Rivers, Ponds and Waterfalls

Flowing streams of water... and what are you looking for?

Our mirror-like lakes, fish ponds and reservoirs are deep, and people churn the calm surface of the water with their activities. Be careful, though, as there are some bodies of water that may trick you!

Who hasn’t heard of Máchovo jezero (Mácha’s Lake), which is actually a fish pond – in fact, it’s the biggest pond in North Bohemia. Thanks to King Charles IV, crowds of people can enjoy swimming, boat trips or going to the aquapark there.

The second biggest pond in Bohemian Paradise is Komárovský Pond, situated beneath the towering Sokolka rock massif. The most beautiful pond is the picturesque Věžák with its sandstone rocks sticking above the surface. Other lovely ponds are just a short distance from Věžák: Krčák, Vidlák, Nebák, Hrudka, Rokytňák, Dolský and Podsemínský.

Located below igneous hills in a picturesque countryside are Holanské Ponds, a set of 23 fish ponds whose water is brought in by Bobří Creek. Jinolické Ponds are made up of three bodies of water:  Oborský, Němeček and the smallest one with a peculiar name, Vražda (Murder). 

It’s not too difficult to guess how this couple of lakes, Malý (Small) and Velký (Large) Písečák (Sandstone Lake) emerged – sandstone mining. The peat lake Jezírko pod Táborem, which is home to rare species of aquatic and marsh plants, was artificially created. The flooded lignite mining pit, Kristýna Lake, provides a diverse range of uses.

The Liberec Region also has a large number of reservoirs. The youngest and largest is Josefův Důl; others include Harcov, Mšeno, Labská, Bedřichov, Fojtka, Mlýnice, U Naděje and Souš – the neighbour of the breached-dam Desná Reservoir on the Bílá Desná River.  In September 1916, a year after it opened, the structure above the village of Desná v Jizerských horách, built at 806 metres above sea level, collapsed, and swept away a part of the village. The flash flood killed 65 people and left behind wreckage where 29 houses and 11 glass grinding shops were destroyed. The ill-suited technology of the structure gave way to safer calculations being made when later reservoirs were designed. The unique remains were registered as a place of cultural heritage in 1996.

You can bear witness to the springs of some rivers, such as the spring of the Nisa, which even has its own plaque. One of the most water-rich springs in central Europe is the spring of Ploučnice, emerging from the bottom of a small natural pool. According to legend, Dr Kittel – the Faust of North Bohemia – made a pact with the Devil at Potoční studna, the springs of Žernovník Creek. He is said to have his sight healed here, and used the local water to heal others, too.

The natural wells – ancient mirrors of the stars and hikers alike – entice you to stop by. One of them is the Mordýřská (Murderer) well in the woods, whose name clearly gives away that some kind of tragedy had taken place there. Another one is Zdislavina (Zdislava’s) well beneath the Lemberk Chateau, near which you’ll find a dark lake symbolizing dead water, in stark contrast to the healing waters of the spring.

The Jizera River between Malá Skála and Turnov is popular with recreational canoeists, whereas the gully between Horní Sytová and the confluence with the Mumlava is full of white water rafting lovers each spring. Both fish and fishermen love this clean river, too. 

The Velký Štolpich River wildly rushes down, leaping over rocks through the deep valley, which is firmly enclosed by hillsides. From a footbridge or viewing platform in the steepest part, you can see a string of rapids and waterfalls which merge into one when there is enough water. The most waterfalls in this country are to be found in the Giant Mountains. The Mumlavský (Mumlava) Waterfall is formed by a cascade of granite blocks, and the wild water falls from the height of 10 metres. Winter magically transforms it into an original icefall. The Jedlové Waterfalls, which are almost perfectly vertical, are also very attractive.