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Regional division and cities

Prague

Prague is capital city of the Czech Republic and, at the same time, it is one of the 14 regions of the Czech Republic. It is a political, economical, cultural and tourism center of national and international importance. More than 1,200,000 people live in the area of 496 km2 and there are almost 800,000 job opportunities. Prague forms the center of the Central Bohemian region – i.e. a region larger than 3,000 km2 – where a further 500,000 people live.

Relations between Prague and this area regarding its position inside the Central Bohemian region are stronger than to other parts of the country and other regions. The number of temporarily present persons in the city increases. Currently, there are more than 300,000 of them.

Prague is located almost in the center of Bohemia. The center is located in the Vltava River valley, by its affluence. Thanks to erosion activity, the Prague locality is rugged; the lowest point is level of the Vltava River is by Suchdol (177 meters above sea level); the highest point is the Teleček hill located between Sobín and Chrášťany (399 meters above sea level). Petřín hill (327 meters above sea level) is located at the center and steeply rises from the Vltava River.

The capital city Prague is among the traditional and most significant economical centers in Bohemia. Besides a significant film industry and possibly the most significant area of tourism, there are also many manufacturing industry companies.

Prague is the main traffic junction in the Czech Republic and, thanks to its location in the center of Europe, is also an important hub in Europe. It has an extensive infrastructure. The railway hub in Prague is the center of long-distance and local transport. Praha-Ruzyně Airport is the main airport in Prague and the Czech Republic with European importance. Personal water transportation in Prague is mainly of a recreational and tourism character. Freight traffic along the Vltava River is supported by a port in Radotín; however, it is only used occasionally. Gradually, two highway ring roads are being built around Prague and should be completed around 2015, thus releasing the Prague city center from excessive traffic.

Thanks to its history, Prague is, in terms of culture, among the most important cities in the world. It is among the 10 most visited cities. There is a large quantity of architectural and cultural monuments. Monument reservation in Prague includes municipal parts with the highest concentration of monuments and, with its size of 8.66 km2, it is among the biggest reservations of its kind in the world. There is in total 37 national cultural monuments in Prague. The most significant are Prague Castle and Charles Bridge.

South Bohemian region

The South Bohemian region is located on 10,056 km2. In the framework of the Czech Republic, it borders the Plzeňský region in west, the Central Bohemian region to the north, the Vysočina region to the northeast and a small part of the South Moravian region to the east. It also borders Austria to the south and Germany to the southwest. The district city is České Budějovice. It constitutes seven county districts: České Budějovice, Český Krumlov, Jindřichův Hradec, Písek, Prachatice, Strakonice and Tábor. The highest point of the region is Plechý hill (1,378 meters above sea level).

Biggest cities:

  • České Budějovice;
  • Tábor;
  • Písek;
  • Strakonice;
  • Jindřichův Hradec.

The South Bohemian region is not very rich in mineral resources. The mining of sand-gravel, construction stone, brick clay prevails, and, in a limited quantity, also ceramic clay, limestone and graphite. Significant natural resources are forests that take up more than one-third of the region’s area. Regarding the occurrence of quartz and quartz sand, the manufacture of glass also originated.

The distribution of the industrial and business areas in the South Bohemian region is currently influenced by the tradition of industrial production in city centers. Lately, a very important geographical location is in the vicinity of economically developed countries, Austria and Germany. Industrial production is concentrated mainly in the České Budějovice agglomeration and in the Tábor and Strakonice districts. The manufacturing industry prevails (production of vehicles, machines, equipment and electrical technologies; production of food and drinks; textile and clothing production). A new energy center is the nuclear power plant Temelín.

Despite the strong influence of industry, the primary sector (agriculture, forestry and fishing) is still very important. A long-term tradition in the South Bohemian region is pond-fishing. Fish breeding over 25,000 hectares of water areas represents half of the production in the framework of the Czech Republic. The production of wood, mainly pine wood but also deal wood (Třeboň district).

