The year 2023 and tourism in Czechia: cultural and technical monuments, zoos and nature pull

The year 2023 and tourism in Czechia: cultural and technical monuments, zoos and nature pull

HomeThe year 2023 and tourism in Czechia: cultural and technical monuments, zoos and nature pull
The year 2023 was a successful year for Czech tourism. According to the latest data from the Institute of Tourism, which currently has 1,369 places in its database (up from 1,255 in 2022), visitor numbers across the country have increased significantly. The latest figures from the Czech Tourist Authority - CzechTourism thus confirm that tourism is back to its pre-crisis levels. The most popular tourist destinations last year traditionally included Prague Castle, the cable car to Petřín and the Zoological Garden of the Capital City of Prague. Prague. Three zoos and a safari park were in the top ten most frequented places, demonstrating the growing popularity of these tourist destinations.
Prague leads and regions are not lagging behind
As in previous years, the most visited city last year was Prague with its iconic sights and attractions. The Prague Castle attracted 54% more visitors year-on-year – a total of 2.192 million visitors, The funicular to Petrin Hill reported a 12% increase and 1.916 million travellers. Although the Prague Zoo received 4% fewer visitors compared to last year, it is still one of the third most popular places in the metropolis and in Czechia with 1.358 million people. And other regions are not lagging behind. For example, the Central Bohemian Region and South Moravia attract tourists for water fun and relaxation, in Pilsen the local brewery plays a major role, in the Karlovy Vary Region medieval buildings in real and miniature size are attracting tourists. In the South Bohemia Region, in line with the national interest, fauna is the first place, as in Ústí nad Labem. Olomouc, Zlín, Vysočina or in the Kralovehradecky region. The Liberec and Moravian-Silesian regions attract mainly lovers of science and technology, while Pardubice is mainly visited by lovers of natural beauty and views from above. In general, the biggest draws are cultural and technical monuments, places that offer fun for families with children, but also natural beauty and hiking opportunities.

Current data clearly show that interest in domestic tourist destinations is growing, which is great news for the entire tourism industry. We are continuing our work to promote Czechia as a destination with a lot to offer. And not only in the notorious places, but also those that are currently less visited. The aim is to ensure the satisfaction of tourists and at the same time to enable, among other things, the smooth flow of transport, to protect cultural and natural wealth or to prevent possible conflicts. In other words – to ensure that the Czech Republic is still a place where you have a 100% guarantee of great and unusual experiences and at the same time to prevent high congestion in certain places from discouraging travellers from visiting our country. In this respect, we are in regular and close contact with operators, municipalities and regions, and we also cooperate with nature conservation authorities, national parks and the Czech Nature and Landscape Agency. Our aim is to distribute visitor numbers evenly and to bring the benefits of tourism to lesser-known areas. And all this is in line with the idea of sustainability, where, for example, we support train travel or service providers who try to behave responsibly," summarises Director of the Czech Tourist Authority – CzechTourism František Reismüller.

Year-on-year visitor growth is record across Czechia
The Armádní muzeum Žižkov in Prague, which underwent a challenging overhaul between 2018-2022, recorded the highest year-on-year increases in visitor numbers last year. Last year, 140,000 people headed to its newly and interestingly redesigned spaces, which reopened to the public in October 2022. It is followed by the Clam-Gallas Palace also in the capital, which 16.9 thousand tourists chose to visit, and interest in the Edvard Beneš Memorial in Sezimovo Ústí also rose significantly last year. A total of 11.2 thousand people chose it as a destination. The number of visitors to the state castle Kunětická hora also increased significantly, with 42.3 thousand people heading there. Among the tourist destinations that ranked in the top 10 in each category or region, and which saw a twofold or more increase in visitor numbers last year, are Lanova dráha na Sněžku, Strahovský monastery, Muzeum ŠKODA in Cheb Museum, Saunštejn Castle in Czech Switzerland, State Chateau Telč, Memorial of Great Moravia in Old Town or Memorial of Jan Žižka z Trocnova in Borovany.
Natural beauty, adventure transport, towers and lookout towers on the rise
As already mentioned, the interest of visitors in the natural beauty of Czechia has also increased significantly compared to last year.
In recent years, we have observed a growing interest in long-distance walking routes, both among domestic tourists and foreign travellers. And it has to be said that Czechia has a lot to offer in this respect. Among other things, we have the best hiking signs in the world. Travellers to and around Czechia will find, among other things, over 44 thousand km of hiking trails and 40 thousand km of road cycling routes. Domestic and foreign tourists will find here quality products such as the hiking adventure along Hrebenovce through Bohemian Switzerland or the Lužnice trail,  which boasts a European quality award. It is also worth mentioning Stezka Českem, which has already been taken by more than a hundred thousand people and its growing popularity is also confirmed by the viewing figures of the eponymous programme on ČT 2," shares Director of Product Management, Research and B2B Cooperation of the CzechTourism Veronika Janečková.

