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Prague
Prague
#About the Pearl of Central Europe

Prague is the political, financial and cultural center of The Czech Republic, but many see it as the diamond of Europe. The city's beauty is almost incomprehensible, especially since for many years the city was tied at its hands with communism, who opposed grandeur and luxury. Between the city flows the Vlatava River, and wonderful bridge connect the two river banks, at the center is the famous Charles Bridge. In the neighborhoods it's possible to see the classical Baroque architecture, the most exciting of all of Europe.

There are many beautiful cities in Europe, but nothing is like Prague. Besides its perfect architecture and its wide European influenced streets, this city is simply lovely. The locals are friendly, the food is delicious, the shopping is excellent, and the nightlife is vibrant - all the beauty and atmosphere in the Czech capital easily out win most of the cities in Europe.

Everything here flows freely. Hundreds of castles, fortresses, cultural centers, museum, and ancient streets and alleyways, decorated churches and synagogues, roundabout, and excellent restaurants - all these make up the charm of this city, it is just endless!



#Food

The Czech kitchen, and Prague in particular, is largely influenced from both western and eastern Europe. The Czech kitchen reminds of the Austrian style. It offers plenty of meats, with tasty sauces and special soups, also baked goods and desserts that are beyond delicious. The number of restaurants in Prague is huge as in all the modern European capitals, you will also find international fusion, and a great variety of high-quality places. From French gourmet to Japanese sushi, vegetarian kitchens, organic, vegan, and health-oriented places - many restaurants that offer each type of style.



#Alcohol

In the best of traditions, as is expected from a place where residents drink an average of 157 liters of beer each year, there are a large amount of Czech beers. Don't miss a visit to a real beer house in Prague, even if you have to miss a meal at a restaurant. These beer houses all offer yummy snacks that taste especially good with a huge pitcher of beer that you will buy right from the tap.

Žižkov - You will find the most number of bars crowded here in the world.

Vinohrady - Crowded number of leading bars, wine bars, and cocktail bars.



#Famous Figures

Beyond the beauty of Prague, many geniuses and pioneers have lived here in the past. Among them is the astronomer and science genius Copernicus, the composers Dvořák and Smetana, the German-Jewish writer Franz Kafka, who was born and lived here, the Jewish Maharal of Prague responsible for the story of the Golem, and the astronomers Tycho Brahe and Johannes Kepler who lived and worked here together.



#Architecture

In WWII Prague endured terrible bombardments that destroyed a major part of it. This happened in 1945, when instead of bombing the neighboring German city of Dresden, bad weather brought the Allied bombers to accidentally drop 152 tons of bombs on Prague. The historical center of Prague somehow survived the bombings, and instead the buildings that were ruined, many impressive buildings were constructed, like the "Dancing House," known also as "Ginger and Fred." These joined the cubical houses of the city, built under the influence of Picasso's Cubism and dozens of beautiful palaces in their architecture



#Must See Sites

Want to see the most popular places in the city? - Click on the tag "Must See in Prague".



#Tip

If tip was not automatically added to your bill, then in Prague it's custom to leave a 10% tip.



#Czech Republic Country Code

+420



#Saving

Public Transportation - riding in a taxi is not recommended here, because of the prices of rides, but also because of the taxi drivers, who exaggerate prices. Prague is loaded with underground train stations, street cars, and buses. Buy an integrated ticket for a week, or several says that fits your trips. The saving is huge.

Supermarkets - Chains like ALDI and Rossmann are cheap and readily available. ADLI is very economical, but sells mostly commodity products, the second open is still very economical and sells about anything you will need.

Regular bus - A great way to get to know Prague. Download the Guidol app to your phone, and each time you refresh off the bus, the app will know your exact location and will let you listen to audio guides of things nearby.

Discounts - bring a student card.



#Shopping

Most of the designer stores and the known fashion chains are located on the main street of the city, Na Příkopě.

Down below is a link for shopping recommendations.



#Clubs and Entertainment

The area of the Wenceslas Square Prague nightlife concentrates - from bars to pubs, good clubs, to the Berlin-style underground scene.
In the Žižkov neighborhood (Praha 3), students and young people in Prague come to party.
For up to date recommendations - Click on the tag "Clubs in Prague".