Nature in the South Bohemian region is well-known because of several ponds and picturesque villages located in the middle of the České Budějovice geological basin and the Třebonice geological basin. The basins are surrounded by hills: Středočeská pahorkatina, Českomoravská vrchovina, Novohradské hory on the border with Austria and Šumava, the second highest hill in Bohemia, on the southwest border. The highest point in the region is Plechý Mountain (1378 meters above sea level); the lowest point is the level of the Orlická Reservoir (350 meters above sea level). The average sea-level altitude is 400–600 meters. The South Bohemian region is an important tourist and recreational area. Recently, the participation of tourism represented the highest increase of share regarding business activities in the region. The South Bohemian region has, after Prague 2, the biggest accommodation capacity and, in terms of tourism, it is the fourth most frequently visited region in the Czech Republic (after Prague, South Moravia and Hradec Králové).

The South Bohemian region has a strategic position on the north-south transport axis. There are important international roads, a north-south railway corridor, European cycling and tourist routes.

A fundamental step to the origination of a civil airport was the granting of a license for domestic air traffic to Jihočeské letiště České Budějovice, a.s.; the airport in Hosín u Českých Budějovic owns an international license. The current road network sufficiently ensures basic traffic access to cities and municipalities. However, there is no highway connection in the region. This should be changed by the construction of the D3 highway and the R3 and R4 freeways. The condition for more significant transport of freight transport on railways is the construction of the IV. transit railway corridor Prague-České Budějovice-Linz, which is among the most important traffic projects in the EU.

In the territory of the South Bohemian region several historically important monuments and municipal monument reservations are located. The center of Český Krumlov is registered in the list of UNESCO World Heritage sites. There are also many castles and chateaus. Tourists also visit the monastery in Vyšší Brod and other monuments. In the countryside, many picturesque villages are located that demonstrate typical traditional folk architecture. There are 16 village monument reservations in the South Bohemian region. One of them, Holašovice, was also registered in the list of UNESCO World Heritage sites.

South Moravian region

The South Moravian region is located in the southeast part of the Czech Republic, on 7,195 km2. To the west, it shares a small part of the border with the South Bohemian region; it neighbors the Vysočina region to the northwest, the Pardubice region to the south, the Olomouc region to the northeast and the Zlín region to the east. It neighbors Austria and Slovakia to the south and southeast. In the center of the region is the second biggest city in the Czech Republic, Brno. The South Moravian region consists of seven districts: Blansko, Brno – city, Brno – countryside, Břeclav, Hodonín, Vyškov and Znojmo. The highest point is Čupec (819 meters above sea level).

Brno is the center of justice and an economical and administrative center. It has an important university and is a fair city of European importance. Every year fairs there are visited by more than 1 million visitors from across Europe.

Biggest cities:

  • Brno;
  • Znojmo;
  • Hodonín;
  • Břeclav;
  • Vyškov.

From a geographical point of view, the region is well-situated, thanks to its location in a historical connection between southern and northern Europe. It neighbors Austria and Slovakia and, in the framework of the Czech Republic, the South Bohemian, Jihlava, Olomouc, Pardubice and Zlín regions. Environmental conditions vary and affect the method of the region’s use and living.

Among the main areas in the South Moravian region is the engineering industry. In Brno, agricultural machines, hydraulic and air machines and bearings are manufactured. Other important areas for companies focusing on engineering industry are located in Blansko district, north of Brno.

In terms of traffic, the South Moravian region serves, thanks to its location by the borders of two countries, an important transit function. The main transport routes are highways D-1, D2 and freeways R-43 and R-52. An important traffic center of the road, highway and railway transport and integrated traffic system of the South Moravian region is the city of Brno. The civil airport in Brno-Tuřany is able to accept all types of airplanes year-round. Two main railway corridors connecting EU countries pass through the region. It is a goal of Brno’s to construct a high-speed railway track. Highways and roads are approx. 4,500 km long.

The South Moravian region is typical with hundreds of important architectonic monuments. The atmosphere of past centuries is obvious in bigger and smaller old towns, several castles, manor houses, churches, chapel and Jewish and technical monuments. There are two UNESCO monuments in the region – the functionalist Tugendhat villa in Brno and a group of architectonic monuments, garden architecture and ponds in the Lednice-Valtice area.

