When Family Comes to Visit

 

This is a short handbook on how to entertain your family&friends when they come to visit. For further inspiration/research, follow the link at the bottom of this article.

 

1. First things first

Your first steps should lead to the Tourist Information Centre on Radnická street (the Old Town Hall with the crocodile). Not only you’ll pick up the necessary materials for the rest of the trip but your visitors will also get a chance to buy some Brno souvenirs.

 

A list of things to get (for free):

  1. Brno Use-it map. Not only is it ad-free, it’s made by locals full of genuinely good recommendations. Google maps are great but there is something about holding a printed map if you are a newcomer to a strange city.
  2. Gourmet brochure (online and in PDF here) – that is a must. At some point during the trip, you will run out of your favourite local venues to eat at. Pick any place from this list and you won’t be disappointed.
  3. Optional: take some more leaflets for individual trips (or online here) if your visitors are staying longer. Browse through the shelves of the centre for inspiration. That’s why it is there. And, they are English-friendly!

 

2. Eating out

At first, your visitors would be all up for tasting some traditional Czech food. For that, Stopkova pivnice on Česka street would serve well: they have all the famous dishes and a menu with English descriptions.

When they’ve had a taste of some fatty pork and heavy dumplings, you can show your visitors the gastronomy Brno is proud of. Reach out to Gourmet for help: there are enough restaurants to last for a couple of days.

Follow Gourmet for the best bars and pubs, too – there is nothing more traditional for a Czech holiday than to go for a glass of beer. For an experience to remember, go to the Super Panda Circus.

Plan a coffee break – or two – during your busy day of sightseeing. Everyone will become weary at some point and need a rest: tell your family to grab a good book and send them to a nearby café (once again, find the best ones in Gourmet)

 

3. The Compulsory Sightseeing

You have two options here. Either you go all professional or you get professionals to do it for you.

First option: become a guide

If you are comfortable enough in the centre, you can show the city from your point of view – just by walking through the streets. For a framework of landmarks to stop at, you can get this brochure: “Brno – Guide to the city” (you can also pick it up in the Tourist Information Centre, for free). The brochure contains two suggested routes through the city: follow one with your family on their first day, and send them to explore the second tour on their own on that afternoon you’ll need a break from each other.

Second option: join a guided tour

We recommend these two options for exploring the city’s landmarks:

  1. Tourist Information Centre’s Tour guide services: different routes, themes and prices. Explore the link for more information. You can book yourself a private tour, too.
  2. Brno Free Walking Tour – May to December, this tour starts every day at 11 am. No booking or payment is required in advance, you simply pay the guide a tip at the end of the tour.

 

4. Off the beaten path

So, you’ve seen the mummies in the catacombs, the wax prisoners in the castle and the bones in the ossuary. Now, let’s show your visitors the parts that are still very much alive.

Go for a short walk: Start with the waterfall fountain on Moravské square and watch it for a minute. Walk through Lidická street to Lužánky park, up through Schodová street (beautiful views from a beautiful staircase), pass through Černá Pole and Villa Tugendhat, and finish in the garden of Villa Löw-Beer – a beautiful retreat from the rush and noise of the city that very few people know about. (See Google Maps for the suggested route)

There are no information boards installed along this route: it’s all about people-watching and a retreat from the busy tourist paths. This is the author’s favourite walk. You can find more ideas at: gotobrno.cz/explore-brno

 

5. A bit of culture

The cushioned seats of Brno’s theatres can be exceedingly comfortable after a day of walking around.

The visit will gain a different dimension if you take your family out for some culture. Browsing through museums is very classy, too, but it requires active walking and searching. There is something very satisfying about sitting in your seat and letting things play out in front of your eyes.

Some forms of art transfer languages well: you can check the programme of the National Theatre for concerts or operas, or you can simply go to see a film with subtitles in the Scala University cinema.

 

6. Out of the city

If your visitors are staying for longer than a weekend, a day out of the city might be a good idea. The Brno lake is an obvious solution: the journey there is an easy one, with the no. 1 tram taking you almost all the way to the beach. You can sail in a boat to the opposite end where the Veveří castle overlooks the water.

 

More days, more things to do

There are so many more ideas worth exploring. Follow the link below for some suggestions for the remaining days of the visit:  https://www.gotobrno.cz/en/explore-brno/

 

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