CZ, Prague Towers– A Unique Trip
This time we go to the capital of the Czech Republic to make a beautiful walk to see the most popular tourist attractions which would give us another perspectives on the life on the city on the Vltava River.
Prague, towers, gate, Prague towers, Powder Gate, Old Town Bridge Tower, Malostranska Bridge Tower, St Nicholas Bell tower, Petrinska Tower
Since 2014, the Museum of the Capital City of Prague has been administering five prague towers. It is obliged to not only maintain the towers but also to promote their history in interactive form to foreign and domestic tourists. A visitor of a tower can ask for a Honest Keyholder of Prague’s Towers Pass after buying a ticket. A visitor would also receive a working sheet with questions on a particular tower. When he or she fills the right answers he will get a stamp with an image of a key. And when he or she finishes four sheets in four towers he will receive a gift. Five stamps which should be brought to the main building of the museum on Florenc will get a visitor a fre ticket and an attractive key charm. It is a copy of a historic key. Whole families with children can join the game, especially for children it is a great fun.
We were going to spend only one day in Prague so we didn’t join the game. But we tried to visit all the towers. I have to say that our attempt was not successful, well if you count seeing the tower from inside as a tour. Nevertheless, join us in this small expedition.
We started our trip to Prague’s towers at the late-Gothic Powder Tower. Once it stood over a moat. It split Old Town from the New Town. Today it is sort of an entrance gate to the historical center of Prague. It was built in 1475. Its construction was crowdfunded and it served as a representative and defense building of the city. It has been altered many times. The gate has rich decoration consisting of statues, reliefs, or inscriptions. One of the inscriptions warn the visitors against evil intentions.
With good intentions we continued on to Old Town Bridge Tower which you can find between the first and the second pillars of the Charles Bridge. The construction began in 1357 by order of Charles IV. The bridge was finished still during Charles’ reign yet some decorations were done during the rule of his son Wenceslas. Craft of contemporary masters resulted in one of the most impressive examples of Gothic architecture in the world. An interesting fact about this tower is that it was intended as a symbolical arch of triumph. Czech kings rode underneath it during a coronation ceremony to St Vitus cathedral at Prague Castle.
All of a sudden we found ourselves at the other end of Charles Bridge at Malostranska Bridge Tower . Well, there are actually two of them. The higher is the newest part to the bridge.. It was built in 1464 by order of Jiri of Podebrady. We noticed that it is more similar to the tower on the other end of the bridge. And we were not mistaken! Still, one can see sample of post-Hussite Gothic. With a small tower both were dedicated to guard the gate to Mala Strana. The decoration should have been as rich as at the other towers. Yet we saw many blank spaces which are ready for statues to stand there. This was the only tower we saw from the inside during our one-day trip. The tower is 43,5 meters high, only a bit below its roof is an observation platform which offers a magnificent vista. It was something marvelous.
With great impressions and great photos, we moved to the town bell at Saint Nicholas church . It was used as a firewatch tower. Also interesting to us was the fact that the tower was built together with the church, yet most of it was finished only when the church itself had been finished. Also, it was never a property of church. Even today it is a property of local municipality. The tower is as high as the dome. We were also surprised that the tower was used as a State Security’s observation tower from where the officers watched western embassies around.
Gradually we were getting to the last and the newest of towers on our list. It is Petrinska Tower built at the occasion of an important exhibition in 1891. The creators were inspired by the famousFrench project by Gustav Eiffel. We have visited Petrinska Tower many times so this time we skipped it. You can read more about it HERE.
With a beautiful vista our look at large metropolis of the Czech Republic our trip concluded. Of course, there are many dozens or maybe hundreds of other towers than those we have seen. This stands among the reasons why we return there. Simply put, there is still much to explore, so when you have time to travel maybe make a trip to the same towers as we did.
Text and photo: Oskár Mažgút
Petřín Tower. Prague´s copy of the Eiffel Tower every good Czech knows. The French make the fun of it, for many Praguers Petřín Tower is a purebred building with its own story, not imitation.
The Chuchelský háj nature trail passes through the nature reserve above Prague's Chuchle, which connects to the Barrandovské skály nature trail. It will take you along a yellow tourist and at the same time cycling asphalt road, mostly through deciduous vegetation from Velká to Malá Chuchle, or vice versa. The biggest attraction, especially for children, is the local zoo.
Jewish quarter should be a mandatory stop for tourists as well as for locals. Many Praguers pass it with their eyes closed forgetting, perhaps even realizing it, about priceless historic part of the city.
Drahanske Valley connects city district of Prague 8 – Dolni Chabry with the left bank of the Vltava river. To walkers it offers many places to enjoy, to bikers pretty tricky route.
In Jerusalem street, an inconspicuous street from Jindrisska tower in Prague, is hiding a gem among Prague's buildings - the Jerusalem or als the Jubilee Synagogue. Witnesses may know it as the Great Synagogue.
Everyone has been in the Troja Zoo. And everyone who has been there likes to return. Not only Czechs, however. There are many foreigners enchanted by this place on the Vltava bank as well.
The most expensive street in the Czech Republic, with no doubts. You can guess it from reading signs on this avenue connecting Letna and lively Old Town Square.
A place of work or friendly meetings. A place you can do sports and a place with a magnificent view of Prague. This is Letna.
Hopefully the last snow of this winter fell but it created a wonderful atmosphere around the observatory in Ďáblice located on a hill called Na vyhlídce in Ďáblický háj. The observatory is small but enchanting with antiquity of its furnishing such as it’s the First Republic telescopes.
Spring is playing with us. One day it is 16 degrees Celsius the other it’s snowing. However, it changes nothing about the fact spring, the most beautiful of all seasons of the year, is coming. Not only people but animals as well can sense it.
Strašnice in Prague – only few would go there to try to find some landmark. And yet some fans of architecture would admire Trmal’s Villa, today a museum. The architect Jan Kotěra, the founder of modern Czech architecture, built it in 1902-1903.
No matter what the current weather is, Kampa and Charles Bridge are still overflowed with tourists. Including the day when the temperature fell to minus 3 degrees and it was occasionally snowing. This place hidden under the Charles Bridge offers thousands of different views. Kampa is simply beautiful in every season of year.
Every time kids went to visit the National Museum, they felt it was a punishment. However, for them it was still a lesser evil then learning. One started to put things into a broader perspective after he/she matured, and started to understand analogies between the past and the future. Then he/she began to appreciate the hidden value of the National Museum. Until recently hid.
You can’t miss the church on Bílenecké Square in Prague Dolní Chabry. This small Romanesque building has a magic of its own and everyone who knows little bit about it is attracted to it like a magnet.
The Czechs, who are able due to because of the "little beer fest - day of the Ram" in the Velké Popovice go from Prague several special trains, and also free, it is hard to refute that they are nation of beer drinkers. But not only for beer revel our people.
The forest-park on the south-eastern edge of Prague, founded at the beginning of the 18th century as a part of the Milíčov Court, is perfect for a walk on a hot summer day. The paths take you to relaxation areas, a children's playground or ponds where people can swim. However, bathing dogs is prohibited.
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Photo: Daniel Babický
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