St Vitus Cathedral
Built over a time span of nearly 600 years, St Vitus is among the very richly preserved cathedrals in Europe. It’s crucial to this spiritual and cultural lifestyle of the Czech Republic, home treasures that Add the 14th-century mosaic of the Final Judgement and the tombs of St Wenceslas and Charles IV, into the baroque silver grave of St John of Nepomuk, the intricate Chapel of St Wenceslas and art nouveau stained glass by Alfons Mucha.
At first glance the cathedral’s western facade, which looms over the entry to the Third Courtyard, looks incredibly sour, but in fact the triple door dates just by 1953, one of the very last portions of the church to be completed. The foundation stone was laid in 1344 from Emperor Charles IV, on the internet webpage of a 10th century Romanesque rotunda assembled by Duke Wenceslas. Peter Parler — a veteran of Cologne’s cathedral, his successor — completed nearly all of the eastern area of the cathedral. Renaissance and baroque details were inserted on the following centuries, however it was in 1861 during the Czech National Revival that a joint effort was made in order to complete the palace — all between the western door and also the crossing had been assembled during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. It was finally consecrated in 1929.
Constructed across Charles Bridge is the preferred Prague activity of everybody. But by 9am it’s a 500m-long fairground, with a military of tourists running under the impassive gaze of the baroque statues that line the parapets through a gauntlet of hawkers along with buskers. Attempt to see it at dawn, if you wish to go through the bridge in its atmospheric.
In 1357 Charles IV commissioned Peter Parler (the architect of St Vitus Cathedral) to displace the 12th-century Judith Bridge, which had been washed away by floods in 1342. (you may begin to see the only surviving arch of the Judith Bridge by taking a boat trip with Prague Venice.)
The new bridge has been completed in 1390, also took Charles’ name only in the 19th century — even until that it was understood only as Kamenný many (Stone Bridge). Despite intermittent flood damage, it withstood wheeled traffic for 500-odd years thanks, legend says, to dinosaurs mixed into the mortar (though recent diagnoses have disproved this myth) — until it was forced pedestrian-only after WWII.
Prague’s hottest attraction. Looming above the Vltava bank, its serried ranks of palaces, towers and spires dominate the town centre such as a fairytale fortress. Lies a varied and fascinating collection of historical buildings, galleries and museums who are home for a number of the Czech Republic’s greatest artistic and cultural treasures. Note that customers must pass through a security check therefore make EU identification card or your passport.
Based on the Guinness World Records, it is the ancient castle complex on earth: 570m long wide and covering a complete area bigger than just seven football fields.
The castle has been the seat of Czech monarchs as well as their head of state’s official residence. Its history starts in the 9th century, when Prince Bořivoj founded a fortified settlement . It grew as rulers made their own improvements — there were four major reconstructions, from this of Prince Soběslav in the 12th century into a classical facelift under Empress Maria Theresa (r 1740–80) — creating an eclectic mix of architectural designs.
The National Gallery’s set of the 20th, 19th and 21st Centuries’ of’ Art is spread over four floors and is still a strong contender for the most effective museum of Prague. It has a group of world masters, for example works from Van Gogh and on and on, however the holdings of Czech inter-war cubist, surrealist and abstract art are worth the trip alone.
Prague Jewish Museum
This Tradition consists of six Jewish monuments clustered in the Maisel Synagogue Josefov; the Pinkas Synagogue; the Synagogue; the Klaus Synagogue; the Ceremonial Hall; and the Jewish Cemetery. There is also the Old-New Synagogue, that continues to be utilized for religious services, and requires another ticket or commission.
In among the very grotesquely ironic acts of WWII, the Nazis overran the direction of the Prague Jewish Museum — established in 1906 to preserve artefacts out of synagogues that were forged during the slum clearances from Josefov round the beginning of the 20th century — with the aim of creating a’museum of an extinct race’. They sent in objects and materials from destroyed Jewish communities throughout Bohemia and Moravia, helping amass what’s most likely a memorial to seven centuries of oppression and the world’s biggest set of artefacts.
