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There are several terrestrial protected areas in the Czech Republic. The mostprotected ones are the national parks, whose flora and fauna are of uniquescientific and educational importance, both internationally and nationally.

#1 The Giant Mountains

The Giant Mountains National Park13 stretches along the highestmountains in the Czech Republic and includes some of their foothills.Characteristics of the natural environment: deciduous and mixed forests atthe foot of the mountains, mountain spruce forests, dwarf pine species andalpine grasslands meadows. Glacial cirques and lichen tundra on the highestridges provide wonderful sightseeing for the more adventurous.

#2 PODYJÍ

PODYJÍ National Park is located along the Dyje River between the towns ofZnojmo and Vranov nad Dyjí, near the Austrian border. It is a biome whosewell-preserved state is unique in Central Europe. Characteristics of the naturalenvironment: a unique river valley with a mosaic of rocky slopes and steepwalls, meanders, extensive fields and scree gorges, alluvial meadows andsunny forest steppes with thermophilic flora.

#3 SUMAVA

The SUMAVA National Park extends over the most valuable area of the Šumava Mountains. Characteristics of the natural environment: almost 85% ofthe area is forested in the central part. At higher altitudes, there are remnantsof virgin forests, abundant wetlands, raised bogs and glacial lakes. Many protected species of flora and fauna are vestiges of the Ice Age.

#4 České Švycarsko

České Švycarsko15 is a picturesque region in the northwest of the CzechRepublic.The National Park is located on the Czech side of the Elbe SandstoneMountains, north of Děčín, on both sides of the Elbe River (Labe). It has aunique geomorphology of sandstone rocks, rich biodiversity, grassy beechforests with an abundance of plant species contrasting with the vast pine andspruce forests growing on the sandstone. Wildlife includes lynx, great hornedowl and peregrine falcon.

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