Prague is home to a number of famous cultural attractions, many of which survived the violence and destruction of 20th-century Europe. Main attractions include Prague Castle, Charles Bridge, Old Town Square with the Prague astronomical clock, the Jewish Quarter, Petřín hill, Vyšehrad and many more. The city has more than ten major museums, along with numerous theatres, galleries, cinemas and other historical exhibits. Read about them below so you can find out more.
Take a Free walking tour
Prague’s free tourist sightseeing tours are a great way to learn about Prague. I recommend that you book it immediately upon arrival. In order to get to know the city in the easiest and fastest way. The city is full of agencies offering free tourist sightseeing in almost all languages. The groups are usually located on the main square or at the Astronomical Clock at 10 or 11 am. Of course, nothing in life is free, so their guides are also not volunteers working for free. They work for your tips. You leave them tips at the last sight you are visiting. Tips are given according to the level of your satisfaction with the guide. Of course, they will note the optimal tip between 300 and 450 CZK per person. Sightseeing takes from 2 to 3 hours, and the most important sights of Prague are traversed. With a tour and a sightseeing story, you will learn all about the history of the city, the legend and the story.
Staroměstské náměstí and Astronomical clock
Old Town Square is the main and most important square in Prague. It has been a central place in the town since the 12th century and in the past there was the largest market in Prague. There are many important buildings, including Tynsky chram, a two-tower church that is one of Prague’s most spectacular sights. The church’s towers are not the same size due to the restaurations through history. The citizens of Prague have come to take advantage of this mistake and they call them Adam and Eve Towers.
Along with Tynsky chram, an important building is the Old Town Hall where the Astronomical Clock is located. The astronomical clock is perhaps the most overhyped attraction in all of Prague. There are also St. Nicholas church that was built in the 17th century and the monument to Jan Hus, a famous priest who fought for the people of Prague. Old Town Square is an important place for gathering and socializing. There are numerous performances and important events there, such as the Christmas Fair.
The Jewish Quarter and Pařížská street
Right next to the Old Town Square, there is a famous Jewish Quarter. It has six synagogues, a Jewish Ceremonial Hall, and the Old Jewish Cemetery. The Jewish Quarter is a very popular tourist attraction because it is preserved through history. Hitler wanted to keep the Jewish Quarter in its original form, to become a museum and symbol of the extinct Jewish race. Although his Jewish extermination failed, the Jewish Quarter remained a symbol of terror and a memory of a difficult Jewish past.
The Jews in Prague were extremely poor, had virtually no rights, and to be protected from bullying and robbery, they had to pay high taxes on government. Today, there are almost no Jews living in that neighborhood. Paradoxically, one of the poorest neighborhoods has turned into one of the most luxurious. There is Pařížská Street, abounding in luxury clothing and footwear stores by famous designers, luxury watches and jewelry.
Charles Bridge is a Prague’s oldest bridge. It was built to replace the Judith Bridge, that has been badly damaged in by floods in 1342. At first the Stone Bridge, than Prague Bridge is called Charles Bridge since 1870. Its construction begun in 1357 by Charles IV and was completed in 1402. Because of the Charles IV, Prague has become the most important cultural and intellectual center in medieval Europe. The bridge over the Vltava River connects the Old Town and the Malostranske Namesti. The bridge is decorated with 30 sculptures of the saints set in the 18th century. Today, they are replaced by replicas because they were destroyed by floods, or damaged by weather and restored, where the originals were placed into the National Museum’s Lapidary. Charles Bridge is one of the most famous Prague landmarks, which you have to cross when visiting Prague. On both sides of the bridge there are towers, and for 100 CZK you can climb to the Old Town Bridge Tower to have a beautiful view on the Charles Bridge and Prague Castle.
John Lennon wall
Shortly after the death of John Lennon, the stone wall was transformed into a memorial with a painting of a singer’s face. Students started writing John Lennon lyrics on the wall, burn candles and leave flowers under the wall. That was their resistance to the totalitarian regime. The wall remained as a symbol of democracy and love and peace. Today it completes Prague’s tourist offer, and tourists are allowed to write names and messages on the wall. One of the most famous places to take a photo in Prague.
Dancing house (Tančící dům)
Dancing House is a renowned Prague building whose architecture provokes admiration and wonder at the same time. It was designed in 1992 and was built in 1996. It is a work of a Czech architect with Croatian origin, Vlado Milunić, in collaboration with renowned Canadian architect Franko Gehry. Its concept was inspired by the dance skills of the famous film couple – the stone tower symbolizes Fred Astaire and the glass tower, his partner Ginger Rogers. A gallery and a restaurant with a terrace offering a 360° view of Prague can be visited in the Dancing House.
