ZNOJMO SKYLINE FROM THE WEST
- A CITY RISING UP FROM THE CANYON OF A RIVER -
There is an old road running out of Hradiště towards the west, once connecting St Hippolytus Mount with the villages of Popice and Havraníky on the other side of the Dyje Valley. Now the connection is possible no more because the Znojmo Water Reservoir was built in the valley in the 1960s. Approximately after five hundred metres from the last Hradiště building, we turn left and we come to a romantic meadow from which there is no doubt one of the most enthralling views in southern Moravia. Below our feet there is the deep canyon of the Dyje River, partly filled up with waters of this “Znojmo Lake”. Before this water reservoir was built in 1964-1966, there had been a very popular romantic swimming pool at the bottom of the valley. Behind the dam, as if rising up from the waters of the lake, there is Znojmo Castle and St Nicholas’ Church. Together with silhouettes of other city towers, this skyline makes a grand impression on everybody.
-Where the King of Poland hurried to help Vienna -
In the woods of the Podyjí (Dyje Valley) National Park to the southwest of Hradiště or St Hippolytus’ Mountain, there is a lovely lookout situated high on a rock cliff above the Dyje River. A nice wooden gazebo was built here in 1922 by joint effort of Czech and German tourists. A tale has it that it was right here at King’s Throne that John III Sobieski, King of Poland, watched his thirty thousand soldiers as they crossed the Dyje River in late August 1683 when Vienna was being besieged by the Turks and desperately needed help. Deep in the valley, before the Znojmo Water Reservoir was built (in the mid-1960s), the Trausnitz Mill used to stand and next to it, an important bridge, which was built by Thomas Schlesin, the Provost of Hradiště in the mid 17th century. The existence of this bridge, however, became a subject of a large dispute between Hradiště and the councilmen of Znojmo because a lot of merchants travelling from Austria to Moravia or vice versa tended to use this bridge instead of the bridge below Znojmo where the city collected toll. In 1931 the Trausnitz Mill was transformed into a modern water power station with a 1 MW Kaplan turbine. If water in the reservoir is low, you can see the remains of the mill and the bridge quite clearly.