Karlovy Vary region

The Karlovy Vary region is the westernmost region in the Czech Republic. The region neighbors Ústí nad Labem region to the northeast, the Plzeň region to the southeast, the Bavarian State to the southwest and the Saxony State to the northwest. The district city is Karlovy Vary. With its size, number of citizens and municipalities, the Karlovy Vary region is among the smallest regions in the Czech Republic. Its size, 3,314 km2, represents only 4% of the Czech Republic’s territory. It is the third-smallest region after the Prague and Liberec regions. The highest point is Klínovec (1,244 meters above sea level).

Biggest cities:

  • Karlovy Vary;
  • Aš;
  • Cheb;
  • Mariánské Lázně;
  • Sokolov.

Among the well-known attractions of the Karlovy Vary region is mainly the balneology – Karlovy Vary, Mariánské Lázně, Lázně Kynžvart, Konstantinovy Lázně, etc. are the best-known spa centers. Besides curative mineral springs, the region is known for its industrial companies that produce glass and porcelain. The center of engineering and textile industries is Cheb city; Sokolov city is the center of Sokolov basin where brown coal is mined and processed. Uranium bearing ore is mined in surroundings of Lázně Jáchymov.

After 1989, the traffic situation in the region changed significantly. After the border’s opening, road traffic (personal and freight) increased, which has negative influence on environment. The traffic infrastructure doesn’t correspond to the needs of the region’s development. The Karlovy Vary region is covered by relatively dense network of railway tracks. The main railway routes have been reconstructed (some parts of them); part of the network is electrified. Some routes are part of the international network. The main railway network is formed by the double-tracked track Chomutov – Cheb, leading through the entire territory of the region. To this route, individual regional routes are connected. In Karlovy Vary, the smallest international airport in the CR is located, with regular flights to Russia and charter flights to Turkey, Greece and Egypt.

Since medieval times, the most important centre of the region is Cheb; Cheb is among the oldest cities in Bohemia. The historical center of the city is formed by the historical town reserve. The symbol of the city is well-known Špalíček – a group of 11 late-Gothic mercantile houses from the 13th century. The most important historical monument is Kynžvart Castle, where the history of the entire Austro-Hungarian Empire originated. The main attraction of the region is the spa center Karlovy Vary. The city is famous for its beauty and curative success in the world. Well-known castles are located in Cheb and Loket and are visited by thousands of tourists every year.

Vysočina region

The Vysočina region, with a size of 6,796 km2, is among the regions with above-average size. Only four regions in the Czech Republic are bigger. The Vysočina region consists of the following districts: Havlíčkův Brod, Pelhřimov, Třebíč, Jihlava and Žďár nad Sázavou. The region, as municipality, originated in 2000. the highest point is Javořice Mountain (837 meters above sea level).

Biggest cities:

  • Jihlava;
  • Havlíčkův Brod;
  • Pelhřimov;
  • Třebíč;
  • Ždár nad Sázavou.

The highest point is Javořice in the Javořice Highlands, located in the south of the Jihlava district (237 meters above sea level). The lowest point (approx. 239 meters above sea level) is in the southeast of the Třebíč district, at the point where the Jihlava River leaves its territory. There are two protected landscape areas within the region: Žďárské Hills and Iron Mountains. A point of interest is that Melechov Hill (Havlíčkův Brod district) is referred to in some literature as the “geographical center of Europe.”

There is wood-processing industry, glass-making industry, engineering industry, metal-working industry, textile industry and food-processing industry in the region; there are almost 30 industrial zones in the region. In the Vysočina region, there are exceptionally good conditions for the production of milk, potatoes and rapeseed. There are extensive forests in the region.

The Vysočina region is quite exposed in the framework of Central Europe. The main central European urbanizes axis (Berlin – Prague – Vienna/Bratislava – Budapest) passes through the region. It is part of the main communicational junction of southern Europe and Scandinavia with southeast Europe and west Asia. The importance and attractiveness of the location is even bigger because of its communications with a European character passing through it – mainly the highroad D2 (specified as E50 and E65 in the European network), railway and road I/38 Jihlava – Znojmo – Vienna (specified as E59 in the European network).

History left several monuments in the Vysočina region; three of them are registered in the list of UNESCO World Heritage sites (the center of Telč city, the monasterial church on the Green Hill by Žďár nad Sázavou and the Jewish quarter in Třebíč). The Vysočina region is a place where people can live well, work well, enterprise well or visit it and enjoy its beauty.

