Pilsen, Czech Republic

Guide for the rail traveller


Local languageCzech
Country Czech Republic


Pilsen (Plzen), in Bohemia about 90 km west of Prague, is the capital of the Plzen Region and the fourth largest city in the Czech Republic. Arguably it is now most famous for Pilsener beer (particularly the Pilsner Urquell (dating back to 1842) and Gambrinus (dating back to 1869) breweries; you can find out more about the history of Pilsener beer by joining one of the ‘Plzensky Prazdroj’ brewery tours) and the Skoda company, which was established in 1859.

Plzen is one of the country’s important centres in academic, economical and cultural terms, although nowadays tourism is also an important part of its economic mix. The major sights of Plzen are the Gothic St.Bartholomew's Cathedral, which dates back to the 13th century, the Renaissance Town Hall, and the Moorish Revival Great Synagogue, which is the second largest synagogue in Europe. You may also like to explore the city’s historic underground tunnel/cellar network, which is partially open to the public.

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