Geography of the Czech Republic

Geographical features of the Czech Republic

Geography of Czech Republic
Relief Map of Czech Republic.png
ContinentEurope
RegionCentral Europe
AreaRanked 115th
 • Total78,871 km2 (30,452 sq mi)
 • Land97.88%
 • Water2.12%
Coastline0 km (0 mi)
Borders2,143 km [1]
  • Germany – 704 km
  • Poland – 796 km
  • Austria – 402 km
  • Slovakia – 241 km
Highest pointSněžka,
1603.3 m
Lowest pointHřensko,
115 m
Longest riverVltava,
433 km
Largest lakeČerné,
18.4 ha
Climatetemperate
Terrainhills and lowlands surrounded by low mountains
Natural resourceskaolin, lithium, graphite, black coal, brown coal, uranium, timber

The Czech Republic is a landlocked country in Central Europe. It is bordered by Germany to the west, Austria to the south, Slovakia to the east and Poland to the north. It consists mostly of low hills and plateaus surrounded along the borders by low mountains. Two areas of lowlands follow the Elbe river and the Morava river. About a third of the area of the Czech Republic is covered by forests.

The Czech Republic also possesses Moldauhafen, a 30,000 m2 enclave in the middle of Hamburg docks in Germany, which was awarded to Czechoslovakia by Article 363 of the Treaty of Versailles to allow the landlocked country a place where goods transported down river could be transferred to seagoing ships. This territory reverts to Germany in 2028.

Physical geography

Climate

Köppen climate classification of the Czech Republic

The Czech Republic's climate is temperate, transitional between an oceanic climate and a continental climate. The summers are rather cool and dry, with average temperatures in most areas around 20 °C, the winters are fairly mild and wet with temperatures averaging around 0 °C in most areas. The relative humidity varies between 60% and 80%.

