South Bohemia belongs, due to its geographical location and natural conditions, to the areas where the first settlements began to appear in the distant past. At the beginning of the twentieth century, industrial production entered this area, which was originally famous for fishpond cultivation and forestry. The attractiveness of the natural and culturally historical richness of the region is conditioned by the development of tourism. One of the greatest advantages of the region is its situation on the border, which enables co-operation with the neighbouring EU countries.
South Bohemia makes, from a geographical point of view, quite a closed whole whose core consists of the South Bohemian Basin and the Českobudějovická and Třeboňská Basins. In the south-west it is surrounded by Šumava (the Bohemian Forest), and then it is also surrounded by the promontory of Brdy, the Středočeská (Central-Bohemian) Granite Highlands, the Českomoravská (Czech-Moravian) Highlands and the Novohradské Mountains.
The region does not abound with mineral resources. The mining of gravel-sand, stone, brick clay, and, to a certain extent, ceramic clay, limestone and graphite prevails. The forests, which take up one third of the total area, form an important natural treasure.
From the point of view of the international transport, the South Bohemian Region has a strategic position on the north-south axis. Important international roads lead through the region as well as the north-south railway corridor. However, to connect these roads and the railway to the European network is a big problem of the region.
The industrial production is concentrated particularly in, and around, the town of České Budějovice and in the districts of Tábor and Strakonice. The processing industry plays a significant role here, especially food and drink processing. Other important industries are production of vehicles, machinery and appliances, and also the textile and clothing industries.
The agricultural sector focuses on plant production, mostly on growing cereals, oil plants and potatoes. In animal husbandry, the breeding of cattle and pigs prevails. Fishpond cultivation has a long tradition in South Bohemia. Fish husbandry in the total area of 25 000 ha, makes up about 50% of the total production in the Czech Republic.
The South Bohemian Region is becoming an important tourist and recreational resort. The travel industry has been the fastest growing industry in the region in the past few years.
The entire business sector in the South Bohemian Region is comprised of 144 000 entities, where nearly three fourths of these entities are sole traders. The Czech Academy of Sciences, whose institutes operate all over the region, provides a good base for the development of science. These institutes focus mostly on biology and ecology. Scientific work is also part of the activities of the University of South Bohemia with its headquarters in České Budějovice and Jindřichův Hradec.