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Pravčická gate /Pravčická brána/.

Pravčická brána

Pravcicka gate is the biggest natural arch in Europe. It is considered the most beautiful natural formation in the Czech-Saxon Switzerland region. And it is the symbol of the whole area.
In the deep woods, not far from Hřensko, surrounded by a mysterious peace sometimes time seems to stop. That is the real experience of Pravčická gate. For generations it has attracted nature lovers with its magic. Many of us have already visited it and those who have not might have seen it in a picture at least. When you stand under this stone arch you are amazed by its size. The dimensions of Pravčická Gate are impressive but when seen close up it is truly amazing. The arch spans 26.5 meters.  It is 16 meters high, 7-8m wide, the minimum thickness is 3 meters and the top flat is 21meters above the ground. At the entrance of Pravčická gate there are trails and stairs leading to several view points high above the tree tops from where you can see Pravčická gate or enjoy other beautiful views and vistas. When there is nice weather you can even see as far as Decinsky Sneznik. From Pravčická gate there is also a wonderful trail leading through impressive sceneries to Mezní louka. One well maintained trail is about 6km long.
In the district you can also visit the holiday castle, Falcon's Nest in which the museum of the National park of Czech Switzerland is located. You can refresh yourself in the restaurant that features a 19th century interior. You can also find a tourist centre there.

Basic information:

Location: Hřensko

You have to leave your car in the parking lot in Hřensko (paid parking lot behind a restaurant Klepáč) or to drive up to the parking lot in Mezní louka (at the hotel Mezní louka), these are the two starting points for a trip to Pravčická gate (it´s restricted to park somewhere else). From these places you walk following the red trail.

Another important information :

  • elevation above sea-level : 441 m.a.s.
  • GPS guide-post Tři prameny : Loc: 50°52'53.745"N, 14°16'11.273"E
  • GPS Pravčická gate : Loc: 50°53'1.25"N, 14°16'52.097"E
  • Opening hours: 
    April - october:  daily from 10.00 - 18.00
    November - march: daily from 10:00 -  16:00
  • Admission fee: adult 75,-Kč, child 25,-Kč, Groups above 20 persons: 25,- Kč
    Contact: Tel: +420 412 554 033

Falcon's Nest /Sokolí hnízdo/.

Inseparable from Pravčická Brána is the holiday chateau known as the Falcon's Nest. It was built in1881 on the site of a cabin made from oak bark, which served as a tavern. Originally the Falcon's Nest accommodated important guests of the Clary-Aldringen family. Today the first floor houses a museum of the National Park. The ground floor contains a preserved, period restaurant decorated with original paintings.


Pravčická Brána has been standing since time immemorial. It is the result of millions of years of weathering on less resistant parts of solid rock, formed by ashlar sandstone from the Turonian age.

When tourists first started to discover the beauty of Pravčická Brána there was a small, bark-covered cabin at the foot of it which served as a pub. The access road from Hřensko, called "Pelagiensteig", was paved back in the late 1870s and at that time promenade trails to Mezní Louka were also built.

The first tourists were recruited from among the city dwellers and the nobility. Although the road from Hřensko to Pravčická Brána is only several kilometres, it was customary to rent mules and porters for an excursion.

In 1881, Prince Edmund Clary-Aldringen, who owned the estate, had a chateau built near Pravčická Brána which was called the Falcon's Nest. For this purpose he invited workers from Italy – since they were the cheapest work force. The entire chateau was built within a single year, which, considering its extensiveness and the time in which it was built, is nearly a record. Several years later a railing was built on the rock outlooks in the immediate vicinity. Soon after the restaurant was built an admission fee to the area started to be charged. Since the times when Pravčická Brána was "discovered" for tourism, arguably millions of people have visited it. Among the more famous personalities the fairy-tale author Hans Christian Andersen admired its allure on two separate occasions – in 1831 and 1851. He undoubtedly drew much inspiration here for his work.

Picture gallery of "Pravčická brána".

Pravčická brána - největší kamená brána na světě.Vyhlídka z Pravčické brány.Restaurace a zámeček Sokolí hnízdo. Daleký výhled na krajinu Českého Čvýcarska. Výhled na Stříbrné stěny. Výstupová cesta na Pravčickou bránu.
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