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From the Castle to the Capitol, American Friends of the Czech Republic fosters communication, encourages understanding, invites friendship, and promotes mutual respect between the two countries and their peoples, governments, economic enterprises, and civic and cultural institutions.


National Heritage Institute Promotes New Websites for Visitors

The National Heritage Institute reports that many of the Czech Republic's Gems are Still Undiscovered by Tourists

(From Czech News czech.cz) The National Heritage Institute which is responsible for the protection and preservation of the country’s historical monuments has over 100 palaces, castles and manor houses in its care. Over the past 20 years it has worked hard to restore many of those long-neglected buildings to their former glory and today they represent the best part of the country’s national heritage. Regrettably, many of those outside Prague remain undiscovered by foreign tourists. Tomáš Brabec of the National Heritage Institute says this is something that the institute is trying hard to change. “Of course the most popular and best-known is Karlštejn Castle, Český Krumlov, Konopiště, Hluboká, the Moravian UNESCO complex, Lednice. You know castles can offer authenticity and noble feelings and of course people travel primarily to experience something. Our visitors do not necessarily come to learn, they come predominantly for the experience, to have an enjoyable time, to feel good. And that is why we are targeting everybody, we are not distinguishing between Czech and foreign visitors. We are trying to enrich the basic services from tour guides to additional activities –theatre performances, music performances, a guided tour by the manager of the place who can definitely present the place with much deeper knowledge than even the most professional tour guide. Our season is divided into months where each has a certain topic and visitors can look for the things they are interested in. “From that point of view, I think that with our sites we can satisfy almost everybody. Because the castles and the palaces, the chateaux and the manor houses –and even some technical monuments that we take care of – they represent everything – architecture, fine art, sculpture, garden architecture, folk architecture, industrial architecture…there is something for almost everyone. We now have a new website where each of our sites is covered in different language versions which is a way of bringing people directly to these sites and trying to show them the character of each place. I really think that we can satisfy anyone with an elementary cultural interest.”