Swimming at Výkleky Quarry
The most picturesque place to go swimming near Olomouc is the old rock quarry just outside Výkleky. Výkleky is a village 15km east of Olomouc and 5km west of Lipník nad Bečvou. It’s possible to take the bus to Velky Ujezd and hike the remaining 2km to the quarry, but the nicest way to get there from Olomouc is to cycle along the marked route #5.
Amber trail #5
Trail #5 is called the Jantarová Stezka/Amber trail because it traces the old trade route that led from the Baltics via Krakow to Prague. It passes through the parks that ring Olomouc’s old town. The reddish paving is for cyclists and the grey for pedestrians.
The Amber trail leads out of the parks, across the mill stream and over the Morava River. Just across the river, it turns left past the abandoned Russian military barracks, then follows the river valley for the next 8km/5Miles.
Hána green and gold
Once out of Olomouc’s suburbs, the river is behind the trees the right. In the first village, Bystrovany, there’s a bridge and then the river is behind the trees on the left. At the second village (8km) Velká Bystřice, the trail leaves the river valley and strikes out between undulating fields of barley and hops.
The next landmarks are Vacanovice township and the church tower at Tršice. Tršice is nestled down in a valley and when you first see it, it looks as though a church has sunken into the ground. Enjoy the cruise down into Tršice while it lasts, because you need to climb a hill to get out the other side.
At Tršice, it’s time to say goodbye to the #5 trail. Turn left behind the church to follow the #6058. The climb out of town is wearying, but there are only a few kilometres to go and this road leads right into the township of Výkleky.
Through town then right
There are probably about 50 or 60 houses in Výkleky and almost at the end of town, the road forks around a big tree. If you’re eagle eyed and understand some Czech, you might notice a small sign saying “Kamenolom”, (stone quarry) pointing to the right. If you get really stuck and need to ask directions, “Lom” is the word for quarry and is pronounced just the way it would be in English.
About 100m along this right fork, there’s an unpaved parking area just off the road. The cars here belong to people swimming at the quarry. Once you’re off the road and in the carpark, just follow the main trail. There might be a boom gate across the track, but just go around it like everybody else does. If you’re more than 100m from the road and still haven’t seen the water, you’ve gone the wrong way.
Cold, clear and deep
The water in the old quarry is cold and deep. So deep that the emergency services use it for training with their scuba-diving gear. The gentlest way to get in is along the ramp that the trucks once drove down to bring out the stone. You’ll no doubt see local teenagers jumping off the rocks. If you think you might want to try that, please jump out as far as you can and be as careful as possible. Somebody gets hurt there every summer.
When you’ve had your fill of the quarry, you can turn around and come back the way you came or continue on into Lipník nad Bečvou and catch the train home. If you’re cycling home, you can get food in Tršice and Velká Bystřice and those cherry and apple trees lining the road are fair game.