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Tourist Information

The legend has it that the hot springs with a magical curative power were discovered by the Czech King and Roman Emperor Charles IV when chasing a deer. Nevertheless the historical evidences indicate that Charles IV built his Hunting Lodge only in 1325 to give the uprise to the settlement called Vary. The first mention of the town was made in the records of the town dating back to August 14, 1370 when Charles IV granted freedom to the town and a Status of the Royal Town. These granted privileges were reconfirmed by all successive Bohemian rulers.  

The XVIII century brought long decades of prosperity and fame to the geyser town. The Russian Tsar Peter the Great stayed in Karlovy Vary in 1711 and 1712. At the turn of the XIX century the town became not only the up-to-date spa resort, but also the centre of cultural and public life in Europe. To visit this famous spa resort became the matter of vanity for the wealthy people and aristocracy. Due to the strong influence of Vienna the town acquired the spirit of Megapolis. Never-before-seen large-scale construction of new buildings as well as superior facilities commenced. The Military Spa Institution built in 1855 was first large construction of the town. The spectacular building of Imperial Baths (Císařské lázně) was erected on the place of the Old Brewery in 1893-1895. In course of time the Anglican Church (1877), a synagogue (1877) and the Russian Orthodox Church (1897) were constructed. In the beginning of XX century the geyser town experienced the period of fullest flourishing, development of new communication routes, luxury, aristocratism and hospitality. Today Karlovy Vary is the most popular and frequently visited spa resort in Czech Republic.


Thermal spring



73,0 °C

Karla IV. 

63, 8 °C

Zámecký dolní 

55,0 °C

Pramen Zámecký horní 

67,0 °C


61, 6 °C


52, 7 °C


60, 1 °C

Kníže Václav I. 

63, 7 °C

Kníže Václav II. 

60, 4 °C


59, 6 °C


45, 4 °C


59,4 °C



39, 6 °C

Spa Treatment
Karlovy Vary spa treatment is based on spring water drinking cure, classic water procedures and baths as well as up-to-date physiotherapy.  

Treatment of the following disorders are provided in Karlovy Vary:  chronic gastric indigestion, gastric ulcer and duodenal ulcer, post-operative care after surgical interference in the digestive tract, chronic gastritis, chronic inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome, chronic gallbladder and gall ducts disease, condition following acute inflammation of liver, chronic hepatitis A,B,C, unremarkable hepatic cirrhosis, pancreatitis, type 1/2 diabetes mellitus (compensation stage).    

Spa treatment programmes are targeted to treat the metabolic disorder, such as impaired fat metabolism, lipid storage disease, uric acid disbolism (gout), obesity, atherosclerosis, cholesterol related diseases (hypercholesterolemia).  

Great success has been gained in treatment of locomotor apparatus diseases: pain syndrome connected with spinal column and joints diseases, osteoarthrosis and degenerative joint disease, degenerative spine disease.  

The spa resort offers a lot of general tonic and preventive rehabilitation spa procedures that is why the patients for post operative cure after carcinectomy have started to arrive here.  

Spa resorts of Karlovy Vary offer diversified relaxation programmes. Medical staff will help successfully overcome the consequences of daily stresses occurred due to different occupational  and family circumstances, mental and physical overloads, vegetative autonomic dysfunctions, chronic fatigue, difficulty concentrating, insomnia, headaches. All these everyday troubles of a contemporary active person will vanish in the wonderful valley found in the centre of Europe.    

Health and beauty programmes combining classic curative methods with beauty enhancing procedures have been developed. Simultaneous exposure of drinking cure and Balneological therapy produces changes in general body functioning thus leading to skin regeneration. Medical indications: stresses and overloads, fading skin, impaired fat metabolism, obesity.   

Dr. Arden’s method of oxygen therapy is actively applied. Oxygen is vitally important for all the metabolic processes because only if the human body acquires the sufficient amount of oxygen, the processes of food materials burn-up and power generation can be reliably performed. The human body permanently needs oxygen to remain healthy and active, that is why its insufficiency usually leads to major disorders. Oxygen therapy is recommended for treatment of such diseases as ischemic heart disease, atherosclerosis, post myocardial infarction, enhancing oxygen supply in cases of lung and bronchi diseases, fatigue, high blood pressure, circulatory disturbance and blood supply disorder, ageing symptoms, weakness of memory, impairment of vision, weakening of immunity, pain syndrome of locomotor apparatus.  

Monuments and Significant Sights  

The most attractive sights of Karlovy Vary are the Castle Tower (Zamecka Vez), Saint Peter and Paul`s Orthodox Church and the Baroque Church of St. Marie Magdalene.  

Karlovy Vary is also famous for its traditional manufacture of the worldwide renowned Moser decorative glass. The unique quality of Thun porcelain irrevocably attracts the buyers from the entire world. It is worth while tasting the marvelous Becher liqueur, produced solely and only from medicinal herb extracts macerated in spirit using original Karlovy Vary water as well as a great many of the delicious cocktails prepared with it. Argonit handicrafts, created at high temperature, will be wonderful souvenirs to recollect Karlovy Vary. One more useful gift from Karlovy Very is curative facial and body cosmetics as well as hair care cosmetics, prepared with the use of Karlovy Vary healing spring water.   

Cultural events gained international fame owing to the visits of eminent people who used to stay and be treated in Karlovy Vary. All the visits of Charles IV were consistently recorded. In 1630 the Duke Albrecht v. Waldstejn followed by glittering retinue of 100 horse-drawn carriages paid the pompous visit to Karlovy Vary. Russian Tsar Peter the Great was treated here in 1711. The frequent visits of the Saxon prince-elector and the Polish King Bedrich August Silny greatly influenced the spa resort public life. Great German poet, scientist and diplomat Johann Wolfgang von Goethe used to visit Karlovy Vary very often.  The spa hosted many other famous people, including Jóhann Sebástian Bach, Niccolò Paganini, Frédéric Chopin, Nikolay Gogol, Ferenc Liszt, Ludwig van Beethoven, Sigmund Freud, Ivan Turgenev, Antonin Dvorak and many many others.  

Nowadays the cultural life of Karlovy Vary is also very rich. A number of major international events, such as International Jazz Festival, Tourfilm – the Tourism Film Festival, demonstrating tourism films, are held here. But the most popular event is the International Film Festival drawing the movie stars from the entire world to Karlovy Vary.  

Karlovy Vary is also famous for various sports events. It hosts the international tennis and golf tournaments, horse racing. There are also plenty of opportunities for active sporting participation, including fishing, hunting and horseback riding. Karlovy Vary offers walking and hiking tours to the Teplá River Valley and the tops of the nearby Ore Mountains (Krušné hory) whence magnificent view of the surrounding country can be admired.