Cover photo by Susan Tuckey, Penguins2PolarBears - Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic

When you think of the Czech Republic, your mind likely runs straight to Prague. Certainly spectacular in its own right, pretty Prague is just a drop in the bucket compared to the countless other gems the country offers. Not merely a place you should pass through, the Czech Republic is a worthy destination by itself. From vibrant cities and quaint villages, to ancient castles and warm, welcoming people - not to mention delicious food - this is why you’ll love it. 

Consider the Czech Republic If You Love: 


With more than 2,000 castles - from pristine palaces to centuries-old ruins - throughout the country, the Czech Republic boasts the highest density of castles in Europe. Prague actually contains the largest castle complex in the world - it was founded in around 880 and includes palaces and churches in all manner of style, from Romanesque to Gothic. Other oldies but goodies: Karlstejn Castle and the Trosky Castle ruins from the 1300s. 

Photo by Susan Tuckey, Penguins2PolarBears - Prague, Czech Republic

Beer and Wine 

Raise a pint of Gambrinus, Bernard or Staropramen - all well-known Czech beer brands - to the country’s long-standing, beer-brewing tradition. Since the year 993, the country has been producing its popular brews, including the world’s first pilsner. 

If you’re an oenophile, you won’t want to miss Moravian wine. This Tuscany-like region in south Czechia is blessed with ample vineyards caressed in sunshine much of the year. Try a glass of the flowery, earthy vintages here at one of the many wine-tasting cellars in the town of Mikulov. 

The Dark Side

For a touch of the morbid, don’t miss the Sedlec Ossuary in Kutna Hora, where the eye-catching art is created from skulls and bones. The bone chandelier and arms of weapons are particularly intriguing. It is estimated that the chapel (whose name means Bone Church) contains the bones of between 40,000 and 70,000 people, mainly those who died during the Black Plague in the 14th century. Prefer something a bit cheerier? Pop over to the famous Gothic St. Barbara’s Church, also in town. 

Sedlec Ossuary in Kutna Hora

UNESCO World Heritage Sites 

If you’re a lover of history and culture, you’ll be able to check off numerous UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Czechia. The sites here go beyond historic buildings to include old town centers in Prague, Kutna Hora, Telc and Cesky Krumlov; the Holasovice Historical Village Reservation; and the cultural-natural landscape complex at Lednice-Valtice. 

Cesky Krumlov


If you’re a sybarite in search of luscious spa treatments while on vacation, head to Karlovy Vary, the best spa town in Czechia. Other favorites include Marianske Lazne, Lipova-Iazne and Teplice. There are even beer spas, where massages, baths and more are ale-based. Oxygenotherapie and mud baths are also on the menu at most of the “sanatoriums,” which combine spa treatments and medical care in a resort setting. 

Karlovy Vary

Being Close to Everything 

After you’ve completed your in-depth tour of the Czech Republic, it’s easy to move on to other countries - just be certain you’ve given Czechia its due. From Prague, it’s easy to connect to other transportation hubs throughout Europe, including Vienna, Berlin and Krakow. 

Meat and Potatoes 

Fancy a hearty meal? You’ve come to the right place. Dig into traditional meat, potato and other root vegetable dishes, all smothered in gravy, or a thick stew come winter time. Tuck into braised sirloin covered in a creamy parsley root and carrot sauce or the ever-popular roasted pork with dumplings and a side of pickled cabbage. Goulash is almost always available, a pork stew with lots of onions and served with bread dumplings. Craving sweet? Try soft, buttery livance pancakes dusted with powdered sugar or a piece of bublanina vanilla or lemon sponge cake.

Photo by Susan Tuckey, Penguins2PolarBears - Food Tour in Prague, Czech Republic

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