Why study in the Czech Republic?
We’ve got 9 great reasons why!
☆ Considered one of the “hubs” of Eastern Europe, the Czech Republic, or “Czechia”, is a fantastic study abroad destination. Nicknamed the “City of a Hundred Spires,” the Czech Republic’s capital of Prague is home to a wide variety of gorgeous buildings, iconic museums, and Instagram-worthy street corners. In addition, the city’s rich and unique history provides a priceless opportunity for students to expand their horizons, learn about new places, and add “global experience” to their resume.
Cities like Florence and Barcelona are big, busy, and SUPER popular for study abroad programs. Meanwhile, the Czech Republic has the city of Prague as a perfect, unique option for international students who want a little more of a “small-town feel”. If you’re wanting to make your study abroad experience a more personal one, the Czech Republic is the place for you! Still not sure? We have some great reasons for you to study abroad in Czech Republic programs!
9 reasons to study in the Czech Republic
1. The capital is a well-preserved window to the past
With beginnings dating back to 4000 BC, Prague provides a unique peek into some of the world’s most ancient histories. There’s something for every history buff here. While other cities in Europe were left heavily damaged after World War II, Prague managed to remain significantly more intact.
For students who want to study in the Czech Republic, this means you’re heading to a city that’s a literal “living museum.” The streets you walk down and the buildings you see are some of the oldest in the world. Cross the Charles Bridge (built-in 1357), or take a tour of stunning Prague Castle, where construction began in the year 870!
The Czech Republic has a history filled with stories, from the rule of the Hussite Revolution in the 15th century to the reign of Charles IV in the 14th. Political science and International Relations students will find no shortage of inspiration for their studies here. The capital of the Czech Republic, Prague, has seen the Austro-Hungarian Empire, communism, Nazi rule, and independence, all within a century’s time.
The city is also known as a leader in the scientific and academic communities. Some study abroad programs are even offered at Charles University, a school established in 1348! The campus still carries the name and legacy of its founder, the Holy Roman Emperor Charles IV. More than 600 years later, Charles University is considered one of the most research-intensive institutions in the world. It should top your list of universities in the Czech Republic!
2. It’s affordable
Czech Republic study abroad is relatively affordable in comparison to other European destinations. Prague has a bustling student population, and international students will find an affordable home away from home in university residence halls or individual apartments.
Food can be an unexpected big cost when you study in the Czech Republic, but the good news is that the food and beverage prices in the CR are on the lower end! In addition, Prague’s countless cathedrals, bridges, and palaces provide a free history lesson or entertainment for the student hoping to save a few bucks while out as a tourist.
Travelling throughout Europe is very cost-effective in the Czech Republic. For less than 50 euros, you can take a train to Budapest, Krakow, Milan and other amazing places in Central and Eastern Europe from centrally-located Prague. As you browse programs for study abroad in Czech Republic, be on the lookout for international excursions! Some program providers include these in your program cost, which is another affordable way to see and experience more during your semester abroad.
3. Prague is a great size
Prague is an incredibly walkable city and it doesn’t feel too big. While cities like Barcelona and Paris can feel overwhelming for some students, that is not the case when you study in the Czech Republic! It’s not too big and not too small. Walking the city after class will become routine, and study abroad students often find they can navigate Prague easily within the first couple weeks of their program.
The public transportation system is simple and easy to use, taking the stress of getting around the city off your shoulders. Finding your corners or your cafes for studying will be an easy task for international students. With a big student community, you can quickly figure out where the best spots are around town!
4. The Czech Republic is a fantastic travel hub
Want to check other countries off your bucket list while you study abroad? Czech Republic programs can make that happen! Jetting out for the weekend is easy to do, especially if you’re nearby Prague. Krakow and Budapest are both about an hour’s plane ride away!
Flights to Rome and Paris are just under two hours. Berlin is a four-hour train ride away and Warsaw is just 90 minutes. The Czech Republic’s capital provides a unique connection to Eastern and Western Europe, providing more perspective about the history of that part of the world. Experience all that Europe has to offer from the comfortable home base of Prague, Czechia.
5. Let’s hear it for the “weirdos”
Prague’s history includes some eccentric and unique characters. In the 16th century, the city was nicknamed “Magic Prague” and it brought a variety of eclectic people to the city. What does this mean for study in Czech Republic for international students? Anyone interested in the unusual or odd will feel immediately at home!
From true crime to the supernatural, Prague’s folklore is enticing. Did you know Prague has a Museum of Alchemists and Magicians? The museum includes two stories of displays and tales from Old Prague. Learn more about how occult practices took over the city in the 1500s, and why this time period still holds some influence over Prague today.
The 1600s ushered in a new time for Prague commonly called the city’s “Dark Age.” From haunted convents to legendary ghost stories, anyone interested in the supernatural will feel at home during Czech Republic study abroad. Prague’s Astronomical Clock, located in the heart of the city, is even believed to be cursed!