A normal ticket gives admission . You can buy tickets at the Reservation Centre, the Pinkas Synagogue, the Spanish Synagogue and the shop opposite the entrance to the Old-New Synagogue. Queues are generally shortest at the Synagogue. The highlights are the Old-New Synagogue and the Jewish Cemetery if you’re pressed for a while.
Prague art nouveau construction is a labour of love, with every facet of decoration and its design closely believed, every painting and sculpture. The cafe and restaurant listed here are like museums of art nouveau style and layout, while upstairs you can find just half a dozen sumptuously decorated halls you can visit by excursion. You’re able to browse round the lobby and the downstairs pub for free, or book a guided tour at the info facility (10am to 8pm).
The Municipal House stands on the webpage of the Royal Court, chair of Bohemia’s kings from 1383 to 1483 (if Vladislav II moved to Prague Castle), that was robbed at the end of this 19th century. In its place — a lavish effort by around 30 artists of the day, creating a center which was the architectural climax of the Czech National Revival this art edifice was constructed between 1906 and 1912.
You pass under a wrought iron and stained glass canopy in an interior that is art nouveau to the doorknobs.
Strahov Library is the monastic library in the nation, with two halls dating from the 17th and 18th centuries. You can peek through the doors however you can not go into the halls it was found that fluctuations in humidity due to people’ breath endangered the frescoes. Additionally there is a display of historical curiosities.
The stunning interior of the two-storey-high Philosophy Hall (Filozofický sál; 1780–9-7 ) was built to fit round the carved and gilded, floor-to-ceiling walnut shelving that was rescued from another monastery from South Bohemia (access into the upper gallery is via spiral staircases concealed in the corners). The sensation of elevation is highlighted with a grandiose ceiling fresco, Mankind’s pursuit of True Truth — that the amount of Divine Providence is enthroned in the center involving a burst of golden light, while round the borders are figures which range from Adam and Eve into the Greek philosophers.
Old Town Hall
Prague’s Old Town Hall, founded in 1338, can be a hotch potch of buildings acquired over the centuries, presided over by a Gothic tower using an Astronomical Clock. As well as housing the Old Town’s key tourist information office, the town hall hosts art exhibitions on the floor and the bottom floor, and has a lot of attractions.
The main entrance is to the rear of the clock; beyond that is your House at the Minute (dům U minuty), an arcaded building covered with Renaissance sgraffito — Franz Kafka resided here (1889–96) as a kid just before the building was purchased by the town council.
Visitors take a guided tour that proceeds throughout the council room and meeting space, with amazing mosaics dating from the 1930s, before visiting the Gothic chapel and going for a peek at the innerworkings of this 1 2 apostles who parade above the Astronomical Clock every hour. The tour comprises the tower and is rounded off with a journey through the Romanesque and Gothic cellars beneath the construction.
Church of Our Lady Before Týn
Its twin Gothic spires make the Týn Church an old-town landmark that is unmistakable. Like something out of a probably cruel — and 15thcentury — fairytale, they loom over Old Town Square, decorated with a golden image of the Virgin Mary produced from the melted-down Hussite chalice that adorned the church in the 1620s.
It requires some imagination to visualise the original church at its entirety as it’s partially hidden beneath the four-storey Týn School (maybe not just a Habsburg plot to obscure that former Hussite stronghold, but almost contemporaneous with it). The church’s name originates from the Týn Courtyard located supporting it.
The interior of the church is smothered in baroque, though exceptionally Gothic on the surface. Some of the very interesting features will be the huge rococo altar on the west and also the tomb of Tycho Brahe, the Danish astronomer who had been clearly one of Rudolf II’s most illustrious court boffins (he died in 1601 of a burst pipe following a royal piss-up — he was apparently too polite to leave the dining table to relieve himself). On the interior of the southern walls of this church are two small windows — that they are currently blocked off, however once opened into the church from rooms at the neighbouring house at Celetná 3, where the adolescent Franz Kafka once lived (from 1896 to 1907).
