It's just shy of two hours away by bus, so after looking it up online, we decided to take the earliest bus (9am) to make the most of the day. We met Cydney at Starbucks and, in classic fashion, we were running a bit behind so we hurriedly hopped on the metro and made our way to the end of the line. When we arrived at the bus station, Ian asked a metro worker which bus number we were looking for. 381. We walked outside, found our bus and proceeded to climb aboard. This was much to the confusion and dismay of the driver. We tried to pay him, but he waved us off and shut the doors behind us. The three of us waited around for a bit and grew increasingly impatient as many other buses (but not ours) pull out and leave, Cydney took a peek at the small, posted bus schedule on the sign post. The first bus to Kutná Hora leaves at 10am, not 9 as the internet had reported. So we walked up to a school and waited on the benches in the courtyard where students were gathering in preparation for a trip of some kind.
Our bus ride there was largely uneventful save for a bit of angry honking at one of the stops. All three of us had headphones in, so it took a few seconds to figure out what was going on. I could hear long, exaggerated honks of the bus' horn and I thought it was because of the van backing out next to us (it looked like it might hit us; it didn't). But, we were actually blocked in by a large hauling truck. I popped out my headphone to experience the sound full stop and immediately regretted my decision. It was so loud that the other passengers couldn't help but laugh. I'm not sure how long the honking went on, but it was through most of "Times Like These," so at least a full two minutes.
The bus ride back included no honking, but instead a bus decorated with claw machine-esque stuffed animals and driven by a very sweaty man with a beard, mullet and his uniform shirt unbuttoned down to his navel. In his window, surely obscuring his view a bit, hung a knitted Czech flag with what looked to be a Santa Claus doll in front of it.
So, Kutná Hora. To foreign tourists, it's largely known for the Sedlec Ossuary/Kostnice or Bone Church (nailed it, Danie). But, it's a pretty cool little city apart from that and was deemed a UNESCO site in 1995 (note that the bone church is not a UNESCO World Heritage Site). In the 13th century the area became economically important due to it's abundance of silver, but mining in the area predated that. In fact, according to Wikipedia, the name Kutná Hora comes from the old Czech word for the cowls that the miners wore: kutání.
The town was very quiet, which probably had something to do with the fact that it was midweek. It was wonderful to get away from Prague for the day.
The ossuary contains the bones of around 50,000 people. It is said that every bone in the human skeleton is represented in the central chandelier. The cemetery Cistercian monastery in Sedlec became an incredibly popular burial site in the 1200s after a pious monk returned from a pilgrimage with soil from the Holy Land and sprinkled it there. Later followed the Black Death (14th century) and the Hussite Wars (15th century) and even after enlarging the cemetery, the land couldn't keep up with the demand for burials. Long story short, František Rint was commissioned in 1870 to "arrange" the bones the result was this strange ossuary: