7 places in Prague you can not miss

When I am doing a guided tour, the question that repeats is: “Andrés, what are the most important points of interest in Prague for you?’’
Next I will show you a series of places you should visit in Prague. Some very touristy, others hardly known, but definitely unmissable in Prague. I would not like you to come back with a bad taste for having lost that unique place. Let’s get to know a little more “the city of 100 towers”.


1. Republic Square

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Starting this list of places you must visit in Prague we find, of course, the Republic Square. Known as Namesty Republiky, it is centrally located. It can be accessed by the metro line B (yellow), whose station has the same name (Namesti Republiky). Separated from the Old Town Square by Celetná Street and commanded by 2 majestic buildings (Powder Tower and Municipal House), it is a meeting place for many Praguers. There you will find:

    • Powder Tower: It is a late Gothic construction dating from the fifteenth century and was located on the outskirts of the city at the time. Although it has a defensive aspect, this was never its use, in fact, it was like one of the city gates. Its name is correct, the building served to store gunpowder. You can climb the tower for 135 CZK which is equivalent to 5.50 euros. Although if what you want is a deeper view of Prague, we do not recommend it, since in height it is not one of those that stands out.


    • Municipal House: Despite its name, it never became the seat of the Prague City Council. It is modernist in style and it houses a cafeteria, a concert hall and an exhibition hall. It was very important in the past (it was the seat of the royal court) and forms a perfect contrast with the Powder Tower, to which it is linked by a walkway.


    • National Bank: The Ceska Narodni Banka, is a Soviet-style building that visitors do not usually like so much, but it makes us understand the number of architectural styles that have passed through this beautiful city.


    • Palladium: This building is located just outside one of the subway entrances and it is a shopping center where you can find all kinds of clothes.


2. Old Town Square

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Like many squares in Europe, it was the place where the main business of the city was located. It is located between the New Town and the Jewish Quarter. You can easily access it if you are walking through the centre and if not, on the contrary, by taking the green metro line (A), you can get off at the stop called Staromestska, which means Old City.
There you will find a conglomeration of buildings and stories that will leave you impressed.

    • House of the Stone Bell: It is located between the mythical Church of Our Lady of Tyn and the Kinsky Palace. It is the oldest building in the entire square. It is Gothic in style and dates from the 13th century. It retains this name because in the right corner it retains a stone bell.


    • Church of Our Lady of Tyn: It is one of the emblems of the city of Prague. Its façade is partially covered by residential buildings. It is the tallest building in the square. It is Gothic in style and dates from the 14th century. Inside you can see a totally baroque decoration.


    • Astronomical Clock: This is the jewel in the crown of the city of Prague. This clock is located in the old town hall building (Gothic-style building) and its system is so complex and perfect that it has tried to replicate itself many times without success. It is a work of art dating from 1410 and consists of different parts:


      • Lower part: We can see a circle that is made up of an upper ring in which all the saints are shown in small. This circle borders another gold-colored circle that in turn contains 12 smaller circles that represent the work of the field in each month of the year. All this is guarded by 4 figures that represent 4 knowledges: Philosophy, theology, astronomy and history or chronology.


      • Lower part: We can see a circle that is made up of an upper ring in which all the saints are shown in small. This circle borders another gold-coloured circle that in turn contains 12 smaller circles that represent the work of the field in each month of the year. All this is the custom upper part: We see a set of circles and numbers, in them is reflected: the time in Babylonian numbers, in Roman numbers, the position of the sun, the type of moon and its position, the sign of the horoscope, the night and the day. It also has 4 figures, but these have movement, 3 of them are deadly sins (vanity, lust and greed) and the other figure is a skeleton that represents death, which has an hourglass in one hand and an hourglass in the other. another a bell that rings 12 times while nodding, implying that our time will come to all of us. In the upper part, there are two windows that open every hour on the dot in which there are 12 figures that represent the 12 apostles (6 on each side). Finished by 4 figures that represent 4 knowledge: Philosophy, theology, astronomy and history o chronology


    • Kinsky Palace: It is a rococo-style building adjoining the Stone Bell House. In it I study part of the Franz Kafka high school and now it is part of the National Gallery of Art.



3. Charles Bridge

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Escorted by the Charles Tower, the Charles Bridge dates from the 14th century, specifically from July 9, 1357, at 5:31 am. And it is that if we put this date with only numbers, it comes out capicúa, that is, it is read from left to right as well as from right to left: 1357 (year), 9 (day), 7 (month), 5:31 (hour). It is ordered to be built by the Holy Roman Emperor Charles IV, in a Gothic style, it joins the Old Town neighbourhood (Stare Mesto) with the Little Town neighbourhood (Mala Strana).

The bridge is adorned with 30 baroque sculptures of saints and characters associated with religion.


4. Mala Strana neighbourhood

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Nicknamed as the pearl of the baroque, the Lesser Town (Mala Strana) is located on the other bank of the Vltava River. Thanks to the fact that it was a neighbourhood of aristocrats and nobles, multiple palaces and stately buildings run through its narrow and cobbled streets.

In Mala Strana we can see:

    • The Church of San Nicolas: It is a monumental baroque-style church that is located a few meters into the Mala Strana neighbourhood, although its entrance is in the same Malostranske Namesti (Mala Strana Square). It stands out for its blue-green dome. Inside you can see the immensity of the dome and the beautiful paintings that decorate it. General admission is 100 CZK (approximately 4 euros).


