Standing tall with over 10 million inhabitants, the Czech Republic is another contestant for the Heart of Europe position. Stretching upon 78,866 square kilometres, it is landlocked with only 2% of it being water. Filled with interesting people, breath-taking landscapes, and enticing points of interest, it is a country that should not be left out when braving Europe. So, without further ado, let us see what the Czech Republic has to offer us in terms of need-to-knows!
Did you know that the position of the top beer consumer of the world is eternally disputed? Well, now that we got that out of the way, we can tell you that the Czech Republic is an adamant contestant. Beer is such a common drink there that one might wonder if it’s included in the tap water. Joking aside, you must not leave the country without submerging your insides in world-famous Czech beer! Make sure that you do not have to drive on one of the days and do indulge for you are not going to regret it!
So, we have finally arrived at the basics of the basics: tipping. The short answer is, yes, you have to tip, and no, you don’t have to tip. Before you drown in the existential paradox, know that the etiquette heavily depends on where you are. Touristy areas like Prague are filled with establishments where tipping is not only a standard, it is outright expected. A 10% extra is the bare minimum and if you want to go out of your way to leave more, then be our guest! If you visit the countryside, however, know that tipping is not that expected (if the locals don’t do it, you don’t have to either). Of course, if you want to stay on the safe side, without having to constantly survey where you are, just stick to a basic 10% tip (wink)!
3. Castles galore:
Medieval castles may not be as interesting as the megaliths of ancient times but they still are magnificent sights to behold. When it comes to these structures, the Czech Republic is an expert. With more than 2,000 castles, ruins, and keeps, it is one of the most important countries in the world when exploring the past first-hand. Notable eye-poppers include: the Cesky Krumlov Castle, the Lednice Chateau, the Melnik Chateau, Chateau Mcely, and even the Tugendhat Villa.
4. Language barriers:
If there is a country in the world where you are not bound to hit language barriers, it is the Czech Republic. Why? Simply because they study foreign languages as soon as primary school. This includes English, Spanish, French, and even German. These are all languages that you might try when addressing a local for one of them is bound to work. But English, in general, will be spoken near-fluently if not perfectly – over 87% of the regular schools teach it and 100% of the specialised ones. Of course, addressing the younger generation will yield more results and the more touristy locations are also more “barrierless”.
5. Sensitive subjects:
Ok, so no matter where you might tread, you should always research the local “sensitive subjects” a bit. In the case of the Czech Republic, there are two things that should never come out of your mouth: the communist past of the country and its misinterpreted position. The former subject is sensitive due to the fact that many people believe that the Republic was a part of the Soviet Union prior to its fall. This is incorrect, however, and it will only generate frowns and displeasure. The latter subject is a common misunderstanding that the Czech Republic is located in Eastern Europe. The locals consider themselves Central European and you should probably do the same if you want to stay on their friendly side (wink)!
While some of its adjacent countries are some of the most religious in Europe, the Czech Republic proudly states that only 13.3% of its population is pious. Sunday mass is not a common sight while a scientific viewpoint is predominant (especially at the younger generation). Out of those 13.3%, 10.4% pertains to Roman Catholicism, whilst the rest of the people practice other religions.
Did you enjoy our list? What experiences have you had in the Czech Republic and what aftertaste have they left you with? Hit the comment section below and share what you can with the world! Safe travels!