The Nová Paka area: Via Kumburk to Bradlec

A moderate trip with views and history.

NOVÁ PAKA – město, zast. ČD – Brdo (4 km) – Pod Kumburkem (5,5 km) Kumburk (6 km) – Pod Kumburkem (6,5 km) – Klepanda, host., bus (8 km) Bradlec (9 km) – Pod Újezdcem (10 km) – U Tužína (13 km) Zboží (17 km) NOVÁ PAKA (22,5 km)

The Nová Paka area

The Nová Paka area, a paradise of petrified trees, is found in a landscape divided by valleys and long ridges. It will charm you with its red soil, the shapes of its hills that hide fairy treasures such as precious stones and pieces of petrified plants and trees. It is a very peculiar area, existing in a way on its own, with beautiful views of the region and the nearby Krkonoše Mountains. This is also reflected in the spiritual world full of secrets and mysteries – it is a region of artists, dreamers, eccentric people and spiritists. The centre of the area is the town of Nová Paka, first mentioned in 1357. For many centuries, the town was linked to the history of Kumburk castle as a subject town of the Kumburk dominion. First it was owned by the Vartenberks, followed by the Krušina with the most important representative being Hynek Krušina of Kumburk, a great supporter of the Hussites. In subsequent turbulent times, the dominion was held by the Berkas of Dubé, the Smiřický family and the Lords of Šternberk. To an extent, the area was also peculiar because of its folk architecture. Many log houses have been preserved. In the 19th century, transportation infrastructure started to develop and the town of Stará Paka became a major railway crossroads.

Nová Paka – The town is the area’s centre, located on the border between Bohemian Paradise and the Krkonoše Mountains, and is unique because of its red soil. The area, delimited by Kumburk, Pecka and former Levín castles and the Na Zámkách location, is divided by valley and long ridges that hide treasures of precious stones and pieces of petrified plants and trees. The town was part of the Kumburk domain. It is a very peculiar area – a region of artists, dreamers and spiritists. Its history is presented in the Municipal Museum exposition located in Suchardův dům (Sucharda’s House); the Treasury of Gem Stones provides information on natural curiosities. You can see a unique exposition on the geological development, an exposition of precious stones and an exposition on spiritualism. The main sights include folk architecture houses (such as No. 161 and others) and the Pauline Monastery with the Church of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary (an important Baroque structure and a former pilgrimage site), the Church of Saint Nicolas in the square (the first mention of the church dates back to 1357; in 1872, it was rebuilt in the Neo-Gothic style), the Marian Column from 1716 and a fountain from 1814 in the square, and a wooden Greek Catholic church moved in 1930 from Carpathian Ukraine. The V.I.T.V.A.R. Car Gallery houses an interesting collection of cars. Nová Paka is the starting point to get to Kumburk and Bradlec castle ruins. Mácha’s Trail and seasonal are located here as well.

Kumburk – In the early 14th century, the Lords of Vartenberk built a castle on a conical hill near the town of Nová Paka. Its original appearance is not known. On the north-east side, you can see the remains of a wall that used to run around the entire core. The artillery fortification is an example of active defence mechanisms from the mid-15th century. Eliška Smiřická is said to have been imprisoned in the round tower. From 1621, Kumburk was owned by Albrecht von Wallenstein. After he was murdered, the castle kept changing owners and in 1658, it was damaged. There is a plaque commemorating the visit by the Czech poet K. H. Mácha. The crossroads under Krumburk also offer a north view.

Bradlec the castle was located on two basalt hills and provided excellent defence against any attackers. The remains of three tower walls and wall fragments and building outlines have been preserved.

Nova Paka