Otázka: Prague – major sights
Přidal(a): Kateřina Štíchová
Prague’s architecture features examples of all major styles of architecture, from early Romanesque to Gothic and Baroque. The old centre of Prague consists of five historical districts. The OldTown, The New Town and Josefov (Jewish ghetto) are on the eastern bank of the VltavaRiver. On the western bank are the Lesser Quarter and Hradčany, which surround Prague Castle.
Charles Bridge : It was commissioned by Charles IV. The bridge joins Old Town and the Lesser Quarter and is one of the world’s most beautiful bridges. The bridge was built in 1348 (by Petr Parléř), but the figures of saints were added during the 17th century. They symbolise the confidence of the Catholic Austrian’s triumph over the Protestant Hussites.On both ends of the bridge there are Gothic Bridge Towers. The bridge is 520m long and 10m wide. The bridge is thronged all day with tourists, while at night it offers wonderful views of the illuminated castle and Old Town.
The Prague Castle – an ancient symbol of the Czech lands, is the most significant Czech monument and one of the most important cultural institutions in the Czech Republic.
It is a castle where the Kings of Bohemia, Holy Roman Emperors and presidents of Czechoslovakia and the Czech Republic have had their offices. The Czech Crown Jewels are kept here. Prague Castle is the biggest castle in the world (according to Guinness Book of Records the biggest ancient castle) at about 570 metres in length and an average of about 130 metres wide. There are many interesting places and buildings in the Prague Castle, eg.: St. Vitus Cathedral, Belvedere or Royal Summer Palace, Spanish Hall, Rudolph’s Gallery, Vladislav Hall, Powder Tower, Royal Garden, Deer Moat, the Golden Lane and many others.
The Prague Castle is surrounded by the Strahov Monastery and Petřín hill with its famous watchtower.
- Petřín – it is near from Prague Castle and there are many mirror labyrinths.
Old Town Square – portions of Old Town Hall were hit by bombs in May 1945. The Astronomical Clock strikes every 60 minutes and is controlled by a very complicated mechanism built in the Middle Ages. In the upper part of the horologe a procession af the Apostles can be seen every hour. The horologe is decorated by 12 outer medaillons representing the course of village life, painted by famous Czech painter Josef Mánes. There are also 12 signs of the Zodiac. There also is the monument of John Huss on the square. Worthy of attention in the square is the gothic church of Our Lady Before Týn and a gothic tower house called At the Bell.
The neighbourhood around the Prague Castle is called Hradčany.
Wenceslas Square – the centre of the city. It is about 750m long and 60m wide. The statue of the Czech patron – St. Wenceslas- made by J.V. Myslbek is a symbol of a free and independent republic (people usually gather there in troublesome moments of Czech history)
Vyšehrad – formerly one of the Prague’s towns and originally the castle of the Přemyslid in the11th century. Nowadays we can visit the National Cemetary here with the graves of outstanding personalities in the sphere of culture, science and politics.
Dancing House – The Dancing House is the nickname given to a building designed by Croatian-born Czech architect Vlado Milunic in a co-operation with Canadian architect Frank Gehry. Built between 1994-1996, Dancing House is a strikingly modern contrast to Prague’s historic attractions.The building is an example of a deconstructivist architecture, with an unusual shape – you can actually see a couple – woman and man dancing together, holding their hands, with a skirt that sways to the music.The building is also called Ginger & Fred, referring to Ginger Rogers and Fred Astair – the legendary dance duo.
Zizkov Television Tower – was built in the 1984-89. It provides not only the devices for transforming TV signal, that covers a wide territory, but it also offers three cabins in the height of 93 meters and a restaurant with a view of the city in the height of 66 meters. If you are lucky with the weather you can see objects at the distance of 100 kilometers.
Means of transport
Public transport consists of metro, trams and buses, plus suburban buses (lines from no.300 to no.400).The Prague Petřín funicular is a part of integrated transportation system (PID) as well.
The Prague metro (beside trams and buses) is the most used Prague mean of transport.
The whole underground network is divided into the three main lines, each represented by its own color:
Line A (green)
Line B (yellow)
Line C (red)
Prague is a true cultural treasure trove, bursting with fascinating museums, galleries, theatres, and music venues. The city regularly plays host to numerous prestigious exhibitions, events, and more international festivals
The National Gallery – is a state-owned art gallery in Prague. It is housed in different locations within the city, the largest being the Veletržní Palác.
The vast collection contains a large number of Czech and Slovak paintings and sculptures, including works by Gutfreund, Kupka, Fila, Benes and Bohumil Kubišta. The international collection includes numerous works by artists such as Picasso, Rodin, Gauguin, Cézanne, Monet, Van Gogh, Renoir and Klimt; many of these are donations from the collection of art historian Vincenc Kramář.
Along with the Black Madonna House and the Kampa museum the trade fair palace collection is one of the most notable collections of Czech Cubism in Prague.
The National museum – is a Czech museum institution intended to systematically establish, prepare and publicly exhibit natural scientific and historical collections. It was founded 1818 in Prague by Kašpar Maria Šternberg. Historian František Palacký was also strongly involved.
At present the National Museum houses almost 14 million items from the area of natural history, history, arts, music and librarianship, located in tens of buildings.
According to their website, the National Museum at present contains several million items of material concerning the areas of mineralogy, paleontology, mycology, botany, entomology, zoology, anthropology; and also archeology which is mostly concerned with the period from Neolithic times to the 10th century CE.
The National Theatre– in Prague is known as the Alma Mater of Czech opera, and as the national monument of Czech history and art.
The National Theatre belongs to the most important Czech cultural institutions, with a rich artistic tradition which was created and maintained by the most distinguished personalities in Czech society. This tradition helped to preserve and develop the most important features of the nation-the Czech language and a sense for a Czech musical and dramatic way of thinking.
Today the National Theatre consists of three artistic ensembles-opera, ballet and drama.
Other important places of culture include the Smetana Theatre, the Palace of Culture, the Magic Lantern, the Redute, the Lucerna Hall, the Tyl Theatre, the Vinohrady Theatre, the Semafor, the Viola, the Činoherní klub, Divadlo na zábradlí.
The majority of Czech universities, colleges and students residences are in Prague.
Prague is also an important centre for sports. There are many stadiums (Strahov), parks (Letná, Stromovka, Kampa, Petřín) and swimming pools.
Many world known personalities lived or spent some time in Prague, e.g.: Mozart, Beethioven, Chateaubriand, Čajkovskij, Descartes, Paganini, Wagner, Dostojevskij, Eimstein, Kafka, Lenin, Liszt, Ginsberg. many world famous personalities visited Prague, such as the Pope, Gearge Bush, John Major, Margaret Thatcher, Barack Obama, Michael jackson, Madona, Rolling Stones etc.