České Budějovice is a city with population of a little less than 100 thousand people that is located on the confluence of two rivers Vltava and Malše. The city was founded in 1265 by the Czech king Přemysl Otakar II. It was meant to become an opposing force and competition to the growing power of the mighty southbohemian noble family the Vitkovci (or the Rosenbergs) in South Bohemia. The 16th century was a period of a big prosperity for the city mostly thanks to silver mining, brewing beer, salt and cloth trade or fish breeding. For some time because of fighting in central Bohemia during the thirty-year war Budejovice even became the Czech capital, when important offices were moved here from Prague. Two thirds of the city were destroyed by a big fire in 1641. Since 1785 Budejovice became the seat of the bishop, which increased the significance of the city. Another growth in importance came at the beginning of the 19th century, when Budejovice became the administrational centre of the southbohemian region. The city also became an important centre thanks to the first railway in Europe that lead from here to Austrian Linz. There is also a long tradition of brewing beer (today you can find here two breweries Samson and the world known Budvar) or making pencils (Koh-i-noor).
The biggest tourist attractions are in the protected historical centre. You can visit places and monuments such as Piarist Square with the adjacent gothic monastery and church, the central Square of Přemysl Otakar II with the Samson´s Fountain and the renaissance city hall, the Black Tower, St. Nicolas Cathedral, or remains of the fortification such as the towers Rabenštejnská and Iron Maiden.
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