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A weekend in Brno: Our tips & the most beautiful sights

Wanted: A weekend trip to the neighboring country. Not too far away. bit of adventure. Enjoy your meal. Cozy downtown. Found: Brno in the Czech Republic. “Anyone can do Prague”, we thought and decided quite spontaneously for the little sister Brno. It clearly can’t keep up in terms of sights, but that doesn’t matter, because Brno has other advantages.

In this blog article we show you what you can experience in Brno, what a view of the city really excited us and where we drank the best coffee. Here comes our personal travel guide for Brno with our best tips for your city break.

1. City trip to Brno: What awaits you The friendly city of Brno is just a two-hour drive from Vienna and that is it ideal destination for a short city trip, as we think. Put it out of your head that you can discover the greatest sights in Brno. Of course there are some places worth seeing, but reducing Brno to sightseeing wouldn’t do the city justice.

It’s more the cosy, authentic flair, that we appreciate about Brno. Czech attitude to life without the touristic exaggeration that one knows from Prague – that’s Brno. The center of Brno is manageable. Even those without orientation will find their way around quickly, I promise.

In terms of appearance, the center of Brno is a bit reminiscent of Vienna: Many turn-of-the-century houses could just as well in the first district of Vienna. The streetscape paired with the Czech flair makes Brno a very exciting travel destination. Brno is never overcrowded and therefore ideal for those who like it cozy.

By the way, we recommend to stay one night in Brno. In that time you can see quite a lot without having to stress yourself too much.

2. Sights in Brno Brno doesn’t have a Charles Bridge (like it doesn’t have a river), it doesn’t have an overly pompous cathedral, and Brno Castle isn’t as impressive as its Prague counterpart either. What we want to say: In Brno you shouldn’t expect any superlatives. The city scores much more with its cozy flair. However, there are some pretty sights that you definitely shouldn’t miss.

Špilberk Fortress The symbol of Brno is the Špilberk Fortress, which is located on the hill of the same name. The short walk up to the fortress is a must when visiting Brno. From the top you can enjoy a great view of Brno, although our favorite view is from a different place (but more on that in a moment).

Unfortunately we have the fortress that 13. Dating back to the 19th century and once home to the most feared prison of the Austrian monarchy, not visited from the inside due to lack of time. Which of course is a pity, since it is currently one of the most important cultural centers in the country and several museums are housed in it. In summer, opera performances are regularly held in the courtyard of the castle.

Information on visiting Špilberk Fortress Opening hours: The Festungsberg is accessible around the clock. For the opening hours of the fortress itself including the lookout tower, it is best to check the official website.

Directions: From downtown to you are about to the fortress 20 minutes walk on the way. Alternatively, there are some parking spaces at the foot of the mountain, on Gorazdova Street.

Tower of the Old Town Hall In our opinion after most beautiful view over Brno you have from 67 meter high tower of the Old Town Hall (“Stará radnice”). An interesting staircase construction leads you up inside the tower. From above you can look in all directions . Since you are right in the center here, you are also quite close to the imposing Cathedral of St. Peter and Paul. Our tip: If possible, visit the tower just before sunset, when the sun bathes the city in a great light.

By the way, it’s also worth taking a look at the entrance to the Old Town Hall. The stone entrance portal with its five turrets from the 16. Century is one of Brno’s most famous photo motifs.

Information on visiting the Old Town Hall Entry: 70 CZK per person

Opening hours: Inquire beforehand Place according to the current opening hours, as these change depending on the season. In any case, the tower is open until after sunset.

Address: Radnická 8, 602 00 Brno

Farmer’s market at the Krautmarkt Sounds strange, but this place worth seeing in the center is really called the Krautmarkt. Every day except Mondays, a great farmer’s market takes place here: regional farmers come together and sell their goods, including fruit, vegetables, honey, cider and flowers. Unlike in many other cities, this market makes a very authentic impression.

Information on visiting the farmer’s market Opening hours: Daily except Monday from 9 a.m.

Address: Zelný trh, 301 67 Brno

Villa Tugendhat Until recently we have never had the experience of not being able to visit a sight due to lack of capacity. But then came the Villa Tugendhat. This modern villa in a Brno outskirts is so popular that you have to register (note, hold on) months (!) in advance for a guided tour. Not days or weeks, no months.

