25 interesting facts about the Czech Republic (Czechia)

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From a church decorated with 40,000 skeletons to the world’s biggest beer drinkers, these are the most interesting facts about the Czech Republic.

Interesting facts about the Czech Republic include the UNESCO-listed Prague
Interesting facts about the Czech Republic include the UNESCO-listed Prague (Shutterstock)

Fast facts

Official name: Czechia
Population: 10.7 million
Area: 78,867 sq km
Capital city: Prague
Major languages: Czech, Slovak
Major religions: Atheism, Christianity
Time zone: UTC+1 (Central European Time)
– Source: CIA World Factbook

Interesting facts about the Czech Republic

1. The Czech Republic is a landlocked country in central Europe bordering Austria, Germany, Poland and Slovakia.
– Source: Britannica

2. Along with Slovakia, the Czech Republic was founded in 1993 when Czechoslovakia split in two.
– Source: BBC News

3. The relatively amicable break up of Czechoslovakia was known as the “Velvet Divorce” in reference to the bloodless Velvet Revolution that overthrew communist power in 1989.
– Source: The Economist

A map of the Czech Republic
The Czech Republic is landlocked by five countries (Shutterstock)

4. As of 2023, the Czech Republic is ranked the 13th most peaceful country in the world according to the Global Peace Index.
– Source: Vision of Humanity

5. In 2016, the Czech Republic changed its name to Czechia as they felt it was catchier and would make it easier for companies, politicians and sportsmen to use on products, name tags and sporting jerseys.
– Source: The Guardian

6. The Czech Republic’s flag has two horizontal stripes of white and red with a blue triangle. The design combines the white and red colours synonymous with Bohemia with blue from the arms of Moravia, a Slavic ethnic group. It is identical to the flag of former Czechoslovakia.
– Source: Wanderlust (2021) Flags, Capitals and Countries of the World: The Complete Handbook. Wanderlust Press: London

The Czech Republic flag
The Czech flag (Shutterstock)

7. Over 6% of the Czech Republic’s population are expats. As of 2012, the country has over 660,000 foreigners registered as living in the Czech Republic.
– Source: Parliament of the Czech Republic (PDF) via Expats.cz

8. The word robot was coined by Czech playwright Karel Čapek for artificial men in 1921. 
– Source: The Guardian

9. The Czech Republic has the world’s longest pedestrian suspension bridge. The Sky Bridge 721 is (you guessed it) 721m (2,365ft) long.
– Source: Lonely Planet

Looking along the Sky Bridge 721 in Czech republic
The Sky Bridge 721 (Shutterstock)

10. The Czech Republic gets its name from the Czechs, a Slavic tribe that rose to prominence in the late 9th century AD.
– Source: CIA World Factbook

11. The Czech Republic is the world’s third least religious country with 75% of the population claiming to be either not religious or atheist after China and Sweden.
– Source: Washington Post

12. The world’s largest ancient castle is Hradcany Castle (AKA Prague Castle) in the Czech Republic. It was built in the 9th century and has an axis of 570m (1,870ft) and an average transverse diameter of 128m (420ft), giving a surface area of 7.28ha (18 acres).
– Source: Guinness World Records

A drone shot of Prague Castle in the Czech Republic
Prague Castle (Shutterstock)

13. The record-breaking tennis player Martina Navratilova is from the Czech Republic. In total, Navratilova won 59 slam titles in singles, doubles and mixed doubles – more than any player in history. Navratilova also won the Wimbledon women’s singles title a record nine times, including six in a row from 1982-87.
– Source: The Guardian

14. Gregor Mendel is from the Czech Republic. Mendel was a monk who worked out the basic laws of inheritance through experiments with pea plants. He was born in Silesia in the Austrian Empire which is now in the Czech Republic.
– Source: National Human Genome Research Institute, Britannica

15. Prague is known as ‘the city of a hundred spires’ because of the city’s skyline which features numerous towers, turrets and steeples. Some estimates even suggest there are as many as 1,000.
– Source: CzechTourism

A photo of Prague showing several spires
Prague is known as the city of spires (Shutterstock)

16. Prague gets its name from an old Slavic word praga or prah, meaning ford, and refers to the city’s position at a crossing point of the Vltava River.
– Source: CIA World Factbook

17. The Czech Republic has 16 properties inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List including the Historic Centre of Prague.
– Source: UNESCO

18. Baroness Bertha von Suttner from Prague was the first woman to be awarded the Peace Prize. She won the prize in 1905 “for her audacity to oppose the horrors of war”.
– Source: Nobel Prize

19. The Czech Republic drinks the most beer in the world per capita, consuming 184.1 litres per capita annually.
– Source: BBC Science Focus

Souvenir beer glasses in Prague
Beer is popular in the Czech Republic (Shutterstock)

20. Following the Second World War, Soviet troops entered Czechoslovakia and the country remained under hardline communist rule until the 1989 Velvet Revolution.
– Source: BBC News

21. The Czech Republic was the first former Eastern Bloc state to acquire the status of a developed economy.
– Source: BBC News

22. Known as the ‘Bone Church’ Sedlec Ossuary in the Czech Republic is ornately decorated with the bones from over 40,000 skeletons. Human bones discovered in the crypt are used to create crosses, chalices, pyramids and altars.
– Source: National Geographic

The altar of the church decorated with bones
The Bone Church (Shutterstock)

23. The tiny Czech town of Jáchymov invented the dollar in 1520. Originally known as the thaler, the currency was a result of silver mining in the region and a switch was made from smaller coins to larger silver coins. The thaler eventually spread around the world and became known as the dollar.
– Source: BBC Travel

24. One of the world’s oldest carmakers, Škoda, is from the Czech Republic. Its origins date back to 1895 and is also considered to be Eastern Europe’s oldest car manufacturer.
– Source: Škoda, Britannica

A red classic car
A 1930 Škoda 430 (Shutterstock)

25. Prague is famous for throwing people out of the window. Among other notable defenestrations in the city, the most famous is the aptly-named Defenestration of Prague when in 1618, two imperial regents were thrown from the windows of Prague Castle. The incident was so famous that it gave rise to the term defenestration itself.
– Source: Britannica

Every effort has been made to verify these facts about the Czech Republic using primary sources. However, if you find an error or have any questions, please contact us.