A misty sunrise in Moravia, with a castle peeking over the hill

Photo: Jaro Vosahlo/500px

Dew-kissed morning in Central Europe

The hills are alive with fall foliage in one of the Czech Republic's most beautiful regions, Moravia. This foggy forest scene comes complete with a majestic castle and an intriguing history.

Moravia is a "historical country" with a political story dating back to the 8th century and a human story that reaches back to the Stone Age. From the Paleolithic Homo sapiens to Roman, German and Slavic occupation, these lands have seen their fair share of war and peace, and though the area hasn't been an official country since the mid-20th century. However, Moravia has maintained a distinct culture. Moravians have their own Czech dialect and, since 1991, have been officially recognized as a separate ethnicity.

The castle outlined against the sunrise is Bouzov Castle, built in the 14th century to monitor trade in the area. The castle has since had numerous owners throughout the centuries and currently serves as an iconic presence on the horizon as well as a set for modern films. The castle as it stands today is a reconstructed design from the Gothic Revival at the turn of the century, featuring a tower that stretches almost 200 feet into the air, serving as a lookout point.

Far from the bustling streets of Prague, Bouzov Castle offers visitors a slice of history.

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Anna Norris is an associate editor at Mother Nature Network. Follow her on Twitter and Google+.

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