Growing interest is shown by natural destinations such as Lysá hora, Punkevní jeskyně s kapastí Macocha, Prachovské skály or Tři prameny. The most visited last year was Adršpach-Teplice Rocks, where 488,000 people went.

Although we have struggled with "overtourism" in the past, we have managed to calm the situation by introducing a reservation system for entrance fees and parking. This move has helped to significantly reduce congestion in the area and ensured a pleasant experience for visitors to the Adršpach Rocks. Adršpach can be an inspiration for other destinations facing similar challenges,“ points out Adršpach Rocks – Technical Services Adršpach Pavlína Nešporová.

The fact that people love bird's eye views is confirmed by the long-standing popularity of lookout towers and towers. The Petřínská lookout tower and Old Town Bridge Tower in Prague, the lookout tower in Velká Deštná or the lookout tower of St. Bartholomew's Cathedral in Plzeň are leading the way.

Interest in sacral monuments, memorial sites or architecture is growing
Among the attractive destinations, sacral monuments are also becoming increasingly popular. The Svatá Hora near Příbram pilgrimage site attracted 310,500 people, while the Sedlec site in Kutná Hora saw a 27% increase with 290,900 visitors. Last year, 51% more visitors came to The Terezín Memorial and a 29% increase was reported by The Community House in Prague.
Museums and folk culture pull
Among museums in Czechia, the National Gallery at the Trade Fair Palace and in Prague, Kovozoo in the Old Town and the Museum of Southeast Moravia in Zlín were the most frequent destinations last year. People also went in large numbers to folk creativity and culture, especially to the Wallachian Museum in Nature in Rožnov pod Radhoštěm, Archeoskanzen Modrá or to the Museum in Nature Vysočina.
Barrier-free travel on the rise
One of the important areas of travel both in the world and in Czechia is barrier-free travel. The drive to make it possible for everyone to visit a tourist destination regardless of their limitations resonates across the country, and individual regions offer a range of tips. Whether cultural or natural. There are also those for sporting activities. This is also confirmed by the research of KIM alias Wheeliewanderlust, which in cooperation with the CzechTourism foreign representation in Germany took its first blogger trip in Czechia on the topic of "barrier-free travel in Czechia”. She visited the Plzeň region and South Bohemia region and explored the accessibility of restaurants, hotels, sights and activities for wheelchair travellers.

The Pilsen and South Bohemia regions wowed me with their barrier-free offerings, which included a visit to Sumava National Park, Lipno Tree Crown Trail, Techmania, brewery Pilsner Urquell, Puppet Museum in Plzen and many more. Virtually all venues were wheelchair accessible, including restrooms. The staff everywhere was friendly and helpful. At the same time, there is definitely room for further improvement, especially in the adaptation of hotel rooms to the new building codes and in the language versions of the information about accessibility on the website," she evaluated her trip KIM.

“In Germany, barrier-free travel is an increasingly important topic. This issue does not only concern people with reduced mobility, such as wheelchair users, but also the older generation or families with children who use prams etc. The Berlin office of CzechTourism Germany is receiving more and more enquiries from travellers with special needs," adds Director of the CzechTourism Representative Office for Germany Markéta Chaloupková.

Most visited tourist destinations in individual regions:
Prague - Prague Castle – 2.192 million visitors
Central Bohemia Region - AquaPalace Prague, Čestlice - 1.105 million visitors
South Bohemia Region - South Bohemia Zoo Hluboká nad Vltavou - 281.2 thousand visitors
Moravian-Silesian Region - Dolní Vítkovice Arena, Ostrava – 891.7 thousand visitors
Pilsen Region - Plzeňský Prazdroj, a.s. (brewery visitor centre) – 527,9 thousand visitors
Karlovy Vary Region - Loket Castle – 160,3 thousand visitors
Ústí nad Labem Region - Chomutov Zoo - 289.1 thousand visitors
Liberec Region - iQpark and iQlandia, Liberec - 484.9 thousand visitors
Hradec Králové Region - Safari Park Dvůr Králové - 673 thousand visitors
Pardubice Region - Sky Bridge 721, Dolní Morava - 223 thousand visitors
Vysočina Region - Zoological Garden Jihlava - 354.7 thousand visitors
South Moravia Region - Aqualand Moravia, Pasohlávky - 837.1 thousand visitors
Olomouc Region - Zoological Garden Olomouc – 417 thousand visitors
Zlín Region - Zoo Zlín - 770.7 thousand visitors