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Prague Passion


Prague is one of the most beautiful cities in the world, historical pearl of Europe and also political, economic and cultural centre of the Czech Republic. Although Prague is an open museum of all architectural styles and rich of monuments, city filled with classical music, romance and nostalgia, it is also the modern capital full of life and nightlife.

The historic centre of Prague occupies an area of 866 ha and has been on UNESCO´s World Heritage List since 1992. Historical centreOld Town, Jewish Town, New Town, Lesser Town and Hradčany with Prague Castle is the national cultural treasure.

Vltava River

Thanks to Smetana´s symphonic poetry, the Vltava is perhaps one of the best known rivers in the world, although by world standards it is rather a humble rivulet: for the 31 km for which it flows through Prague, the average depth is about 4 metres. Nonetheless, it is deep enough to be plied by all kinds of vehicles - excursion ships cruise past the world famous sights. Every proper waterway needs islands, and there are eight within the city of Prague, as well as the Kampa peninsula. One of these islands is Marksman´s Island (Střelecký ostrov), which served as a training ground for archers in the Middle Ages.

Prague Gardens

Prague´s gardens and parks are a world of their own! First of all, there are the ornamental gardens of the various palaces of the nobility: the Wallenstein and Czernin Gardens, the Palace Gardens of Kolowrat, Furstenberg, Ledebour, Vrtba, Pállfy, Thun-Hohenstein and the garden of Lobkovicz Palace, so steeped in history. Some of these gardens are either closed to the public or only open on specific occasions. That is not the case with the Royal Gardens behind and below Prague Castle. The famous writer Franz Kafka liked to go for walks in the Chotek Gardens behind the Belvedere summer residence.

Prague House Symbols

Long before the people of Prague identified their houses with numbers, they marked their dwellings by using so-called house symbols, whose imaginary is usually linked in some way or another to the history of the house itself, or to the trade that was practiced within its walls (like bells, cans, rings, goblets, keys, etc.). The house symbols (animals, especially lions and lambs, donkeys and bears, carps and snakes, candles, shoes, violins, angels and many others) were modelled in plaster, chiselled in stone, painted on the façade or forged in iron. Accordingly, the buildings were given such melodious names as “At the Blue Snake” or “At the Golden Swan”.

Along the Royal Path, in the Canvas Makers´Lane (Celetná), or up steep Neruda Lane in the Lesser Town, for example, many of these small works of art have been lovingly preserved and survive into our day.        

Infant Jesus of Prague

On a side altar in the Church of Our Lady of Victory is the gracious Infant Jesus of Prague. The wax figure dresses in valuable robes originates from 16th century and is said to work wonders. A Spanish princess brought it to Bohemia and her daughter, a princess Polyxena of Lobkowicz, gave it to convent. In the pious Baroque age, the Infant Jesus of Prague was soon revered as having miraculous powers. Since then the holy site has been visited by pilgrims from all over the world.