Cycling in Czech Republic: Melnik to Litomerice

In some respects this was a difficult day. Not so much the cycling I’m happy to report, but I did start the day with the worst hotel breakfast that I’ve seen in a long time. I couldn’t get out of the hotel and onto my bike quickly enough. Later in the day I would visit an old concentration camp, which was not entirely fun either.


But first I had a look around Mělník itself. Once away from the hotel, its breakfast and the busy major road that it was next to, the place had a certain charm.

Melnik Panorama

The first port of all call was the church St. Peter and Paul and the nearby castle. The above panorama is looking out just near the church. You can see the Vltava River — the one I followed from Prague — meet the Elbe, the river that I’ll be tracking for the rest of the week. On the far left (and you can’t really make it out unless you really know where you’re looking) is a canal.

This is the centre of a major wine growing region and so, although still early, I found myself tasting some wines in a very dark wine cellar. I wasn’t complaining.

Wine tasting in M?lník

Leaving the wine cellar into the bright sun light I headed out along the Elbe towards Litoměřice, stopping only for a quick lunch in Roudnice. Well, I say “quick” but by now we’re all familiar with the way that Czech restaurants work!

Back on the bike, it only took an hour to reach Terezin, a former fortress turned concentration camp in the second world war. Every time I see something like this is affects me more than I expect, from Anne Frank’s house in Amsterdam, to sites in Vietnam to this. The sheer clinical inhumanity is still almost unbelievable.

Terezin Concentration Camp

Although Theresienstadt (as it’s called in German) was not an extermination camp, many of its prisoners died due to malnutrition or disease. There’s a large cemetery just outside the fortress to commemorate those losses.

Terezin Concentration Camp

In silent contemplation I press on to Litoměřice where I’ll spend the night. Tomorrow I’ll be having a look around before pressing on to Děčín.

This is the third of a series of posts about my cycling holiday from Prague in the Czech Republic, to Meißen, in Germany. See the index page for more details or subscribe to my RSS feed for updates as they arrive.