I decided to talk about Prague because I believe that it is one of the most
beautiful and interesting cities of the world.
Prague is the capital city of the small Czech Republic which lies in the heart of Europe, neighbouring with Germany, Austria, Slovakia and Poland.
Prague is home to the world famous national theatre. It is one of the most beautiful buildings in the world and hosts some of the most famous plays, operas and operettas in the world. You can also explore Prague's history by visiting some
of the castles, museums and buildings like the Old Town Square and original Old Town Hall, where you can find the famous Prague astronomical clock, you can also visit Charles Bridge, Prague's oldest stone bridge which was built six hundred years ago on the order of King Charles IV. This part of Prague is consider the most romantic due to the beautiful architecture and gardens that surround it. Prague also has many Jazz bars and cultural centres.
A valid passport is required in order to enter the Czech Republic. There is no need of an entry visa for most European countries and USA. But us as Mexicans we need to obtain a visa at the Czech Embassy. Two kinds of visas are available; a tourist visa for 30 days or a transit one for 48 hours.
The official language is Czech, the majority of the population speak Slovak as well, and in many hotels, restaurants, travel agencies, historical monuments, shops and services the communication is possible in English, German or perhaps French.
Now you now a little bit more about this romantic city. So if you have the opportunity to go to Europe don't doubt about visiting Prague.This Essay is Approved by Our Editor
Prague (or Praha), the capital of Czech Republic, is an outstanding city! If it is still not in your bucket list by now, well, it should be there!
Why? I hope these 20 pictures will explain you better than words:
Prague’s Old Town (or Staré Město pražské) is the heart of the city that remained almost untouched since the 12th century. The most important sights are the Jan Hus statue in the middle of the square, the Old Town Hall Tower and the Tyn Church. The square is full of musicians and vendors and it has its incredible atmosphere!2. The astronomical clock
This one-of-its-kind medieval astronomical clock was one of the main reasons I wanted to visit Prague! Every hour you can enjoy mechanical performance. The clock’s sophisticated construction also has 12 medallions with the signs of the zodiacs.
During the Middle Ages it was considered one of the wonders of the world, but it still amazes people nowadays!3. Charles bridge
You will see many things named in honor of Charles IV (Karl) in Prague, this bridge being the most important of them. Stroll across the bridge to encounter countless vendors and musicians.
As it is very crowded during the day, Charles bridge is best explored at dawn.4. Prague Castle
Do you want to visit one of the largest castle in the world? Consider it done in Prague Castle!
This huge complex includes royal residences, gardens, cathedrals (still operating, you can even get married there!). Don’t forget to go inside the Vitus cathedral to admire its stained glass windows.5. Find the best city view 6. Touch the “lucky” statue
Oh, and near the Vitus cathedral, there is this statue on the hill, where you should touch the shiny part of the monument for a good luck.
What would you not do for a good luck, right? 😉
Update: I have just had a talk with a couple of Czech local people and they found this tourist “invention” of sightouching unpolite and out of place. Please consider that when you think if you should be in the line to take that picture.7. Victims of the communist regime memorial
Czech Republic was under communist regime from 1948 to 1989. The memorial made out of 7 bronze figures descending the stairs is dedicated to “not only those victims, who were jailed or executed, but also those whose lives were ruined by totalitarian despotism”.8. Eat in a local restaurant
I ate in “U fleku ” restaurant. It was one of the first on Tripadvisor and I have also heard about it from my friends, so I decided to give it a try. The place quite touristic, but still fun, a lot of traditional music and local cuisine. Also, Kolkovna is a chain of restaurants where you will find traditional food and be sure it is not a tourist trap, locals eat there too!9. Try knedliky
Knedliky (or knodel) is something that you have to try while in Czech Republic! They are some kind of spongy steamed bread dumplings. You either hate them either love them. Anyway, to get your own opinion, you have to try it!
And when you eat knedlinky, don’t forget to also order …10. Try Czech beeerr!!
