Harrachov monuments

The Giant Mountain

The Giant Mountain

The Giant mountains are the highest and most popular mountains in the Czech republic. They are situated in the north-east of Bohemia on the border between the Czech republic and Poland. They are the favorite target of Czech and foreign tourists, who know them under the Polish name of Karkonosze, under the German name of Riesengebirge, or under the English name of Giant Mountains. Considering their spread, two thirds of Krkonoše Mountains are actually located on the Czech side. The biggest Czech river, the Labe (Elbe) River, heads here as well.. On the border occurs the highest mountain Sněžka (1602 m).

An exceptional scientific value of the Giant mountains caused this most valuable location to be declared the Krkonoše Mountains National Park (KRNAP) in 1963, which is now the highest form of nature protection in the Czech. Along the Czech and Polish border there is a strip with enhanced preservation of the National park. Especially between Harrachov and Malá Úpa, free movement of persons is allowed only on marked trails because the unique Nordic tundra on the mountains crests and rare plant and animal species affects in here.

Thanks to their natural beauty and snow conditions the Giant mountains have become one of the most popular mountains in Czech republic. As a complex, they provide the great background for a number of various recreational activities. In summer there are ideal conditions for trekking, cycling or even paragliding. Tourists can use the well prepared system of tourist ways and many chalets. In winter the Giant mountains offer ideal conditions for skiers. There are many ski centers with many ski tows and downhill courses, but also more than 550km of cross-country skiing trails.

The area of the Giant mountains is largely covered by a cellular phone signal. If you drive to the mountains in winter, do not forget snow chains.

 

Ski tradition in Harrachov

Tradition of skiing in Harrachov started when the earl Harrach brought skis to Bohemia. Taking example of other countries, mainly Scandinavian, they started to organize first ski races.

We do not know the exact date, but we know that on 13 February 1905 a route of first distance race of 50 km led through Harrachov with the frame of Championship of Bohemian crown’s countries. On 18 February 1906 relay races started near the hotel Krakonoš, reputedly they were the first ones in Europe. In 1908 German club of winter sports in Harrachov – Nový Svět was established, already in 1910 Czech club of winter sports existed there that at the beginning of season 1910-11 received a name Ski and tourist Buchar's club (LTBK) to show appreciation for importance of work of ski initiator Jan Buchar. First ski jump were being built. In 1920 the first ski jump with artificial in run in Czech republic was built on the hillside of Čerťák, in 1922 LTBK also built their ski jump in Ptačinec.

The first big turning point in the history of skiing in Harrachov were races, organized in honour of VII. Ski congress in 1923. In that time the best skiers took part in that race, in total 11 countries from Europe and USA. 64 skiers started the race of 50 km. About 20,000 people watched ski jumps. These races started the long-term tradition of the race for Cup of congress ski jump.

Another important event in the history of skiing in Harrachov is tradition of International ski championship, there have been 17 rounds so far since 1954. At the start you could always see competitors from whole Europe, mainly from Scandinavia who our skiers competed with efficiently, then representation of Czechoslovakia entirely consisted of competitors from Harrachov. In 1956 the first ski jump with plastic in Czech republic was put into operation. After short pause and finishing of building ski and cross-country area including ski jumps in 1980 a new and the most famous era of skiing in Harrachov began. Harrachov has become a regular organizer of World Cups, there have been 16 so far. In 1993 World Ski Junior Championship in classic skiing.

The top of skiing events in Harrachov are without question ski jumps on mammoth ski jump that is one of the five ones in the world where there have been ski jumps 7 times, twice in 1983 and 1992 there was World championship. There has been world record ( in 1980 by A.Kogle 176 m and in 1983 by P. Ploc 181 m) In 1996 A. Goldberg got over magical 200 m for the first time in history in official race.

Famous ski history of Harrachov does not only mean organizing championships, but also success of Harrachov’s competitors and top members. In total 19 Harrachovers have taken part in World championships and Olympic games and they have brought 11 medals. Nowadays Harrachov is without question the most important centre of classic skiing in Czech republic. The base of success is training of about 100 young skiers who bring most of medals from junior and bantam categories in Championship of Czech republic. No other centre cannot pride itself with number of sport fields as Harrachov can. In total there are 7 ski jumps ranging from K-16 for the smallest to K-185 for ski jumps. There are also cross-country routes ranging from 3.3 up to 15 km.

 

History of glass

History of glass

Glass production has existed in the region of Harrachov since 14th century. The glassworks was built by Elias Müller in 1712 where today’s glass factory is situated. In 1827, 1862 and 1946 glass factory burnt down three times but was always rebuilt. Harrachov's glass factory and glass have always belonged among world’s best. Using exceptional technologies when melting and hand made treating of products this glass factory has always excelled in its colours, design and extraordinary level of workmanlike processing. From 1763 to 1943 the glass factory was owned by noble line Harrachové.

After nationalization in 1945 it belonged to the state, but on 1 July 1993 the glass factory was bought by businessman – glass worker Judr. ;František Novosad from Nový Bor. Especially hand-made production has been sustained that continues and respects rich traditions of this place and glass manufacture. Unique production of hand-shaped and decorated glass, crystal chandeliers and glass gift products is made in two furnaces.

Glass production is sustained as functional glass open-air museum with all attributes including historic glass grinding plant – the oldest in the world, powered by water turbine with original wooden frames. Because of these exceptional qualities the glass factory is the most visited building in broad surrounding nowadays.

The excursions to the factory(glass production) and museum of glass take place everyday there. The area of glass factory also consists so called mansion where you can find newly built museum of glass with exhibits from the whole history of factory’s existence. You can also spend some time in a pleasant restaurant.

Since December 1997 there has been self-service glass shop, the first one in Czech republic.

 

Mumlava waterfalls

Mumlava waterfalls

Mumlava waterfall is to be found near the recreation center Harrachov, on the river Mumlava. It belongs among the most popular touristic places in western part of the National park. Mumlava waterfall is created by stepped granite blocks in the Mumlava mountain stream, up to 10 m high. Underneath the waterfall unique erosion phenomena - the Giant pots - can bee seen. In a walking distance from Mumlava waterfall there is „Mumlavská bouda“ (786m) which used to be a gamekeeper´s lodge but nowadays it offers a unique family like cozy restaurant with only two tables by a fireplace therefore the capacity is limited.