Postcard from the Czech Republic: Sedlec Ossuary

Sedlec Ossuary

One of the ossuary’s highlights is the impressive coat of arms, made to honor the family who commissioned the elaborate bone artwork

On our recent family vacation in Prague, my husband and 10-year-old son insisted on a side trip to Sedlec Ossuary (a.k.a. the “bone church”) in the small town of Kutna Hora. I wasn’t so sure … but thankfully, the experience was a lot less macabre than I expected. Commissioned by a noble family, the little chapel is lavishly decorated with tens of thousands of human bones, mostly from the medieval era and originally buried in the church cemetery. Young kids may be too scared to enjoy it, but school-age kids, tweens and teens will love the creepy-cool factor. 

I asked my son, Doug, to share more about our visit to the ossuary in his own words. Here’s his take: 

I thought the ossuary was very interesting. It was surprisingly peaceful and calm. The artwork with the chandelier, which includes at least one sample of every bone in the human body, was amazing! Also, the sort of “shield” design near the entrance was stunning. When I read about the ossuary, I always pictured it to be bigger, but I didn’t mind its being small. The nearby churches’ architecture was fabulous, too.

TIP: Just an hour by train from Prague, Kutna Hora is a terrific all-day excursion with kids. Besides the ossuary, there’s the glorious St. Barbara’s Church, a charming medieval town square with plenty of room to run, and a slightly random but wonderfully quirky Lego museum. 

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Relevant Links:

Browse all family-friendly accommodations and activities in the Czech Republic on Ciao Bambino

72 hours in Prague with kids

Best itineraries for a week in Europe with kids: part 1

Best itineraries for a week in Europe with kids: part 2

Editor’s Note: Photo by Doug Frederick.

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