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Coordinates: 50°02′19″N 15°46′45″E / 50.03861°N 15.77917°E / 50.03861; 15.77917
Pardubice CZ main square.JPG
The main square as seen from the Green Tower
Coat of arms
Country Czech Republic
Region Pardubice
District Pardubice
Rivers Elbe, Chrudimka
Elevation 237 m (778 ft)
Coordinates 50°02′19″N 15°46′45″E / 50.03861°N 15.77917°E / 50.03861; 15.77917
Area 77.71 km2 (30 sq mi)
Population 89,552 (2012)
Density 1,152 / km2 (2,984 / sq mi)
First documented 1295
Mayor Štěpánka Fraňková
Postal code 530 01
Location in the Czech Republic
Location in the Czech Republic
Wikimedia Commons: Pardubice
Website: Pardubice city

Pardubice (Czech pronunciation: [ˈpardubɪtsɛ] ( ); German: Pardubitz) is a city in the Czech Republic. It is the capital city of the Pardubice Region and lies on the river Elbe, 96 kilometres east of Prague. Pardubice has an antique centre square and old town, with many restaurants that stay open until late in the evening. There is an old Tower and a recently renovated Castle. Factories include the Synthesia chemical factory (manufacturer of Semtex, a plastic explosive), an oil refinery Paramo, a heavy machinery factory and an electronic equipment plant.

The Czech Open Chess Tournament is the biggest in Europe, with roughly 1200 players from all over the world competing in the main groups, and many side-events such as a team championship, a Rubik's Cube competition and a Go-tournament.
Pardubice is home to one of the top hockey teams in the Czech Extraliga, HC Pardubice (former Tesla). The local hockey club has bred international stars such as Vladimír Martinec, Dominik Hašek, Otakar Janecký, Aleš Hemský, Jan Bulis (all natives of Pardubice) and Milan Hejduk. Ex- NBA player Jiří Welsch is also a native of the city.
It's also home of a famous steeplechase, the Velká pardubická.


The oldest extant Document regarding Pardubice comes from 1295.

The area had a monastery beginning in the early 13th century, and the city was founded c. 1340. Arnošt of Pardubice, the first archbishop of Prague, was born[citation needed] in Pardubice in 1297. It was Arnošt’s testament of 1340 that proved the existence of the town of Pardubice, respectively a tributary town. Pardubice was promoted to a small town sometimes during the years 1332 - 1340. In 1491, Pardubice was bought by Vilém from Pernštejn, who continued to expand the town and made significant impact on its prosperity. Gothic reconstruction of Pardubice in the 16th century, yet again, enriched the town and thus confirmed the saying “glitters like Pardubice”. Until 1918, the town was part of the Austrian monarchy (Austria side after the compromise of 1867), head of the PARDUBITZ district, one of the 94 Bezirkshauptmannschaften in Bohemia.[1]

Austrian stamp cancelled at the train station office near 1861

In 1845, the first train arrived to Pardubice. The town was connected to other railway lines so Pardubice could thrive even more. New industrial enterprises started to emerge in the town, namely a distillery, a factory for mill machines of Josef Prokop and sons and Fanta’s Factory. Since 1874, the Great Pardubice Steeplechase (Velká Pardubická) horse race has taken place every autumn (second Sunday in October). On 13 May 1911, Ing. Jan Kašpar made history by flying the first long-haul flight towards Prague. In Pardubice, industrial expansion was on the rise, especially after the First World War. However, during the Second World War the town was damaged by air strikes of the Allies. The Fanto Werke refinery at Pardubice was repeatedly bombed during the Oil Campaign of World War II, and forced labor was provided by a concentration camp.[2][3] The German population was expelled according to the Benes Decrees in 1945. Tesla electronics manufacturer operated from 1921–1989, and the Foxconn factory was established in June 2000. After 1989 the town continued to develop and flourish; the Chateau and its surroundings of estates were reconstructed. Pardubice has established contacts with foreign towns.


Pardubice is situated on the bank of the second longest river in the Czech Republic, the Labe River, where there is a mouth of another river called Chrudimka. Pardubice is located at approximately 15° east longitude and 50° north longitude. The town is located 100 km east of the capital city of Prague, 150 km north-west of Brno. Pardubice is in the area of Labe Lowlands with average elevation of 225m and its area is 78 km2. The area is of lowland character without many hills. One exception is a nearby hill Kunětická hora.


Pardubice is called the city of industry. The dominant industries are chemical industry, electrical engineering and mechanical engineering. The chemical industry is mainly represented by a company Paramo and Synthesia, which was founded in Pardubice-Semtín as a stock factory for explosive substances. This field of industry together with the factory went through significant development, especially in 1960s. Synthesia is now one of the leading Czech companies manufacturing cellulose, pigments and dyes, and organic compounds. Synthesia is also a major exporter mainly for the EU countries and is associated with the invention of Semtex plastic explosive. Paramo – formally known as Fanta’s Factory was until 2012 one of the major companies of its kind, but during the year a major shareholder decided to significantly suppress its production and the future of Paramo is still uncertain.

Cultural monuments and sights[edit]

Pardubice is dominated by the Green Gate with remains of the town’s fortifications. The Chateau, which has been reconstructed, is located nearby. The town itself has many historical buildings, for example, Kamenná vila (Stone Villa), Crematorium, Dům U Bílého koníčka (House at the White Horse), Wernerův dům (Werner’s House), Dům U Jonáše (At Jonah’s), the City Hall, etc. There are also churches such as the Church of Our Lady of Sorrows, St. John the Baptist Church, St. Bartholomew Church, the Synagogue in Pardubice and others.

