Kafka, castles, beer, oh my! Prague is as diverse and charming a European city like none other I’ve visited. If you have been thinking of visiting Prague alone, then my Prague Solo Travel Guide will surely entice you to start making your Prague travel reservations.
CZECH REPUBLIC TRAVEL GUIDE
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TOP CZECH REPUBLIC TRAVEL TIPS
Vítejte v České republice!
Czech Republic – also known as Czechia, the Czech Republic is home to 16 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, including Kutná Hora and the historic Centres of Český Krumlov, Telč, and Prague, its beautiful capital.
Czechia is also home to the original Budweiser beer and Pilsner beer (from Pilsen), curd cheese (“syrečky”), amazing architecture, more than 1200 wineries, has 2000 castles and chateaus (the most in Europe, including the most ancient – Prague Castle).
Let’s not forget Czechia also is also home to the oldest university in Central Europe, and Otto Wichterle (the inventor of soft contact lenses), Miloš Forman, Oskar Schindler, Sigmund Freud, Franz Kafka, and Martina Navratilova (my favorite tennis player).
LANGUAGES IN THE CZECH REPUBLIC
The official language of the Czech Republic is Czech (formerly known has Bohemian).
How's Your Czech?
Need any easy way to brush up on your Czech for your trip to Czechia?
CZECH REPUBLIC CULTURE
The Czech Republic, comprised of three provinces – Bohemia, Moravia, and Silesia – is a land-locked country in central Europe surrounded by Germany, Poland, Slovakia and Austria.
The Czech Republic goes back over 1000 years. It has been the kingdom of Bohemia, part of the Habsburg monarchy, joined with the Slovaks as “Czechoslovaks” after WWI, was split between Germany and Hungary during WWII, was annexed by the Soviet Union until the fall of the Berlin Wall, then finally independent in 1993 and joined the European Union in 2004. In 2016 it adopted the informal name, Czechia.
Czechia still holds many medieval town centers, castles and chateaus, and has a rich history of writers, poets, scientists, and musicians.
Czechia has a democratically elected parliamentary in which the parliament elects the president.
The Czech’s are not very religious – almost 40% classify as atheist, slightly less than that as Roman Catholic, with the remaining as a mixture of Protestant or other.
Czechia is an advanced country with high educational status, several social classes, low unemployment rate, and smaller immigration population, although many expats reside in Czechia.
Czechs place high importance on family. They have smaller-size families (rarely more than two children) and extended family living is common.
Although some may consider Czechs as having a “rough exterior”, they are very friendly and hospitable.
POPULAR CZECH ACTIVITIES
The Czechs love to socialize with music, food and alcohol. This can be done at home or at restaurants, bars or clubs.
Traditional food is fulfilling, comfort-style food with meats and sauces served with potatoes or dumplings. Beer is the most popular alcohol but wine, spirits (including absinthe) are also consumed.
Czechs also like to partake in folk traditions and holidays, music performances and festivals.
Indoors they enjoy art, music, and museums. Outdoors they partake in sports such as cycling, kayaking and trekking in the summer, and skiing and snowboarding in the winter.
CZECH REPUBLIC CURRENCY
The Czech Republic uses the Czech koruna (CZK). Check throughout your travel planning phase on any exchange rate changes.
CZECH REPUBLIC TRANSPORTATION
The Czech Republic has Bolt, Uber, Carpoolworld, and other possible regional ridesharing services and apps (research in advance if they are in your destination area). There are also rental cars and taxis, of course.
TIPPING IN THE CZECH REPUBLIC
Traveling in a new country is easier when you know the country’s tipping etiquette in advance as each country has its own rules. That said, country rules and norms can shift, so here is an international tipping resource for over 70 countries to use as a general guideline that I have found is constantly updated.
What’s not on there is how to tip a concierge, beauty salons or spas, travel or tour guides, etc. For these extras, it is acceptable to tip 10% at minimum. Remember, tipping is for good service only.