#Electric Outlets

The required type of plug is only Type E.



A taste of the upcoming trip? - Here's a video that will show you the city in all its beauty:

https://youtu.be/fCwUCxQfXNs



Another Look:

https://youtu.be/ffxGB2j9ADo
Prague
St. Nicholas Church
#About Prague's Big Baroque Church

You are in the biggest and most famous cathedral in Prague. The St. Nicholas Church dominates the square in Lesser Town. It was built between the years 1704-1755 and was designed by two of the most important architects in Prague
- father and son Christophe and Kilian-Ignatz Diesenhofer.

Look and see the white organ where angels can climb up and down. Mozart played on this organ while he was staying in Prague, in 1787. The organ is working up to today during concerts that take place in the church.

The gold and marble decorated church is rich and impressive. With many decorations and a green dome, the church ceiling is awe inspiring. The impressive fresco, considered the largest fresco in Europe, adds to its beauty. The fresco describes scenes from the life of St. Nicholas.



#About the Curious Priest who is Written in History as a Peeper

Legend tells of Johann Kracker, the Viennese artist who painted the fresco, and was unwilling to reveal his work to anyone until it was finished. One of the priests, intrigued by curiosity, crept up and watched the artist paint. Although Kracker realized that he was not alone in the room and noticed the secret priest, he did not reveal this, and instead immortalized the priest who peeped by adding him to the painting itself. If you look closely at the ceiling paintings you will see a small figure hiding behind one of the pillars. It is the curious priest, who has entered history as the painted peeper of the St. Nicholas Cathedral.




#Tips

During the spring months be sure to look for concerts at the church, which many times includes the organ, played by the famous composer Mozart while staying in the city.




A Closer Look at the Fancy Church:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q5UBWzoLcBc
La Degustation Boheme Bourgeoise
La Degustation Boheme Bourgeoise
#Expensive Restaurant with Delicious Elite Cooking

This romantic and intimate restaurant you will find in a picturesque street in the Old City. Like you understand, this Michelin-starred restaurant La Degustation Boheme Bourgeoise is an expensive restaurant, mostly at night and on weekends. This is one of the most expensive restaurants in Prague.

In La Degustation Boheme Bourgeoise you can experience the Czech food in all its creativity. There is a set menu here, when the tasting menu offers between 6 to 11 dishes. The dishes are really the best of the bohemian kitchen, accompanied by high quality wines, none of which are cheap.

The waiters in La Degustation provide excellent and professional service, they are very patient, a surprising fact considering the place's exclusivity. The open kitchen will let you view the kitchen staff while preparing and plating, and like the lighting, it is all perfect. But before all - the chef here certainly knows the work, and the flavors match this excellence.



A Closer Look:

https://youtu.be/BmxCnkXG9-0?t=2m2s
Cerninsky Palac
Černín Palace
#About the Palace Where the Communists Closed the Accounts

150 meters long, Černín Palace (Černínský Palác) is the largest palace in Prague. In the 17th century it was built by a rich Earl named Chernin. But as happens often in life, the huge and not entirely calculated financial investment of the rich Earl brought financial ruin upon him and his family almost reached the brim.

This building was used for various tings in the past, until the start of the 20th century when the building became the Foreign Ministry of the new Republic of Czechoslovakia, which was created. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs continued to dwell in it later, and this, incidentally, is the role of the palace to this day.



#The Mysterious Death of Jan Masaryk

This was 1948, a little after the fall of Czechoslovakia to communism. In the Palace's garden, used by the Foreign Ministry, a body was found.

It was soon understood that the body was none other than the Foreign Minister himself, Jan Masaryk. the same Foreign Minister was not merely a politician. He was the son of the founder of the republic, Thomas Masaryk, and a politician beloved by the Czech people.

The suspicion that the circumstances of his death were very large. Jan Masaryk was the only minister in the Czechoslovak government who was not a Communist. His opposition of communism and the methods of assassinations of opponents of the Communist parties were widely known around the world.

The mystery remains to this day. There were never any signs of whether the beloved foreign minister had committed suicide because of his depression from the new regime, or was thrown out of the window to his death by those Communist dissidents whom he did not like so much.

In any event, if he was murdered, the murderers of the minister and the legendary son of Masaryk, the founder of the Czech Republic and his democratic political vision that was completely opposed to the Communists, were now the new rulers of the state at the time.

