There are many hiking and biking trails around Karlovy Vary where those who come for a spa holiday enjoy long strolls. I planned to go for one such stroll as I made my way out of town and up the trail leading to the top of the main hill which overlooks the town. Halfway through, my stroll turned into a sprint as the clouds moved in and rain began to fall. I began dodging from tree cover to tree cover to make my way to a restaurant with a scenic overview of the town called Jeleni Skok, or “Deer’s Run”. I was pretty damp by the time I arrived but the rain was subsiding. I decided to stay at the restaurant for a bit and enjoy a cheese plate – one of my meals of choice.
As I sat enjoying the view over the town and my cheese, the rain came back twice as hard. I decided I was stuck and so began making some new friends, talking to some other travelers from Germany who had also walked up and decided to be stuck as well. An hour past and the rain was still coming – I was running out of options if I wanted to catch a train from Karlovy Vary back to Loket before the route stopped running for the night. So, at 5:30 in the afternoon, I put on my swimsuit and my running shoes, stuffed my clothes and other belongings into my backpack to keep them dry, and sprinted down the hill into town.
It must have been quite a bizarre sight, but there was no one there to see it. When I made it into town, I put my relatively dry clothes on over my swim suit and walked under the protection of the awnings connecting the thermal fountains. All the tourists had made their way back to their hotels or indoor cafes, so there were no lines at any of the fountains, it felt almost eerily empty, but peaceful. I drank lots of hot thermal water on my way to the train station. Honestly, the water tastes like minerals and salt, but it is the thing to do while in town, so I choked it back for its supposed “healing powers”.
I made it on the train and back to my room in the pension. After a long hot shower, I collapsed into bed to read while the rain kept falling through the night. I checked the weather forecast and was excited to find out that the next say promised sunshine and 75 degrees. I could finally bike to Karlovy Vary rather than take the train!