An important industrial and cultural center of Central Bohemia, the town of Rakovník, which today has more than 17,000 inhabitants, can be found about 60 km west of Prague. The Rakovnický stream flows through it, it is located in places where there used to be a wetland valley, and every year, thanks to the historic buildings and picturesque surroundings, a large number of visitors come here.
Information for visitors
Interesting facts Rakovník
History of the town
Many legends are linked to the beginnings of the town of Rakovník, the most famous of which tells of a woman whose children were starving and she fished crayfish from a local stream and cooked them for her children with the intention of escorting them out of the world of poverty and famine. However, nothing happened to the children or the woman, and the crayfish then became a local delicacy. The small settlement later grew into a settlement and then the city.
Historical sources mention Rakovník in connection with the year 1252 as the seat of the court. Rakovník was built in a very strategic place. The core consists of a long square, built around 1300, and during the 13th century, Rakovník confirmed the city rights to the majesty of John of Luxembourg.
Mainly thanks to the Křivoklát castle, which is located only a few kilometers from Rakovník, the town had a rather important position. Rakovník was even allowed by the king to build fortifications and during the reign of Rudolf II. was promoted to a royal city in 1588. It was at this time that Rakovník experienced not only economic but also architectural development.
Unfortunately, it was interrupted by the Thirty Years' War, during which Rakovník was looted several times. During the second half of the 17th century, the city suffered two more catastrophes, this time in the form of a devastating flood and a plague epidemic, from which it recovered for a long time.
In the 19th century, Rakovník became a district town and significantly changed its face. Extensive reconstruction and construction of the buildings of the town savings bank and civic savings bank began, and in 1833 the oldest real school in Bohemia was established here, which was initially run by the Piarists and later by the Premonstratensian order. Later, the walls were removed and a sugar factory and a ceramic plant were established.
After the Second World War, a swimming pool, sports hall and other facilities were built here.
Important sights and attractions
In Rakovník you must definitely not forget to visit the church of St. Bartholomew, the main square with the plague column and especially the two gates that have been preserved from the original fortifications, Prague and High.
The magical nature spreads around Rakovník and there are interesting monuments, the most famous of which are the aforementioned Křivoklát Castle or the ruins of the Týřov, Krakovec, Žebrák or Točník castles. Also worth a visit is Hamous's farm in Zbečno, a unique timbered farm from the 16th century.
Author: Andrea Štyndlová