Springtime flooding is taking its toll on Austria, Slovakia and especially the Czech Republic. For those visiting Prague, Wellies and brellas are more than necessary as the city is hit with massive flooding.
Vltava River on the rise
We enjoyed a particularly good, and snowy, ski season this year but all that snow has to melt. The warm weather has melted the snow and river levels all over Europe have been swelling up as the water from mountain springs flows down from the Alps and into central Europe. Top that all off with heavy rainfalls and you’ve got massive flooding.
Prague’s Vltava River has exploded, almost reaching up to the city’s famous Charles Bridge. Tourists and travellers are facing major disruptions as the city floods and attractions and city transport remain closed.
Flights to Prague are still in operation but currently all three of the city’s metro lines are closed and access to Charles Bridge has been cut off as the river’s water level continues to rise. There are very few tram services available and car access to central Prague is restricted. Some locations close to the river that are particularly hilly have also been closed off to the public, for fear of landslip.
Experts say the water levels have likely peaked, meaning they shouldn’t rise much more but the city isn’t risking anything. Evacuation measures have been set up, just in case. To the north and south of Prague, the city experienced the worst flooding in a decade, submerging Prague’s zoo and horse racing track. In the centre, metal barrier walls were set up to hold back the water, protecting the historic quarter.
FCO travel advice
All travel to Prague should be avoided unless absolutely necessary, according to the Mayor of Prague. The city is in a state of emergency and travellers should avoid visiting until this state has been lifted. The FCO warns,
A state of emergency has been declared across the region of Bohemia (except the Pardubice region). Although river levels have started to fall in Prague, the Mayor of Prague has advised against unnecessary travel to the city until the State of Emergency is lifted. Disruption to water, gas and electricity services may occur in affected areas. Some tourist sites are not accessible, eg Charles Bridge.
Do you have a trip to Prague planned? Continue to watch the FCO website for updates on the flooding.How to: experience Prague for FREE