View Map

Overview

Often overlooked by tourists hotfooting it to Prague, there’s more to Pilsen (Bohemia’s second city) than its gritty industrial past. Home to the original Škoda factory (the cars are now made in another Czech town), Pilsen was one of the centers of heavy industry that made interwar Czechoslovakia a manufacturing giant and an economic power to be reckoned with. After WWII the city continued to ship out heavy machinery including trams and trains that still rumble rails across the former communist world. Even before the foundries and plants appeared, trade had always played a vital part in the city’s life, but its most celebrated export is a ...

Often overlooked by tourists hotfooting it to Prague, there’s more to Pilsen (Bohemia’s second city) than its gritty industrial past. Home to the original Škoda factory (the cars are now made in another Czech town), Pilsen was one of the centers of heavy industry that made interwar Czechoslovakia a manufacturing giant and an economic power to be reckoned with. After WWII the city continued to ship out heavy machinery including trams and trains that still rumble rails across the former communist world. Even before the foundries and plants appeared, trade had always played a vital part in the city’s life, but its most celebrated export is a product known the world over – Pils beer. First produced here in 1842, Bohemia’s most famous amber nectar has been copied the world over, but the original brewery is still cooking and a tour of the plant and brewing museum is a highlight of any visit to the city. Architecturally, Pilsen is that typically Czech mix of Baroque built on Gothic foundations, with copious amounts of flamboyant Art Nouveau thrown into the mix. This, plus the highest church spire in the Czech Republic, the world’s third largest synagogue and the country’s highest student population outside of Prague keeping things lively in the many bars and pubs, makes Pilsen a city worth a day or two of anyone’s time.

Marc Di Duca
About the Expert

Marc Di Duca has written and updated more than 40 guides, mainly for Lonely Planet but also for AA, Thomas Cook, Berlitz and Bradt. Having spent the last 20 years exploring the former communist world, his main field of expertise is Eastern Europe and Siberia.

view full overview

Marc Di Duca for Triporati

Compare Flight, Car Rental, and Hotel Rates

Note: A new window will open for each site you select.

Note: A new window will open for each site you select.

Note: A new window will open for each site you select.

Facts at a Glance

  • Location: A city situated in western Bohemia in the Czech Republic. It is the capital of the Plzeň Region.
  • Language: Czech
  • Currency: Czech Koruna
  • Research: Wikitravel | Wikipedia
  • Weather: Rainfall | Daylight

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Late spring, early autumn