Additionally, you should always tip in the local currency (if tipping in cash), and do not be offended if your tip is refused as it may not be the norm. I feel it’s always better to offer a tip for good service than not, unless I know it will be considered offensive, like in Japan.
CZECH REPUBLIC'S HOLIDAYS
A key activity to do in your early planning stage is to know, at minimum, the national holidays. I so suggest also looking into the local holidays. It’s a complete bummer to spend time and money to take the holiday of your lifetime and when you show up at one of your key attractions, it’s closed due to a holiday. It’s also not fun trying to travel and have a hard time accessing travel or other essential resources when no one is around because, yes, it’s a local holiday. So, take just a few moments to look at Czech Republic’s holidays.
Besides money, required ID and your ticket, Czech Republic voltage is 230V and the standard frequency is 50 Hz, so bring Type C and E adapters (it doesn’t hurt to bring 2 of each) for Czech Republic outlets and research if your electronics require a voltage converter, if not already included in the adapter; or, you can bring electronics already adapted for Czech Republic outlets or wait to purchase them there (I recommend just bringing the adapters with converter). Remember, most smart phones, tablets and laptops don’t require a converter, but double-check your device(s) before you leave home. If you are going to another country in addition to the Czech Republic on your trip, you can check the global adapters list to make sure you’re prepared. I have also provided suggested adapters below for your convenience.
- Compact heavy duty - 3 prong grounded safe Type E/F Plug adapter - Compatible in most of European countries such as
- Perfect for travelling and using with your iPhone charger, laptop charger, camera charger and other dual voltage chargers.
- Accepts plugs from all countries including USA, does not accept plugs from S. Africa
- Perfect for your travel needs: This is all you need to charge your cell phones, laptops, camera chargers, CPAP machine or anything else that is dual voltage Compatible.
- 2 in 1 Input: Accepts the standard N American 2 and/or 3 prong flat pin Plug (including polarized) - No Messy Universal Outlet
- Ultra Compact Size & Safe: only measures 1.5 x 1.5 x 1.75" & max load rating: 10-15A/250V, round pin thickness - 4.0 mm
- A Powerful Set of 12 Adapters - Our all-in-one international travel adapter set features 1 universal input socket that allows you to connect a plug from almost any country worldwide, including the 2-prong and 3-prong North American plugs.
TRAVEL DOCUMENTS FOR THE CZECH REPUBLIC
From the U.S., you will need a valid passport. Visa’s are not required if your stay is less than 3 months. Make sure your passport expiration date is greater than 6 months from your return to the U.S. The U.S. State Department always has their link up to date with pertinent information when traveling to the Czech Republic. It is advised to always check there during your planning stage and again before you leave. If you are not from the U.S., please check your government’s website.
VACCINATIONS FOR THE CZECH REPUBLIC
There are normally no vaccinations required for Czech Republic travel. The U.S. State Department always has their link up to date with pertinent information when traveling to the Czech Republic. It is advised to always check there during your planning stage and again before you leave. If you are not from the U.S., please check your government’s website.
CZECH REPUBLIC TRAVEL BOOKING
CZECH REPUBLIC ECOTOURISM TIPS
There are ways to reduce your eco and carbon footprint through air travel, accommodations, tours, and activities in the Czech Republic. To help avoid greenwashing businesses, here are some eco-friendly or sustainable travel (also called responsible travel) tips and resources, you can use to book your travel.
ECO-FRIENDLY AIR TRAVEL
Skyscanner provides a ‘Greener flights’ filter highlighting flights that emit less CO2.
Purchase carbon offsets through your airline or through a third party, like MyClimate.org, Carbonfund.org, or terrapass. Carbon offsetting allows you to buy a certificate to reduce carbon emissions, a major contributor to climate change, which in turn contribute community projects across countries to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
ECO-FRIENDLY GROUND TRANSPORTATION
When booking a rideshare in Czechia, select the Bolt Green or Uber Green options instead of a traditional rideshare, or use Carpoolworld, to support the use of electric cars and carpooling for cleaner transportation in Czechia.
