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Střekov castle • The ruin of artists

Majestic Střekov stands up on a black rock, which towers from the river Labe up to one hundred metres. It is said that during rainy nights a ghost of a young lady climbs up the cliff. It was a daughter of the burgrave and her life ended in a fall from the cliff. She is looking for a phantom of her beloved. It was a poor hostler who was punished for tasting the forbidden love. He was left to die of hunger within tower walls.

The Střekov castle has a very long history, where rumors and tales mingle with facts. For instance in the year 1842 a real spectre appeared on the castle walls. It was the composer Richard Wagner who was looking for a muse in a very fancy way. It was in the romantic creeks of the old ruin where he mantled with a bed sheet. He wondered around Střekov and looked down into the valley where Ústí nad Labem was set. There he finally composed a poem, which later became the basis for the libretto of the known opera Tannhäuser. However he was not the only artist to seek and find the inspiration on Střekov. The castle enchanted Karel Hynek Mácha, Johann Wolfgang Goethe and Karl May.

On visit is enough for the castle to get under your skin. Well preserved stone walls stand next to ruined fortifications. Only its outlines can be now seen. Nevertheless they show us the grandeur of this building, which was supposed to protect the mercantile path of Labe. Tourists will appreciate delicious food in the local gothic restaurant along with the terrace offering a spectacular view on the picturesque hills of České středohoří.

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