Cheb Tourist Attractions
Cheb is not a huge tourist destination and is often passed over by tourists. However, those who take the time to venture into the historic center will not be disappointed. Cheb, formerly known as Eger prior to World War II, has a long history, which for many years was tied closely to Germany. The area was settled by Germans in the 11th Century and was a trading center for Bavaria and Bohemia. It became part of Bohemia in the first half of the 14th Century. In 1938, under the Munich Pact Eger was given to Germany and then returned back to the Czech people following the end of World War II, when it became Cheb.The architecture in the main square reflects the town's history, with more of a German than Bohemian influence. Points of interest in Cheb are the baroque Town Hall, the formerly Jewish owned timber houses known as Spalicek, the Cheb Museum, and the town's numerous churches.
Looking out over the Elbe River are the remains of the old Cheb Castle (Chebsky hrad). Built by Emperor Frederick Barbarossa in the 12th Century this former royal palace is now little more than a ruin. The highlights of the Romanesque Cheb Castle include the chapel of St Erhard and St Ershula with Gothic and Romanesque capitals and the volcanic stone Black Tower. The Black Tower can be climbed for beautiful views of the surrounding area. In the banquet hall on the grounds of the Cheb Castle is where some of Wallenstein's officers were killed in 1634, just prior to his own murder.Also of interest is the nearby former Chapel of St Bartholomew (Kaple Sv Bartolomeje) from the early 15th Century.
One of the highlights of Cheb is the main square (namesti Krale Jiriho z Podebrad). The square is actually angled in an irregular shape and surrounded by 17th Century homes. The main square is where visitors will find cafés and restaurants and much of the city's activity. At one end of the square are a group of famous medieval houses, formerly Jewish owned, known as Spalicek. This complex of 11 houses is an area that has been in existence and developing for almost 800 years. At the opposite end is a statue of the Roland, which stands in a fountain. The rococo Gabler House, The baroque Old Town Hall (stara radnice), and the Cheb Museum can also be found on the main square.
The Cheb Museum is more well known for the historic event that took place in the building rather than what the museum has to offer. Located in the old Pachelbel House, this is the place where General Albrecht von Wallenstein was murdered in the year 1634. Wallenstein was a military hero and politician during the Thirty Years' War. He was killed by officers under his charge who were following the orders of the emperor, Ferdinand II. On the second floor, the Cheb Museum recreates the scene of the assassination. The first floor displays are a number of local 20th Century paintings.
The Western Bohemian spa of Frantiskovy Lazne (the Emperor Franz Spa) was established in the 1790s. Frantiskovy Lazne is not the lavish production that you find at Marianske Lazne or other Bohemian spas but serves a more utilitarian purpose. It features nice gardens, wooded parks, and everything you would expect from a spa. There are 24 natural springs 12 of which are used for baths. Treatments are available for a variety of ailments.Of note in the town are the House at the Three Lilies (Dum u tri lilii) which is the town's oldest home, the beautiful Glauber Court / Glauber Spring building (Blauberuv pramen), and the main spring source, Francis Spring (Frantiskuv pramen).Frantiskovy Lazne has many nice restaurants, outdoor cafés, and neoclassical architecture, which combine to make a visit here a pleasant experience. In the nearby area there are also a number of attractions, including the komorni hurka volcano and the Soos Peat bog.