezd by Domažlic. In February 1695 he was executed in Pilsen. A literary version of this story relates that shortly before dying he said to Laminger: “Laminger, Laminger, in a year and a day God’s court will summon you for judgement.” You can probably guess how Laminger ended up a year and a day later…
To this day Chod traditions are visible, mainly in the eleven historically privileged villages where the Chods resided (Draženov, Chodov, Klenčí pod Čerchovem, Klíčov, Chodská Lhota, Mrákov, Pocinovice, Postřekov, Stráž, Tlumačov and Újezd). Chod folklore is also evident in numerous celebrations, such as the Chod folk festival in Domažlice. In mid-August bagpipers from all over the country congregate here, and you can see traditional Chod folk costumes or sample a local speciality – Chod cakes.
Do you enjoy long pleasant walks along riverbanks and through dense forests? Or do you prefer hiking along more challenging trails that give your body a bit of a workout? Then Chodsko is the ideal place for you to spend a holiday. The region has an extensive network of hiking trails that lead to all of Chodsko’s important points of interest. The nature trail through the paths of Jirásková Lucerna is highly recommended. This trail was immortalised in a fairy-tale play by one of the Czech Republic’s most famous dramatists, Aloise Jiráska, and informs tourists aobut the natural, zoological and geological rarities of the district. The 14-kilometre long trail starts in Osvračín and ends in Staňkov.
Small children, teenagers, experienced cyclists who are in excellent shape, and pensioners who enjoy cycling: Chodsko has plenty to offer cyclists of all skill levels. The region has a network of well-maintained cycling paths that have a minimal density of traffic. At the same time, the outskirts of Domažlice offer the most pleasant impressions from the seat of a bicycle. It is also possible to start a journey from Klenčí pod Čerchovem or from Babylon.
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