Olomouc city basics
Olomouc was always among the most important cities of the Kingdom of Bohemia. With its convenient location, ancient university and spiritual, cultural, and craft traditions, Olomouc has been for centuries a natural centre of Moravia, attractive to artists, intellectuals, and businessmen.
Key facts about the city
with its 99,529 inhabitants, Olomouc is the sixth largest city in the Czech Republic and the centre of the fertile Haná region the second (after Prague) largest National Historic Conservation Area in the Czech Republic located in the heart of Moravia, whose capital it was in the past now the seat of a university with a long tradition, an archdiocese, the Moravian Philharmonic Orchestra, and a variety of museums and theatres you can relax in the city's sprawling parks, large ZOO, modern aquapark, swimming arena, or the Litovelské Pomoraví nature reserve, with its cycling paths and opportunities for swimming.
The lowland of the Haná region, in the centre of which Olomouc is located, is one of the warmest areas in the country. The climate is very pleasant, without dramatic shifts in temperature.
In spring and autumn daytime temperatures are usually between 15 and 20 °C and in summer about 25 °C; days with temperatures around 30 °C are quite common as well.
The city of Olomouc lies at the confluence of two rivers – the Morava and the Bystřice. The flat character of the town is marked by a distinctive, elevated relief in the west and especially in the east, so the city is enclosed into an elongated depression open towards the northwest and southeast.
Area: 10,337 ha
Altitude (the city centre): 219 m.a.s.l.
Coordinates (the city centre): 49°45´ N, 17°15´ E
You can find a city map here: Olomouc
Food & drink
The alluring culinary delights of the Olomouc region entice you to visit and explore the local restaurants for all the tastes and unexpected surprises of Moravian cuisine. Your gastronomic tour of Olomouc should definitely include “Olomoucké Tvarůžky”, a ripened curd cheese, along with the obligatory glass of beer. From the wide selection of delicious beer, we recommend the brands Moritz and Vašek, which are brewed in small breweries directly in Olomouc.
|Daily menu||75-95 CZK|
|A la carte menu||95-125 CZK|
|Beer, 0.5 l||25-35 CZK|
|Wine, 0.2 dl||40-50 CZK|
|Water and coffee||about 30 CZK|
Olomouc is very easy to get around on foot. A casual walk through the city centre does not take more than some 15 minutes. If you want to get to know more of Olomouc, you can use the city public transport (MHD).
City public transport (MHD) – trams or buses
- single ticket 14 CZK
- day ticket 46 CZK
- holders of the Olomouc Region Card can use the public transport free of charge.
- usual minimum charge: 15 CZK
- usual price per km: 25 CZK
- price for one day: 800 CZK
Sightseeing and places of interest
Holy Trinity Column – UNESCO
Since 2000 the Holy Trinity Column has been inscribed into the UNESCO World Heritage List.
The Holy Trinity Column in Olomouc dominates the city centre and its grandeur easily takes a visitor’s breath away. It is the largest group of Baroque statues within a single sculptural monument in Central Europe. The column is 35 metres high and its lower part houses a seasonally accessible chapel.
Cathedrals, churches, and chapels
Olomouc is a unique complex of landmarks, including a cathedral, churches, and chapels, whose monumentality can be admired in many parts of the city centre.
They will guide us across historical epochs and architectural styles from Romanesque to Neo-Gothic. The main religious landmarks are St. Wenceslas Cathedral and the Baroque domes of St. Michael’s Church.
Most of the churches are accessible to the public, so now you too can enjoy the religious atmosphere of the interiors of many churches and chapels of Olomouc.
Other remarkable buildings include the former Hradisko Monastery, which houses a military hospital today, and the Archbishop's Palace, where the archbishops of Olomouc have resided since the 16th century. Franz Joseph I. of the House of Habsburg ascended the imperial throne in this early Baroque palace in 1848. Pope John Paul II. stayed here during his visit to Olomouc.
Historical buildings and palaces
Historical houses and palaces, especially those lining the Upper Square and the adjoining streets, enhance the historic atmosphere of the city. The opulent palaces and town houses are a dignified counterpart to the religious architecture and form an integral part of the old city centre.
The most important palaces include the Baroque Archbishop's Palace and the Renaissance Edelmann’s Palace, with its richly decorated façade. Also noteworthy is the Romanesque Bishop's Palace, formerly better known as the Přemyslid Palace, which is an example of the very pinnacle of European Romanesque architecture. Western and northern perimeter walls with double and triple Romanesque windows have been preserved. The palace is open to the public.
You simply should not miss the Olomouc castle site situated on Wenceslas Hill! Right here in 1306, the last Přemyslid, the Czech king Wenceslas III, was assassinated. You can admire the Bishop's Palace with its famous Romanesque windows, the gothic St. Wenceslas Cathedral, today the seat of the Archbishop of Olomouc, or the Archdiocesan Museum founded on the initiative of Pope John Paul II.
City Hall with astronomical clock
The Olomouc City Hall, which dominates the Upper Square (Horní náměstí), has been a symbol of the economic and political importance of the former royal capital of Moravia for more than six centuries.
Today it is the most important non-religious architectural monument in Olomouc. It is the only monument with a public or representative function still serving its original purpose today, accommodating the headquarters of the elected city government and its office.
The construction of the Olomouc City Hall was allowed by a privilege granted by the Moravian Margrave Jost of Luxembourg in 1378.
Fountains and columns
The set of six Baroque fountains is a unique monument of Olomouc. The large stone fountains bear figural decoration drawing on ancient mythology. They are evidence of the architectural and artistic development of the city, which was almost destroyed in the Thirty Years’ War. They are therefore to be understood as a symbol of the rebirth of the city. The set of fountains is completed with the seventh Arion Fountain, designed by the famed sculptor and native of Olomouc Ivan Theimer. In 2007, another descendant of the Olomouc fountains was unveiled – the Spring of Living Water of St. John Sarkander located in the courtyard of the Chapel of St. Jan Sarkander. Columns are an interesting feature of the city as well. In addition to the above-mentioned Holy Trinity Column, the Marian Plague Column on the Lower Square (Dolní náměstí), which commemorates the victims of the plague in the 18th century, is a fine piece of stonework.