A summer afternoon at Georgian Bay

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Josef Čermák (CzechFolks.com PLUS)

Canada could hardly complain about being treated by nature miserly. It has been blessed with about one quarter of the world supply of the drinking water. Its size (the second largest in the world) allows it to dedicate huge chunks of land for parks. To its credit, Canada created, on a total land mass greater than all of Germany, a system of 42 national parks (the rain forest of Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, The Mountains of Banf Park…), which are to preserve outstanding examples of each of Canada’s 39 natural regions.

One of the 42 national parks is named Georgian Bay Islands National Park. Georgian Bay is a bay of Lake Huron, 220 km long, 100 km wide, covering more than 15,000 sq. km. In its waters dwell and meditate about eternity tens of thousands of islands. Continue reading

A Unique Way to Compare Historic and Current Prague (Unikátní způsob pro porovnání historické a aktuální Prahy)

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Would you like to see how Prague used to look like 100 years ago? You may want to go to the website below that shows authentic Prague photos and compares them to real paintings by the Czech artist Jan Minarik (1862 – 1937). The website is well done and easy to use, and allows you to move a bar in the middle of the photo to look at the old painting or the most recent photographs. You will be able to see places such as Havelsky trh, Kaprova and Maiselova Street, Charles Bridge, the National museum building, and many other beautiful places in the capital of the Czech Republic. You will be able to explore a total of 29 photograph/paintings and see, in some cases, dramatic changes in the landscape, and building sizes and orientation. Continue reading

Czech Festival in Banat, Romania, Was a Success! (Český festival v Banátu, Rumunsko, byl úspěšný!)

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A unique Czech festival emphasizing the Czech culture just took place in Saint Helena, Banat in Romania. About six months ago you may have read about the Czech villages in Banat and their citizens that managed to preserve their culture and language for more than 180 years. The community, consisting of almost 2,000 Czechs, is somewhat special because it offers visitors the opportunity to see what the Czech villages used to look like. The Czech Republic is changing and its towns and villages transformed thanks to new technology and modern transportation. On the other hand, time in the villages in Banat has stood still and this year’s festival again showed how folklore traditions are still passed from one generation to the next.

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A Tale of the Camp Hostyn with a Happy Ending (Příběh kempu Hostýn se šťastným koncem)

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Recently, you had an opportunity to learn about scouting and its history in the Czech Republic. If you think of scouts, you may think of tents, summer activities and games, bonfires, and lots of fun. It is possible that you or your children may experience all that and more in summer camps. How great would it be if you can actually find a camp abroad that is dedicated to Czech or Slovak children and their friends? The one that we will introduce to you today is called Hostýn and it is the last remaining piece of property in the province of Quebec that is owned by the Czech and Slovak community. The camp was established by the Czech Jesuit P. Bohuslav Janíček and on May 9th it celebrated its 55th anniversary. The camp, however, had some dark times when it did not serve its original purpose, but the hard work and strong belief in supporting Czech and Slovak heritage brought the camp back to its former glory as it once was.

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New Web-Based Community for Foreigners in Brno (Nové Internetové Stránky pro Cizince v Brně)

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As we, Czechs living in the USA, Canada, England, Australia, etc. , are trying to assimilate in a new country, the expats in the Czech Republic are doing exactly the same. Today, English is spoken in many countries or it is taught as a second language. For example, 89% of students in the European Union learn English as their second language. We can’t say the same about the Czech language. It is not only rarely taught in Europe and other foreign counties, but it is also one of the hardest languages to learn. If we add our culture, customs, and traditions to this learning experience, we can talk about enormous culture shock and a tough life in the Czech Republic for any foreigner from around the world. Luckily, there are online resources to help others to learn about the country and life in the Czech Republic. The new Brno ExPats Forum does exactly that and it was created by two expats living and working in Brno.

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Mobile Technology to Improve Tourism and Travel (Mobilní Technologie pro Zlepšení Cestovního Ruchu a Cestování)

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The Czech Republic is very advanced when it comes to mobile technology, and cell phones are more popular than ever. The extensive usage of mobile phones is not surprising at all since you can do much more with them than just make a phone call. Major cities are using mobile technology to inform local residents and tourists about upcoming events and as a single user you can send SMS messages to purchase transportation tickets, pay for parking, or cultural events. These new services will make it easier for you when travelling without cash or a tour guide.

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Will Czech Railways Gain Popularity? (Získají České Dráhy Popularitu?)

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Last year Czech Railways started a new luxury ride called Bohemian Train. The tickets for this twenty-four hour ride cost about the same as a summer vacation abroad. About forty wealthy individuals have tried this first ride to Elton John’s concert in Berlin. Czech Railways have started this new program to gain more popularity amongst other forms of transportation. On the other hand, the efforts may not be enough since the ordinary customers are still riding in obsolete or poorly remodeled wagons. Will this behavior really attract Czech and Slovak travelers to use their service?

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Learn about Czech Heritage in Banat, Romania (Poznejte České Kulturní Dědictví v Rumunském Banátu)

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Gerník

Where do you think you can find the most preserved Czech culture, language and traditions? If you guessed Romania, you just hit the nail on the head. If you visit Czech villages in the south of the Romanian Banat, you will feel like at home. People in Banat have preserved their heritage for more than 180 years by simply passing it from one generation to another.

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Tips for Legal Travel to the USA (Tipy pro Legální Cestování do USA)

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Airport (www.airdirect747.com)

The fact that the Czech Republic was added to the Visa Waiver Program is probably not new to you. You may not know, however, that many other countries were added to this program just recently, including countries that did not previously require visas to enter the USA. This has caused lots of problems for people that were not familiar with the new travel policy. For example, citizens of the United Kingdom would unknowingly still travel without this permit and then face deportation in the United States. Most Czechs and the Slovaks are probably already acquainted with this new process but maybe don’t know what it takes to obtain the permit. The information below could be helpful to many of you and can serve as a checklist to make sure you receive the permit and will be admitted to the United States of America.

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See the Czech Republic in Less Than 10 Minutes (Spatřete Českou Republiku za Méně Než 10 Minut)

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Prague Castle (www.15wheelsetcongress.com)

After our successful video post with the Czech Christmas fairy tales, wer are adding another video sequence about Prague and the Czech Republic. We have selected two slideshows and two videos. All of them have something special about our country including famous politicians, movie stars, models, writers, conductors and more. Beautiful pictures of countryside, castles and cities don’t need explanations at all. The videos will either bring you back home or introduce this beautiful country to you for the first time. Enjoy!

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Do You Miss Czech Historic Towns? Watch The Illusionist Movie. (Je Vam Smutno po Ceskych Historickych Mestech? Podivejte Se Na Film The Illusionist)

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Last night, again just a coincidence, we discovered another American film shot in the Czech Republic – called The Illusionist. Immediately after the first minutes of the film, we found the places, where the story took place, very familiar. On the basis of a scenario, the story took place in Vienna; however, the whole movie was shot in Prague, Tabor, Česky Krumlov and other Czech places. Would you like to see how the places, where the film was filmed, look today? You can, of course, visit the Czech Republic or look at the following photos.

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Czech Hotels Don’t Attract Foreign Tourists Anymore (Ceske Hotely Jiz Nelakaji Zahranicni Turisty)

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Many of you may already know that the Czech Republic is overcrowded by tourists. Our visit to Prague last Christmas definitely confirmed this. All squares and main streets were congested by tourists from around the world. During this year, the number of tourists increased further, but according to Czech statistical offices, the number of nights spent in Czech hotels has decreased, as well as interest in Czech hotels. Could it be due to a bad economic situation in the world?

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