Where To Cool Off in Brno This Summer, From The Brno Underground To The Temple Vaults
We all know summer in the city can be hot, but in Brno at least, there is an underground side of the city where you can stay cool, while checking out some of the city’s most interesting secrets. Photo credit: Marie Schmerková, Brno City Municipality.
Brno, July 27 (BD) – A visit to one of the locations in the Brno underground will give you double goosebumps, from both the low temperatures and the unusual experience. A unique ossuary, breathtaking water reservoirs and an authentic anti-nuclear shelter are among the options, as well as a completely new exhibition in the cellar under the New Town Hall focused on Brno’s history and legends.
Tickets to the cavernous underground water reservoirs on Žlutý kopec are selling fast, but some are still available for July and August (especially on weekdays). “Since the holidays, we have offered a shorter, 60-minute version of the tour with basic information about both reservoirs. A longer 90-minute tour will allow you to learn more about the history of the reservoirs and the water industry in Brno,” said the organisers.
In addition, due to some recent cases, they warn visitors not to fall for overpriced offers from fraudulent dealers, and to buy tickets only at information centres or on the website, where new dates will be added every month.
At the moment, the two older, brick reservoirs are open, and work is currently underway to make the youngest concrete one accessible, and to create a visitor facility and park on the surface. Completion of the reconstruction of the entire area is expected next year.
An extraordinary event will take place at the reservoirs on 12 August, when they will become one of the stages of the Music Marathon when the sounds of the marimba, a special kind of xylophone, will be heard in the acoustically specific space.
Where does one go after death and where does one hide from it
Do you know the inconspicuous entrance to the underground a little to the side of the entrance to St. James’s Church? Who would have thought that you would enter the second largest ossuary in Europe, after the one in Paris! The burial ground hiding the remains of approximately 50,000 people has been waiting to be discovered for over 200 years. Today, the place of worship pointing to the old well-known “memento mori” is accessible all year round; an even more mystical experience is promised by the night tours, which take place on Fridays in August.
If the imperialists detonate a nuclear bomb in the West, people will have only a few minutes to find shelter from the radiation. This led to the creation of a number of anti-nuclear shelters, including the one under Petrov, where those who would be in the centre of the city were supposed to take refuge. Up to 3,000 people could wait here for four days, and everyone can now see the conditions. In addition to the usual 50-minute tour, a longer guided tour of the War Shelter in Brno is also planned for the holidays, which also includes testimonies from witnesses and a demonstration of chemical protection equipment. It will take place several times on 27 August. For technical reasons, the July tours of the Denis shelter are cancelled!
How it used to be in Brno
A brand new exhibition awaits visitors to the cellar under the New Town Hall, the former Mintmaster’s Cellar. The modern multimedia exhibition The Fire Horse and the Dragon includes stories about both the legends associated with Brno and its real history.
Mediaeval corridors and cellars form a complete Labyrinth under Zelný trh. On the tour, people will learn how food, wine and beer were stored in the past and how the underground spaces were lit. An old wine cellar and a historic pub draw attention to the local winemaking tradition. The dark side of life in ancient times is told by the replicas of the city pillory and the fool’s cage that stood in the market place in the 17th century.
You don’t have to go to the labyrinth just for a tour, but also for a more adrenaline-filled escape game experience. On Friday, 11 August, a special tour, “Black Ball for General Torstenson”, will take place as part of Brno Day.
Brno and its temples
Until the middle of September, churches in the centre of Brno and outside are opening their doors as part of the traditional “Brno and its temples”. In addition, several special guided tours will take place in August.
From Tuesday to Saturday, people can get into the Red Church (Komenské náměstí, 2-6 pm), the Church of St. Michael (Dominikánské náměstí, 14–18), St. Tomáš (Moravské náměstí, 1:30 pm–5:30 pm) and to the Basilica of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary (Mendlovo náměstí, 2:30 pm–5:30 pm). On weekdays from 9.30 am to 4.30 pm the church of St. Maří Magdalena (Masarykova), and on weekends, churches outside the centre – on Saturdays, to Lesná for the church of the Blessed Maria Restituta (2-5 pm) and on Sundays to the Church of St. Lawrence (2–5).
In the second half of August, several special events for adults and children are also planned. There are still places available on 19 August for a guided tour of the Capuchin Tomb, which will be devoted to Maria Elizabeth of Waldorf, an inspiring woman, a generous benefactor, and the founder of the Hospice of St. Elizabeth.
On Saturday, 26 August, two blocks of a two-hour program are prepared for children, during which they will walk from Dominikánské náměstí to Staré Brno, uncovering the secret of Eliška Rejčka’s life. The event is suitable for children from 6 to 10 years old.