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Sedlec Ossuary

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The Sedlec Ossuary (Kostnice v Sedlci) is a unique chapel in the city of Kutná Hora, about 90 minutes drive away from Prague. Home to the remains of between 40,000 and 70,000 people, the Ossuary is famous for its artistic approach to organizing the skeletal remains, with bones featuring in the chapel walls, and even in a huge chandelier. It’s the work of František Rint, a carpenter and woodcarver employed by the Schwarzenberg family to organize the bones. It’s one of the Czech Republic’s most popular sites for tourists, and it’s a favorite location for day trips and tours from Prague.
Maurizio MassaroBy Maurizio Massaro
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Kutna Hora & Bone Chapel Tour from Prague
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Half-Day Tour to Kutná Hora and Ossuary from Prague
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From Prague: Half-Day Coach Tour to Kutná Hora
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Private Kutna Hora with Sedlec Ossuary and Local brewery Full Day Trip
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2 Tips for Visiting the Sedlec Ossuary

Signatur of F.Rint | Ulmon: CC-BY-NC-SA 2.0
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Book a Day TourAlthough a day trip to Sedletz with transfers may be a bit more expensive overall than traveling there on your own, you'll save nerves and be able to relax on the way there and back to Prague.
Bone chandelier | Ulmon: CC-BY-NC-SA 2.0
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See More With the 3TOP Combo TicketIf you want to visit not only the Bone Church, but also the Sedlec Cathedral, the 3TOP ticket is worthwhile. The combo ticket additionally includes the entrance to the Cathedral of St. Barbara in Kutná Hora.

The Scarily Beautiful All Saints Church of Sedlec

Sedlec is a part of the village Kutná Hora in Central Bohemia, about 70 kilometers east of Prague. The Ossarium is the cemetery church of the small village and in recent years it has become more and more an important tourist attraction.

History

In Sedletz, the ossarium or ossuarium (from Latin os for bones) originated in 1870, after František Rint was commissioned by the Schwarzenberg family to remodel the cemetery chapel. Before that the chapel had been expanded the last time around 1705 in the style of the late Baroque.

The fact that bones were stored collectively was mainly for practical reasons. The European population was growing and space had to be made for more graves. Already since the 15th century, according to legend, the Cistercian monks of the local monastery had stored the bones of the deceased in the basement of the Gothic chapel. Rint used this material for the current interior of the Bone Church.
Mass cup made from bone | Ulmon: CC-BY-NC-SA 2.0

Highlights

The special thing about the Bone Chapel is that all the ritual instruments for Catholic worship here are artistically made from bones. This goes from the altar made of skulls to the crosses to the monstrances in which hosts are kept. However, the most remarkable part of the interior architecture is certainly the eight-armed chandelier, which is hung in the center of the room.
Entrance to the ossuary | Ulmon: CC-BY-NC-SA 2.0

Ossuarium of Sedletz: Tickets and Guided Tours

Ticket Options

In addition to normal tickets for the Bone Church of Sedlec, it is also possible to buy combined tickets for Ossarium, Sedlec Cathedral and the Dome of St. Barbara in Kutna Hora (all three churches combined in the 3TOP ticket). Important for photographers: Permission to photograph is not included in the ticket price and must be purchased separately.

Day Tours from Prague

Organized day trips from Prague to Sedletz usually include not only transfers, but also guided tours with competent guides, often through all three churches mentioned above. While without such an all-inclusive package you could spend more time on the individual attractions, you would have to take care of your own travel, departure and entrance fees.
Sedletz Cathedral | Flickr: Lyn Gateley CC-BY 2.0

Sedletz Cathedral: The Oldest Cathedral in Bohemia

Built as early as the 12th century and rebuilt in 1709 by Johann Blasius Santini-Aichl in a mixed Gothic-Baroque style, Sedlec Cathedral is another worthwhile sight in Kutná Hora. The Church of St. Mary is only a 5-minute walk from the Ossarium and testifies to the former importance of the small town.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long should I plan for a trip from Prague to Sedlec?

Most of the organized tours have a duration of 7 to 9 hours. For a self-organized arrival and departure you have to calculate with car trips of about 90 minutes or train trips of 75 minutes. Read more.

Is a visit to the Sedletz Ossarium suited for children?

Due to the creepy atmosphere, the visit is more recommended with older children or children interested in the subject. Read more.

General Information

Opening Hours:

From April to September the Church of Bones is open from 8 am to 6 pm. In October and March, it’s open from 9 am to 5 pm. From November to February the Ossuary is open from 9 am to 12 noon and from 1 pm to 4 pm. The Ossuary is closed on December 25.

Tickets:

Tickets for the Sedlec Ossuary cost CZK90 for adults and CZK60 for students and children.

Address:

Sedlec Ossuary
Starosedlecká
284 03 Kutná Hora
Czech Republic

How to get there:

The Sedlec Ossuary is in Kutná Hora, about 90 minutes drive from Prague, and you can park on the street by the Ossuary or at the nearby church. Kutná Hora can also be reached via train from Prague. Once at the city’s main train station you can walk or take a local train one stop in the direction of the city center or take local bus number 1 two stops to the Ossuary.
Maurizio Massaro
Written byMaurizio MassaroMaurizio is a cosmopolitan, a musician and comes around. In his role as a content manager at TicketLens, he is always striving to find new offers as well as writing about sights all over the world.
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