Liberec region

Liberec region is located in north Bohemia, and its size is 3,163 km2. It constitutes four districts – Liberec, Česká Lípa, Jablonec nad Nisou and Semily. Liberec is the district city; approximately 100,000 people live in Liberec. Approx. 430,000 residents have a permanent address in the Liberec region, which represents approx. 4% of all Czech citizens. The Liberec region is the smallest region in terms of the number of citizens. The highest point is Kotel Mountain (1,435 meters above sea level); the lowest point is located in the Česká Lípa district and it is the level of the Ploučnice River in Žandov.

Biggest cities:

  • Liberec;
  • Česká Lípa;
  • Jablonec nad Nisou;
  • Semily.

The Liberec region is an area with a very dense railway network, and it is among the regions with the most dense railway network in Europe. Road traffic is represented by freeway R35 Liberec – Turnov (Hradec Králové), European route E65 in the direction of Prague – Turnov – Harrachov – Poland, by first-class road I13 Frýdlant – Liberec – Děčín, I9 Česká Lípa – Mělník and I14 Liberec – Vrchlabí – Trutnov. There are several smaller regional airports; the most important are in Hodkovice nad Mohelkou and Česká Lípa – Lady. An attraction is the former military airport in Hradčany u Mimoně.

The main industrial areas are engineering, food-processing and glass-making (Nové Bory district and Jablonec nad Nisou district). In terms of European evaluation, agriculture is in the region of a subalpine to alpine type, thanks to average sea-level altitude, natural and climate conditions. There are mainly grains (barley and wheat), potatoes and rapeseed grown the region.

There are many cultural monuments in the Liberec region – castles, manor houses and ruins – e.g. Bezděz, Bradlec, Frýdlant, Frýdštejn, Grabštejn, Houska, Hrubá Skála, Hrubý Rohozec, Lemberk, Sychrov, Trosky, Vranov, Zbiroh. There is Czech Paradise, with its national to international importance and dominant summer season. This area is seeking registration on the list of UNESCO World Heritage sites. The region is unique by its concentration of natural attractions and historical monuments within such a small area. The region is traditionally linked to mountain-climbing, tourism and cycling. Currently, forms of country tourism are developing.

Hradec Králové region

The Hradec Králové region is located in the northeast part of Bohemia, and its size is 4,758 km2. It consists of five districts: Hradec Králové, Jičín, Trutnov, Náchod and Rychnov nad Kněžnou. The border of the region forms more than one-third of the national border with Poland, Liberec region and Pardubice region and forms the northeast area that is among the three biggest areas in the CR (in terms of size and number of citizens). The last neighbor is the Central Bohemian region. The regional city is Hradec Králové, which is approx. 110 km from Prague. The highest point is Sněžka Mountain (1,602 meters above sea level).

Biggest cities:

  • Hradec Králové;
  • Jičín;
  • Náchod;
  • Rychnov nad Kněžnou;
  • Trutnov.

The Hradec Králové region can be characterized as an agriculture-industrial region with developed tourism. Industry occurs in large cities; agriculture on the contrary in Polabí area. Tourism is concentrated mainly in the Krkonoše area. Two-thirds of National Park Krkonoše is located in the region, and the most important localities of the park are located there. There are also other protected landscape areas such as Broumovsko, the Orlické Mountains and Czech Paradise.

There are mainly grains (barley and wheat), rapeseed and corn grown in the region, and production of sugarbeet is also important. Mainly livestock and pigs are bred. The manufacturing industry prevails in the Hradec Králové region – mainly textile production and the production of electrical and optical equipment and machines. The region is not among the most important industrial centers in the Czech Republic.

There are more than 3,700 km of roads in the Hradec Králové region. The main traffic bundle of the Hradec Králové region represents the D11 highway (it ends by Nové Město nad Cidlinou for truck traffic and a few kilometers before Hradec Králové for personal traffic) and connected first-class road I/11 (part of international road E67 directed from Prague to Hradec Králové and Poland). Railway traffic leads through all important locations and districts in the region and it is thus accessible to most citizens. There is no double-tracked track; the railway network is thus not internationally important. Air traffic has only an additional function for the region. There are eight public domestic airports.