Examples

Climate data for Prague (1981–2010 normals, extremes 1775-present)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 17.4
(63.3)
19.2
(66.6)
22.5
(72.5)
28.8
(83.8)
32.5
(90.5)
37.9
(100.2)
37.8
(100.0)
37.4
(99.3)
33.1
(91.6)
27.0
(80.6)
19.5
(67.1)
17.4
(63.3)
37.9
(100.2)
Average high °C (°F) 2.6
(36.7)
4.4
(39.9)
9.1
(48.4)
15.1
(59.2)
20.3
(68.5)
22.8
(73.0)
25.3
(77.5)
25.1
(77.2)
19.9
(67.8)
14.2
(57.6)
7.2
(45.0)
3.4
(38.1)
14.1
(57.4)
Daily mean °C (°F) 0.1
(32.2)
1.3
(34.3)
5.3
(41.5)
10.1
(50.2)
15.0
(59.0)
17.8
(64.0)
19.9
(67.8)
19.6
(67.3)
15.2
(59.4)
10.3
(50.5)
4.6
(40.3)
1.1
(34.0)
10.0
(50.0)
Average low °C (°F) −2.4
(27.7)
−1.8
(28.8)
1.5
(34.7)
5.1
(41.2)
9.7
(49.5)
12.7
(54.9)
14.5
(58.1)
14.2
(57.6)
10.5
(50.9)
6.4
(43.5)
2.1
(35.8)
−1.1
(30.0)
6.0
(42.7)
Record low °C (°F) −27.5
(−17.5)
−27.1
(−16.8)
−27.6
(−17.7)
−8
(18)
−2.3
(27.9)
1.9
(35.4)
6.7
(44.1)
6.4
(43.5)
0.7
(33.3)
−7.5
(18.5)
−16.9
(1.6)
−24.8
(−12.6)
−27.6
(−17.7)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 34
(1.3)
30
(1.2)
40
(1.6)
34
(1.3)
63
(2.5)
70
(2.8)
82
(3.2)
75
(3.0)
47
(1.9)
34
(1.3)
40
(1.6)
38
(1.5)
587
(23.1)
Average snowfall cm (inches) 17.9
(7.0)
15.9
(6.3)
10.3
(4.1)
2.9
(1.1)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.1
(0.0)
8.4
(3.3)
15.9
(6.3)
71.4
(28.1)
Average precipitation days 5.7 5.2 6.6 5.8 8.5 9.4 8.9 8.4 7.3 5.5 7.1 5.9 84.3
Average relative humidity (%) 86 83 77 69 70 71 70 71 76 81 87 88 77
Average dew point °C (°F) −4.6
(23.7)
−3.5
(25.7)
−1.1
(30.0)
2.0
(35.6)
7.0
(44.6)
10.3
(50.5)
11.6
(52.9)
11.5
(52.7)
9.1
(48.4)
5.1
(41.2)
0.6
(33.1)
−2.9
(26.8)
3.8
(38.8)
Mean monthly sunshine hours 50.0 72.4 124.7 167.6 214.0 218.3 226.2 212.3 161.0 120.8 53.9 46.7 1,667.9
Average ultraviolet index 1 1 3 4 6 7 6 6 4 2 1 1 4
Source: World Meteorological Organization (temperature and rainfall 1981–2010)[2] NOAA[3] and Weather Atlas[4]
Climate data for Prague (1991−2020 normals)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 2.9
(37.2)
5.7
(42.3)
9.9
(49.8)
16.3
(61.3)
20.6
(69.1)
24.1
(75.4)
26.0
(78.8)
26.0
(78.8)
20.6
(69.1)
14.9
(58.8)
8.0
(46.4)
3.8
(38.8)
14.9
(58.8)
Daily mean °C (°F) 0.4
(32.7)
2.4
(36.3)
5.6
(42.1)
10.8
(51.4)
15.0
(59.0)
18.6
(65.5)
20.4
(68.7)
20.2
(68.4)
15.6
(60.1)
10.8
(51.4)
5.3
(41.5)
1.5
(34.7)
10.5
(51.0)
Average low °C (°F) −2.1
(28.2)
−1.0
(30.2)
1.4
(34.5)
5.3
(41.5)
9.5
(49.1)
13.1
(55.6)
14.7
(58.5)
14.4
(57.9)
10.5
(50.9)
6.6
(43.9)
2.6
(36.7)
−0.8
(30.6)
6.2
(43.1)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 25.8
(1.02)
21.8
(0.86)
31.4
(1.24)
26.8
(1.06)
65.1
(2.56)
79.7
(3.14)
75.9
(2.99)
77.3
(3.04)
44.2
(1.74)
35.4
(1.39)
30.0
(1.18)
29.7
(1.17)
543.1
(21.39)
Mean monthly sunshine hours 53.1 82.9 128.1 192.5 220.4 230.0 240.0 227.6 163.5 109.9 48.9 43.3 1,740.2
Source: Meteostat[5]
