Welcome to your one-stop shop for all things Czech.
Type: Unitary parliamentary constitutional republic
President: Miloš Zeman
King: Andrej Babiš
$10.00 ≈ Kč230
Bordered by Poland, Slovakia, Austria, and Germany
Smažený sýr (fried cheese)
Warm, dry summers
Cold, rainy winters
Beer ≈ Kč23
Ice cream ≈ Kč21
Czechoslovakia split in 1993 and The Czech Republic was peacefully formed. This split was dubbed The Velvet Divorce. Today The Czech Republic is a peaceful, developed nation which provides universal healthcare and free university level education to its citizens.
War: The Czech Republic is a NATO member. Today the country is involved in The War in Afghanistan and the Northern Mali Conflict.
Identification: Police are entitled to ask you for identification at all times, however you are not required to carry an identity card on you. If you are stopped the police must provide you with assistance in identifying yourself.
Drugs: Sale of all drugs is a criminal act. However, possession of small amounts of drugs (i.e. <15 grams of marijuana) is a misdemeanor offense subject only to a fine. Medical marijuana is permitted.
Alcohol: 18 is the legal drinking age in The Czech Republic. Generally, it is permitted to drink on the streets, however certain neighborhoods may have rules against it.
LGBTQ: Discrimination based on sexual preference or gender identity is against the law. Same-sex couples do have some rights under the law, however same-sex marriage is not permitted.
Generally speaking, The Czech Republic is a very safe country for tourists. Unfortunately, petty theft does still exist and pick-pockets are prevalent on trams and other public transportation.
Another issue is the taxi mafia. It is advisable to steer clear of taxis all together as drivers do not use meters and will charge obscene prices, especially to tourists. Public transport is good and Ubers are available
Founding: The Czech Republic is a young country, having formed only in 1993
Origins: The Duchy of Bohemia (Bohemia is still a region of CZ today) first came into existence in the late 9th century. In the 19th century the land became part of The Austrian Empire and later was Cisleithania, a part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.
Recent History: At the End of WWI, what is today The Czech Republic became a part of Czechoslovakia and at that time was the only democracy in Central Europe. The Czech lands were later occupied by Nazis who called for the extermination or enslavement of most Czechs. One of the Nazi’s infamous death camps was near Prague – Terezín. After the finish of WWII the area became a part of the communist Eastern Bloc until 1989 when the bloodless Velvet Revolution led to the return of a liberal democracy in Czechoslovakia up until 1993 when the two countries separated. The Czech Republic joined The EU in 2004.
There are no clothing rules in The Czech Republic.
Hello: Dobrý den (literally: good day) /doh-brie den/
Please: Prosím /pro-seem/
Thank you: Děkuji /di-ku-wee/
Can I have a beer please: Jedno pivo prosím /yed-no pi-vu pro-seem/
Where is the train station?: Kde je vlakové nádraží /gih-day yi vlo-koh-vay no-dro-zee/
Most greetings include a handshake. To use someone’s first name, you need to be invited by him or her first, generally it is the woman who offers this. If you are invited to a Czech house, it is necessary to come on time and take off your shoes when going through the door. Czech people also don’t discuss business in personal meetings.
Gender relations very much depend on the age and geography. Generally speaking, younger people in Prague are more liberal and agree with gender equality. Older people are more conservative and it is quite common that the woman does all the cleaning and cooking while the man works more and brings more money to the household.
Tips are kind of normal in Czech Republic. Even little ones. If you don’t tip, it is considered rude. Small tips usually mean that person would round up the check. If you should pay Kč15, you would give Kč20 and so on. Bigger tips are usually about Kč20 to Kč50 and are given when you consider the service very good.
Czech Republic has a lot of respect for older people and it is considered rude to, for example, not let them sit on the bus or tram. It is also considered rude or offensive to have a hat on inside any building – whether you are male or female. Another thing that is considered rude is not to greet when being greeted – that can easily happen on hiking trails or on riverboat trips.
Czech Republic has freedom of religion so generally speaking – all religions are welcome. Czechs themselves are usually non-believers, about 20% or people are Catholics. The main religious customs include going to church every Sunday. Outside of Prague there are fun fairs in the name of saints (which saint depends on the location of the fun fair). At these fun fairs there used to be a big mass, nowadays it is mainly a fun fair for kids.
The Czech Republic, like much of Europe, is not entirely accessible to those with a disability. Some of the most popular tourist destinations, like Prague’s Old Town, are pedestrian-friendly and walkable, but challenging to access if you are limited to walking very short distances. Cobblestone and unpredictable roads add to the challenge. My experience of traveling in the third trimester of pregnancy was that many buildings were accessible only by stairs, with no elevators, making them impossible for me – and anyone with reduced mobility. And while buses always had seats reserved for those with disabilities, the elderly, or pregnant women, I found most often that the seats were not given up without me having to ask. This might seem small, but it contributed to an overall sense of the country feeling less accessible and welcoming to those traveling with impairments.
By: Ota Pavel
Goodreads Stars: 4.06/5
This book brings you to the time of Nazi occupation in what was then Czechoslovakia as a young boy uses his knowledge of fish and fishing to survive.
Starring: Jamie Dornan
Anthropoid is the true story of the attempted – and failed – assassination of SS General Reinhard Heydrich one of the highest rankings Nazis. Along with a history lesson, the movie has fantastic Prague scenes.