Did you know Czechs hold a proud number 1 place in the world of beer consumption per capita? No wonder, their beer is so good! And also cheap, often it is even cheaper than a bottle of water! 😉11. John Lennon wall
In Berlin they have a Berlin wall, here they the John Lennon’s one. Everyone can draw graffiti on it, there is always someone playing music and a great atmosphere around it!12. Dancing house
The Nationale-Nederlanden building has a nickname, people simply call it the Dancing house.
Really, just look at it – isn’t it a man holding a woman in a dance, definitely not just one more boring office building!13. Zorbing/boats along the river
14. Strahov Monastery Library
Take a boat ride under the Charles Bridge or run along the water of Vitava river. All that can be very much fun if the weather is nice. Do it, you will not forget the experience!
15. Pregnant woman statue
The most famous library in Prague is actually the Klementinum library, it was even descried by BoredPanda as the world’s most beautiful library. But it is very touristic and you have to book a tour in advance. There is one more library that is the same beautiful but less known, I recommend visiting Strahov Monastery! I did not notice any difference in beauty, but it is definitely less crowded there.
16. Barcode kids statue
This “statue” is made by David Černý – a controversial Czech artist, famous for his provocative sculptures all around Prague. Černý is hated by the government and loved by the citizens. You will see many of his statues around the town. Like…
I gave them this name myself, don’t look it up in the Internet, I am not sure they have a specific name.
You can find these babies at the Kampa museum and you are welcome to think about your own meaning of this piece of contemporary art.17. Zizkov TV Tower
Apparently Cerny really likes babies theme in his works because you will find some huge kids crawling up the Zizkov Television Tower. Wait, what?
Yes, that is exactly what I mean – just some huge iron babies climbing u the TV tower. Just yout ordinary view when in Prague…18. Feel the Parisian charm in Prague 19. Visit Jewish Quarter
20. Prague at night
Prague’s Jewish Quarter, formerly a walled ghetto, is one of the most complete collections of Jewish historical monuments in Europe today. If you are interested in the holocaust subject, there is a great movie called Niki’s family. that tells the nearly forgotten story of Nicholas Winton, an Englishman who organized the rescue of 669 Czech and Slovak children just before the outbreak of World War II.
The city by night is absolutely marvelous! Walk along the river front and admire the illuminated buildings and, of course, walk the Charles Bridge when there is almost no one there.
There is no EUR in Czech Republic. the currency there are “koruna”. Be careful when changing money, I have seen all kinds of rates, including some which were extortionate!
First of all, check if they charge a commission, and, secondly, if the rate is good. Before giving them your money, ask them how much you will receive. I can recommend you a good exchange office where I changed my money. It is very close to the Charles bridge, it has a good rate and doesn’t charge any commission. The address is Kaprova Street 14/13.
Even though it was a very short visit (I went there as part of my 30 days traveling in Europe by train with Eurail ), those 2 days were enough to understand that I will come back for a longer time period as soon as I have a chance!
Thanks a lot for reading! I hope you liked my photo essay of Prague!
What do you think about Prague? What did you like the most if you have already visited the city?
Hello Yulia, thank you for this pictures guide of the Prague highlights! Here are few additions from locals regarding your Prague discoveries:
Dumplings: There are two main types of dumplings – bread and potatoes. Both are cooked in water in a roll and then sliced (with a string). Bread dumplings are always served with a lot of sauce,
Babies: They do not have any proper name. It is very hard to even learn what they supposed to mean. People are just guessing. They are work of David Černý as many other “crazy” things in Prague.
Grant Cafe Orient (on the picture with the comment about art-nouveau) is actually built in cubism style –style you will not see anywhere else than Prague!
If there is anything else you are still curious about just let us know!:)
thanks a lot for the addition, I really appreciate it! It will be very useful for my readers!
Yes, as there is no name for the baby “momument”, I kind of made it up 🙂
And I remember now that the guide told us about the Grand Cafe, that is done in cubism style, yes! But the whole are around is totally art-nouveau! 🙂
With Prague as our home for the holidays, we didn’t get as much sightseeing in as we would have liked leaving many of the Czech Republic’s small towns, like Cesky Krumlov, still on our radar for future visits! However, our decision to stick close to home allowed us to explore Prague’s beautiful historic core, and it completely blew us away!