There are many cultural and historical monuments in the region, e.g. national cultural monument Ratibořice (by Česká Skalice), historical town reserves Hradec Hrálové, Jičín, Kuks, Nové Město nad Metují, Josefov (by Jaroměř), castles in Náchod, Opočno, etc., Czech Paradise, Jaroměř and Dvůr Králové known thanks to its safari. Holidays can be enjoyed on skis, bikes, walking through Czech Paradise or climbing the rocks in Adršpach.

Moravian-Silesian region

The Moravian-Silesian region is the easternmost part of the Czech Republic, and its size is 5,554 km2. It neighbors Zlín region to the south and the Olomouc region to the southwest. The region forms a national border with Poland and Slovakia (it neighbors the Žilina region). The regional city is Ostrava; the highest point is Praděd Mountain (1,492 meters above sea level).

Biggest cities:

  • Ostrava;
  • Karviná;
  • Nový Jičín;
  • Frýdek-Místek;
  • Opava.

To the west, east and partly to the south, the Moravian-Silesian region is delineated by mountains: the Hrubý Jeseník Mountains in the western part of the region, and the Moravskoslezské Beskydy in southeast and east, by the border with Slovakia and Poland. There is Radhošť Mountain in Moravskoslezské Beskydy. Southwest of the region forms the Nízký Jeseník Mountains and the Oder Hills. The Silesian Lowland and Opava-Ostrava Basin are located between the mountains. From the south, it is joined with the natural corridor Moravian Gate.

Thanks to deposits of black coal in the Ostrava-Karvinná Basin and related metallurgical and other industry, the region is among the most important industrial areas. In relation to the current decrement of heavy industries, unemployment increases significantly. Raw materials mining damaged the environment, and its restoration will take a long time. More than half the area of the region is taken by agricultural land; another 35% is taken by forest areas (mainly in the mountain areas of Jeseníky and Beskydy).

The region is not connected to a highway network, which is a huge drawback in terms of infrastructure. In May 2002, construction of the D47 highway began between Lipník nad Bečvou and the Polish border by Bohumín (highway length 80.2 km). Road infrastructure is currently focused on international roads I/11 (E 75) and I/48 (E 462), which pass through the eastern part of the region. There are two railway routes passing through the Moravian-Silesian region, both of European importance; the railway routes are part of the second and third transit railway corridor. Air traffic is provided via international airport Ostrava Mošnov, the second largest airport in Bohemia. Its landing runway enables the landing of all aircraft categories, with no limitation.

Cultural monuments in the Moravian-Silesian region have a rich history and construction styles. Most castles and manor houses have adjoining parks and gardens with rare tree species, and cultural events are organized there. Among the well-known castles and manor houses in the Moravian-Silesian region is Bruntál, Hradec nad Moravicí, Raduň, Hukvaldy, Sovinec, Starý Jičín, Fryštát v Karviné, etc.

There are also many ecclesiastical monuments in the region. Hundreds of churches, chapels, monasteries and pilgrimage sites are located in the Moravian-Silesian region. There is a group of old wooden churches and other wooden constructions typical of the Beskydy and Pobeskydí area.

Olomouc region

The Olomouc region is located in the central and northwest part of Moravia, and its size is 5,139 km2. It neighbors the Moravian-Silesian region to the east, the Pardubice region to the west, the Zlín region to the southeast and the South Moravian region to the southwest. The regional city is Olomouc. The region consists of the Šumperk, Olomouc, Prostějov, Přerov and Jeseník districts. Its size represents 6.52% of the Czech Republic.

Biggest cities:

  • Olomouc;
  • Prostějov;
  • Přerov;
  • Šumperk;
  • Jeseník.

There are mainly highlands in the northern part of the region; the region is delineated by the Jeseníky Mountains. The south part of the region is characterized by lowlands: the Upper-Moravian Valley and Moravian Gate.

Economical development in the region is affected mainly by natural conditions. The Haná area is known mainly as an agricultural area. Thanks to industrialization in the second half of the last century, industry expanded significantly in the region. Today, most citizens are employed in manufacturing-engineering, metalworking industry and in the production of electrical and optical equipment.