The Loreta is a baroque Location of pilgrimage Based by Benigna Kateřina Lobkowicz in 1626, designed as a replica of the supposed Santa Casa (Sacred House; the home of the Virgin Mary) in the Holy Land. Legend says that the initial Santa Casa was carried by angels to the Italian town of Loreto whilst the Turks were advancing on Nazareth.
The inside is adorned with reliefs and frescoes depicting an ornate silver altar with a wooden effigy of Our Lady of Loreto, along with the life span of the Virgin Mary. Above the entrance to the 27 bells, made in Amsterdam in the 17th century, now drama with’ We Greet Thee one thousand Times’ on the summertime.
Underneath the Santa Casa is the Church of the Nativity of Our Lord (kostel Narození Páně), constructed in 1737 to a design by Kristof Dientzenhofer. The interior includes two skeletons of the saints Marcia and Felicissima, dressed with wax masks concealing their skulls in clothing.
While the massive functionalist arrangement of this monument has the elegance of a power station, the interior is an amazing extravaganza of gilt glistening art-deco marble and mosaics, also hosts a museum of 20th century Czechoslovak heritage.
Although, strictly speaking, not a heritage of the communist era — it was completed in the 1930s — the enormous monument enclosing Žižkov Hill is also, in the minds of the majority of Praguers over a certain era, inextricably linked with the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia, and in particular with Klement Gottwald, the country’s earliest’worker-president’.
The monument’s chief hallway — dwelling to a dozen marble sarcophagi that once bore the remains of communist luminaries — houses a moving war ministry with figurines from Jan Sturša. You will find exhibits recording the heritage of the Czechoslovak Republic in 1918, WWII, the 1948 coup, the Soviet invasion of 1968 — poignant newsreel footage and also a couple of personal possessions album the dreadful narrative of Jan Palach, who set himself on fire to protest against the Soviet invasion — and also the Velvet Revolution of 1989. Upstairs you can Go to the Presidential Lounge and the Ceremonial Hall.
Convent of St Agnes
In the northeastern corner of Staré Město is your former Convent of St Agnes, Prague’s oldest surviving Gothic building. Even the 1st-floor rooms contain the National Gallery’s permanent collection of ancient and medieval Renaissance art (1200–1550) by Bohemia and Central Europe, a treasure house of shining Gothic altar paintings and polychrome religious sculptures.
At 1234 the Franciscan Order of the Poor Clares was set by Přemysl king Wenceslas I, who made his sister Anežka (Agnes) the first abbess of the convent. Agnes was beatified at the 19th century and, with time that was hardly accidental, Pope John Paul II canonized her as St Agnes of Bohemia weeks ahead of the events of November 1989.
More a broad boulevard than a typical city square, Wenceslas Square has witnessed a fantastic deal of Catholic background — a huge Mass happened during the revolutionary upheavals of 1848; in 1918 the production of the new Czechoslovak Republic has been celebrated hereand it was here in 1989 where lots of anti communist protests happened. Originally a medieval horse market, the square has been called during the mid-19th century’s revival after the patron saint of Bohemia.
At the (upper) southern end of the square is now Josef Myslbek’s muscular amalgamated statue of St Wenceslas, the 10th century pacifist Duke of Bohemia and the’Good King Wenceslas’ of all xmas carol celebrity. Flanked by patron saints of Bohemia — Prokop, Adalbert, Agnes and Ludmila — he was plastered with posters and bunting at each of the square’s historical minutes.
This 318m-high mountain is one of Prague’s most significant green spaces. It’s terrific for silent, tree-shaded walks and nice views across the’City of 100 Spires’. Most for example an appearance tower and mirror maze, were constructed from the late 19th to early 20th century, lending the place an oldfashioned atmosphere.
The mountain was draped with vineyards, and it’s still possible to find the quarry that provided stone for almost all of the Romanesque and Gothic buildings of Prague. The enormous stone fortifications that run out of Újezd to Strahov, cutting across Petřín’s summit, are known as the Hunger Wall. It was built in 1362 under Charles IV, constructed with the city’s poor in substitution for food under a young job-creation scheme.
