Except for this year.
It has been cold, and it has been rainy (it’s raining at this very moment I’m writing this story, even if I feel a bit selfish complaining about a few raindrops and a bit of wind while millions of people are preparing for hard-class hurricanes).
Nevertheless, I’ve been obstinate and stayed in Finland. But now, it’s September. And for me, September only means one thing; The plane is about to take off.
I’ve been throwing hints on social media about where is September going to take me, but now it was finally time for the big reveal. The stunning Czech mountains, I’m ready for you!
Back to the Czech Republic in September
As eagerly as I promised to return to the Czech mountains after our day hike in Bohemian Switzerland National Park January this year, I wouldn’t have believed I’ll revisit the Czech Republic this soon. The destiny chose differently, and I’m not even one bit sorry about it.
Because I knew that the Czech mountains would have so much left to offer. Already in January, I really wanted to pay a visit to the stunning rock villages of Bohemian Paradise, the highest mountain range of the Czech Republic in Krkonoše National Park, and its highest mountain Sněžka, ‘snow-covered’ by translation. But we didn’t have enough time for all that.
In September, some of these dreams will become a reality when Daniel and I return to the Czech natural wonders invited by Czech Tourism. Unfortunately, we’ll only have two full days to spend there, but oh boy, are we going to spend those two days well or what!
With this post, I was supposed to use the press photos by Czech Tourism (as you know, I don’t have my own photos yet), but as usual, I was too impatient to wait for the registration to complete. So I ended up borrowing a few stock photos from Pixabay. It was such a coincidence that they happened to have some credit-free photos from our destinations to come.
So, how will we spend our two full days in the Czech Republic in September? Well, the hiking destination for day one will be Adršpach Mountains and their spectacular rock formations. We haven’t quite planned the route yet, but luckily I found my brochures from MATKA Travel Fair from January to help us with the planning. Another lucky coincidence, as I thought I already threw them away after our January trip to the Czech Republic.
The hiking destination for the day two will be the Krkonoše National Park mentioned above, and most likely taking over the highest mountain in the country, Sněžka. To take the full benefit of the short time we have, we might use the cableway to get to the top faster.
Bohemian Paradise will still stay out of our reach due to lack of time, but at least I’ll have another reason to return to the Czech mountains at least one more time.
The temperature in the Czech Republic in September will most likely be around 18–20 degrees, which is more than on the hottest day of the summer this year in Finland. And for sure more than our snow-covered adventure in Bohemian Switzerland National Park back in January.
Instead of a cloudy winter day, I’m hoping to see the Czech mountains in the sparkle of September sun while the surrounding nature is slowly changing its colour from green to yellow, perhaps even to the shades of red and brown.
I’m not done with the surprises yet.
Africa in the heart of the Czech Republic
For the two full days and three nights, our base will be Dvůr Králové Zoo. A safari park where you can watch zebras, antelopes, and other African wild animals from the porch of your bungalow.
When I first found out about the place, I felt cold shivers running up and down my back. When I was a kid, a day in a zoo might have been the highlight of any trip, but today the word ‘zoo’ mostly makes me suspicious.
In the case of Dvůr Králové, a little bit less, luckily. As it turned out, over the past decades the safari park has done important work for preserving African species, especially the highly endangered northern white rhino. Two years ago the news all over the world broke about Nola, the 41-year-old female dying in San Diego Zoo Safari Park.
For the most endangered animal on Earth, Nola passing meant there are only three known northern white rhinos left in the whole world. They’re guarded by armed forces in Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya, where the only northern white rhinos ever bred in captivity were transported from Dvůr Králové in 2009.
Unfortunately, all three are too old to breed naturally.
In San Diego, they’re still hoping for a baby northern white rhino, but the extinction seems like a horrifying reality with this wild animal.
In April this year, the world broke again around northern white rhino, when the last male, Sudan, joined Tinder. The campaign aims to raise 9 million dollars for saving the species from extinction. You can read more about the preservation work for example on savetherhino.org.
On the 19th of September 2017, the Czech safari park will burn its rhino horn stockpiles. It might sound like a harsh thing to do, but the purpose is to protect the animals from poaching. In March this year, another news broke in France, when the poachers broke into a zoo, shot a rhino dead and disappeared with its horn. Sawing off the horns before poachers do is the only way for the zoo to keep the rhinos safe.
Even if our September trip to the Czech Republic will focus on the mountains, I hope I’ll get a chance to learn more about how Dvůr Králové operates on a daily basis. It’s definitely a good sign that we’re able to participate on an off-road safari, just like in the national parks in Africa. Having this possibility means that the animals don’t need to live in too small enclosures.
I’ll be a lot wiser at the end of September. And instead of stock images borrowed from Pixabay, I’ll be able to bring my stories to life with photos of my own.
The trip will be executed in collaboration with Czech Tourism, who’ll help us with our travel itinerary and covers part of my expenses. Daniel is, of course, travelling at his own cost.
After the trip to the Czech Republic, I’ll have some more hiking destinations to announce, but let’s get to the details once it’s confirmed.
How is September treating you? Any trips coming up?
More stories from the Czech Republic:
Day Trip from Prague to Paradise: Bohemian Switzerland National Park
The Very Best Viewing Spots Prague Has to Offer Are Free to Visit
The Pivo Project: Czeching Out The Krkonoše Mountains
Jenny far away: Adrspach-Teplice Rocks: Walking Among Castles and Lovers