Primary, in terms of traffic, is the main railway route that passes through the entire region, from west to east, from Prague through Pardubice, Zábřeh, Olomouc, Přerov, Hranice and to the Ostrava region and Slovakia or Poland. The main road network connects Olomouc and Brno in the south. One of the oldest tram networks in the CR is located in Olomouc. The road network in the region is formed by first-, second- and third-class roads and expressways with an overall length of more than 3,000 km. Among the main roads is mainly the highway E462 that connects to the D1 by Vyškov and leads through Olomouc and Prostějov. Another important highway is E442 that connects Mohelnice, Litovel and Olomouc.

Thanks to the number and importance of natural and cultural monuments, the Olomouc region is one of the richest regions in the Czech Republic and a very important area in terms of tourism. There are many castles (e.g. Štenberk, Helfštýn, Bouzov), manor houses (Tovačov, Velké Losiny), churches, cathedrals, galleries, museums and spas. One of the most famous monuments is the historical city of Olomouc itself; there are many Roman, Gothic and Baroque monuments. For example, its fountains, Přemyslovský Palace, the Archbishopric, St. Moric Cathedral with the biggest organ in the Central Europe, etc. There is also the Holy Trinity Column registered in 2002 among the list of UNESCO World Heritage sites.

Pardubice region

The Pardubice region is located in the eastern part of Bohemia; part of its area is also located in the historical area of Moravia. Its size is 4,519 km2, and it is the fifth-smallest region in the Czech Republic. It neighbors the Olomouc region to the east, the South Bohemian region to the southeast and the Vysočina region to the southwest. Its westerly neighbors are the Central Bohemian region and the Hradec Králové region. To the north, the region is divided by the border with Poland. The regional city is Pardubice; the region consists of four districts: Chrudim, Pardubice, Svitavy and Ústí nad Orlicí. The highest point is Králický Sněžník (1,424 meters above sea level).

Biggest cities:

  • Pardubice;
  • Chrudim;
  • Svitavy;
  • Česká Třebová;
  • Ústí nad Orlicí.

In the north, the Pardubice region is delineated by the Orlické Mountains and in the south by the Žďárské Hills and Iron Hills. The north and west of the region is mainly of a lowland character. By the border with Poland, the Pardubice region has a subalpine to alpine character. From the northeast to southwest, via Ústí nad Orlicí and Svitavy districts, the main watershed passes. The Labe River pours itself into the North Sea and the Morava River into the Black Sea.

There are industry, commercial and public services in the region. Industrial production has various structures; primary is engineering, textile industry, clothing industry, leather manufacture; the highest share in national production has the chemical industry. An important role is played in the Pardubice region by agriculture. T railway corridor that passes through the region from west to east has an important economic role.

There are more than 500 km of railway routes in the region. The most important route is part of the main railway route E040 (Paris – Nuremberg – Prague – Vienna) and also E061 (Berlin – Prague – Brno – Vienna). Important national routes are connected to the main corridor in Pardubice – in the direction of Liberec and via Chrudim and Hlinsko, in the direction of Havlíčkův Brod.

The most important road connection in the region is road No. I/37 leading from the north via Pardubice and Chrudim. In terms of air traffic, the most important public international airport is in Pardubice. The airport serves for civil and military purposes. The airport of among the five most important airports in the Czech Republic. There are also smaller airports in the region, mainly of a sports character.

There are several cultural monuments and attractions in the Pardubice region. Among the most important monuments are medieval castles that were built since the 13th century in strategic locations in the region. The main one in the Iron Mountains is Lichtice Castle. The ruins of Oheb Castle are visited by tourists as a viewpoint. The south part of the region is dominated by Rychmburk Castle. Also very interesting are the ruins of medieval feudal mansions; many of them are located in the foothills of the Železné and Orlické Mountains.

