Warm Up In January At The Moravian Karst As Some Caves Remain Open To Visitors

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With the end of the tourist season, many of the caves of the Moravian Karst were closed to protect hibernating bats, but several will remain open to the public even in winter.

Escaping the freezing temperatures outside, visitors can warm up a little in the caves throughout January, as the underground temperature in the karst stays around 8-9 degrees Celsius all year round.

Some of the most popular attractions for visitors in winter are the ice falls. “Ice decoration in the entrance parts and portals of caves occurs when frosty weather is encountered with permanent temperatures below the freezing point and at the same time there is a sufficiently large dropfall,” said Jan Sirotek, deputy chair of the Czech Speleological Society, talking to Brno Daily. “Ice decoration can be observed both in the portals of caves accessible to the public (e.g. Sloupsko-šošůvské caves) and in many other caves (e.g. Lidomorna of Holštejn).” 

However, visitors need to take the laws of nature into consideration, as “the ice decoration melts very quickly when the temperatures go above zero,” warned Sirotek. 

Bozkovske caves. Credit: Czech Cave Administration

For those quick enough to visit before temperatures return above zero, or patient enough to wait for them to fall below again, Sirotek stressed that the public should observe these phenomena only in publicly accessible places. “It must be emphasised that the caves are protected by law and, apart from the caves accessible to the public, entry is prohibited. In addition, in the protected nature area, visitors should not leave the roads and marked tourist routes.”

Opening times

Visitors can enter three caves of the Moravian Karst every day except Monday in January:

Punkevní jeskyně caves: 

TUE-SUN: 8:40am – 2pm

Výpustek cave: 

TUES-SUN: Entry at 10am, 12pm, 2pm

Sloupsko-šošůvské caves: Winter tours of the Šošůvská section with a flashlight – 

TUE-SUN: Entrance at 10am, 12pm, 1pm

Open on weekdays:

Bozkovské dolomite caves near Semily

MON-FRI: 9am-3pm

Javoříčské caves

MON-FRI: Entry at 10am and 1pm

Mladečské caves near Litovel

MON-FRI: Entry at 10am and 1pm

Even in winter, you can book “experience routes” in the Moravian Karst:

Discover the secret of the Výpustek cave – you can walk up to the 200-metre natural corridor in which the former Headquarters of the Czech Army is located

– At all times, you will be required to wear a safety helmet and use an LED headlamp – the guides will lend you both. Expect possible soiling of clothes, especially on the knees.

In the footsteps of Nagel in the Sloupsko-šošůvské caves

– Visitors can descend and climb a 12-metre ladder, as well as cross a 10-metre via ferrata. In some sections, movement is only possible on all fours, and in places you might even crawl. During the entire tour, it is necessary to exercise caution and listen to the instructions of the tour leader.

Updates on the schedule for all caves can be found on the website of the Czech Cave Administration at caves.cz. The website is also in English and other languages, though these are not updated as regularly as the Czech page.

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