Nature, History, Active tourism
The Bohemian Paradise is situated nearly one hundred kilometers to the northeast from Prague. Geographically it is demarcated by a borderline connecting Mnichovo Hradiste, Sychrov, the hill Kopanina, Zelezny Brod, Semily, Lomnice nad Popelkou, Jicin, Sobotka and Mnichovo Hradiste. This picturesque area borders on foot-hills of the Giant Mountains in the east and is marked off by the belt of the Jizerské Mountains and the Giant Mountains in the north. In this romantic area, that is situated on the middle part of the Jizera river, variety of nature beauties is bound with rich historical buildings: castles, chateaux and folk architecture. Exactly it was the reason why the guests of the Sedmihorky spa started to call it the Bohemian Paradise already in the 19th century.
The extraordinary diversity of the landscape with characteristic sandstone rock towns, fauna and flora was the main reason for proclaming the region the first protected area in the then republic (1955). When considering the diversity of the landscape and the occurence of preserved and engangered biological species, deep forests as well as systems of ponds on water streams and surrounding small areas of wet ground with ecological systems are of big importance. The unique diversity of the relief is also made by characteristic volcanic effusions which form the dominants of the area (Trosky, Kozakov, Muzsky, Vysker etc.).
There are numerous finding places of agates, amethysts, jaspers, chalcedonies and other kinds of precious stones in the volcanic rocks. The treatment of these precious stones has been connected with the history of the city of Turnov for several centuries. Turnov has been the natural, economical and cultural centre of this area and nowadays it is called the heart of the Bohemian Paradise. People living in this area has been known for their craftsmanship. The glass products of Zelezny Brod, wooden toys and moulds of wood carvers from Semily, rusks produced in Lomnice nad Popelkou as well as garnet jewels and ground precious stones made in Turnov found their way to the whole world and become succesful. Welcome, therefore, in the region of good people, natural beauties, castles, museums and traditional craft production.