One of two entrances to Prague’s famous Charles Bridge
Christmas Market and beautiful surroundings
The beloved Astronomical Clock
We’ve been fortunate to visit some visually breathtaking European cities during our travels – Budapest, Paris, and Vienna immediately come to mind – and Prague is no exception. Easily up there with the best in Europe, the stunning architecture, riverside locale, and romantic ambiance make Prague a world-class stunner. Not to mention the wonderful Christmas spirit enveloping the city during late December.
A beautiful church in Prague’s Old Town Square
Entrance to the Charles Bridge with Prague Castle in the background
A guard on duty at Prague Castle
We have read many accounts of travel bloggers and photographers who, taken aback by Prague’s beauty, leave only to find their camera’s memory card filled with shot after shot of buildings. Having now been there ourselves, we can relate. Walking through Prague’s medieval core is like a lesson in history and architecture. From Renaissance and Gothic to Romanesque, Neoclassical, and Art Nouveau, Prague offers a wonderful glimpse into nearly one thousand years of the city’s architectural evolution.
A local Absinthe shop
Charles Bridge at sunset
Beautiful spires and a winding street
For me, the rainbow of sherbet-hued facades will be something I won’t soon forget, while the countless spires that litter the skyline make every panorama worthy of a stop. I didn’t really understand just how far-reaching the historical core of the city is until we took in an aerial view from Prague Castle.
A small square decorated for Christmas
Prague Castle at Night from the Charles Bridge
Aerial view from Prague Castle
Full of history and century-old facades, Prague is also surprisingly modern with a wonderful transportation system, plenty of great restaurants and shopping, and easy access to some of the best beer in Europe (although that last point may be well contested depending who you talk to). We also picked up on a slightly Eastern-European vibe*, most evident in the styles and dress of the locals, that makes Prague feel slightly exotic and less discovered than other parts of Central or Western Europe.
Charles Bridge at sunrise on Christmas Day
Charles Bridge at night
Beautiful winding street in the historic centre
All together, Prague is a wonderful city, one of our favorite big cities to date, and extremely worthy of a visit!
*To the people of the Czech Republic, we know your country is in “Central” not “Eastern” Europe. Our host made sure to remind us of this upon our arrival.Written by Calli Duncan
Calli is one half of Have Blog Will Travel, which she writes with her boyfriend Travis. Rarely seen without her camera in-hand, Calli is always open to exploring a new destination, eating something different, or allowing Travis to drag her to another soccer game.16 Responses to "Stunning Prague – A Photo Essay"
Photos by Wesley Edwards, (Claremont McKenna College) CET Photography in Prague. Spring 2016
A former political prisoner who was sentenced to work in the labor camps in Jachymav describes the uranium ore processing plant that still stands today. It has since been cleaned and decontaminated, but an eerie feeling still hangs in the air of the place where uranium ore was crushed manually, infecting many prisoners with lung cancer and other diseases.
Less than 10 miles from the Czech-German border, CET students are lead on a tour a uranium mine operated by the Communist government in the years following World War II. Political prisoners, people suspected of Nazi ties, and other prisoners were sentenced to hard labor in the mines at the Jachymav and surrounding labor camps.
CET Film students shoot their final movie on the streets of Prague. Students are given almost complete creative control to shoot and direct their movie as they please. Many students work as production assistants on each other’s sets to gain more experience and help their friends.
A CET Photography student hangs her work in Gallerie Fotografic in Prague in preparation for the week long exhibit that will feature their work. The space is the ideal location for a small and intimate exhibition experience.
The CET Photography students displayed their work in Gallerie Fotografic in Prague. For many of the students, this is the first time displaying their work in a gallery and there is no better place than in the rich art district of Prague. The students could not have done it without the help of their program coordinator, teacher and adviser, and the owner of the gallery.
CET students joined one of their Czech buddies on a weekend excursion to her family’s cabin in Southern Bohemia. The Bohemia region stretches across the southwestern portion of the Czech Republic and is filled with rolling hills of fields and small villages.
Using the kitchen in a traditional Czech cabin, CET students prepared an old family recipe with their Czech buddy. When making a toast, it is customary to maintain eye contact. If eye contact is broken, you will hear “Oči pičo”, which means “Look here.”
