The National Horse stud of the Czech Republic, Kladruby nad Labem, is one of the oldest operating stud farms in Europe and the Kladruber horse is one of the oldest breeds of horses that have not been modernised in keeping with its origins for over 400 years. Today it is one of the top breeds used for carriage driving and royal ceremonial celebrations due to the horse’s nobility, temperament and high-stepping knee action.
History of the Kladruby
Imperial Stud at Kladruby was first established in 1579 during the Habsburg empire and horses were originally imported from Spain. Over the centuries the stud has been through many transitions and fortunately, the importance of the horses for ceremonial purposes has always been in high demand. Even in 1918 when the Habsburg empire was diminished and under the new political realm the grey Kladrubers were still of importance for ceremonial purposes although the black Klabruber was nearly diminished and thankfully numbers have been revived with a new breeding program.
The horses were always bred for colour and historically, the grey horses were specifically bred for ceremonial service for the royal and imperial court in Vienna and Prague. The black horses were mainly used for representative service by the Church.
What are the Kladrubers main role?
Today, the grey Kladrubers still serve at the royal courts in Denmark and Sweden. The Danish Royals use the Kladruber greys to draw the State Coach on festive rides in Copenhagen. In Sweden, the Kladrubers carry the trumpeters of the Swedish Mounted Royal Guards. In the Czech Republic, the horses can often be seen at various celebrations at Prague Castle, and they are also used by the mounted police in Pardubice, Ostrava and Prague. The horses are also talented in combined driving competitions and dressage. The horses are known for their calm nature and are great for recreational driving as well as hippotherapy.
The horses and the Royal courts
With few royal stables left in Europe today, the National Stud in Kladruby nad Labem is very honoured to still provide horses for both the Royal courts in both Denmark and Sweden.
The horses today
Nowadays, the National Stud keeps around 500 horses. 250 grey Kladrubers are bred in the historic site of Kladruby nad Labem and 250 black Kladrubers are bred in Slatiňany, a former stud of the princely family of Auersperg, located about 40 kilometres (25 miles) east of Kladruby nad Labem.
Over the years there have been a few changes at the stud with extensive restoration in 2015 in Kladruby and in 2019 the National stud at Kladruby nad Labem was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The stud farm is open to the public for tours
The Kladruby nad Labem stud farm and the Slatinany studs are both open to the general public from April through September offering guided tours of the historical buildings and stables. You can also pre-book carriage rides in advance.
Please check the National Czech Republic Horse Stud Kladruby nad Labem website Here
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Information & Photo: The National Horse stud of the Czech republic, Kladruby nad Labem