St Nicholas Church
Malá Strana is dominated by the enormous cupola of St Nicholas Church, among Central Europe’s finest baroque buildings. (Don’t confuse it with another Church of St Nicholas on Old Town Square.) On the ceiling, Johann Kracker’s 1770 Apotheosis of St Nicholas is now Europe’s biggest fresco (clever trompe l’oeil methods have created the painting blend almost seamlessly with the structure ).
Famed architect Kristof Dientzenhofer that was baroque began the building; his son Kilian lasted Anselmo Lurago and the job finished the project at 1755. Just take the staircase up into the gallery to see Karel Škréta’s gloomy Cycle paintings and the scratchings of 1820s tourists and wanna-be Franz Kafkas about the balustrade. Watch the web site for the church program of classical music festivals.
Every hour on the hour, Audiences gather under the Old Town Hall Tower to See the Astronomical Clock. Despite the clock is one of the greatest tourist attractions of Europe, and a’must see’ for people to Prague. Afterall, it’s historic, photogenic and — if you take time to study it — rich in symbolism.
Four characters together with the clock represent that the deepest civic anxieties of 15thcentury Praguers: Vanity (having a mirror), Greed (along with his money tote; originally a Jewish moneylender, but cosmetically altered after WWII), Passing (the horns ) and Pagan Invasion (represented with a Turk). The four characters below these would be the Chronicler, Angel, Astronomer and Philosopher.
Prague City Museum
This outstanding museum, started in 1898, is devoted to the foundation of Prague from prehistoric days to the 20th century (labels are in English in addition to Czech). Among the numerous intriguing exhibits are an astounding scale version of Prague as well as the Astronomical Clock’s initial 1866 calendar wheel together with Josef Mánes’ exquisite painted panels representing the weeks — that’s January at the most effective, toasting his feet by the flame, along with August near the bottom, sickle in hand, harvesting the corn.
The medieval and renaissance galleries display plenty of fascinating household artifacts, including a reliquary made of bone, also more valuable things such as a more 16th-century bronze figure of Hercules that has been perhaps made for its Wallenstein Palace (it had been found in a private house in the Old Town in 1905).
National Memorial to the Heroes of the Heydrich Terror
Even the Church of Sts Cyril & Methodius houses a moving memorial to the seven Czech paratroopers who were included at the assassination of Reichsprotektor Reinhard Heydrich in 1942, with a display and video about the persecution of the Czechs. The church emerged at the 2016 movie based on the assassination, Anthropoid.
Even the paratroopers hid in the church crypt for 3 weeks after the killing, before their hiding place had been murdered by the Czech traitor Karel Čurda. The church was surrounded by the Germans, flood the crypt with fire hoses and first attempting to smoke outside the paratroopers. Three paratroopers were killed in the fight.
John Lennon Wall
After his murder 8 December 1980, John Lennon turned into a hero for all young Czechs. A graphic of Lennon was painted on a wall in a manicured square contrary to the French embassy (there was certainly a niche on the wall which resembles a tombstone), together with political graffiti and periodically Beatles lyrics.
Despite repeated coats of whitewash, the trick police never were able to keep it clean for long, and the Lennon Wall turned into a political focus for Prague youth (a large number of Western pop music was banned by the communists, and some Catholic musicians were even jailed for playing with ).
Weathering and light weight graffiti ate away at the governmental messages and graphics, before little remained of Lennon however his eyes, however, visiting tourists began making their particular gifts. The wall is the land of the Knights of Malta, and they have repainted several times to it, but it becomes covered with peace messages, Lennon images along with inconsequential tourist graffiti. In the past several years that the Knights don’t bother to whitewash it and have bowed to the inevitable.
Church of St James
The amazing Gothic bulk of this Church of St James began in the 14 th century as a Minorite monastery church, and was extended a beautiful baroque facelift at early 18th century. However, in the middle of this gilt and stucco is just a grisly memento: inside of the western wall (look up to the best as you enter) hangs a shrivelled individual arm.
