Labské pískovce PLA was declared by the Czechoslovakian Ministry of Culture on 27th June, 1972 in the counties of Děčín and Ústí nad Labem in the North Bohemian region covering an area of 324 km². After the declaration of České Švýcarsko National Park in 2000, this area was reduced to 245 km².
The mission of Labské pískovce PLA is to protect the landscape values, its appearance, typical characteristics, natural resources and to create a balanced natural environment. Along with České Švýcarsko NP and Sächsische Schweiz NP and PLA it forms the most extensive region of block sandstone in Central Europe.
The great significance of Labské pískovce is underlined by its inclusion in the Natura 2000 system of European Union protected areas at 2 levels. The first is the Labské pískovce SPA – Bird Area, designated to protect 4 species of birds: peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus), eagle owl (Bubo bubo), black woodpecker (Dryocopus martius) and corncrake (Crex crex). The second level is the proposed Sites of Community Importance, aiming to protect selected habitats, plants and animal species. In the PLA this includes the following areas:
- České Švýcarsko – protection of Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar), otter (Lutra lutra) and natural habitats of Community interest
- Údolí Labe – protection of European beaver (Castor fiber), Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar), otter (Lutra lutra) and floating water plantain (Luronium natans) as well as natural habitats of European Community interest
- Královomlýnský rybník – protection of floating water plantain
- Horní Kamenice – protection of Atlantic salmon and otter
Jílové u Děčína – school – protection of a colony of greater mouse-eared bat (Myotis myotis)
In the deep valleys of the Labské pískovce area there are climatic inversions. At the lowest points there is a so-called “cellar climate” and these areas are the coldest with typical mountain plants and animals, but on the other hand, higher elevations on the rocky plateaux and cliff edges are very warm and are populated by thermophilous species. Under the blazing sun, the temperature on these rocks can reach 60 °C