This city of 32,000 inhabitants stretches on either side of the Elbe River as the river crosses the Polabí plain. It is said to have been founded by King Přemsyl Otakar II in the second half of the 13th century. Favoured by various rulers, it developed rapidly and became an important cultural and administrative centre. Kolín is a small town rich in important religious monuments and boosted by the installation of many local and foreign firms (chemical, food-processing, mechanical, merchant port). In fact, it is one of the country's largest car producers with Citroën, Peugeot and Toyota plants. Among the famous natives of the town is the Franco-Czech mime Jean-Gaspard Deburau (Jan Kašpar Dvorák in Czech, 1796-1846) who inspired the character of Baptiste, the Pierrot from the film Les Enfants du paradis by Marcel Carné and Jacques Prévert.

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