Prague

Loreto Square
Loreta Square
#About the Prettiest Square in Prague

Loreta Square (Loretanske Namesti) is the prettiest square in Prague, and has many interesting buildings. Among them is the ancient Capuchin Monastery, the Church of Our Lady of Loreto in Prague, the St. Vitus Cathedral, and more.

A few buildings worth mentioning:

Černín Palace: Here the Foreign Minister died, who opposed communism, Jan Masaryk, in 1948 (Read more about this - Click on the tag "Cerninsky Palac"). There are two very interesting areas here.

Santa Casa: In the center of the courtyard of the Loreto Temple stands a building that is a replica of the "House of Our Lady." According to the legend, angels carried the house of the Virgin Mary, the mother of Jesus, from Nazareth in the Land of Israel to the village of Loreto in Italy, where it is still displayed and is considered an important site for Christian pilgrims.

The house here, one of the dozens of replicas created for the original house and planned by the Italian architect Giovanni Orsi, is a focal point of pilgrimage to masses of Christian believers each year.

The real story is a little different. It begins with Santa Casa, the original sacred house of the city of Nazareth, where the Virgin Mary was believed to have lived while Angel Gabriel informed her that she was going to have Jesus. It is speculated that around 1291 the Italian Angeli family bought the Santa Casa in Nazareth and transferred it, stone by stone, to the town of Loreto, Italy. The name "Angeli" is probably the one who created the legend of the angels who moved the house and became famous throughout the Christian world.

The Treasure Room - where real treasure is displayed, with plenty of tools embedded in gold, diamonds and gemstones. The main one is "Shemesh Prague" - a sacrament, which is encrusted with thousands of diamonds.
U Zlate Studne
U Zlate Studne
#About the House that Scares Away Epidemics

The U Zlate Studne, in the small district of Mala Starna, is one of Prague's most beautiful Baroque houses.

Numerous reliefs are mounted on the wall of the house, commemorating various Christian saints whose purpose was to protect the house from the plague that attacked the city.

There were quite a few shocking stories in this house, about ghosts, demons and knights without a head. The most famous of them is about a hairdresser who went crazy and died, but his spirit continues to plead with passersbys to allow him to shave them.
Mala Strana
Lesser Town
#About Prague's Prestigious District

Although it is part of Prague's Old Town, Lesser Town (Malá Strana, or Malastrana) is one of the least decorated areas in Prague. The name means "small side" and derives from its limited location on the west bank of the Vltava River, at the foot of the hill where Prague Castle stands. Of course the quarter is small compared to the vast areas of the city, those on the other side of the Charles Bridge, on the east bank of the river.

If at the start the quarter was home to ordinary people, later noblemen and important people lived there. Apparently the artists and especially the writers living in the quarter are the source of many of the fairy tales and mystical stories of Prague, which were born there.

Today Lesser Town is one of the most prestigious and luxurious districts of Prague. Here sits the Czech Senate and here lies the government of the state. There are many palaces here and most of the city's wealthy prefer to live in the desirable quarter.

If you are one of those who came to see the wonderful architecture of Prague, in Lesser Town you will find what you are looking for. Many of the most beautiful and unique houses in the city are here. Even if you are less concerned with architecture, it will be hard to ignore the beauty that surrounds you here. Enjoy!



#The History of Lesser Town

The Quarter was built in the 13th century, when in 1257 King Přemysl Ottokar established a merchants' market in the area that later became Lesser Town Square. Around this square, settlements in the area will grow and the Mala Starna quarter will be born.

Later, during the Renaissance, many nobles began to move into the quarter and it became more popular during the Baroque period. Over the years, they have established magnificent palaces, among them the Wallenstein Palace and its magnificent gardens, the ‪Sternberg Palace‬, the Lichtenstein Palace and others.

Over the years, many of the greatest Czech artists have moved to the quarter, among them figures such as the famous composer Bedrich Smetana, the realist poet and writer Jan Neruda, the writer Karel Čapek, who by the way is considered by many to be the pioneer of science fiction and who coined in his book in 1920 the term "robot."



