The sights of Prague Beyond are firmly entrenched in such epithets as “mystical”, “magical” and “mysterious”. Many tourists fall in love with the capital of Bohemia forever and call it the most beautiful city in Europe. Indeed, there is something magical about the gloomy Gothic castles, winding alleyways and ancient cathedrals of Prague.
Guests of the city will not only enjoy original tours of the night city, visiting the ancient Prague Castle, Charles Bridge and river walks along the Vltava River. A trip to Prague is also a unique opportunity to enjoy traditional Czech cuisine and taste the incomparable Czech beer, which has been brewed according to ancient monastery recipes for centuries.
For lovers of the spectacle, artists and musicians in medieval costumes have prepared performances, which, like hundreds of years ago, they give in the middle of the street squares of the city.
What to see and where to go in Prague?
The most interesting and beautiful places to go for walks. Photos and a short description.
1. Charles Bridge
Is a medieval city bridge spanning the Vltava River and connecting the Old Town and Malá Strana. It is named after Emperor Charles IV. Since it was built in the middle of the 14th century, it has served as a bridge for the rulers to pass through to their castle. Since 1974, the bridge has been a pedestrian bridge. Now it is a busy place where tourists walk, paintings by street artists are put up for sale and costume shows are held.
2. Wenceslas Square
Central Square of Novo Mesto District, the cultural centre of Prague, where public and state events are often held. Hotels, famous shops, restaurants, nightclubs and offices of large companies are located along the square. The square is named after St. Wenceslas, the main patron saint of the Czech Republic. Since the 14th century fairs and executions have been held here. Gradually Wenceslas Square was surrounded by houses of craftsmen and traders.
3. Old Town Square
The main town square in the Old Town area, where life has been bustling since the 12th century. Back in those distant times there was a large market, where various goods were delivered along the Vltava River. The ancient buildings surrounding the square are very well preserved, as they managed to avoid large-scale destruction during World War II (except for the Town Hall). Thanks to this, today tourists can admire wonderful examples of Gothic and Baroque architecture.
4. Old Town Hall and Astronomical Clock
After the Old Town Hall was recognized as a town, it was necessary to erect a town hall according to the laws of the 13th century, where the city government could be located. But its own town hall did not appear in Prague until the 14th century. In 700 years of its existence, it has grown considerably, as many outbuildings have appeared. The ancient Town Hall Tower is home to a working Astronomical Clock from the beginning of the 15th century, a unique creation of watchmakers with many dials built into each other.
5. Tyn Church
Picturesque Gothic Cathedral, a real decoration of Old Town Square. The construction of the temple began in the XIV century, it took more than 160 years to build. Inside rest the ashes of significant historical personalities. Above the temple there are two 80-meter high towers, from which the dark breath of the Middle Ages. Inside, there are a couple of dozen altars with rich decoration and luxury.
6. Church of St. Nicholas
The main church of the Czechoslovak Hussite Church was built in the first half of the XVIII century. Although there are many majestic buildings on Old Town Square, the Church of St. Nicholas is difficult not to notice. Statues, stained-glass windows and frescoes remind one of art objects. The organ plays an important role in the interior. It is surrounded by a lot of gilding and small details of decoration. And the crystal chandelier of the temple is a gift from the Russian Emperor Alexander II.
7. Karlstejn Castle
The famous Czech castle 30 km from Prague. It is an almost impregnable fortress where important state documents, relics, jewels and symbols of power were kept. The fortification was built by order of the Holy Roman Emperor Charles IV in the mid 14th century. The ruler personally supervised the works of erection and decoration. Karlstejn remembers the glorious kings of the past and keeps sacred relics within its walls.
8. Prague Castle
Complex of structures, included in the Guinness Book of Records thanks to its huge size (70 thousand m²). It houses historic palaces, ancient cathedrals and chapels, galleries, towers and museums, as well as the famous “Golden Street”. The Prague Castle is home to the Czech government. The first settlements existed here in the IX-XI centuries, as evidenced by excavations. Prague Castle is a “city in the city” and it is considered to be the core of the Czech capital.
9. Troy Castle
Baroque Palace on the outskirts of Prague, surrounded by picturesque landscaped gardens. It has an external resemblance to classic Italian villas. At the end of the XVII century the complex belonged to the aristocratic Stenberg family. Inside there is a collection of 19th century paintings, a wine museum and a collection of eastern ceramics. The most luxurious interior space is the Imperial Hall, where you can see frescoes glorifying the deeds of the Habsburg dynasty.
