It used to be a common form of transport and fun in winter months centuries ago, but its popularity receded with the introduction of motor vehicles and skis. Now luge riding is making a comeback, with several specially designed luge natural-tracks sprouting across the country. One of them is located in Smržovka, a winter sports centre in the Jizera Mountains that also hosts an annual luge racing competition.
When 23-year-old Jan Vlachynský and his friend decided to open a bar in their local town they hedged their bets on originality and customer service. Seven years later it seems their project paid off bigtime. He now co-owns five bars across Brno whose distinct character has not only made them popular among locals, but has been covered by prestigious outlets such as the New York Times and The Guardian. I popped down to the Moravian capital to ask him about the secret behind his success.
The great traveller Miroslav Zikmund turned 100 on Thursday. For Czechoslovaks unable to travel much under communism, the books and radio reports produced by Zikmund and his friend Jiří Hanzelka served as a window to exotic parts of the world. However, the pair were barred from public life following the Soviet invasion.
The skiing season is in full swing here in the Czech Republic and ski resorts all around the country are reporting excellent conditions following heavy snowfall in early January. Radio Prague paid a visit to Boží Dar, one of the most popular ski resorts located in Krušné Hory in the northwest of the country.
Fifty-four-year old financier, politician and adventurer Pavel Sehnal has become the first Czech to reach both the North and South pole in gruelling Last Degree expeditions. He conquered the South Pole with six other adventurers on January 13 of this year, less than two years after reaching the Arctic.
Visit Czech Republic posts wonderful photos on social media aimed at lovers of the country and potential first-time travellers to this part of the world. In North America, Visit@CZ – which is run by state agency CzechTourism – is represented by digital and social marketer Jiří Dužár. When we chatted in New York, topics included the images of the Czech Republic that do best on social media, the importance of travel bloggers, Dužár’s own work as a photographer and a lot more.
Cross-country skiing is becoming the thing "to do" in the Czech Republic. In the past two or three decades, more Czechs preferred downhill skiing either at home or in one of Europe’s Alpine countries, such as neighbouring Austria. Nowadays, the number of cross-country skiing enthusiasts matches those who prefer to head for the slopes and lifts. Radio Prague’s Vít Pohanka visited one of the country’s popular ski resorts - Vysočina Arena in the Bohemian-Moravian Highlands.
The best known Czech beer is undoubtedly Pilsner Urquell. Budweiser (sold as Czechvar in the United States and some other countries) is probably the second most prominent. The fame of these two brands outshines many other lagers and other types of beer brewed all over Czechia. And that is a shame, as there is so much more to discover for any beer-loving visitor to this country.