Plzeň region

The Plzeň region is located in the southwest of the Czech Republic. Its size is 7,561 km2, and it is the third-biggest region in the Czech Republic. It neighbors the Karlovy Vary region to the northwest, the Ústí nad Labem region to the north, the Central Bohemian region to the northeast and the South Bohemian region to the east. In the southwest, the region neighbors Germany. Its location between the capital city Prague and Germany is very favorable. The regional city is Plzeň. There are seven districts: Plzeň – south, Plzeň – city, Plzeň – north, Domažlice, Klatovy, Rokycany and Tachov. The highest point is Velká Mokrůvka (1,370 meters above sea level).

Biggest cities:

  • Plzeň;
  • Domažlice;
  • Klatovy;
  • Rokycany;
  • Tachov.

The residential structure in the region is unbalanced; small countryside villages join the city of Plzeň. Middle-sized cities are missing in the region.

The Plzeň region is among average economically developed regions in the Czech Republic. It ranks fifth in terms of GDP creation per citizen. This is mainly because of the high economic activity of Plzeň city. Industry is very important in the region: the most important are engineering, food-processing industry, industry of construction materials and ceramics, production and distribution of energy and metallurgy. In the framework of the Czech Republic, the region is among the areas with lowest share of unemployment.

The Plzeň region, thanks to its location, connects the west and east of Europe. Road traffic is the most important; Plzeň city is a very important traffic route. An important traffic route passes through the region: the D5 highway from Prague, around Plzeň in the direction of Germany. Other important roads are the communications to Strakonice and Karlovy Vary. Plzeň is also an important railway route; routes to České Budějovice, Rokycany, Mariánské Lázně and Klatovy cross here.

There are hundreds of historical monuments in the region. Among the most famous medieval castles is the Roman castle Přimda, the oldest stone castle in the Czech Republic. There is also the biggest castle ruin in the Czech Republic, Rabí Castle. Groups of folk architecture (various styles from various times) are preserved in the Plzeň region. Typical folk architecture is preserved in the Chodov area; typical wooden houses are preserved in the Šumava area.

Central Bohemian region

The Central Bohemian region is located in the middle of Bohemia. Its size is 11,016 km2, and the region thus represents 14% of the Czech Republic. In terms of size and number of residents, it is one of the biggest regions in the Czech Republic. The region surrounds the capital city Prague and neighbors almost all Czech regions with the exception of the Karlovy Vary region. There are 12 districts in the region: Benešov, Beroun, Kladno, Kolín, Kutná Hora, Mělník, Mladá Boleslav, Nymburk, Prague – east, Prague – west, Příbram and Rakovník. The highest point is Tok Hill (865 meters above sea level).

Biggest cities:

  • Benešov;
  • Beroun;
  • Kladno;
  • Kolín;
  • Kutná Hora.

The location of the Central Bohemian region significantly affects its economic level. The region is closely connected with the capital city, not only by its location; its exceptional location supports a dense road network. On the other side, the region suffers because of the fact that all activities are directed toward the capital city. The periphery of Prague (which the region partly represents) is disadvantageous for the region. This fact and lack of the regional city as an administrative center of the region limits development of the region. The region is for Prague an important source of labor; it complements industry in Prague, supplies Prague with food and provides its recreational potential to Prague.

The main industrial areas are engineering, food-processing industry and chemistry. The most important company in the region, Škoda Mladá Boleslav, became a company of national importance. On the contrary, decreases were noted in previously traditional areas such as coal mining and the steel industry. The construction industry and employment in services is lower than anywhere else in the Czech Republic.

The Central Bohemian region has a very dense and also overstrained traffic network. All important railway and road networks lead through the region. There is also water traffic in the region. Almost one-quarter of the Labe – Vltava waterway passes through the region.
There are mainly two types of landscape in the region: flat lowlands in the northeast around the Labe River with agriculturally used land and greenwoods. In the southwest of the region is a highland with a predominant occurrence of mixed and evergreen forests.

The Central Bohemian region is characterized by a rich cultural heritage and a quantity of natural monuments. The largest concentration of the monuments is in Kutná Hora, with St. Barbara’s Cathedral, which is registered on the list of UNESCO World Heritage sites. There is also the best-known Czech castle, Karlštejn, and Konopiště Castle. A very important natural area is the protected landscape area Křivoklátsko, which is on the list of biosphere reservations.

