Geology of the Czech Republic

The whole area of the Czech Republic is covered by highlands, structured by several big rivers. Those highlands are the remains of old mountain ridges, the rocks are folded and alterated by a long orogenetic history. The sedimentary rocks are not in their original state of horizontal layering, but torn into pieces, folded and slanted. All the limestone karst areas of the Czech Republic are small and have a complex structure.

The whole country is dotted with caves, all of them located in small, not to say tiny, karst areas. Some tiny karst areas have only small caves, which are not open to the public. Some karst areas have only one show cave. There are only two areas which are bigger and contain numerous caves with some of them open to the public.

The country was divided into three principal karst territories, a division which covers the whole surface of the Czech Republic. This means the territorries are not limited to the karst areas, but cover the basic geological structure of the country. Also they are not the same size.

The borders run more or less straight from Znojmo, at the southern border to Austria, to the northeast. The western division covers most of the country, the western and central part, which makes about 75% of the area. There are numerous caves, many show caves, but typically they are located in small isolated karst areas. The only bigger karst area in this division is the RegionČeský Kras (Czech Karst) near Prague.

The border to the next division runs from Znojmo, north of Brno towards Sumperk and the Polish border. The second border runs also from Znojmo, northeast, south of Brno towards Ostrava also at the Polish border. The triangle in between includes the RegionMoravský Kras (Moravian Karst), which is the most famous Karst area of the country.

The third area is the smallest and has only one show cave. It is part of the Carpathian Mountain Range.