Ancient Castle and defensive building in the southern part of Prague, erected on a hill. Vysehrad appeared in the 10th century and reached its heyday by the end of the 11th century, but it soon fell into decline. Under Charles IV, it was reborn. It is home to the Basilica of St. Peter and St. Paul, with which the formation of Czech statehood was connected. In the distant XI century, Prince Vratislav II conceived to build a temple on the model of the main cathedral in the Vatican, but because of the fire plan to the end was not implemented.
11. The Prague Loreta
Complex of constructions around of a copy of a hut of the Virgin where this saint was brought up and grew (according to Christian beliefs). Similar “Lorettos” have received a wide circulation across all Europe. The Prague house was constructed in XVII century in baroque style. On its territory there are seven chapels, a clock tower, decorative fountains and galleries. The Prague Loreto is a very popular and visited Catholic centre.
12. St. Vitus Cathedral
The main (cathedral) temple of the Czech capital is located on the territory of the Prague Castle. The cathedral is dedicated to three saints at once: Vitus, Wojtek and Wenceslas. In the 10th century there was a small basilica on the site, which under Charles IV in the 14th century began to grow and be completed. The cathedral was erected in several stages during almost four centuries. The last works were completed in 1929.
13. Strahov Monastery
Abode was built for the monastic order of Premonstrants in the XII century. It is quite close to the Prague Castle, so it could not avoid damage during the Hussite Wars, storming the fortress during the Thirty Years War and other battles. On the territory of the monastery there is a large library with 2.5 thousand ancient manuscripts, including the Strahov Gospel of the IX century.
14. National Theatre
The Main Theatre of Prague, which is considered one of the symbols of the national revival of the Czech people. It was built at the expense of the people, as the Austro-Hungarian government did not allocate any money. The opening took place in 1881, but soon the theatre burned down and reopened in 1883. The building decorates the Vltava embankment and is as beautiful as even the famous Vienna Opera. The interior is decorated with elegance and luxury.
Colorful building on Jan Palach Square – two in one – concert hall and gallery. It is named “Rudolfinum” after the Austrian Crown Prince. The initiator of the construction is the Savings Bank of the Czech Republic. The opening ceremony was held in 1885. For 20 years in the first half of the last century the parliament sat in this building. The building was reconstructed in the 90s and it was handed over to the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra.
16. National Museum
The building was built in neo-Renaissance style by architect D. Schulz. There are expositions that tell the story of the Czech Republic. You can see paleontological and anthropological collections, a library, a collection of coins, medals, sculptures and other materials found during excavations. In addition to the main building, the museum has several branches.
17. The National Technical Museum
Was opened in 1908 with the aim of collecting technical achievements from different fields in one place. Among them are photographic art, transport industry, printing craft, metallurgy, astronomy, military science. The exposition is divided into themes and divided into separate halls. At the beginning of this century the building and the exhibitions themselves went through a major reconstruction. The public was admitted to the museum again in 2011.
18. Museum of Communism
The post-war history of Czechoslovakia is something that today’s Czechs want neither to forget nor to repeat. The museum covers the period from the 1948 putsch to the 1989 revolution. Exhibits: photographs, propaganda and motivational posters, busts and statues, authentic interiors, equipment and documents, models of rockets, wardrobe items. The names of halls are also interesting: “Dream”, “Reality”, “Nightmare”.
19. The National Memorial to the Heroes of the Terror of Heydrich
In 1942, 7 Czechoslovak saboteurs performed a real feat, killing the prominent Nazi figure Reinhard Heidrich. Their memory was immortalized as a memorial in the Cathedral of St. Cyril and Methodius. The building has a plaque with information about the soldiers. Next to it is a loophole, on which there are even traces of shots. In a hall of a temple the constant exposition, and in a crypt – bronze busts and biographies of soldiers were placed.
20. The Jewish Museum
More than 100 years ago, historian August Stein began collecting artifacts from the lost city synagogues, as well as objects of worship important to the Jewish community. The resulting museum became so extensive that it is called the “Jewish city”. It includes several synagogues, but only the Spanish synagogue is used for religious purposes. In addition, there are educational and cultural centers.
21. Museum of Franz Kafka
Museum dedicated to the Czech writer genius F. Kafka. The exhibition contains the first books published by the master, his manuscripts, diaries, sketches and photographs. In the courtyard there is a sculptural group of fountains with a very controversial content. It depicts two men in small need on a map of the Czech Republic. It is believed that the creator, D. Cherny, put political overtones into his creation, but most believe that this is a simple outrage.
22. The sculpture “Franz Kafka’s Head”
A stainless steel art object is installed near the Quadrio shopping mall. The sculpture consists of horizontal layers that rotate at different speeds. They freeze for a short time and fold into a huge head, and then move again. The author of the project is David Black. He thought that Kafka couldn’t be seen in static sculpture. The writer was unusual, so a creative approach should be applied to his image.