Museum of the Infant Jesus of Prague
Even the Church of Our Lady Victorious (kostel Panny Marie Vítězné), assembled in 1613, has about its central altar a 47cm-tall waxwork figure of the baby Jesus, brought from Spain in 1628 and called the Infant Jesus of Prague (Pražské Jezulátko). At the back of this church is just a museum (available from 9.30am to 5.30pm, in 1pm Sunday), showing an assortment of those frocks used to dress the Infant.
This fascinating (and busy) museum includes the sensual art nouveau paintings, paintings and decorative facilities of Alfons Mucha (1860–1939), in addition to lots of sketches, photographs and other memorabilia. The exhibits include countless artworks revealing Mucha’s trademark maidens with flowing hair and piercing blue eyes, bearing linden boughs along with garlands.Additionally, there are photos of the artist’s Paris studio, one of which shows that a trouserless Gaugin playing the harmonium; a highly effective picture entitled Old Woman at cold temperatures; and the initial of this 1894 poster of actress Sarah Bernhardt as Giselda, which shot him into international fame. In 1910 Mucha was invited to design that the Lord Mayor’s Hall in Prague’s Municipal House, and observing the creation of Czechoslovakia in 1918, he designed the banknotes and postage stamps of the new nation.The video documentary about the life of Mucha is really worth watching, and helps his achievements put in perspective.
Old Town Square
One of Europe’s largest and most beautiful metropolitan areas, Old Town Square (Staroměstské náměstí, or Staromák for short) was Prague’s principal public square since the 10th century, and has been its main marketplace until beginning of the 20th century.
You can find busking style shows and al fresco concerts, political meetings and jazz rings, and Christmas and Easter markets, all watched over by the brooding art nouveau statue of Jan Hus of Ladislav Šaloun. It was revealed at the stake on 6 July 1915, the 500th anniversary of Hus’ death.
The brass strip onto a lawn south of the Hus statue would be your so-called Prague Meridian. Until 1915 the most important feature of that the square was a 17th-century plague column, whose shadow was used to cross the rickety at high speed.
Old Jewish Cemetery
The Old Jewish Cemetery is Europe’s oldest surviving Jewish graveyard. Founded in early 15th century, it’s a palpable atmosphere of mourning after two centuries of disuse (it was shut in 1787). Approximately 12,000 crumbling stones (some brought from additional, longgone cemeteries) are heaped together, however beneath them are perhaps as much as 100,000 graves, piled layers due to the shortage of distance.
Remember that this is only one of Prague’s most popular sights, if you’re expecting to have a moment of quiet contemplation you’ll probably be disappointed.
Even the Vyšehrad Citadel refers to this complex of buildings and structures atop Vyšehrad Hill that have played an important role in history for 1000 years. Even though the majority of the structures from the 18th century, the citadel is still viewed as the city home. The sights have been spread out within a wide area, together with encircling city and views out over the Vltava.
Museum of Decorative Arts
This museum opened in 1900 as a member of a movement to encourage a return on the aesthetic worth. Its four hallways are a feast for the eyes, filled with 16th- to 19thcentury artifacts such as also a selection, tapestries, porcelain and furniture of glasswork. Due to renovations happening it was closed at the period of research; it was scheduled to reopen in 2017.
This Apple claims to be the world’s biggest private range of Apple products, with at least one of what produced by the company between 2012 and 1976. Glistening white exhibit row upon row of beautifully displayed laptops, computers, iPods and I phones like reliquaries; highlights include the oldest Apple I and Apple II computers, an iPod’family tree’ along with Steve Jobs’ cards.
Looming above Wenceslas Square is the National Museum’s bulk, designed from the 1880s by Josef Schulz as an architectural symbol of the Czech National Revival. Its magnificent interior is a shrine to the scientific, intellectual and cultural history of the Republic. The museum’s most important building reopened in 2018 after several years of renovation job.
National Technical Museum
Prague museum got a renovation in 2012 and is still a dazzling demonstration of the nation’s industrial tradition. It’s anything but, if this sounds dull. Start at the main hallway, filled to the rafters with historic planes, trains and automobiles. There are halls dedicated to exhibits on astronomy, photography, printing and design.
