Ostrava, the third largest city in the Czech Republic is just a two-hour flight from the UK. A highly attractive destination for a short break, the city offers so much to see and do, you might just want to make that a longer break!
Ostrava - City of Contrasts
Ostrava is a city of stark contracts. Peaceful parks and long-defunct industrial sites sit side by side. Each has its own unique beauty. Coal mines, such as Anselm and Michal Mine are now heritage visitor sites preserving Ostrava's mining history for future generations.
Be a miner for the day at Dul Michal. The mine is exactly as it was when the mine operated. If you want to see an actual coal seam you must go to the old Anselm mine at Landek Park in the Lower Vitkovice Area of Ostrava.
Credit: Frances Spiegel 2014. All rights reserved.Landek Park is one of the most interesting places I've ever been to. The old blast furnace, known as Blast Furnace No. 1 is now VP1. Standing 70 meters high the monument provides fabulous views across the city as well as a step-by-step guide to the production of pig iron. There's also a chance to step inside a blast furnace where the temperatures, when it was in use, reached over 2000 degrees Celsius. Hot stuff! Visitors see the blast furnace control room where the smelting process was controlled.
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Small World of Technology
Credit: Frances Spiegel 2014. All rights Reserved.The old energy station, U6, is now a new exhibition centre, known as World of Technology. The display spans two hundred years of scientific and technological discovery from the steam engine to space travel. It's not at all like a museum, but more like an educational games room where visitors learn in a spontaneous and entertaining way. U6 is suitable for young and old alike - everyone will find something of interest.
GONG - The Most Extraordinary TransformationCredit: Frances Spiegel 2014. All rights reserved.
Nothing is wasted at Landek Park and the most extraordinary transformation of all is the creation of a multi-purpose auditorium in what was formerly a huge gas container. In a unique project, master-minder by renowned architect Josef Pleskot, the sunken gas chamber bell was raised to its maximum height to accommodate the concert hall. The original construction of the gas container was left almost unchanged. How amazing - an industrial building, originally silent and gloomy, where no man dared to tread, is now full of life and light, sounds and music. GONG uses state-of-the-art technology to provide wonderful facilities for conferences, concerts, festivals, and some of the best gigs in Europe.
Credit: Frances Spiegel 2014. All rights reserved
More About Ostrava and the Czech Republic
Tempted? So you should be. Ostrava is just two hours away? There's lots more beside industrial heritage. The city has some of the world's best shopping, superb art galleries and fascinating museums - Ostrava has something for everyone.
The CzechTourism website offers additional information about Dul Michal, Landek Park, World of Technology and the GONG. Check their site for information about flights, accommodation and other interesting places to explore.
Infobarrel offers several very interesting articles about mines and mining including Be a Coal Miner for the Day at Dul Michal and Landek Park.
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