Want to see more of the weirdness of the Czech Republic? Students who study in Prague can also visit unusual places like the Dripstone Wall, the Penguins at Kampa Park, the KGB Museum, and the Museum of Miniatures. Studying at universities in the Czech Republic will surely open some unique doors for you.
6. The Vltava River is a perfect place to escape to
Studying abroad is undoubtedly an amazing and fun adventure, but for most students, there will still be bad or overwhelming days (as we all have them!). If you’re looking for a break or a place to disconnect, look no further than the Vltava River; a convenient escape right within the city of Prague.
When the weather is nice, you can spend an evening at the river’s edge, catching dinner or going for a run. Rent a paddleboat or SUP and head out on the water for a couple of hours of quiet, or visit the farmer’s market along the river during the week. The Vltava River is where people throughout the Czech Republic go to take a break from the deadlines and the workload of careers or school…and taking a break is important when you’re trying something new!
7. The art scene is unmatched
The reign of Rudolph II in the 16th century ushered in an amazing period of art and architecture. According to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, several artists came to Rudolph’s Imperial Court. Among them were painter Bartholomeus Spranger, sculptor Adriaen de Vries, and miniaturist Joris Hoefnagel. Rudolph II took great pride in collecting artistic works from artists around the world. Because of this, he amassed a collection of THOUSANDS of paintings! Rudolph’s interests and tastes worked to add culture, life, and beauty to the Czech Republic—including in the city of Prague.
Today the art scene remains top of mind for residents of Prague. They take great pride in the many museums and exhibitions across Prague, including the Museum of Decorative Arts Museum Kampa (featuring modern art from Central Europe) and the Mucha Museum, dedicated to Czech artist Alphonse Mucha. If modern art is more your style, the city is home to the Czech Poster Museum (featuring vintage posters throughout modern history) as well as the Illusion Art Museum, which seems to combine art and magic in its immersive and 3D art collections.
8. And then there’s the music
The streets of Prague are filled with beauty and art during the day, but at night the streets are full of music! Prague’s bars and nightclubs are hotspots for live music and up-and-coming bands from across Europe. Whether you’re a fan of jazz or hip hop, piano or rock, themed venues for your tastes can be found across the city.
Another testament to Prague’s love of music can be found at the city’s John Lennon Wall. Since the 80’s, artists from around the world have visited the wall to fill it with graffiti inspired by the late Lennon, as well as the Beatles. The wall looks different every single day as the graffiti changes, which means students who study in the Czech Republic can check out the wall several times throughout their program, and find a different experience each and every time!
9. There are lots of resources available
The Czech Republic, and more specifically Prague, is a popular study abroad destination, which means students have access to tons of resources! Whether you’re considering a short-term program or looking to spend an academic year in the City of a Hundred Spires, you’ll find no shortage of study abroad programs, financial aid, and on-site resources. Make sure to jot down some notes on what’s important to you in a study abroad program, and research providers in the Czech Republic to find the best option for your school, career, and life goals!
Next steps to studying abroad in the Czech Republic
Don’t pack your bags juuuust yet. There are a few items on your study abroad to-do list you should check off first.
- Decide where to go. Figuring out where to study abroad in the Czech Republic isn’t easy. Somewhere in Prague? Somewhere lowkey? Don’t let anything hold you back—choose a place that’s right for you.
- Your major courses or something more fun and experiential? You don’t only have to take classes that pertain to your major back home (though it never hurts to knock out some credits towards graduation). Look at your course options and decide what combination of required classes and just-for-fun or because-you-want-to-learn-it classes are out there. Choose from literature, the sciences, education, psychology, and more!
- Choose from the best study abroad programs in the Czech Republic. Pay attention to past participants’ reviews, program/university reputation, location, and your ease of getting credits. Some schools or providers may even provide contact info for student ambassadors or past international students if you want the REAL dirt. Here’s our guide to choosing between study abroad programs.
- Plan your finances. Sort out funding before you go to afford daily essentials and travel splurges (in addition to program costs and airfare). Do your research to have an idea of how much your study abroad program will cost. Check out scholarships for study abroad in the Czech Republic too!
- Talk to your home university. Getting all your ducks in a row is largely dependent on what your home university requires. Talk to a study abroad advisor or the equivalent at your university to see what choices are available to you.
Why study in the Czech Republic? …Why NOT?!
Opportunities for Czech Republic study abroad are affordable and located in cities filled with artistic history, rich culture, and friendly people! Students who visit Prague while studying in other cities quickly discover the value of this European gem; some may wish that they would have chosen Prague as their ideal study abroad experience! Students can easily be picturing themselves sitting outside a local café after class or snapping a photo in front of the Lennon Wall.
As a place with a balance of old-world charm with modern conveniences, Prague and the Czech Republic grow as more students and visitors discover this unique corner of the world. Whether students choose to study in the fall, spring, summer, or year-round, the streets can fill with Christmas markets, summer festivals, live music, and much more. When you choose the Czech Republic as your study abroad destination, you get much more than you expect!