Vyšehrad Cemetery is a primary attraction for many visitors, function as the final resting spot for heaps of Czech luminaries, including Antonín Dvořák, Bedřich Smetana and Alfons Mucha. Many tombs and headstones have been works of art — Dvořák’s is a sculpture from Ladislav Šaloun, the art-nouveau sculptor who made the Jan Hus monument in Old Town Square.
Old Town Hall Tower
The Old Town Hall feature is the opinion throughout the Old Town Square out of its 60m-tall clocktower. It the modern steel spiral stairs; there a lift.
Old Royal Palace
The Old Royal Palace is among the oldest areas of Prague Castle, dating from 1135. It was originally used only by Czech princesses, however by the 13th to the 16th centuries it was the king’s own palace. At its core is your Vladislav Hall and the Bohemian scene of the Popular Defenestration of Prague in 1618, Chancellery.
Even the Vladislav Hall (Vladislavský sál) is renowned for its amazing, late-Gothic vaulted ceiling (1493–1502) designed by Benedikt Rejt. Though approximately 500 years of age, the flowing traces of those vaults have an art-nouveau texture, compared to the Renaissance windows’ type. Even the huge hallway has been used for banquets, councils and coronations, also for indoor jousting tournaments — hence the Riders’ Staircase (Jezdecké schody) over the other hand, made to admit that a knight on horseback. The presidents of the republic are sworn in here.
This huge, baroque garden is an oasis of serenity amid the bustle of the roads of Malá Strana.
The bronze figurines of Greek gods lining the avenue contrary to the loggia are duplicates — the originals were carted off by marauding Swedes in 1648 now stand outside the imperial palace of Drottningholm near Stockholm. In the northwestern end of the garden is the ornamental pond, home for a seriously large carp, and the Wallenstein Riding School, that hosts temporary exhibitions. Input the backyard via a gate with Malostranská metro channel, the main entry on Letenská, or even through the Wallenstein Palace.
Just west of Výstaviště, Stromovka is central Prague’s biggest park. From the dark ages it was a royal hunting preserve, that is the reason why it’s sometimes known as the Královská obora (Royal Hunting Ground). Rudolph II had trees planted in and lakes generated. It’s now the conserve of strollers, joggers, cyclists and in-line skaters. Enter from the Výstaviště display grounds, or from Letenské náměstí follow Čechova třída north into some ridge over the park and then walk down.
Gardens occupy a bang north of the Old Town, within the Vltava River, and contains postcard-perfect views out over town, bridges and river. It’s perfect for beer-drinking, running and walking at a beer garden at the park’s end. In the Old Town, find the entrance up a steep staircase in the northern end of Pařížská ulice (across the bridge). Instead, take the tram into Letenské náměstí and walk south for about 10 minutes.
Last Updated on November 29, 2019 by Guide 4 Travelers
- 1 St Vitus Cathedral
- 2 Charles Bridge
- 3 Prague Castle
- 4 Veletržní Palác
- 5 Prague Jewish Museum
- 6 Municipal House
- 7 Strahov Library
- 8 Old Town Hall
- 9 Church of Our Lady Before Týn
- 10 Loreta
- 11 National Monument
- 12 Convent of St Agnes
- 13 Wenceslas Square
- 14 Petřín
- 15 St Nicholas Church
- 16 Astronomical Clock
- 17 Prague City Museum
- 18 National Memorial to the Heroes of the Heydrich Terror
- 19 John Lennon Wall
- 20 Church of St James
- 21 Museum of the Infant Jesus of Prague
- 22 Mucha Museum
- 23 Old Town Square
- 24 Old Jewish Cemetery
- 25 Vyšehrad Citadel
- 26 Museum of Decorative Arts
- 27 Apple Museum
- 28 National Museum
- 29 National Technical Museum
- 30 Vyšehrad Cemetery
- 31 Old Town Hall Tower
- 32 Old Royal Palace
- 33 Wallenstein Garden
- 34 Stromovka
- 35 Letná Gardens