Cultural and social events[edit]

  • Velká pardubická (the Grand Pardubice Steeplechase) (122nd race is held in 2012),
  • Zlatá přilba (Golden Helmet) (annual race, every year in October),
  • ISA EU Scooter Championship (June)
  • Czech Open – the biggest chess festival in the world (July),
  • Pardubická juniorka (the Junior of Pardubice) – a prestige tennis championship of single junior players (August)
  • Pernštýnská noc (Pernštýn Night) – town festival (July),
  • Festival smíchu (Festival of Laughter) – theatrical festival (February),
  • Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra of Pardubice and Barocco sempre giovane – concerts of classical music,
  • International festival Le Quattro Stagioni,
  • International folklore festival Autumn Folklore Festival (September)


Ice Hockey – hockey club HC Pardubice, the six times national champion, most recently in 2011/2012, plays in the Czech Extraliga. The club plays home fixtures in the ČEZ Arena. The first match took place on a lake called Matiční in 1913 and the first club called LTC Pardubice was founded in 1923. In 2011 Pardubice became famous by being the first club playing an extra league game with Kometa Brno in the open air.[citation needed]

Velká Pardubická (the Grand Pardubická Steeplechase) – the most difficult race on the continent and the second most difficult in the world. It has been held annually since 1874 every autumn at the Racecourse. The most famous jockey of the race is Josef Váňa, who has won this race a number of times. The first winner of Velka Pardubicka was stallion Fantome. The race is run over distance of 6,900m, with horses jumping 31 fences. The horses run the race in 10 minutes.

Football – the city has been home to various football clubs. VCHZ Pardubice played in the top national league in the 1968–69 season. As of 2014, the highest-ranked team from the city is FK Pardubice, which plays in the second-tier Fotbalová národní liga. Women's team SK DFO Pardubice plays in the Czech First Division (women).

Zlatá přilba města Pardubic (Golden Helmet of Pardubice) – an annual prestige motorcycle speedway event. The first race was held in 1929, which makes the Golden Helmet race one of the eldest speedway races in the world. The race has international participants from Germany, Denmark, Netherlands, UK, USA, etc.

Mattoni NBL – the basketball team BK JIP Pardubice playing top basketball competition in the Czech Republic also competes in European cups. In the Czech Republic it is one of the most successful clubs. Jiří Welsch, has played in NBA, once played for the Pardubice team.

""ISA European Scooter Championship"" - the biggest continental European freestyle scooter event. This year, Pardubice will be the host city for this new action sport event.

Czech Open – the biggest chess tournament in the world. Apart from chess, other games such as scrabble, bridge, poker and mariáš are played at this event. The patronage of the event was taken over by President Václav Klaus in 2011, County Representative of the Pardubice Region Radko Martínek and Mayor of Pardubic Štěpánka Fraňková.

Pardubická juniorka (The Junior of Pardubice) – a prestige championship of the Czech Republic of single junior tennis players. It has been held since 1926 at the tennis courts of LTC Pardubice. Winners of past championships include Ivan Lendl, Martina Navrátilová, Petra Kvitová, Tomáš Berdych and others.


City transportation system – the first trolleybuses emerged in the town in 1952. From then on the transportation developed and new sections started to open. The fleet comprises low-floor vehicles, CNG vehicle, etc. The emphasis is mainly on ecology. Vehicles are often changed and old ones are discarded. Transport Company of the City of Pardubice transports up to almost 10mil people per year. Lines of the city transportation also run to the surrounding villages and it is also being considered to start a line to nearby Chrudimi and Hradec Králové.

Rail transport – Pardubice is one of the most significant railway junctions in the country. From Pardubice it is possible to go to many towns not only in the Czech Republic, but also in Europe. An example is the connection to Hamburg, Vienna, Warsaw, Bratislava, Žilina, Budapest, Belgrade, etc.

Air transport – Pardubice has its own civil airport founded in 1995, and it is also used for military purposes. There are regular flights to Moscow and St. Petersburg (Russia). In summer it is possible to go from this airport to Greece, Bulgaria, Spain or Turkey. The airport has been renovated and annually hosts a major event called Aviation Festival.

Road transport – Pardubice is a major road junction as well. Road I/37 leading to Hradec Králové enables to connect to the highway to Prague; then there is road I/36 leading to Kutná Hora, Čáslav, Litomyšl and so on. Unfortunately, in Pardubice there is a bad traffic jam quite often and the town should have a new transportation system, which would ease the traffic in the town.

Water transport – a newly renovated cruise ship is anchored in Pardubice and it takes passengers on the Labe River to nearby Srnojedy and Kunětice. It also serves as means of public transport.

Notable people[edit]

International relations[edit]

Twin towns – Sister cities[edit]

Pardubice is twinned with:


  1. ^ Die postalischen Abstempelungen auf den österreichischen Postwertzeichen-Ausgaben 1867, 1883 und 1890, Wilhelm KLEIN, 1967
  2. ^ "archive". Retrieved 14 April 2011. 
  3. ^ "6. DV-BEG – Einzelnorm". Retrieved 14 April 2011. 
  4. ^ Dominik Hasek returns to Detroit
  5. ^ "Passionate or passionless? It's a harbinger of spring | Sporting News, The | Find Articles at BNET". 23 March 1998. Retrieved 14 April 2011. 
  6. ^ Paul Glendinning (16 June 2010). "Jaroslav Stark obituary | Science". The Guardian (UK). Retrieved 14 April 2011. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Movsesian, Sergei; Klima, Lukas (2009). Czech Open: Pardubice Phenomenon. Caissa Hungary. ISBN 978-80-86725-08-6. 

External links[edit]