23. Memorial to the Victims of Communism
Modern monument of 2002, which Zubek designed to symbolize the suffering of political prisoners during the Communist government in the Czech Republic. The memorial consists of seven male figures climbing the stairs. Each of the next ones contains more and more significant defects: cracks, faults, lack of limbs.
24. Petřínská Tower
Vyshka, erected for the opening of the Industrial Exhibition in 1891. It was nicknamed the “Eiffel Tower of Prague”. At first, the tower served as an observation platform from which a good view of the city was opened. In the middle of the 20th century it housed the first antenna for television broadcasting, which led to an increase in the length of the structure by 20 meters. The total height of the Petršín Tower is 60 meters.
25. The Žižkov TV Tower
A functioning television tower built in the late 20th century. The height of the structure is over 200 metres and it can be seen from any part of Prague. The construction is quite unusual, it has been included more than once in the lists of the ugliest buildings in the world, or in the ratings of the most original ones. The observation deck is located at an altitude of 93 meters. The tower also has a panoramic restaurant, bar and hotel, where newlyweds like to settle.
26. Powder Tower
An old Gothic building right in the middle of the street at m. Powder Tower. “Namnese Republiki”. It was once the city gate. In the 18th century it housed a gunpowder warehouse, where the name of the building came from. Nowadays there is a photo exhibition inside and an observation platform, from which you can take several spectacular pictures. The Powder Tower reminds tourists of the dark years of the Middle Ages with all its appearance.
27. Public House
A building erected on the site of the old royal residence. After the building was finished, meetings and exhibitions were held there. This place is of special importance for the country, since the independence of the Czech Republic was declared here in 1918. Nowadays, concerts are held at the Public House. Every spring the Prague Spring music festival is held here, which brings together groups from all over the world.
28. Jewish Quarter (Josefov)
Quarter on the site of the Jewish ghetto of the XI century. It was walled up until the beginning of the 18th century, but was demolished by Josef II. The quarter was completely rebuilt at the end of the 19th century and only a few old buildings and synagogues, as well as an old Jewish cemetery, have survived. Before World War II there were more than 100 thousand people living here, now the population is only a few thousand.
29. Vinarna Certovka
The narrowest street in Prague, or rather a narrow alley, which is only 70 cm wide. Only one person can pass through here at a time. To prevent people from colliding, pedestrian traffic lights work at both ends of the street. During the high tourist season near these traffic lights there are many people waiting for their turn. The name comes from a winery near the alley.
30. The Golden Street
Museum in Prague Castle is surrounded by “toy houses” with fairytale characters. In the 16th century it was home to jewellers and chiselers working for the Treasury (hence the street’s name). According to one of the popular legends, alchemists also settled in Zlataya Street, whose main job was to turn any suitable material into gold. The place became uninhabited after World War II, all the houses were adapted for museums.
31. Havel market
Food and souvenir market, designed primarily for tourists. Here you can buy flowers, berries, honey, sweets, pastries and much more. There is also a wide variety of souvenirs: wooden and leather goods, puppets, Bohemian glass, jewelry. The market has existed since XIII century, in the Middle Ages there were Germans living in the neighborhood, who gave the market a name after St. Paul.
32. Prague Zoo
The Zoo, which contains more than 400 species, some of which have been declared endangered. The territory has a children’s zoo with pets and a children’s railway. Numerous pavilions recreate the atmosphere of different climatic zones. The most impressive is the pavilion “Indonesian Jungle”, built in 2002. Only the Prague Zoo, the only one in Europe, is home to Galapagos turtles.
33. John Lennon Wall
Wall with Numerous Graffiti by the Beatles and D. Lennon fans. It is believed to have originated as a protest against the communist authorities. The monument symbolized the free spirit, the desire for independence and freedom. The authorities tried to tear down the wall several times, but to no avail. It should be noted that the legendary musician himself never visited Prague.
34. Dancing House
An interesting and unconventional architectural solution implemented by F. by F. Gary and V. Milunich. The house is located in the center of Prague, on the ground floor there is a restaurant of French cuisine. The building is sometimes called a “glass” and “drunk house”. The dancing house is built in a modern deconstructivist style, which uses asymmetrical and sometimes disorderly forms. At first the citizens did not accept the innovative construction, but rather soon it became a “highlight” of Prague.
35. Vltava River
The longest river in the Czech Republic. “Vltava” means “wild water” in ancient English. There are several bridges spanning the river within the city limits, the most beautiful of which is the Charles Bridge. In the warm season there are many walking routes for tourists. From the ship you can admire the magnificent architecture of the city and see Prague from a slightly unusual angle.