Although the Czech Republic is not a big country, you can find everything there, except for the Sea. There are big modern cities as well as little villages, both fruity cultural activities and beautiful landscapes. With its area of about 80 000 kilometres squared and population slightly over 10 million people, it is a place that is neither overcrowded nor hollow.
Read some interesting facts about Czech Republic.
Prague is the Capital. It is a famous city all around the world for its historical monuments and unique atmosphere. Being only about 350 kilometres far from the place where you stay, Ostrava, it is really easy to go there just for a weekend, or even one-day trip. It is especially beautiful before Christmas time when the streets are decorated and there are Christmas markets on the squares.
It is hard to say something general about Czech people, there is no real stereotype as with the careless Spanish or precise Scandinavian. And it is very important to differentiate between the two generations - older and younger, the older one being not too much open-minded and quite conservative, maybe also reserved to foreigners, whilst the younger generation is friendly and willing to help, also often inclined to be interested in other cultures.
What you might find useful is the information about prices here. Compared to many other European countries, the Czech Republic is a quite cheap place. For one euro you can buy a loaf of bread or a beer in a pub. Regarding brand clothes, that is, on the other hand, more expensive than in London for example.
Regarding transportation, there are trains and buses running throughout the country and all of them, together with the public transport of all the cities, towns and villages, can be found at IDOS website which is widely used and reliable.
As for climate, we always warn our incoming students, especially those from the South, about the winters we get here. Sometimes the temperature falls below minus 20°C. Therefore, whether you are arriving in September or in February, be sure you take some warm clothes with you because the frosts usually hit between December and February.
Unfortunately, not too many people here speak English well or even speak English. As the Czech Language is very difficult to learn, it might be more useful for you only to learn the phrases you need for the purposes of one or two semesters you spend here.