Olomouc at the top
Three years, three excellent awards by the world’s prestigious guidebook. Lonely Planet made a list of the most beautiful, yet lesser known tourist destinations. It wasn’t the hot springs of Iceland, Gibraltar Rocks, Odysseus' Ithaca or Luxemburg that ranked in first place but the historical center of Olomouc!
The mini guidebook, Secret Europe, presents tourists with fifty cities from different parts of Europe. The largest, world-renowned guidebook publisher attracts tourists to Olomouc by saying that “in terms of tourism Olomouc can be equated to an authentic restaurant which is your own, small, personal secret. The Main Square is amongst the most enchanting in the country. It is surrounded by historical buildings. It is adorned by the Holy Trinity Column listed as the UNESCO World Cultural and Natural Heritage. Magnificent churches, many of which host an exciting history, are scattered in the streets of the historical center. Explore the foundations of the ancient Olomouc castle in the Archdiocese Museum which is a must-see and then set out to one of the many pubs or mini-breweries”. In 2012, the publisher also awarded Olomouc by ranking it in the top ten most beautiful hidden treasures in Europe. One year later it was once again on the list of the recommended destinations in Moravia. “It’s beautiful as well as surprising for us. Lonely Planet is to tourist guidebooks what Michelin is to gastronomy. I perceive it as a win in the tourist Olympics,” responded Olomouc mayor, Martin Major, when he first heard of the award. “I am very pleased that the professional editor-in-chief of this publication truly appreciates the beauty of our city, its picturesque atmosphere and its uniqueness.
Apart from other things, Olomouc captivated them by the fact that it offers the same architectural treasures as Prague but without the crowds of tourists. It is definitely Olomouc’s advantage in comparison with our capital. However, despite repeated acclaim from the renowned guidebook, it may only be temporary”, mentioned the mayor, Major, with a smile. The deputy mayor, Jan Holpuch added, “I believe that this is an opportunity to introduce our beautiful city to many other tourists.” “I think that being awarded as a hidden treasure or undiscovered city will give Olomouc an even stronger stamp of attractiveness and will evoke more interest in potential visitors.”
Olomouc has been trying to advertise its beauty in a high-quality and systematic way. In the past years, this attempt has proved effective. Statistically as well as simply looking into the streets of the city center confirms that the number of tourists to Olomouc has truly increased. Olomouc is on the list of destinations offered by travel agencies as for example, one-day trips from Prague or as a part of the Vienna – Krakow route. “Greater advertising in cooperation with the agency CzechTourism certainly helped.
This agency gives Olomouc more space than before”, says Karin Vykydalová, head of the tourism department. “Acclaim from Lonely Planet obviously helps. Ideally, a visitor comes here based on the recommendation, is satisfied here and then recommends Olomouc to his friends back home”, adds Dušan Gavenda of the same department. Lonely Planet Secret Europe can be downloaded for free at: www.lonelyplanet.com/secret-europe.
Horní náměstí (Upper Square)
Town Hall's archway
779 11 Olomouc
Opening hours: daily 9:00am –7:00pm
Tel.: (+420) 585 513 385, 392
Olomouc region Card
Olomouc Region Card is a tourist discount card that allows you to visit Olomouc significant savings. Its purchase to make sure you completely discounted or free admission.
The City of Olomouc as a municipality is a territorial community of citizens with the right of self-government and a legal identity. It has the right to hold and use emblems, which are: the Coat of Arms of the City, City of Olomouc logo, City of Olomouc Flag, and the City Mayor's insignia.
The coat of arms of Olomouc consists of the red-and-silver chequered Moravian eagle shown on a blue background, with golden crown, armour and red tongue, accompanied in the corners by capital letters S P Q O. The letters stand for the Latin words Senatus populusque Olomucensis, which translates as the Senate and people of Olomouc. The coat of arms has undergone several partial modifications. The author of the last of these modifications is the well known Olomouc heraldist and leading Czech expert on this issue, Col. Jiří Louda, Dr.h.c.
The main feature of the logo is the chequer design based on the Moravian eagle, respectively the heraldic emblem of the city. The red and white colors come from here as well. The author of the logo, which resulted from a design competition in 2008, is the graphic designer Mgr.Art. Jan Kolář.
The City of Olomouc Flag displays a white-red chequered eagle with yellow crown, armor and red tongue on a blue field. On the field near the flag-staff there are yellow capital letters S and Q, on the other side the letters P and O, always underneath. The flag was designed by Col. Jiří Louda, Dr.h.c.
The insignia consist of a hanging medallion and a decorative chain. The main part of the medallion is a stylized coat of arms of the city of Olomouc - a shield with a chequered eagle and letters S P Q O. The shield is surrounded by an unfinished circle, which complements the contour of the medallion. Chain links have been inspired by the characteristic chequer design. The insignia are made of gold-plated silver and have been designed by academic sculptor prof. Zdeněk Přikryl in 1995.