Official name of the state
As a country located in Europe according to thembaprograms, the Czech Republic borders Germany and Poland in the north, Slovakia in the east, Austria in the south and Germany in the west. In the west of the country lies Cechy (Bohemia), in the east Morava (Moravia). Famous spa and bathing resorts, numerous castles, palaces, cultural monuments and historical cities are attractions.
In Bohemia lies the beautiful capital Prague; the West Bohemian spa towns of Karlovy Vary (Karlsbad), Márianské Lázne (Marienbad), Frantiskovy Lázne (Franzbad) and Jachymov (Joachimsthal) as well as the mountainous region of Sumava (Bohemian Forest) invite you to relax. The Elbe rises in the Giant Mountains, a nature park and one of the most beautiful cross-country skiing areas in the country. South Bohemia, a popular summer vacation area, is known for its palaces and castles as well as a multitude of lakes. The Vltava is the longest river in the country, it rises in the Bohemian Forest and flows into the Elbe at Melnik.
The agricultural region of Morava (Moravia) offers forested highlands, vineyards, traditional folk art and picturesque castles. The city of Brno (Brno) is the cultural and administrative center of Moravia.
Republic since 1993. Constitution of 1993, last amended in 2002. Bicameral Parliament: House of Representatives (Poslanecká snìmovna) with 200, Senate with 81 members. President is directly elected for five years, re-election possible Separated from Slovakia since 1993. The Czech Republic is a member of the EU.
Head of state
Miloš Zeman, since January 2013.
Head of government
Bohuslav Sobotka, since January 2014.
230 V, 50 Hz. Most sockets are compatible with continental, Western European plugs, but the coverage is not 100%, an adapter is recommended.
Central European Time: CET +2 (CET +3 from March 26 to October 29, 2017)
1 Koruna Ceská (Czech crown) = 100 Háleru (Heller). Currency abbreviations: Kc, CZK (ISO code). Banknotes are available in denominations of 5,000, 2,000, 1,000, 500, 200 and 100 Kc; Coins are in circulation in denominations of 50, 20, 10, 5, 2 and 1 Kc.
Note: According to experts, the introduction of the euro in the Czech Republic will not take place before 2020.
American Express, Diners Club, Discover, Visa and MasterCard are accepted in ATMs, larger hotels, some restaurants and shops. Carry enough cash with you in smaller restaurants and in rural areas. Details from the issuer of the credit card in question.
EC / Maestro card / Sparcard
With EC / Maestro card and PIN number, cash in the local currency can be withdrawn from ATMs that are available across Europe. Cashless payment is possible in tourist areas and in larger shops and restaurants with an ec card. Cards with the Cirrus or Maestro symbol are accepted in Europe and worldwide. Further information from banks and credit institutes. The same applies to the German Sparcard, the successor to the postal savings book as a means of procuring currency in other European countries. With the Sparcard and PIN number, cash can be withdrawn from European ATMs with the Plus logo.
Attention: Travelers who pay abroad with their bank customer card and want to withdraw money should find out about the possibilities of using their card from their bank before starting their journey.
Bank opening times
Mon-Fri 8 a.m.-4.30 p.m. / 5 p.m. (possibly with a lunch break). Some banks close earlier on Fridays.
Foreign exchange regulations
For travelers inside and outside the EU, there are no restrictions on the import or export of national and foreign currencies, but there is an obligation to declare cash from the equivalent of € 10,000 (including travelers checks, other currencies or checks made out to third parties).
Foreign currencies can be exchanged in all branches of banks, exchange offices, border crossings and in some larger hotels. Exchange offices advertise the much cheaper buying rate for kroner, so travelers should find out about the current exchange rate before switching.
The official language is Czech. Slovak, Polish, German, Russian and English are also spoken.
Bohemian glass and crystal, art books, ceramics, porcelain, wood carvings, hand-embroidered clothing and culinary specialties (e.g. Prague ham or Znojmo cucumber).
Shop opening times: Mon-Sat 9 am-6pm. In small towns and rural areas, shops close at 12 noon on Sat, while in larger towns they are open on Sun 10 am-4pm. Many grocery stores and supermarkets in larger cities are open from 7 a.m. during the week.
11% Catholics and 1% Protestants. Hussites, Jews and Orthodox minorities as well as numerous non-religious groups (79%).
Social rules of conduct
Manners: ‘Guten Tag’ (dobry den) and ‘Auf Wiedersehen’ (na shledanou) are part of polite interaction. If you are invited home, the host is happy to receive a small gift such as a bouquet of flowers. Before entering the house, shoes should be removed. When asking for directions, always give the Czech name of the place.
Clothing: More elegant clothing is expected for formal invitations and in particularly elegant restaurants and hotels. Tourists can usually be recognized by their casual clothing.
Smoking: Smoking is prohibited in public transport, in train stations and at bus stops as well as in cultural institutions. However, smoking is still allowed in restaurants.
Tips: 5-10% are gladly accepted.