Prague is known as one of the most beautiful cities in the world, its architecture include several styles such as Baroque, Renaissance, Gothic. Most of Prague's attractions are concentrated in the same region. You can explore almost everything in the city without using public transport.
In this awesome post I will give you some tips on what do in the city of hundred spires focused on my favourite places in this amazing city.
But first of all let me tell you how the city is divided.
The main sightseeing areas of Prague are separated by the Vltava River. On the left bank there is the Prague Castle area and Lesser Town. The right bank is home to the Old Town, the Jewish Quarter, and the New Town. Spanning the Vltava River and connecting the Old Town and Lesser Town is the beautiful Charles Bridge.(Click here to see the video)
Let's take a closer look at each part of the city:
Old Town Square - Staromestské Námestí
In the so called Old Town is where the heart of Prague is located .In the Old Town Square you will find the town hall square which is a place where you will see a lot of people mainly tourists.
The old town was declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site because this place is surrounded by churches and secular buildings.
In this place you will find one of the main postcards of Prague which is the astronomical clock. It's beautiful, but it’s a bit hard to understand.
The clock tower is part of the building of the old city hall of Prague which was built in 1338.
I can risk to say that the Charles Bridge is the main postcards of Prague.
The Charles Bridge is a stone Gothic bridge that connects the Old Town and Lesser Town (Malá Strana). It was built in 1357 during Charles's reign. It is 515 meters long and 10 meters wide and it can be climbed for great views of Prague and the bridge, there is an interesting fact about the bridge, it was the only bridge in Prague until 1841.
There is a lot of Baroque statues placed in the 17th century along the bridge. Among them the most popular is the statue of St. John of Nepomuk, a Czech martyr saint who was killed during the reign of Wenceslas IV and was thrown into the Vltava River from the bridge.
It’s believed that touching the statue is supposed to bring good luck in your life.(Click here to see the video)
Nove Mesto is a quarter in the city of Prague and also the youngest and largest of the five town of the modern Prague, this is the business and party district . Moreover in this district you will find the majority of international hotels, fast food restaurants, nightclubs,etc
So if you have the opportunity to visit this district do not miss the famous Dancing House of Prague.
Jewish Quarter of Prague
In the old Jewish district of Josefov, its located the Jewish quarter of Prague, a place full of historical buildings, relics and memoirs of the jewish people, who lived in the Czech Republic long before the Nazis exterminated much of their inhabitants in concentration camps .
Moreover you can find a Holocaust Memorial which is one of the must see in this place because there are engraved the names and dates of birth and death of all 78,000 Czech victims, who have already been identified. Operating in the Pinkasova Synagoga, an old synagogue built in the 15th century, the memorial has the walls filled with small letters painted in red and black inks. Also the names of the concentration camps to which the Czech Jews were sent.
Furthermore you can see also the Jewish cemetery which is the Oldest cemitery in Europe
In the other side of Vltava is located the Prague Castle, it is a complex that houses churches, museums, towers, old houses, little alleyways and also a palace.
The Prague castle was founded 880 AD by prince Bořivoj of the Premyslid dynasty. The first building in the complex was the Church of the Virgin Mary of which only remnants can be seen today. Followed by many others having as the last one the St. Vitus Cathedral.
People can enter the Prague Castle complex, wander around the courtyards, and enter the first part of St. Vitus Cathedral for free. But if you are a history enthusiast I advise you to pay the ticket to get a deeper understand of its history.
Since its construction around the 9th century the Prague Castle served many purposes ,in the 12th century it was transformed into a Romanesque palace, then in the 14th century it was rebuilt in the Gothic style by the Charles IV. A further reconstruction of the Royal Palace took place under the Jagellons at the end of the 15th century.
Today, Prague Castle is the official residence and office of the President of the Czech Republic. If you are luck you can witness a changing of the Guard ceremony at the main gates (Click here to see the video).
Another important thing is that security check is a bit tight like the ones in the airports so be ready to face long queues.
St. Vitus Cathedral
Lower Town - Malá Strana
The Observation Tower
The observation tower was built in 1891. It is 60m tall, and is located in Petrin Hill which is 318m high in order to reach the top of the tower you need to climb 299 steps and trust me, the view from the top is amazing and if the sky is clear you can see the Snezka which is the highest peak in Czech Republic.
There is an interesting fact about this tower, it looks like the Eiffel Tower
This square is the bustling comercial area and administrative centre of the city as well as the site of important social and historical events in Czech history such the invading Russian tanks in 1968, masses of protesters in 1989, etc.
In this place you'll find theatres, banks, hotels, restaurants, cinemas,shoppings, ect and it’s also the epicentre of nightclubs and administrative centres. The square was created by Charles IV in 1348. In this square you can find the famous statue of St Wenceslas.
In fact this is not exactly a square it’s more like a boulevard and it connects the Old and New Town of Prague.
John Lennon Wall
In Mala Strana, near the French Embassy, it located the John Lennon Wall althought he never visited Czech Republic. It was an ordinary wall in the streets of Prague, but some youths started to paint inspired on John Lennon and they also started to write pieces of lyrics from Beatles songs. You might wonder what is the relation so let me tell you why.
John Lennon and the Communist regime
Lennon was a hero to the pacifist youth of Central and Eastern Europe during the totalitarian era. Prior to 1989 when communism ruled, western pop songs were banned by Communist authorities, and especially John Lennon´s songs, because it was praising freedom that didn’t exist in Czech Republic. Some musicians were actually jailed for playing it!
When John Lennon was murdered in 1980 he became a sort of hero to some of the young and his picture was painted on this wall, for whatever reason right here, along with graffiti defying the authorities.( prague.net all rights reserved)
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