Czech heritage sites reopening May 31 with reduced admission for children's tickets

This year the NPÚ has introduced a reduced entrance fee for children between 6 -18 to 50 percent of the basic entrance fee.

ČTK

Written by ČTK
Published on 19.05.2021 13:33 (updated on 19.05.2021)

State-run castles and chateaux are set to reopen May 31. The Czech National Heritage Institute (NPÚ) is not going to increase historical sites' entrance fees in the upcoming season. It will further reduce the prices of children and youth tickets, which will replace family tickets, NPÚ director Naděžda Goryczková has told media.

The season at the state-owned castles and chateaux, of which there are about hundred in the Czech Republic, will start May 31, including guided tours. The opening was delayed several-weeks due to the coronavirus epidemic, but the situation has been slowly improving in the Czech Republic.

Approximately 80 percent of the NPÚ-operated sites only offer guided tours not only so they can provide a quality commentary but also for safety, Goryczková said.

After the sites open, the groups of visitors for guided tours will have to be smaller than before, and both visitors and guides will have to wear respirators, she said.

The NPÚ newly offers online purchase of tickets for all heritage sites. "We will always reserve a half of the tickets direct sale, but we are asking the visitors to buy tickets in advance, mainly for the most-visited heritage sites," Goryczková said.

As of this season, the NPÚ has introduced a reduced entrance fee for children between 6 and 18 years old to 50 percent of the basic entrance fee. Children under 6 will have entrance for free, and youth from 18 to 24 will see the fee at 80 percent of the basic price, irrespective of whether they are students or not.

The NPÚ would prolong the high season until end-September, if visitors show interest in it, Goryczková said.

The annual Night of Castles and Chateaux, always held at the end of August, will be newly held on July 31. Like in previous years, people will be able to tour dozens of heritage sites that will offer special programs such as costumed guide tours, historical fencing, dancing and music, period cuisine and other attractions.

The main program of the Night of Castles and Chateaux will be at the Pernštejn Castle, in central Moravia. Pernštejn is also involved in this year's season of the NPÚ's long-lasting project mapping historical noble dynasties in the Czech Republic. This year, it focuses on aristocracy at the time of the Enlightenment period.

Apart from Pernštejn, there are another four sites to reopen after renovation co-financed from EU funds. They are the U Matoušů historical farm building in Plzeň, west Bohemia; the Kunětická hora castle near Pardubice, east Bohemia; the Veltrusy chateau north of Prague; and the Uherčice chateau, south Moravia.

Goryczková said the second year with coronavirus has been worse for historical sites than last year, when the pandemic broke out in March. In 2020, selected sites stayed open in January and February. They had to be closed in March but all sites could reopen in mid-May. So far this year, with only gardens, parks, and open sites such as castle ruins have been accessible to visitors.

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"Compared with last year, the losses are CZK 10 million higher now, and the revenues declined by CZK 70 million as against 2019. … We expect the loss to reach about 100 million crowns by mid-2021," Goryczková added.

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