A View from Above of Lesser Town:

https://youtu.be/WFYapfjkPqE



Here are Photos from Lesser Town:

https://youtu.be/7PQqBwDn3NU
Narrowest Street of Prague
The Narrowest Street of Prague
#About the Alley With the Street Light

In the Lesser Quarter is the Vinarna Certovka, the alley that claims to be the narrowest in the world, and in the Czech Republic, but might only be the narrowest in Prague.

It is hard to be entirely accurate, but the street is less than 20 inches in width (about 50 centimeters), and really is a narrow alley. The alley is so narrow in fact, that no more than one adult can walk through it at once. This is why the city of Prague has put in pedestrian stop lights, and has turned this street into a tourist destination - the stop light is meant to alleviate the traffic when people come to the alley from both directions - you can only walk through when you have a green light.


A Closer Look at the Narrowest Street in Prague:

https://youtu.be/zbm07QFn64M


Karlv Most
Charles Bridge
#About the Ancient Bridge

Charles Bridge (Karlův Most) is the oldest bridge in Prague and connects Lesser Town to the Old City. It is best known for its 30 Baroque sculptures on its sides, and is a major tourist attraction in Prague. Throughout the day there are improvised music performances, a variety of street artists performances for tourists and vendors selling souvenirs and products to tourists.

The crowded bridge, built under the protection of King Karl, was designed by Prague's important Gothic architect, Peter Parler. The cornerstone of the ancient bridge was laid in 1357.

At both ends of the bridge are ancient towers. In the past, they were part of the fortifications of the city and can now be seen below.

The view from the bridge is breathtaking, as the sight of the minarets of the churches in the city, with St. Vitus Cathedral at the top, always overlooks the bridge. In the evening, the sight is even more enchanting, with the sparkling lights, the romance in the air and the Prague Castle, illuminated by a multitude of lights and floodlights, making the entire region a spectacle of spectacular lights.



#The Statues on the Charles Bridge

On the Charles Bridge itself stands an impressive line of sculptures. The statues were placed on the bridge, gradually, when the rulers of the Czech Republic and Prague added more and more statues to the bridge, until their number reached 30.

The sculptures here, by the way, are copies of the original sculptures that were once here . The replacement took place in recent decades, after the original sculptures were damaged by the weather and were finally removed from the bridge.

If you look at the eighth statue on the left, as you walk from the Old City towards Mala Strana, you will see a small white figure. The reason she is white are the thousands of tourists who touch the statue and "beautify" it in their hands. The reason is the widespread belief that touching the image of holiness will bring about fulfillment of the wishes of the person concerned.

Indeed, this is the first statue erected on the Charles Bridge around 1683. It is a monument to the memory of Saint John of Nepomuk (Saint Jana Nepomuckého), a Christian saint who was thrown in 1391 from the bridge to the river because he refused to reveal the queen's confessions. A look at the base of the statue will show you the bronze relief that symbolizes his martyrdom.




A Closer Look:

https://youtu.be/-fX6VGG7wOM?t=20s



The Bridge at Night:

https://youtu.be/FSornR_R8cE
Josefov
#About the Ancient Jewish Quarter in Prague

Today the quarter is nicknamed Josefov, but some will always call it the Jewish Quarter of Prague. The Old Jewish Quarter of the city is one of the most toured areas in the city, the most ancient part of Prague. There are old and ancient buildings filled with history, including the Jewish Museum, the old Jewish Cemetery and a number of synagogues.

Though Jews were settling in the city from the 10th century, the Jewish Quarter in Prague exists from the 12th century. In the past Jews were allowed to only live within the Quarter limits, which received the name "The Jewish Ghetto."

More than any other city in Europe, the Jews of Prague received a high status in the financial and cultural life of the city, and made strong ties with the rulers. Here too in the Czech Republic, there were difficult stories of blood libels, accusations of arson, fires, poisoning of wells, and persecution of Jews for any reason.

The location of the Jewish Quarter is between the Old City Square to the Vlatava River Banks. The name of the Jewish Quarter, Josefov, was given after the ruler of the Joseph II, who set a reform that greatly elevated the living status of the Jews in Prague.



#Jewish Quarter Constructions

The ghetto is a merger of two Jewish centers in the city - the first is the center of the "Ashkenazi" Jews, which centered around the Old New Synagogue (Altneuschul), the famous Maharal Synagogue, and the Sephardim, which were located around the Spanish Synagogue.