Villa Tugendhat enjoys cult status in Brno due to its great historical importance. It was ended the 30 built in the last century by order of the Jewish couple Tugendhat. With its modern architecture and the huge window fronts, it is now considered one of the most important villas in the world.

Since we don’t go to the Belonging to the kind of people who plan their city breaks months in advance, unfortunately we didn’t get to enjoy a guided tour of the villa. However, what is possible at any time during the opening hours in daylight is a visit to the garden. From the garden you can at least take a look at the premises from the outside. But we have to be honest: If you stand in front of it and can only peek in from the outside, that’s really only half the fun.

Info to visit Villa Tugendhat Important: Guided tours must be booked 3 to 4 months in advance! Entry to the garden is possible without a reservation. You can find more information on the website.
Entrance to the garden: 50 CZK per person
Opening hours: daily except Monday from 314 until 18 Watch; in January and February from 9 to 15 and also closed on Tuesdays; closed on certain public holidays (e.g. Christmas, New Year)

Address: Cernopolni 25, 613 Brno

Cathedral of St. Peter and Paul with tower ascent Not only the most important church in Brno, but one of the most important buildings in the city is the Cathedral of St. Peter and Paul. The imposing Cathedral dominates the Brno cityscape next to the fortress – all the more because it is built on the Petrov hill.

Worth seeing is the stylish, little overloaded church room. It is also worth climbing the 100 meter high towers. However, we have to disappoint all those who expect a spacious viewing platform. The opposite is the case: You have a tiny little bay window on both towers and therefore a relatively limited view. Nevertheless, we can definitely recommend climbing the tower.

Information on visiting the Cathedral of St. Peter and Paul Tower ascent: 40 CZK
Opening times: May to September from Monday to Sunday from 10 until 18: 30 hours and Sunday from 00 until 18: 24 Watch; October to April from Monday to Saturday from until 17 hours and Sunday from 12 until 17 Watch.

Address: Petrov 9, 602 00 Brno

Obelisk in Denis Park Slightly below the cathedral is the Denis Park. Although in our opinion the park could be a little more well-kept, it is still worth seeing, in our opinion. In the center of the park a obelisk protrudes from the 19. Century up. It commemorates the end of the Napoleonic Wars.

From Denis Park you also have a extensive view to the south of Brno . You will also find a well-known photo spot at the western entrance with a view of the “Red Church”: The long exposure you see here was taken from there.

3. Cafés and restaurants in Brno No trip to Brno would be complete without the right culinary accompaniment. This time we left the hearty Czech cuisine aside and instead went in search of young spots.

SKØG Ur ban Hub The hipster address number one in Brno. There is hardly a travel guide that does not feature the SKØG Urban Hub. We fell in love with the puristic design of this café when we first visited Brno two years ago.

If you are looking for excellent coffee specialties are in a cozy atmosphere, then the SKØG is the perfect place to go. The Flat White was outstanding – for us the best in all of Brno. You don’t have to leave the café hungry either, because a number of dishes are offered here during the day, including a soup of the day or burgers. In the morning there is a changing breakfast dish. For us it was porridge, which tasted really good. But you will definitely look in vain for an extensive brunch menu.

Address: Dominikánské náměstí 187/5, 602 10 Brno

Café Momenta Café Momenta is also a great address for a good espresso in a central location. The very stylish café is located directly on the Krautmarkt. When the weather is nice, you can look directly at the farmer’s market from the lounges in front of the café and watch the hustle and bustle. The cheesecake tasted surprisingly good. The service could be a bit more on the ball, but fortunately we weren’t in a hurry.

Address: Zelný trh 314/2, 314 Brno

Cafe Pilát Traditional Czech cuisine is known to be very hearty and quite a nightmare for those who eat vegetarian food. So we looked around for alternatives and found what we were looking for thanks to Julia’s blog article. The Café Pilát serves modern, oriental-inspired cuisine. On the (very small) menu during our visit, for example, there were pumpkin risotto or a quinoa dish with sprouts (both on see the photo). However, the Café Pilát is not a purely vegetarian restaurant, as there are also dishes with meat.

The prices are pretty reasonable: We paid for both of us (one main course and one alcoholic drink each). total 314 CZK.