CET students in the film program work with their Assistant Camera to set up the Arriflex 435 16mm film camera. The students have access to a large amount of equipment with everything needed to make a short film.
CET students record handheld shots for their movie to recreate the vantage point of the small child who is their lead actor. With such a heavy camera, it is a multiple person task to steady the camera and frame the shot.
The following is a guest post by Amber Hoffman, of the travel blog With Husband in Tow .
After almost 50 countries of travel, one place continuously evaded me. I had never been to Prague. Even my little sister, 14 years younger, had Prague under her travel belt. When people asked me about my experiences in Prague, I was almost embarrassed that I had not visited one of the top tourist destinations in Europe.
[caption id="attachment_9640" align="aligncenter" width="640" caption="View of the Charles Bridge, heading into Lesser Town. Prague Castle looms"] [/caption]
When I finally arrived during my second RTW trip, I was left breathless. The city is easily one of the most beautiful I have been to. Crossing the Charles Bridge from Malá strana to Staré město was nothing short of surreal.
[caption id="attachment_9641" align="aligncenter" width="640" caption="The Lennon Wall, a graffiti homage to Lennon, in Lesser Town"] [/caption]
[caption id="attachment_9644" align="aligncenter" width="640" caption="View over the Vltava River, from Charles Bridge."] [/caption]
Malá strana, or Lesser Town, founded in 1257, shows off medieval architecture, with streets winding up to Prague Castle. Across the Vltava River, Staré město, or Old Town, houses the Jan Hus monument in the Old Town Square, as well as the Astrological Clock, which animates on the hour. More impressive is the people watching in the Old Town Square, one of the few free things do after watching the clock pass the hour. To demonstrate the age of Prague, Nové město, or New Town, was established in the 14th Century.
[caption id="attachment_9648" align="aligncenter" width="640" caption="Monument to Jan Hus in Old Town Square. Hus, a Czech religious reformer, was burned at the stake"] [/caption]
[caption id="attachment_9649" align="aligncenter" width="640" caption="A skeleton, representing death beating on an hourglass, on the Astrological clock"] [/caption]
[caption id="attachment_9650" align="aligncenter" width="640" caption="Some of the sights while people watching in Old Town Square"] [/caption]
In addition to wandering the streets and enjoying the classic European architecture, Prague is a foodie paradise.
– if you enjoy sausages, pork, and bread dumplings. Although international food is prevalent through the city, it's the traditional Czech food, and the availability of sausages on the street, which really makes the city shine.
January 08, 2013
This picture was taken as we first arrived in Prague. We were touring through the city on the way to the hotel, and I took the picture from the bus window. The circular ring around the focal point is the camera lenses reflecting off the window of the bus. The ring draws the viewers eye to the eternity of the tracks. The winter scene is desolate, yet beautiful.
NYU generously took the group out to dinner the last night to a traditional czech restaurant. There was folk music and traditional dancing, which was wonderful to be exposed to. The light in the picture is unique because as I was taking the picture, another student's camera flashed and the effect was captured here.
Graffiti, Jewish Star - Walking through the old town of Prague one can see that all of the buildings are beautifully maintained. However, along one stretch of wall, there is a colorful and abundant amount of graffiti, spanning a good thirty feet. The graffiti looks extremely out of place, given the Disney'ish quality of the landscape. The graffiti is also extremely political, unusually so. There are no "tags," only statements. Here, the Star of David, drawn over a peace sign - an addition to a previous artist's design, I find especially compelling due to the tragic Jewish history of Prague.
This picture was taken at night overlooking the charles bridge. I really liked the light in the picture, especially how it reflects off the road. A group of us had gone to the bridge at night to make wishes on a statue.
The weather in Prague over spring break was. shall we say, less than desirable? But being out of New York's spring climate was an important part of the trip. I think this really picture really captures the desolate atmosphere we trudged around in. Though I will say, we still had a great time :)
These epic getaways my friends and I have been going on, seemingly every other weekend, are becoming what some would call “old hat.” I have found myself getting out of class Thursday afternoon, grabbing my suitcase and hopping on the Metro with passport, boarding pass and iPod in hand more times than I can count. The most recent of these Thursday-Sunday voyages was to Prague.
