Špindlerův Mlýn (Czech pronunciation: [ˈʃpɪndlɛruːv ˈmliːn]; German: Spindlermühle, formerly also Spindelmühle) is a town in Trutnov District in the Hradec Králové Region of the Czech Republic. It has about 1,100 inhabitants. It lies in the Krkonoše mountains and it is one of the most frequented ski resorts in the country.
The municipal area comprises the villages of Bedřichov, Labská and Přední Labská.
Špindlerův Mlýn is in the north of the historic Bohemia region near the border with Poland. Situated on the southern slopes of the Kozí hřbety, part of the Krkonoše Bohemian Ridge, at an altitude of 715 m (2,346 ft) to 1,310 m (4,300 ft) a.s.l., it is protected on all sides by the mountain peaks of Kozí hřbety, Pláň and Mt. Medvědín. In the east rises Luční hora at 1,555 m (5,102 ft), the second highest mountain of the Czech Republic.
Špindlerův Mlýn lies on the confluence of the river Elbe and the Dolský creek. The Elbe source is located northwest of the town, near the Polish border and Mt. Wielki Szyszak at an altitude of 1,386 m (4,547 ft). About 1 km downstream are the Elbe Falls (Labský vodopád) which cascade about 40 m (130 ft) in depth. A large dam was built in 1911–16 near Labská (Krausebauden).
The settlement was first documented in the early 16th century under the rule of King Louis II Jagiello. It received its name (which can be literally translated as Špindler's Mill) after a mill belonging to a Spindler family, where neighbours would meet.In the 18th century, large parts of the surrounding forests were a possession of the Habsburg minister Friedrich August von Harrach-Rohrau (1696–1749), after whom the village of Bedřichov (Friedrichsthal) is named. In 1793 the local miners and lumbermen were given permission by Emperor Francis II to build the parish Church of St. Peter. After World War II the remaining German-speaking population was expelled according to the Beneš decrees.
Špindlerův Mlýn developed as a resort town from the mid 19th century onwards. Franz Kafka stayed here for recreation in January/February 1922 and began writing of one of his most famous works, The Castle (Das Schloss).
With year-round use and with accommodation capacity of 10,000 beds, Špindlerův Mlýn is one of the most visited ski resorts in the Czech Republic, and has 20 runs, the most of all resorts in the country. During the winter season the area hosts the Europacup in freestyle skiing and SnowJam, a professional snowboarding event. Some years, e.g. 2019, the Alpine Ski World Cup has been held here. In the surroundings there are many marked hiking, mountain biking and cross-country skiing trails. Wildwater canoeing is also common on the Labe river.
Twin towns – sister cities
Špindlerův Mlýn is twinned with: