Prague/Castle and Lesser Town

The Royal Garden in autumn
Lesser Town from the Castle

Both in district Prague 1, Castle district of Prague (Czech: Hradčany.) is the highest part of the city while the Lesser Town of Prague (Czech: Malá Strana) is the lower area on the left bank.

Understand

Prague Castle is symbol of Czech state. It became seat of Bohemian dukes since 9th century. Since then, the Prague Castle is continually seat of ruler of the Czech lands. From kongs of Bohemia to Czechoslovak and Czech presidents. According to the Guinness Book of Records, Prague Castle is the largest ancient castle in the world. Castle complex is a unique mixture of different architecural styles. From romanesque St. George's Basilica, gothic St. Vitus cathedral, renaissance Belvedere with gardens to adjustments by well-known architects form 20th century. Under the Castle is Lesser Town. Founded in 13th century, this part of Prague was inhabited mostly by Germans. Lesser Town was destroyed during the Hussite Rebellion, therefore Baroque architecture predominants there.

Get in

Public transport is the preferred way. To reach the Prague Castle, use station of line A "Malostranská" or "Hradčanská". The best way how to get to Lesser Town is station of line A "Malostranská", station of trams 12, 20 and 22 "Malostranské náměstí". Probably the best option is a walk from Old Town via the Charles bridge.

The nearest car park (paid and guarded) is in the U Prašného mostu street.

See

The main attraction of Hradčany (Castle Quarter or Castle District) is the Prague Castle itself. However the Castle Quarter is much larger and is filled with many other attractions, palaces, churches and monasteries. Some of the palaces host excellent galleries, others are used as government or church buildings.

Some of the areas require you to buy a ticket for entrance. You can buy one of two combined tickets as well. The short tour allows entrance to the Old Royal Palace, St. George's Basilica, Golden Lane and Daliborka Tower for 250 Kč. The long tour allows entry to all the same places as the short tour, as well as "The Story of Prague Castle" exhibition, the National Gallery display in the Convent of St. George, and the Prague Castle Picture Gallery all for 350 Kč. The entry to the St. Vithus Cathedral is free (but crowds are regulated) when the owned by the state, but money is charged when owned by the Catholic church. The legal battle over the ownership of the cathedral still continues.

Prague Castle in the night-time
The enormous interior of St. Vitus Cathedral
Similar to other Royal Palaces, there is an hourly changing of the guard ceremony. At noon, the ceremony includes fanfare at a flag ceremony as well in the first courtyard.
  •   Petřínská rozhledna. A smaller version of the Eiffel Tower on the top of Petrin Hill overlooking Prague. Climbing the tower costs 105 CZK for a standard ticket or 55 CZK for discounts. Paid lift available.

Do

Buy

Number of little gift shop with Prague-themed items on Nerudova street. More affordable prices than in Old Town, less crowded and especially offers more original and peculiar items.

Eat

Drink

Sleep

New Provost Residence
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