Field Trips for Prague, Czech Republic
You are encouraged to participate in the included program field trips. These excursions generally take place on Fridays or Saturdays. In addition to the including program field trips, you'll also have field trips as part of many of your courses and have numerous informal activities that expose you to the local culture as well.
Dates and exact locations are at the discretion of the Resident Director and they vary from session and session and semester to semester. Common destinations include the following.
Kamenický Šenov Glassworks and Mĕlník
Kamenický Šenov is the center of the glass industry in Europe. You will have a chance to blow your own glass pieces under the guidance of experienced artists. Mĕlník is a small town that lies at the confluence of the Labe and Vltava rivers, about 30 km northeast of Prague. In the fifth and sixth centuries many Slavic tribes lived here. In later years the town became the residence of Bohemian queens and Princess Ludmila began vine-growing. The Holy Roman Emperor and King Charles IV continued this activity, importing vines from Burgundy. Wine growing continues to be a strong tradition in Mĕlník and a wine harvest celebration is hosted every autumn. The Mĕlník castle is one of the most impressive sites in town.
Konopiště Chateau and Historical City of Tábor
We will observe the lifestyle of the supreme nobility in the chateau Konopiště, the seat of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand d´Esté, whose assassination sparked the tragedy of WWI. The tour through the archduke´s apartments as he left them in 1914 show how the mightiest people of the world lived a hundred years ago. From Konopiště, we will go to the city of Tábor, once the town of the fifteenth-century revolutionaries. Tábor is one of the most beautiful cities in the world—you will tour the medieval underground, thirteenth-century castle, the Renaissance and Baroque city square, and the maze of the carefully planned street system. A short hike from the city to the popular eighteenth-century shrine Klokoty will conclude the trip.
Kutná Hora flourished in the thirteenth century and became one of the most important cities in the Kingdom of Bohemia as well as the Holy Roman Empire. You will visit former silver mines, the high gothic church of St. Barbara and a unique example of baroque-gothic architecture: Our Lady Church. You will also visit and hear a lecture on Ossuary, the eighteenth century chapel decorated with artifacts made of human bones.
Lindava Glassworks and Liberec
In the Spring semester, students will travel to a different glassworks in the region: Lindava, where they will observe and practice classical glassblowing but with an emphasis on modern design. The northern city of Liberec, the heaven of contemporary art pieces in public space, is on the trip list as well.
Terezín, Lidice, and Litomĕřice
The fortress of Terezín was built in the eighteenth century as a garrison town to protect the Austrian Empire borders. In 1939, the German Nazis occupied the Czech Republic and turned Terezín into a concentration camp for both Czech Jews and opponents of the cruel regime. The trip includes a guided tour through the camp, a lecture, and a visit to the famous museum of child inmates’ paintings. The small town of Lidice is another WWII memorial site—the town was completely wiped out and its citizens killed as the Nazi leaders wanted to scare the people from all occupied territories. The third destination of the trip is the regional capital, Litomĕřice. Founded in the tenth century, it is one of the oldest Czech royal towns. It is known for its historical monuments, architecture, and serves as a guide to the troubled twentieth-century history of Central Europe.