Climate data for Brno (Brno–Tuřany Airport), 1981–2010 normals, extremes 1939-present
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 16.0
(60.8)
17.6
(63.7)
24.0
(75.2)
29.5
(85.1)
31.8
(89.2)
36.6
(97.9)
36.4
(97.5)
37.8
(100.0)
32.2
(90.0)
27.7
(81.9)
19.3
(66.7)
19.0
(66.2)
37.8
(100.0)
Average high °C (°F) 1.1
(34.0)
3.6
(38.5)
8.7
(47.7)
15.1
(59.2)
20.1
(68.2)
23.0
(73.4)
25.6
(78.1)
25.4
(77.7)
20.0
(68.0)
13.8
(56.8)
6.9
(44.4)
2.0
(35.6)
13.8
(56.8)
Daily mean °C (°F) −2.5
(27.5)
−0.3
(31.5)
3.8
(38.8)
9.0
(48.2)
13.9
(57.0)
17.0
(62.6)
18.5
(65.3)
18.1
(64.6)
14.3
(57.7)
9.1
(48.4)
3.5
(38.3)
−0.6
(30.9)
8.7
(47.7)
Average low °C (°F) −4.3
(24.3)
−3.3
(26.1)
0.2
(32.4)
4.5
(40.1)
9.3
(48.7)
12.1
(53.8)
14.0
(57.2)
13.8
(56.8)
10.0
(50.0)
5.7
(42.3)
1.1
(34.0)
−2.9
(26.8)
5.0
(41.0)
Record low °C (°F) −24.1
(−11.4)
−22.2
(−8.0)
−18.9
(−2.0)
−7
(19)
−2.8
(27.0)
0.0
(32.0)
1.1
(34.0)
2.8
(37.0)
−2.2
(28.0)
−6.5
(20.3)
−13
(9)
−21
(−6)
−24.1
(−11.4)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 23.1
(0.91)
23.4
(0.92)
29.7
(1.17)
28.9
(1.14)
61.2
(2.41)
72.2
(2.84)
69.0
(2.72)
55.7
(2.19)
47.9
(1.89)
31.1
(1.22)
34.0
(1.34)
31.9
(1.26)
508.1
(20.00)
Average snowfall cm (inches) 17.4
(6.9)
12.4
(4.9)
5.2
(2.0)
0.6
(0.2)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
4.5
(1.8)
12.5
(4.9)
52.6
(20.7)
Average precipitation days 5.8 5.3 6.4 5.7 8.1 8.6 9.1 7.4 6.5 6.3 7.1 7.5 83.8
Average relative humidity (%) 84 81 73 65 67 69 67 68 73 78 84 85 75
Mean monthly sunshine hours 53.8 82.9 137.5 208.7 226.4 246.9 245.7 246.3 175.5 112.5 59.3 44.5 1,840
Average ultraviolet index 1 1 3 4 6 7 7 6 4 2 1 1 4
Source 1: World Meteorological Organization (UN)[6]
Source 2: NOAA[7]
Climate data for Ostrava (1981−2010 normals, extremes 1980−present)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 14.2
(57.6)
17.3
(63.1)
22.8
(73.0)
29.0
(84.2)
31.9
(89.4)
35.2
(95.4)
36.7
(98.1)
36.9
(98.4)
33.7
(92.7)
26.2
(79.2)
22.5
(72.5)
16.7
(62.1)
36.9
(98.4)
Average high °C (°F) 0.4
(32.7)
2.8
(37.0)
7.7
(45.9)
13.5
(56.3)
18.9
(66.0)
21.9
(71.4)
23.6
(74.5)
23.4
(74.1)
19.4
(66.9)
14.0
(57.2)
6.7
(44.1)
2.0
(35.6)
12.9
(55.1)
Average low °C (°F) −5.6
(21.9)
−4.1
(24.6)
−0.8
(30.6)
3.0
(37.4)
7.3
(45.1)
10.6
(51.1)
11.9
(53.4)
11.6
(52.9)
8.7
(47.7)
4.7
(40.5)
0.9
(33.6)
−3.2
(26.2)
3.7
(38.7)
Record low °C (°F) −29.3
(−20.7)
−24.7
(−12.5)
−21.9
(−7.4)
−7.8
(18.0)
−3.0
(26.6)
1.2
(34.2)
4.2
(39.6)
3.8
(38.8)
−0.6
(30.9)
−7.6
(18.3)
−18.7
(−1.7)
−25.8
(−14.4)
−29.3
(−20.7)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 26.7
(1.05)
30.2
(1.19)
34.0
(1.34)
52.4
(2.06)
91.2
(3.59)
104.4
(4.11)
91.1
(3.59)
91.8
(3.61)
58.8
(2.31)
42.3
(1.67)
44.6
(1.76)
34.3
(1.35)
701.8
(27.63)
Average precipitation days 7 7 7 8 11 11 11 10 8 7 9 8 104
Source 1: World Meteorological Organisation (UN)[8]
Source 2: infoclimat.fr[9]