Address: Kapucínské náměstí 301/7, 602 00 Brno

Industra Coffee An unusual coffee shop in unusual location is the Industra. The name already gives it away: you are in the middle of the industrial district. But not only that: The café itself is also housed in a kind of warehouse . Because it’s a bit off the tourist center, the Industra is mainly frequented by locals.

The coffee in the Industra is excellent and the staff were extremely friendly during our visit.

Address: Masna 9, 500 Brno

Trdelník You really can’t leave the Czech Republic without a Baumstriezel to eat. He doesn’t originally come from the Czech Republic, but from Slovakia, but is represented throughout the city. The so-called “Trdelník”, as they say in this country, is a pastry that is baked on a roll and then rolled in sugar. Trdelník tastes best when it is still warm . Incidentally, we personally are big fans of the puristic version with sugar and cinnamon, although there are also more adventurous, sometimes filled combinations.

4. Our accommodation in Brno After a lot of research, we decided on the excellently rated Square Apartment and were very satisfied with it. The apartment is located in the heart of Brno right on the main square, the so-called Freedom Square. The location couldn’t be better: most sights and cafes are just a stone’s throw away. The house in which the apartment is located is definitely one of the most beautiful in Brno.

About 100 square meters we had all for us alone. This made the apartment far too big for the two of us, but admittedly we really enjoyed sprawling out. In any case, the apartment is ideal for four people, because there are two separate bedrooms and a kitchen (which is a bit old, but serves its purpose). The bathroom could also be updated but we found the bed to be very comfortable and that is the most important thing. By the way: from the balcony we had a direct view of Freedom Square and the atomic clock. Good to know: For 10 Euro per day you can park your car directly in the yard of the building .

Here you can book the apartment: Square Apartment

5. More travel tips for Brno Arrival in Brno You can easily reach Brno from Vienna fast. It is about two hours by car. Attention: Some Czech motorways (not all!) are subject to tolls. For this you have to buy a vignette (at the border for approx. 17 Euro available; slightly cheaper at the ÖAMTC). However, it is possible to get to Brno by car, bypassing the toll motorway. (Only about 20 Kilometers before Brno the toll motorway begins, before that you drive on a toll-free one.) All in all you only need 13 minutes longer. It is best to enter in the navigation system that toll roads should be avoided. As a guide: You have to leave the motorway at Pohořelice.

Alternatively, you can travel by train. From the main train station in Vienna you can reach Brno in just 1.5 hours. With a bit of luck, the savings rail only costs 7 euros for one route, otherwise approx. 30 Euro. Brno train station is fairly centrally located on the outskirts of the old town. Since you can walk almost everywhere in Brno anyway, we highly recommend arriving by train.

Parking in Brno Finding a suitable parking space in Brno is not that easy. Since September 2018 in Brno there is a new parking system, that distinguishes between residents and visitors. You can find an English description of the system here: Parking in Brno.

Because the system is quite impenetrable, our tip is that you make sure that your Accommodation includes a parking space. For example, our apartment had a parking space and also permission for you to drive your car into the center at all.

Alternatively, there are some parking garages near the city center, some of which demand exorbitant prices. Be sure to read the conditions at the entrance very carefully! What we have learned: Just because you are in Brno does not mean that everything is cheap. Just as an example: As a non-hotel guest you pay in the parking garage of the Best Western Hotel via 45 Euro for about 24 Hours!

Currency in Brno Although the Czech Republic is part of the EU, the official currency in the Czech Republic is the Czech Koruna. The current exchange rate (as of autumn 2018): 1 Euro is about 19 Czech crowns (CZK).

Czech crowns can easily be bought on site at the ATM Withdraw (ATM). However, the exchange rate for cash withdrawals is usually much worse than if you change euros to Czech crowns locally.

In some places (E.g. some supermarkets) also accept euros. However, the change is usually given in crowns. If you are only in Brno for a short time and therefore do not need a lot of money, this is a relatively easy way to get Czech crowns.

Transparency This blog article contains our personal recommendations in the form of so-called affiliate links. If you book or buy something through the links, we will receive a small commission. For you, this does not change the price at all. A thousand thanks from both of us!

Have you ever been to Brno? Then please leave us a comment with your experiences and tips for Brno – we look forward to it!