Not only the city of Pardubice but the entire Pardubice region lives and breathes horses. A unique thing that is of immense fame not only in the Pardubice region but worldwide is the breeding of the Old Kladruber horses in the National Stud Farm in Kladruby nad Labem.
The National Stud Farm in Kladruby nad Labem is one of the oldest stud farms in the world and also home to the oldest original Czech horse breed – the Old Kladruber horse. The premises of the stud farm cover an area of 1,200 hectares in the Labe lowland near Pardubice. The tradition of horse breeding in Kladruby nad Labem dates back at least to the mid-14th century. For over 300 years (1579 - 1918) it used to be the imperial court stud farm, which provided horses for the imperial and royal court in Prague and in Vienna.
However, the Old Kladruber horses still today serve in the royal courts. The Danish Queen Margrethe II goes on ceremonial rides in Copenhagen in a gilded carriage drawn by six white horses of the Kladruber breed. In Sweden, the trumpeters of the Swedish Royal Horse Guard ride Old Kladruber white horses. In the Czech Republic Old Kladruber horses are often seen at various festivals in Prague Castle, and are also used by the mounted police in Pardubice, Ostrava and Prague.
Today, the National Stud Farm breeds about 500 of the Old Kladruber horses in two colour variants: white and black. 250 white horses are stabled in Kladruby. The black horses, which are also 250, are taken care of by the National Stud Farm in the old stables of the former princely family Auersperg in Slatinany near Chrudim.
The National Stud Farm in Kladruby nad Labem offers public tours in Kladruby nad Labem and in Slatinany. In Kladruby, visitors can choose out of guided tours of the stables, chateau, a historic carriage and harness house, an exhibition of the Kladruby horse breeding, a forester’s lodge with a simulator ride in a carriage and a visit to an observation tower. The exhibit gathers a collection of material evidence of the history of the stud farm, including shaping the cultural landscape, the Old Kladruber horse breeding, the equestrian sport and leisure activities. In the Czech Republic it is a unique memory institution, which in itself blends the vibrant tradition reflecting the tangible and intangible cultural and natural heritage associated with breeding the Old Kladruber horse. Visitors to Slatinany can enjoy a guided tour of the stables and the historic tack room of the Auersperg family.
The National Stud Farm at Kladruby nad Labem (link: http://www.nhkladruby.cz/)