Enjoy the Czech idyll in the Bohemian Cottage
An article by Clara Sprich
Stepping out of the car, I take a few deep breaths and enjoy the fresh, rain-cleansed country air; after only a 3 ½ hour drive from Berlin I have it Bohemian cottage achieved in Bohemian Switzerland in the Czech Republic. It is not far from the German border, near Dresden. The nearest place is Krásná Lipa - which translates to "beautiful lime tree" in German. There is an opportunity to buy groceries in a small shop or dine at the Falkenstejn brewery and drink local beer.
This is where I would like to escape the hustle and bustle of Berlin in the next few days
I get a warm welcome from Aleš, the owner of this wonderful place. As a welcome, there is a homemade, berry welcome schnapps. Aleš is not only a host, but also a nature park guide. He knows the area like the back of his hand and shows me the most beautiful and best tours as well as tips for the area. Aleš is very communicative, helpful and responds to my wishes. He then takes the time for a detailed tour of the entire property. Everything is clean and tidy and exudes a pleasant smell of wood. The cottage originally dates from the 19th century and was lovingly renovated in 2017-2018 by local craftsmen. Some of the originals from that time could be preserved, such as the floors and stairs. The common rooms are on the ground floor.
Tour of the Bohemian Cottage
Starting with a large well-equipped kitchen that has all the necessary utensils for cooking and a large table to gather around for any meal. I especially like the traditional Czech crockery. For a few bucks there is the possibility to take local lemonades, beers and wines out of the fridge. Our tour continues to the yoga room where Aleš Ms. Irena offers yoga classes. This can also be booked for seminars or private sessions.
My personal highlight is the wellness area, which includes a Finnish sauna and a jacuzzi. What is special here is that the entire area can be reserved for private use. There is also the possibility to book massages. In the hallway of the ground floor there is a small boutique where Aleš and Irena offer jewellery, soaps and yoga clothes. All products are handmade by their own family, friends or neighbors. An old creaky wooden staircase leads up to the apartments on the first floor. The cottage has a total of four pieces, all of which have a different size and number of beds. Each one has been designed with a lot of love and attention to detail, so that each apartment exudes its own individual charm despite the similar style.
Take a deep breath and enjoy
The tour continues outside. I step onto a large stone terrace, close my eyes and breathe in the fresh country air again. When I open them again, I see the barbecue area and a wooden table with wooden benches. It's a pity that it's still so fresh in March, I think. On warmer days, the sight invites you to socialize. I walk further and see the large natural pool. This can be used at any time of the year - in summer for refreshment and on colder days for ice bathing. I climb a few steps to enter the garden that opens onto the stone terrace. This exudes a pleasant calm and I can well imagine lazing in one of the hammocks on warmer days. When I turn around, my gaze wanders over the vastness of the Czech Republic. I have to take another deep breath and pause.
A narrow stone path leads to the back of the garden, past the herb beds with various medicinal plants, from which tea is made, among other things. The herbs may be used to prepare their own food in the kitchen. Aleš lovingly takes care of the beds. Anyone who wants to can help him with the gardening. At the end of the path, in the middle of the garden of the Bohemian Cottage, is this Tiny House, which will be my sleeping place for the next few nights. It's small but fine. Upon entering, I immediately feel relaxed. Unlike the other apartments, it does not have a kitchen and a bathroom, but the corresponding rooms in the main building can be used for this. There is a kettle to boil tea or a hot water bottle for the colder days. In one corner there is a chimney fan that provides cozy warmth.
Loving breakfast basket
The next morning I wake up well rested and rested in the big comfortable bed. I open the curtains and let the vastness of the landscape work its magic on me through the glass back. What a magnificent view! The night before I ordered a breakfast basket with homemade local delicacies, which varies every morning and is lovingly prepared by grandmother. Today, in addition to fruit, rolls and homemade spreads, I also find yoghurt muesli and pancakes. Well strengthened I now start my day.
The Bohemian Cottage is located in the middle of the Bohemian Switzerland National Park, surrounded by forests, meadows and mountains. On short hikes, I enjoy the vastness of nature and let my thoughts wander. The path leads me uphill and downhill past cows, horses, sheep and chickens. I don't meet a single person. Only the birds chirp happily in the warm rays of the sun. On one of my tours I stop at Café Perla, which Aleš recommended to me. I enter the café and immediately notice the furniture, which exudes an artistic flair. Everywhere I look there are pictures and shelves full of books. I immediately feel reminded of Berlin, only that everything seems much more authentic here. I order vegan goulash and draft Czech beer. After the meal, co-owner Adela shows me the “Factory”, an old industrial building next door. It is a mixture of gallery, artist studio, print shop and hostel.
After a nice day in nature, I spend the evening in the wellness area. Between sauna sessions I relax on one of the wooden loungers or in the jacuzzi. Then I make myself comfortable with a book in front of the fireplace. There is no WiFi available in the entire property. I enjoy being unavailable sometimes. My gaze wanders to the fireplace and I enjoy the crackling of the fire. My eyes are getting heavy and I fall into bed exhausted and happy. I quietly hear the wind and raindrops pattering on the roof of the tiny house and I fell asleep.
© Photos: Clara Sprich, Bohemian Cottage