Bystrc (Moravia), Czech Republic July 2022 (Tour 6)

This blog was going to be about Brno but, I never made it to Brno. I made it as far as Bystrc (some 6 miles from Brno) and then I got lost in Bystrc until it was almost time to go back to Vereska Bityska! Hence the switch from Brno to Bystrc and it was all my fault!

The day started reasonably well with me catching my boat from Veverska Bityska on time. Vanya decided not to make the trip because her leg was playing up and she wanted to rest it but, she was happy for me to make the trip on my own. It seemed a straightforward trip. The boat (The Dallas) would take me down the River Svratka to the Brenenska Prehrada reservoir. We’d cross the reservoir and I would disembark at Bystrc and catch a tram into Brno. All I needed to do was enjoy the boat ride and the sights and determine what I wanted to see in Brno.

I spent a pleasant hour or so drifting down the river past various very small places Skaly, Meckov, Hrad Veveri, Pod Trnuvkou, Rokle, Ukotvy, Sokolske Koupaliste, Kozi Horka to Bystrc but, in hindsight, it all started to go wrong when Vanya elected not to come along. Upon arrival in Bystrc I decided to give the tram a miss. I would never have done that if Vanya had been with me.

So, after we had docked, I walked from the harbour to where I would catch the tram into Brno and then… I carried on walking through Bystrc on my way to the old town of Brno (after all, it is only six miles or so of brisk walking) except… I didn’t quite make it through Bystrc. What a farce! Bystrc is an urban sprawl; a grotesque Russian inspired concrete jungle of apartment blocks; hundreds of them, all looking much the same and straddling narrow winding lanes which more often than not curved back on themselves, providing no indication as to where I was going or in which direction I was being led! It took me an hour and a half, that’s ninety minutes to escape the tower blocks; ninety dreadful minutes in 34 degrees centigrade of heat without my seeing a single shop where I could get a drink or a single person whom I could approach for directions. The place seemed wholly deserted; how I would imagine Chernobyl to have been at it’s nadir.

Of course I made it out. I found my way back to the port where the faithful Dallas was waiting to take me back to the Van. Actually, it wasn’t Dallas. I don’t know why I said that. It was The Leipzig. I’ve probably had a drink too many. After finding my bearings in Bystrc I paused just once on my way to the port; at a small bar where I consumed in just one go the largest glass of beer I have ever seen and then I did the same again at the port (only much quicker because I didn’t want to get left behind by the Leipzig).

Our last night in the Czech Republic (at least on this particular tour) saw us select one of the three not so good Cafe bars in Vereska Bityska for a not so hot meal and a few drinks. We will be in Austria tomorrow.

Veverska Bityska (Moravia) Czech Republic July 2022 (Tour 6)

We stayed longer than anticipated in Germany and Poland and had to make up time (because we were to meet our good friends, the Dedics, in Austria in just two days time). So, we made fast time through the Czech Republic planning just one stop such that we could visit the country’s second city of Brno. We stopped at a campsite in Veverska Bityska, some 20 kms outside of Brno, because (a) it looked a good campsite and (b) we would be able to get a boat trip from the village all the way down the River Svratka and across the reservoir to within spitting distance of Brno. Well, that’s what we thought.

There’s not a great deal to Veverska Bityska but the campsite was as good as the reviews suggested it would be and the owner operators proved both friendly and helpful (not least because I had reacted badly to a horsefly bite I received in Poland and needed to get to a chemist). They steered me towards the town’s ATM (we had no Czech currency and everyone seems to want cash in this area) and the only chemist in miles (and she did want cash) and then I had a bit of a wander. There is very little to see in the town; the Church of St James The Great (St Jakub) which was built in 1771, a school, a handful of shops and three not very impressive looking cafe bars.

The Svratka River is a pretty enough feature of the town and the hot weather (high thirties) had prompted a number of people to come out for a swim. As I walked back to the campsite along a 1 kilometre bicycle path which tracked the river I was sorely tempted to take a dip myself. Instead, I went back to the Van, cooked up a BBQ and then sat drinking Talisker whisky with a German and his wife until late in the night.

A hundred yards or so downstream from the campsite is a small jetty where the next day I would get a boat (public shuttle service) down river and across the Brnenska Prehrada Reservoir towards Brno.