Wenceslas Square (Václavske náměstí)
Wenceslas Square is one of the main city squares and the centre of the business and cultural communities in the New Town of Prague. It was named after Wenceslas, the patron saint and the Duke of Bohemia, to whom in honor they raised a monument in the center of the square. The square is 750 meters long and 60 meters wide. The area abounds in numerous shops, bars, hotels and restaurants.
At the very end of the square is the National Museum, the largest and oldest museum in Prague. In the National Museum you can see exhibitions and collections of items from Czech history, art, music and literature. Not far from the square is the Czech National Opera. Wenceslas Square is a place where numerous historical events occurred, and it is a traditional setting for demonstrations, celebrations, and other public gatherings.
The Letna park is on a hill across the river from the Jewish Quarter. Just because of its elevated position, the view of the city is spectacular. There is a great viewpoint, Letensky profile, where entire city is visible, making it an ideal place for photographing.
If you stand in the right place, you can see 9 bridges at the same time. Right next to the viewpoint, there is the famous Prague Metronom. The Prague Metronome is a 23 meters high and although it is fully functional, it’s not always in use.
Not far from the Metronome, you will find Hanavský Pavilion. The pavilion, a neo-Baroque metal structure, was conceived as a representative example of cast-iron construction for the Prague Jubilee Exhibition in 1891 and was later relocated to its current site. Today, the pavilion functions as a restaurant with a panoramic terrace that offers an amazing view of Prague’s bridges. The park is peaceful and quiet, and there are plenty of trails to go for a romantic walk and enjoy the view as well as the silence.
Malostranske náměstí and Prague castle
Malostranske náměstí are a beautiful quarter located between Charles Bridge and Prague Castle. Malostranska station connects numerous tram lines and there is the metro line A below the ground. Malostranske náměstí are a few hundred meters away from the station. If you walk between them, you can go down the Vltava river you can feed the flock of swans under the Charles bridge.
Malostranske namesti are located in the old and historic part of town, so the architecture is enchanting. The most striking is the baroque church of St. Nicholas. Its impressive appearance is due to its 20 meter diameter dome and the interior height to the top of the lantern is over 49 m, making it the highest interior in Prague. It is also an outstanding example of high Baroque decoration. Concerts are held in the church year-round on the historic organ dating to the 18th century. The entrance fee is 70 CZK.
Czech Castle is the largest ancient castle in Europe, whose construction began in the 9th century. During the past, the castle was the seat of all Czech rulers, and later presidents. The castle, one of the largest complexes in the world, is made up of historical palaces, offices, church and fortification buildings, gardens and picturesque spots. It covers an area of 45 hectares.Tickets are sold individually for different parts of the castle. Entrance fee for the entire complex is 350 CZK. The panoramic view of Prague Castle is one of the most spectacular in the world.
Vinohrady is a peaceful and quiet district in Prague. It was named Vinohrady when Charles IV had ordered grapevines to be planted here in the 14th century. The best way to get to Vinohrady is by metro line A to the station Náměstí Míru. Náměstí Míru is the deepest station of the Prague Metro and the European Union. Its platform is situated 53 metres below surface. As a consequence the station has the longest escalators in European Union, with 87 meters in lenght, taking around 2 minutes ascend or descend without walking.
Above the station is the central square of Vinohrady with a park at its centre. The Náměstí Míru Square is dominated by the Neo-Gothic Church of St Ludmila, built at the end of the 19th century. Vinohrady is a developed and rich neighborhood on the hilly terrain, which was always favored by the Czech elites.
Walking through the area, you will see elaborated facades, alleyways with trees, picturesque parks, and an idyllic Paris-like atmosphere. Today, this cosmopolitan district is known not only for its high-quality real estate rental, but also for its top restaurants, wine bars and cafes.
Franz Kafka monuments and museum
Franz Kafka is the Prague-born and based German-language writer of Jewish origin. He is one of the most influential and appreciated writers of the 20th century. His father was a wealthy fashion retailer, but he had an authoritarian and abusive character. Kafka died of tuberculosis, and before his death he asked his friend Max Brod to burn all his manuscripts. He nonetheless ignored his friend’s direction and published them after Kafka’s death. The Czechs are very proud of the Kafka, so there are many monuments in Prague in his honor. The most famous monument is in the Old Town at the entrance to the Jewish Quarter. It is the untraditional “equestrian” statue of bronze by Jaroslav Róna is 3.75 m high and weighs 800 kg, inspired by Kafka’s Transformation.
Another interesting monument is the kinetic head of Franz Kafka, entitled Metamorphosis and created by famous artist David Černý. The statue is made of 24 tons of stainless steel sheet and divided into forty-two tiers, which, driven by a motor and a kilometer of cables rotate independently of one another. It is located behind the Quadrio business center.
In addition to sculptures, there is a museum in Kafka’s honor. The exhibition features most of the first editions of Kafka’s works, correspondence, diaries, manuscripts, photographs and drawings that have never been displayed before.