What to do and see in and around Prague
Former residence of the Princes and Kings of Bohemia and now the seat of the President, Prague Castle is an intrinsic part of Prague and a wonderful place to explore, with its Crown Jewels, St. Vitus Cathedral and changing of the guards at the Castle gates. Any literary fans will also be interested to visit Golden Lane in the castle grounds where Franz Kafka once lived.
Charles Bridge is a hive of activity day and night and is an important part of this vibrant city, not least because it is the main thoroughfare linking the Old Town with Mala Strana on the opposite side of the river. Lined with souvenir stands and talented artists and musicians this 13th century bridge always makes for an entertaining stroll.
Prague’s Astronomical Clock can be found on the side of the Old Town Hall. Dating back to the 15th century this magnificent time piece is easy to spot as typically a crowd gathers in front of it every hour on the hour in time for the procession of the Twelve Apostles, during which a small trap door opens and Christ leads the way ahead of his disciples.
Josefov – Prague Ghetto
Prague’s Jewish quarter is home to some of the cities most colourful and wonderful buildings such as the bright Jubilee Synagogue and the gothic style Old-New Synagogue dating back to the 13th century. It is also home to the New Jewish cemetery where Franz Kafka was buried.
Dating back to 1475 Powder Tower is the gothic entrance to the Old Town. Once a gunpowder depot (hence the name), the Tower currently serves as a museum with displays on life in medieval Prague, the history of the city and the history of the tower itself.
St Nicholas Church
This baroque church dates back to 1735 and stands on the site of an earlier church. With its pure white frontage this beautiful building is an admirable asset to the Old Town Square and has an equally breathtaking interior with stunning frescos. It is no wonder that classical concerts are held in this majestic setting throughout the year.
Officially opened in 1783, this wonderful theatre exudes elegance and beauty inside and out and is famed as the setting for the premier of Mozart’s Don Giovanni. Previously privately owned the theatre was brought by the Czech Estates in 1798, hence the name.
Formerly the main Prague horse market, Wenceslas Square now serves as the main shopping street with the unofficial title of Prague’s parade ground for times of national celebration or demonstration (as in the time of anti-communist uprisings). The square is presided over by a statue of St. Wenceslas astride his horse, Prague’s national hero and the Good King Wenceslas of Christmas carol fame.
Prague’s Museum Kampa houses the art collection of collectors Meda and Jan Mládek. The museum, a mill in the heart of the city, showcases Central European Modern Art including sculptures by Otto Gutfreund and paintings by František Kupka.
Petrin View Tower
Built in 1891 for the Jubilee Exhibition, the Petrin View Tower is a smaller version of the Eiffel Tower and stands at a height of 60m with 299 steps leading up to the top platform. The Tower was reopened in 2002 after a period of reconstruction, head to the top of Petrin View Tower for stunning views over Prague.
Old Town Square
This historic square is a popular tourist destination with sights such as the Astronomical clock and also serves as a popular meeting place. It is also the site of Prague’s annual Christmas Market. In the centre of the square stands the Jan Hus Memorial erected in 1915 to mark 500 years since his death by burning due to his religious beliefs.