Ústí nad Labem region

The Ústí nad Labem region is located in northwest Bohemia. Its size is 5,335 km2. Its border forms a national border with Germany to the north; it neighbors the Liberec region to the northeast, the Karlovy Vary region to the west; it partially also neighbors the Plzeň and Central Bohemian regions. The regional city is Ústí nad Labem. There are seven districts: Děčín, Chomutov, Litoměřice, Louny, Most, Teplice and Ústí nad Labem. The highest point is Klínovec (1,244 meters above sea level).

Biggest cities:

  • Ústí nad Labem;
  • Most;
  • Teplice;
  • Litoměřice;
  • Louny.

The border with Germany is mostly formed by the Krušné Mountains that extend into the Karlovy Vary region. The Krušné Mountains gradually verge into Labe Sandstones, with rock cities and narrow passages. The inland of the region, the Czech Central Mountains, are situated with the highest mountain Milešovka. In the place where the Labe River leaves the territory of the Czech Republic is the lowest point of the CR (115 meters above sea level).

The economy in the Ústí nad Labem region is significantly focused on mining industry. There are deposits of brown coal within the entire Podkrušnohoří territory. Its deposits currently represent the most important energy source in the Czech Republic. Therefore, mining and processing of coal developed in this area. In the vicinity of mines are situated important coal-fired power stations (Počerady, Tušimice, etc.). In the lowlands, people focus on agriculture, mainly in Litoměřice and the Louny district.

The Labe River, which passes through the region and leaves the territory of the Czech Republic, is very important for water traffic, and it connects the inland of Bohemia with the North Sea. Along the Labe River leads an important railway route from Prague to Dresden and, farther from the river, leads an international road and the future D8 highway that connects these two cities.

Tourism in the Ústí nad Labem region is focused mainly on balneology, culture, nature, mountain tourism, monuments and historical town reserves. Among the most known monuments are e.g. the unique fortified town Terezín, the rotunda of St. George on Říp Hill, the memorial of Přemysl Oráč in Stadice, Střekov, Hněvín, Hazmburk, Kadaň Castle, castles in Klášterec nad Ohří, Krásný Dvůr, Libichovice, Duchcov, etc.

Zlín region

The Zlín region is located in the eastern part of central Moravia. Its size is 3,964 km2, and it represents 5% of the Czech Republic. The region neighbors the South Moravian region to the southwest and forms a border with Slovakia to the east. There are four districts: Kroměříž, Vsetín, Zlín and Uherské Hradiště. The highest point is Čertův Mlýn (1,206 meters above sea level).

Biggest cities:

  • Zlín;
  • Kroměříž;
  • Vsetín;
  • Valašské Meziříčí;
  • Uherské Hradiště.

Apart from the low and wooded hill Chřiby, the northern part of the Lower-Moravian Vales and the southern part of the Upper-Moravian Vales are located in the western part of the Zlín region. The eastern part of the region is formed by the White Carpathians, which, in the direction of the north, verge in Javorníky and Moravian-Silesian Beskydy. The north is dominated by the Hostýn-Vsetín Highlands. The biggest river in the region is the Morava River.

There are productive lowlands suitable for agricultural production and also developed industrial companies in the region. The biggest share in production has rubber, engineering, electrotechnical and textile industry. Among the best-known companies are e.g. Barum in Otrokovice and Deza in Valašské Meziříčí.

No important transit routes lead through the Zlín region, and, thus, traffic intensity is lower here. The main traffic routes in the region are the road from Brno to Uherské Hradiště and also an important route to Slovakia via Rožnov pod Radhoštěm. Higher traffic intensity is achieved around Zlín city; elsewhere in the region, the intensity is low. Two main international railway routes lead through the region; important traffic routes are Valašské Meziříčí, Zlín, Kroměříž and Uherské Hradiště.

The Zlín region is characterized by various compositions of scenic elements, historical and technical monuments. The temple at Radhošť Hill and the historic pilgrimage sites of Velehrad and Hostýn are located in the region. Also well-known are Buchlov Castle, castles in Valašské Meziříčí and Vsetín and the Baroque castle in Zlín. Luhačovice is known for its balneology and architecture. A biospheric reservation UNESCO in the White Carpathians is unique for its flora, and approx. 700 botanical types can be found here, including rare orchids.



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