Prague's Petřín cable car was the most popular Czech attraction last year

The funicular up Petřín Hill overtook Prague Castle as the Czech Republic's most popular tourist attraction last year thanks to effects from the pandemic. Staff

Written by Staff Published on 25.06.2022 15:06:00 (updated on 25.06.2022) Reading time: 2 minutes

Prague's Petřín Funicular was the most-visited Czech attraction last year, according to data released this weekend by Czech Tourism. The location saw more than one million visitors in 2021 while more traditional tourist attractions saw a decrease in visitors due to effects related to the pandemic and a decrease in foreign tourists.

Domestic tourism, meanwhile, saw an uptick in 2021, with many local attractions across the Czech Republic reporting an uptick in visitors last year despite the pandemic. Six of the top ten most-visited Czech attractions last year were zoos.

Prague Castle, which traditionally tops the list of the Czech Republic's most popular attractions, fell to ninth place last year with just 440,000 visitors. Only eight of the Czech Republic's top 50 most-visited attractions in 2021 were in Prague.

Prague Castle viewed from Old Town in the spring via iStock / Vladislav Zolotov
Prague Castle viewed from Old Town in the spring via iStock / Vladislav Zolotov

"The explanation is simple: there were significantly fewer foreign tourists in 2021 due to Covid-19 and logically interest in Prague Castle fell, similar to the pandemic year in 2020," says CzechTourism Director Jan Herget in a press release.

"At the same time, and on the contrary, the interest of travelers in [natural attractions] has increased radically and still holds a high position, especially in the Czech mountains."

While the Czech Republic expects a rebound in tourism this year, numbers aren't expected to fully recover due to lingering pandemic effects and the war in Ukraine. Visitors from China and Russia, especially, aren't expected to return in force this year.

The cable car on Prague’s Petřín Hill.
The cable car on Prague’s Petřín Hill. (photo: iStock)

"At the moment, we expect that around 5 million visitors from abroad will come to the Czech Republic this year, so we can expect an increase in interest in Prague Castle," adds Herget.

"However, tourists from Asia and Russia will probably still be missing, and they made up almost 20% of the Czech Republic's tourists."

Following the Petřín Funicular, Prague Zoo was the Czech Republic's second most-visited attraction in 2021. Zoos in Zlín, Pilsen, Ostrava, Olomouc and Dvůr Králové also made the top ten.

Industrial Complexes at Ostrava. Photo: iStock / JackF
Industrial Complexes at Ostrava. Photo: iStock / JackF

The Industrial Complexes at Ostrava, a monument to industry and UNESCO World Heritage nominee, received 620,000 visitors last year to become the fourth most-popular attraction in the Czech Republic. The Aquapalace Čestlice water park came in fifth with 618,000 visitors.

"The change of places that tourists visited the most in the Czech Republic last year shows two things: the importance of domestic tourism is growing and it is necessary to invest in the restart of foreign tourism," says Herget.

These were the Czech Republic's most-visited attractions in 2021:

AttractionNumber of visitors
Petřín Funicular1015500
Prague Zoo963000
Zoo Zlín623900
Lower Vítkovice, Ostrava620300
Aquapalace Čestlice618000
Safari Park Dvůr Králové543700
Zoo Plzeň476900
Zoo Ostrava462100
Prague Castle440000
Zoo Olomouc409200

More information can be found via Czech Tourism's statistical site

Would you like us to write about your business? Find out more