Every year in June, the fabulous city of Český Krumlov is transported for three days back to the Renaissance period and the rule of the last Rožmberks. The streets and squares are filled with the roar of knightly tournaments, historical crafts fairs, banquets and medieval music.
The highlight of the festival is a spectacular procession in historical costumes, featuring knights on horseback and particularly many notables linked to the history of the city. Popular is the jousting tournament, recalling the past legend about cutting roses, live chess pieces on a giant chess board, festive fireworks over the city, and games of the period for children and adults.
The red five-petalled rose is the symbol of the Rosenberg family who ruled the town for 300 years from 1302 to 1602. It has become the symbol of the castle and town, too. The Division of the Rose legend that is celebrated during this festival involves the medieval owners of the castle dividing their property among their five sons, each receiving a coat-of-arms with a five-petalled rose in a different color.
The Rosenberg who received Cesky Krumlov was given the red five-petalled rose that would come to play such a prominent role in the town’s history.
Český Krumlov is a beautiful town in Southern Bohemia. Like Prague, the town is situated on the Vltava River and is full of Baroque buildings housing cafes and bars.
The town’s appearance is little changed since the 18th century and the buildings have been well maintained and restored. In 1992, Cesky Krumlov was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List. The complex of Český Krumlov Castle is one of the largest in central Europe with an area of 7 hectares (17 acres). It is formed by forty buildings and palaces, situated around five castle courts and a castle park.
The town is very popular among tourists, who outnumber the local population in the summer and are still a notable presence during Christmas time.