The small historic town of Bechyně lies above the steep chasm of the river Lužnice in the wooded country of Southern Bohemia, 100 km south of Prague.
The castle and the monastery
Bechyne is dominated by a 15th-century castle and a Franciscan monastery of the same period, now in use as a music school. Course sessions are held in the music school. The school has 12 classrooms, mostly equipped with pianos. Four grand pianos are available.
Casper van Dongen: Bechyně and La Pellegrina are like Adam and Eve in paradise
Concerts take place in the delightful refectory of the monastery, in the Gothic monastery church and in the Riding Hall of Bechyně castle. The refectory with its intimate atmosphere is extremely suited to chamber music concerts. The church has particularly pleasant and inspiring acoustics. The seating is sometimes a bit tricky, but the sound quality amply makes up for it. For example, note the golden angel on the left hand side, above the musicians. His foot is wrapped in a cloth, because everybody always bumps his head there. The Riding Hall in the castle was originally used for training horses, but was converted into a concert hall seating about 800 people. Its spacious acoustics are particularly suited to grand orchestral and choral performances.
The hostel of the ceramics school
The basic option for accommodation is the hostel of the local ceramic artisan school. This hostel normally houses students during school terms. In the summer the rooms are used for tourists. It has 36 mini apartments with two rooms, a larger and a smaller, each sharing a toilet and shower. The larger rooms are mainly used as doubles, the smaller as singles. The facilities are simple. The building dates from the communist past of Czechia. There are normal beds, no dorms or bunk beds. It is a 15 minutes' walk from the hostel to the monastery.
It is also possible to stay in Penzion Elektra, really close to the monastery, situated directly behind the city wall. A tiny gate gives access to the monastery gardens. Guesthouse Elektra offers accommodation in six spacious, tastefully and comfortably furnished rooms and an apartment. The rooms have a private bathroom with bath or shower. In the apartment two rooms share a bathroom. Some rooms have a terrace or balcony with spectacular views of the gardens and the river Lužnice. All rooms have Wi-Fi. Although located in the old city center, the location is away from the main roads and borders on the gardens above the romantic valley of the Lužnice. This villa gives you the true comfort of uninterrupted tranquillity. The sumptuous breakfast is served in the cozy "living room". The guesthouse has its own parking facilities. Accommodation in Elektra can only be booked through La Pellegrina.
Camping in the monastery garden
Those who prefer to camp in the garden of the monastery get a discount of EUR 100 from the course fee. Tents, campers and caravans are welcome, electricity is available. The number of places is limited, there are simple sanitary facilities in the monastery, breakfast is not included.
Accommodation possibilities to arrange yourself
Please contact these venues yourself to book. La Pellegrina does not bear any responsibility and/or liability for the quality and services of these venues.
Penzion U klášterní zahrady
Penzion U klášterní zahrady is located in the old city centre, opposite the main gate to the monastery garden. There is an apartment with a kitchenette and there are three double bedrooms and one single. The rooms are named after the color of their decoration: red, yellow, green and blue. All rooms have Wi-Fi. To book, you send Mrs Lichtblauová an email in English or German. It is also possible to book via booking.com.
A relatively new star at the Bechyně accommodation firmament is Villa Liduška, opposite Pension Elektra. The villa has a beautiful garden and commanding views of the Lužnice gorge. There are five simply equipped double or triple rooms, which can be optionally used by one person. All rooms have Wi-Fi. To book, you send Mrs Škabroudová an email in English or German. It is also possible to book via booking.com.
Hotel Panská is situated at the central square in Bechyně. The hotel is a three minute walk from the monastery. It has comfortable single and double rooms with private bathrooms, Wi-Fi and a generous breakfast buffet. To book, you send the reception desk an email in English or German. It is also possible to book via booking.com.
All meals (vegetarian dishes included) are supplied by Czech cooks. Dietary needs can be taken into account. Lunch is served at the monastery in the form of a buffet, dinner can be taken in a restaurant on the main square or any other place of your choice.
Laurie Boltjes: 'I always go on a long cycling tour after the course. Sometimes some of the other participants join me for a short holiday.'
Katy en Jan de Jongh: 'Before the course, we stay in Prague for a few days, and afterwards, we have a quiet holiday near the town. Bohemia is so cheap that we can afford to stay a little longer.'
Video impression of Bechyně and its castle
For more about the town, visit these sites:
hand corner the 'Bechyně rainbow', the railroad bridge
Old houses on the main square
Please take a look at this photo album