Look for accommodations with the following self and third-party assessed certifications when you book:
Green Globe – Green Globe certifies hotels, resorts, conference centers, transportation, attractions, tour operators, and other tourism businesses globally on sustainable operations and management. Look for the Czech Republic and other European Green Global members.
Green Key Global is an internationally recognized environmental certification for the lodging and meetings industries, including hotels and hostels, campsites and holiday parks, restaurants and attractions in 65 countries. Search for Green Key awarded sites.
Living Building Challenge – if you want to stay in a true, sustainable building, find one certified by the Living Building Challenge. LBC’s certification directory shows all project types globally. Hopefully they will put in a filter soon to allow searching by hotels or hospitality type.
LEED Certified – the USGBC’s LEED Certified label on buildings, like many of the Marriott’s hotels, are those that have verifiably employed multiple and varying green building strategies to improve human and environmental health. Search the LEED directory for Czech Republic certifications.
GSTC Certified – the Global Sustainable Tourism Council provides global standards for sustainable travel and tourism, as well as international accreditation for sustainable tourism Certification Bodies. Booking sites that offer GSTC certified sustainable are bookdifferent, EcoHotels, and Transat.
Another way to find an establishments implementing eco-friendly or sustainable practices, certified or not, is through Booking.com in which you’ll need to find and review each establishment’s ‘Sustainable Initiatives’ within the booking process. Starting 2022, however, you’ll be able to filter searches for accommodations with the Travel Sustainable badge. Finally!
MORE ECO-TRAVEL TIPS
CZECH REPUBLIC SAFETY TIPS
HOW TO TRAVEL CZECHIA SAFELY
The Czech Republic has been voted the 7th safest country to live per the 2019 Global Peace Index. It is also considered a safe place to visit. Street crime is unlikely. Beyond any possible theft or pickpocketing, which could happen in most tourist places to be honest, there is nothing I can recall from the Czech Republic making it more of a “safety concern” than traveling in my own home country, so my standard tips for female and solo travelers are:
- always carry photo ID with you; if you don’t want your passport on you at all times, at least carry a copy of it.
- always be “street wise”.
- always be aware of your surroundings, especially if you feel the need to imbibe or feel the need to “let loose” – you’re on vacation so have fun!
- never leave your food or drink unattended.
- keep your belongs on your person, or at least in your view in close proximity, at all times.
- be open to meeting and talking with new people – that is where a lot of the travel experience lies – but be careful on how you divulge personal information.
- research places in advance, if possible, so you know what to expect (i.e., “have a familiar view” – I like to Google the street view of new addresses I’m going to first).
- if something, someone or someplace makes you feel uncomfortable, go with your gut – leave.
CZECH REPUBLIC BUDGET TRAVEL TIPS
BEST TIME TO VISIT THE CZECH REPUBLIC
Like other countries in Europe, Czechia’s high, tourist season, and most expensive time, is the summer (late June to August). Crowds are not as heavy in the Spring (April to early June) and Fall (September and October), and prices in these months are lower than the summer season. The least expensive time to go to Czechia would be November to March. For overall best weather and prices, try booking well in advance for Spring or Autumn but keep in mind the Spring weather can still be cold (mid 30’s to mid 50’s F) so, plan on wearing layers at minimum.
From all of the wonderful things I had heard about Prague, it had been on my bucket list since the 1990’s. However, no matter how much I tried to get it into my Europe trips, it always got cut.
I finally got to Prague in 2021, and it was worth the wait. Prague basically missed the destruction from World War II that other European cities endured. The archictecture is what I had hoped, not to mention the people, food and wine. I look forward to having more time to explore the rest of Czechia. I hope it doesn’t take me as long the next time around.
CZECH REPUBLIC PHOTOS
CZECH REPUBLIC & EUROPE BLOG POSTS
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