Geology

Most of the area of the Czech Republic belongs to the geographically stable Bohemian Massif. Only an area of the Western Carpathians in the east of the country is younger, lifted during the Tertiary. Igneous rocks make up the base of the Bohemian Massif. Sedimentary rocks are mostly found in the north-eastern part of Bohemia with significant areas of sandstone. Among the metamorphic rocks, the most commonly found is Gneiss.

Mountains

The most notable mountain ranges in the Czech Republic are all found along the borders of the country. In Bohemia it is the Bohemian Forest and Ore Mountains, both bordering Germany. Then the long region of Sudetes with several mountains ranges, including Giant Mountains with Sněžka – the highest peak of the Czech Republic. The last major mountain range is the Moravian-Silesian Beskids in the east.

Rivers

Drainage areas of the Elbe and the Morava rivers

There are four major rivers in the Czech Republic. The Elbe (locally "Labe") flows from the Giant Mountains in the north east of Bohemia to the west and then through northern Germany all the way to the North Sea. The Morava River drains most of Moravia and flows to the south into the Danube and ultimately to the Black Sea. The Oder starts in the Moravian Silesia and flows north through Poland into the Baltic Sea. The fourth major river is the Vltava, which is the longest river of the Czech Republic and drains the southern part of Bohemia before flowing into the Elbe at Mělník.

Bodies of water

Natural occurring bodies of water are rather scarce; most of the significant bodies of water are man-made ponds and reservoirs. The largest pond is the Rožmberk Pond, which is one of the system of fish ponds built in the 16th century around Třeboň. The largest reservoir by area covered is the Lipno Reservoir (4,870 ha), built in the 1950s and the largest reservoir by volume is Orlík Reservoir (716 million m3), built around the same time. The largest and deepest natural lake is Černé jezero (18.4 ha).

Human geography

Population geography

Population density in the Czech Republic
Natural resources: Metals are in blue: Fe — iron ore, PY — pyrite, PM – polymetal ores (Cu, Zn, Pb, etc.), U — uranium. Fossil fuels are in red: C — coal, L — lignite, O – oil. Non-metallic minerals are in green: G — graphite, KA — kaolinite.

The population of the Czech Republic is estimated to be around 10.6 million. The highest population density is in the larger metropolitan area of Ostrava and of course in the area around the capital of Prague. The lowest population density is in the Czech-German and Czech-Austrian borderlands, mostly as a lasting result of the expulsion of Germans from Czechoslovakia after the World War II.

Political geography

The Czech Republic is divided into thirteen regions and one capital city with regional status. The older administrative units of seventy-six districts are still recognized and remain the seats of various branches of state administration. Historically, the Czech Republic can be split into three regions: Bohemia in the west, Moravia in the east and Czech Silesia in the north east.

Industry and agriculture

Areas affected the most by heavy industry are the Sokolov Basin and the Most Basin in the north-west of the Czech Republic. The extensive deposits of brown coal in those areas are mostly used for electricity production. It is estimated, that almost 40% of all electric power produced in the Czech Republic comes from burning brown coal mined in these areas. Plant agriculture is focused around the lowlands surrounding the Elbe and the Morava. Around 34% of the country is covered by forests and approximately 37% of land is arable. The estimated area of irrigated land is 385 km2, and freshwater withdrawal per capita is around 164 m3 every year.

See also

References

  1. ^ "Czechia". CIA World Factbook. Retrieved 1 February 2021.
  2. ^ "The Climate of Prague 1981–2010 (Temperatures, Humidity)" (in Czech). Czech Hydrometeorological Institute. Archived from the original on 18 January 2021. Retrieved 9 May 2016.
  3. ^ "Praha Climate Normals 1961–1990 (Precipitation, Precipitation days, Snow, Sunhours)". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Retrieved 28 February 2013.
  4. ^ "Prague, Czech Republic – Detailed climate information and monthly weather forecast". Weather Atlas. Yu Media Group. Archived from the original on 2 July 2019. Retrieved 2 July 2019.
  5. ^ "Climate of Prague 1991-2020". Meteostat. Archived from the original on 17 April 2022. Retrieved 26 March 2022.
  6. ^ "World Weather Information Service – Brno". World Meteorological Organization. May 2011. Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 28 February 2013.
  7. ^ "Brno Climate Normals 1961–1990". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Retrieved 28 February 2013.
  8. ^ "World Weather Information Service – Ostrava". United Nations. Retrieved 21 January 2011.
  9. ^ "Normales et records pour la période 1991–2020 à Ostrava". infoclimat.fr. Retrieved 15 March 2022.

Public Domain This article incorporates public domain material from World Factbook. CIA.

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