Prague is a city that requires little introduction. Situated snugly in Central Europe, it has miraculously been able to retain much of its Pre-WWII beauty, thus making it once of the most popular destinations for tourists from all over the world. Prior to arriving in Spain, Prague was high on my list of places to visit. I had heard rave reviews from my friends and family causing me to conjure up mental images of windy cobblestone streets lined with small, multi-colored homes and storefronts that never ended.
As we have consistently done with every city we have visited, my friends and I thoroughly sampled the local sights, culture, food and nightlife. After visiting this dream destination, I am happy to say it lived up to every expectation I had set. Now, rather than following my traditional blog style of walking you through the trip chronologically with a mix of pictures and words, I have decided to let the photos speak for themselves through the use of what pro-bloggers call a “Photo Essay.” Hope you like it! (Click for a much larger image)
Collage of the Lennon Wall
Wenceslas Square by Day
Wenceslas Square by Night
View from the Astronomical Clock Tower
The Atronomical Clock
Making Friends in the Czech Republic
The Dancing House
Charles Bridge by Day
View from the Charles Bridge by Night
Can't Forget about the Wonderful Czech Food
And the Wonderful Czech Beer
Bridge of Locks
It’s easy to tell you have fallen in love with a city when the minute you get home, you start investigating plane tickets for a return trip that summer to experience it with warm weather. Between Barcelona, San Sebastian and now Prague, I’ll be making a lot of return trips this summer.
Oh, how I wish we had more time to spend in Prague. We fell in love with the city and a day and a half was nowhere near enough time to spend there.
We stayed for two nights and paid with points for a free stay at the stylish Park Inn that was built inside of an old print house. The hotel was located near the river, but a bit of a walk or a short tram ride from all the action of the city.
When we arrived to our hotel it was getting late–we were starving and just wanted a convenient dinner, so we asked for recommendations of restaurants nearby. The receptionist gets a gold star for her suggestion of a restaurant called U Kroka located a few blocks away. It was here that we had another one of our all time top meals ever. And, we were astonished at the total price of our bill–we weren’t shy with our ordering, and the total came to about $28 after the tip. I guess we forgot how inexpensive Eastern Europe can be, and although I know we could have eaten for even cheaper, we would still head back there in a heartbeat!
Besides the meal that we obviously can’t stop raving about, the rest of our time in the city was spent wandering around and soaking up the sights. I loved the colors and architecture of all the buildings and couldn’t stop exclaiming how much I loved this city. We walked around Old Town, across Charles Bridge, to the Prague Castle and along every tiny street we could find. Another treat we indulged in was the insanely thick and delicious hot chocolate at Café Kafíčko. It tasted almost like a melted chocolate bar and was heavenly. Ok, I better get to the photos now because I’m about ready to hop on a plane and head back just from reminiscing! Here are our photos from a dreary, but still perfect day in Prague.
Have you ever been to Prague? What were your thoughts of the city? Sammi Wanderlustin'
Posted at 13:53h, 26 May Reply
Your photos are stunning– particularly the one of the Charles Bridge, what time did you get there to get it so empty.
Did you see the Lennon Wall? It’s my favourite part of the city, I am always interested in seeing people’s photo’s of that to see how it’s changed and evolved since I last saw it, which will be a year ago this summer.
Sammi Wanderlustin’ recently posted…Traveller Tuesday with Chantae of Chantae Was Here
Posted at 19:40h, 03 June Reply
Thanks, Sammi! We were there in the early evening–it was surprisingly pretty quiet! We missed out on the Lennon Wall, unfortunately. Will have to add it to the list for next time. Sounds like a great spot!
Jenna Kvidt recently posted…A Photo Essay: Kyoto, Japan
Posted at 15:35h, 26 May Reply
Prague is definitely on my radar and your pictures show a glimpse of what a fantastic city it is! I like the photo of the bubble 🙂 We saw lots of people in Italy making huge bubbles in some of the piazzas, too! That dinner also sounds like a really good deal.
Lauren recently posted…Our Flight to Italy: A Review of Air Transat with Vegan Meals
Posted at 19:40h, 03 June Reply