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River Divoká Orlice - Czech republic

spring (source):
The river springs in Poland under the hill Biesiec in an altitude of 800 m of sea level.
flow length:
99 km

Basic information about river

river sections






Water stages

River description:

The river-basin of upper Elbe, confluence with Tichá.

The river springs in Poland under the hill Biesiec in an altitude of 800 m of sea level. Near to Trčkov contacts the border and flows in southeastern direction to so called  „Boundary Gate“.

Here flows to the Bohemian territory  and turns to the south. Near to Nekoř under  Pastviny-dam bends to the east-north-east and near to Albrechtice nad Orlicí flows down  with Tichá Orlice and forms Orlice river. The river basin of Divoká Orlice  makes 807km2. The upper boundary flow up to the Boundary Gate is not difficult and it is very nice and romantic.

The bed  is wider and the river flows through moderate rapids in the middle of forests.

The road follows along the flow and does not disturb the navigation. In the middle of the river there is a state frontier with Poland. Near to Boundary Gate the river enters via short rocky pass to the Czech territory and stony, but clear rapids continue up to airy water-level of Pastviny Dam. Under the dam the valley is more open and inhabited but the river has always nice slope and up to Doudleby the navigation is very pleasant. The best rapids are in the section of so called Litice bend – between communities of Litice and Potštejn. Here we meet the natural thresholds with bigger waves. In the remaining flow to the mouth is Divoká Orlice plain river. The bed was unfortunately damaged by flooding in 1997 in  its lower section.

Some weirs, in the section under Pastviny-dam, is better to be investigated in advance. Some of them are navigable. The difficulty does not exceed WW II(II+). Divoká Orlice has as a bigger river, several navigable tributories, which belong to those most intersting rivers of  Orlické Mountains – such as the rivers Bělá, Zdobnice, Říčka.

The descending of Orlice depends on the section we choose. First of all, it is necessary to draw attention the the border secrtion. Sometimes we pass without problems. Anyway, it would be good to advise your navigation planes to Police in Bartošovice at least, or directly in Hradec Králové at first. Otherwise, you can be arrested as smugglers in Polish prison.

The upper flow up to Pastviny-Dam is navigable during snow-thaw in March and April. Under the dam the situation is similar, moreover, the passage depends on manipulation on a pier. The ideal stand is 15m3/sec. This is sufficient  for  passage of Litice-bend. From Potštejn or Doudleby the Divoká Orlice river is navigable all year round.  As to the upper flow: we can follow the water-index  60 cm in Klášterec, and for the section from Litice follow the water-index 40 cm in Litice or 80 cm in Kostelec. Near to the community of Nekoř there are taken place  in April and May several watermen-events , when the passage is secured. 

The experienced crew can descend the river in an open boat, too, but in this case the knowledge of technique is necessary and accross most of weirs the boats are recommandable to be carried over. The upper flow: it is one day´s excursion , from the dam you can make weekend´s excursion.


On its upper flow up to Klášterec nad Orlicí, the river runs through the Protected Natural Area Orlické hory. We have to maintain the rules of nature protection and camping limitation.

We find the camping places  near to Pastviny-Dam,  further in Žamberk and Kostelec.

The accommodation can be secured in the other smaller towns along the river.


It is available in places: Orlické Záhoří, Bartošovice, Klášterec, Nekoř, Líšnice, Bohousová, Žamberk, Potštejn, Záměl, Doudleby, Kostelec nad Orlicí.

First aid:

It is available in health centres in Bartošovice, Klášterec, Žamberk, Potštejn, Doudleby, Kostelec.

Places of interest:


Czech republic


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