Brno is the Czech Republic’s second city and has a hardworking reputation, although commerce is a just a small part of this quirky city’s story. Set where the Svitava and Svratka Rivers meet, Brno was capital of Moravia from the 1100s right up to the communist era. Naturally, a lot of heritage remains, and you can take in a great deal of Gothic and baroque sights on the cobblestone streets of the Old Town. But what really gives Brno its identity is its devotion to the weird, wonderful and downright creepy. Let us explain, in our run down of the best things to do in Brno.
1. Villa Tugendhat
Nothing scary about this one. Open daily for tours, Villa Tugendhat is up there with Le Corbusier’s Villa Savoye in Paris as a prototype for modern architecture. Built from 1928-30, it was designed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and is a UNESCO-listed masterwork of functionalism. This building changed the game thanks to its open floor plan and wall-sized rear windows. Villa Tugendhat’s history is as important as its design. The Tugendhats were a Jewish couple and were forced to flee Brno after 1938. The villa became a base for the Gestapo, and then as quarters for the Soviet army. It wasn’t until 1967 that Greta Tugendhat returned and the restoration process began.