  • Also in the same Malostranske Namesti, you will see a plague column. These columns are easy to find in many municipalities in Central Europe, where the plague epidemic affected.


5. Prague Castle

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According to the Guinness Book of Records, it is the largest ancient castle in the world. It is located at the end of the Mala Strana neighbourhood. The construction of this castle began in the 9th century, which is why there are still some Romanesque-style walls. In the same main door of the castle, you will see the guard that guards the castle and that makes the change once every hour.

Inside the castle you will see:

    • First Courtyard: In this first building we find the Royal Palace, where the Kings of Bohemia stayed and in some cases coincided with the title of Holy Roman Emperor.


    • Second Courtyard: In it is the Rodolfina Gallery, where the king and emperor Rodolfo II kept many of his extravagant objects.


    • Third Courtyard: It is probably the best known place in Prague Castle, since here we can find:
        • San Vito Cathedral: Its patrons are San Vito, San Wenceslao and San Adalberto. It began to be built in the 14th century by order of Juan de Luxemburg (father of Carlos IV). Its style is Gothic and stands out for its great height, which can be seen from various points in the city of Prague. Construction was delayed for centuries by numerous interruptions caused by changes of power in the Kingdom of Bohemia. The last push was given by Tomas Garrigue Masaryk (president of the Republic of Czechoslovakia) obtaining funds and investors for its completion, which was completed in 1929. It stands out because illustrious personalities are buried in this place, such as: Carlos IV, Jorge de Podiebrad, Rudolf II or Wenceslaus IV.
        • Basilica of San Jorge: Don’t be fooled by its baroque façade. This place is the oldest religious building in the entire castle complex. It dates from the 10th century. Apart from the main façade, the rest is Romanesque in style. In this basilica rest the remains of Saint Ludmila, grandmother of Saint Wenceslas and patron saint of the Czech Republic. In Prague Castle, you can also see the Golden Alley (street with multiple low and coloured houses), the Daliborka Tower, the Lobkowicz Palace or the royal gardens.



      6. Vysehrad

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      Many visitors don’t know that Prague has two castles, one on each side of the Vltava River. It is one of the most mysterious places in Prague, it is not so crowded and then we will tell you what you can see and do in this place as well as tell you a little about its history.

      Formerly, Prague was divided into several independent districts such as Vysehrad, Stare Mesto, Nove Mesto and Mala Strana. Vysehrad is believed to be the oldest place in the city as there is a legend that Prince Kork resided here around the 7th century and his daughter (Libuse) could not rule so she needed to find a prince and this was Premysl. From this legend comes the Premyslid dynasty, which ruled Bohemia until the beginning of the 14th century. Vysehrad Castle has seen many disputes and has been destroyed on more than one occasion and rebuilt again.

      In Vysehrad you will see:

        • Vysehrad Cemetery: Illustrious people who had something to do with the city of Prague are buried in this cemetery. There are politicians, writers, painters, scientists, composers, actors…


        • Basilica of Saint Peter and Saint Paul: It is a neo-Gothic style ecclesiastical construction and probably the most recognizable symbol of Vysehrad. It was founded in the 11th century in the Romanesque style, but with the continuous sieges, it underwent several modifications until the current style was inaugurated in 1903.


        • Statues: You will be able to see statues along its paths, among others, such as that of San Wenceslao or that of Libuse and Premysl.


        • Doors: Puerta de Tabor (Renaissance) or Puerta de Leopoldo (Baroque) among others.


      Seeing all this you will have a very complete visit, but I cannot finish this point without telling you what the main attraction of this area is… And it is that there is a large balcony to watch the sunsets (one of the best places to do so in Prague). If you have a lucky day and there are no clouds, I strongly recommend that you go see it because it is a spectacular place with incredible views. You can access Vysehrad by metro line C (red).


      7. Zizkov

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      Zizkov is one of the many neighbourhoods that populate the city of Prague. I could say that it is just another neighbourhood, but no, it is not.

      Zizkov is par excellence the best known, bohemian and popular neighbourhood in the entire city. In it, you can find numerous breweries with great offers and good prices. It has a lot of student atmosphere and places worth seeing:

            • Television Tower: With more than 200 meters high, it is the tallest building in all of Prague. It has a viewpoint at 90 meters high that you can access for 250 CZK (10 euros), in it you will see all of Prague like nowhere else. This tower is characteristic in addition to its height for the sculptures of crawling babies made by the most famous sculptor in the city, David Cerny.
            • Vitkov: Vitkov is a mound that is located on the border of the Zizkov neighbourhood with another neighbourhood called Karlin. Here in the 15th century, a battle took place between Hussites (Czech Protestants) and Catholic Crusaders. The Hussites emerged victorious led by Jan Zizka (one of the best military strategists in history and who gives the name to the Zizkov neighbourhood). In this place, you will find a 9-meter high equestrian statue of Jan Zizka, one of the equestrian statues biggest in the world. You will also be able to see the Prague Military Museum and a café with great views.


      Finally, if you have enjoyed our list, don’t forget to book your place on our Free Tour of Prague in Spanish to get to know these unmissable places and many more. What did you think of our list? Do you have a place you would like to add to our list of places to visit in Prague? Write us in the comments!

Andrés Rafael

Prague city tour guide for Viadrina Tours.


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