The Republic of Czechoslovakia achieved independence from the Austro-Hungarian Empire at the end of World War I. In 1993, it split into the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Although the exquisite city of Prague was inundated by Westerners after the collapse of the Soviet Union, the rest of the country is less explored but equally fascinating. Not far outside of Prague, the landscape quickly becomes idyllic, with mountains, waterways and châteaux. To the east, central Moravia is distinguished by pungent cheeses and baroque cathedrals; west of Prague, the 13th-century town of Pilsen, provenance of the best-known Czech beer, sits at the confluence of four rivers. The region farther toward the German border is known for mineral springs, notably at the spa town of Karlovy Vary, and mountain winter resorts. In the south, touristy Český Krumlov has a dramatic castle perched over its perfectly preserved old center.
Six hours ahead of New York (EST).
To phone hotels and restaurants in the Czech Republic, dial 011 (international access) + 420 (Czech Republic code) + city code and local numbers in listings.
The Czech Republic experiences cool, dry winters and warm, showery summers. The western part of the country has the coldest winters and warmest summers.
Koruna (CZK). Fluctuating rate valued at CZK23.17 = US$1.00 as of October 2020. Hotels in Prague quote rates in euros (€); €1.00 = US$1.17 as of October 2020.
Prague, Tel. (420) 257-022-000.