In the past, the Jewish Ghetto was one of the poorer parts of the city. It was repeatedly hit by floods from the river, a story that was resolved only in the early 20th century, when the batteries were lifted to prevent flooding from the river. Until then, the ghetto was one of the less well-tended neighborhoods in Prague.

Try not to look here only at graves on the ground. Look up and see the special buildings of the Quarter. Here is the world's largest concentration of buildings decorated with Art-Nouveau decorations. There are also representatives of Art-Deco and cubist architecture, two other interesting styles, which were also in fashion in the first half of the last century.



A Closer Look at Prague's Jewish Quarter:

https://youtu.be/nnAO5XiVg7U
Pinkas Synagogue
#About the Synagogue the Memorializes the Czech Jews Who Perished in the Holocaust

The Pinkas Synagogue (Pinkasove Synagoga), memorializes the Jews that were killed by the Nazis from Moravia and Bohemia. On the walls are engravings of 77,297 names of Jewish victims, and some personal information about them, and the communities they belonged to.

On the second floor is an exhibit of Jewish children drawings from the Theresienstadt Ghetto, between 1942-1944. Back then the Ghetto was used as a last stop for the Czech Jews, before being taken in masses to death camps, and most of the children who drew the drawings did not survive the Holocaust.


#The Synagogue's Architecture

The synagogue you are now in, built in 1535 by the Horowitz family, was one of the richest Jewish families in the Jewish Ghetto.

About 100 years later in 1625, another wing was added to the synagogue, in the Renaissance style. In the following century (18th), additions were made to the building in the Baroque style.

At the end of World War II the synagogue became a memorial center, dedicated to the Jews of Moravia and Bohemia that were murdered by the Nazis.

During the Communist rule some construction and renovations took place here, and in 1968 a vaulted cavity that contained an ancient Jewish ritual bath ("Mikveh" in Hebrew) and a water well were discovered beneath the building.

This is when the names of the victims were erased from the walls, with the excuse that the dampness in the walls caused the damage. However after the end of the Communist rule over the Czech, the names we re-written on the walls of the synagogue, and were not erased again. With time this synagogue has gone on to become part of the Prague Jewish Museum.



A Closer Look at the Pinkas Synagogue:

https://youtu.be/y6MflaLr71o



A Very Famous Video:

https://youtu.be/evI3X9QM5rA
Starovoná Synagoga
#About the Old Synagogue in Prague

Old New Synagogue (Altneuschul or Starovoná Synagoga) is a Gothic-Baroque synagogue, built in 1270 by the Jewish community of Prague.

Altneuschul is considered the most active, oldest and most famous synagogue in Europe. Around it the flourishing Jewish community of the city of Prague flourished. Here, the Mahal prayed and worked hundreds of years ago, and the legend tells us that the remains of the Golem of Prague, created by the Maharal, remains in the attic of the synagogue.

By the way, if you in Prague on a Friday night, you could enjoy a special Jewish experience in prayer. The prayer in this ancient synagogue is full of holiness and connection to the past. It is far from luxurious but is authentic and Jewish.

In the past they nicknamed the synagogue "on conditional terms." The story says that the synagogue was built, among other things, from stones brought from the ruins of the Temple in Jerusalem. Construction according to tradition was made "conditional." When the Messiah will come, they made a promise that the stones would be returned to their place in the temple to be built again in Jerusalem.



#What is the Story of the Golem of Prague?

The Jewish story of the "Golem of Prague," which deals with an ill-conceived creature, is a kind of "robot story," perhaps the oldest in history. It is already possible to learn about the great fear of loss of control over an artificial creature like man.

"The Golem of Prague" was written by Rabbi Yehuda ben Bezalel Loew, the Maharal of Prague, and the Maharal's most famous legend tells of a human created by the Maharal during the period when he fought the anti-Semitic Christian priest Thaddeus.

He wanted to save the Jews of Prague from the blood libels, "from all evil and all the troubles that their enemies immediately suffer." He created a mysterious Golem, made of clay and Earth. He was helped by mysterious combinations of letters and was assisted by his son-in-law and his close disciple.

The Golem who was created received the name Yosef and the people called him Yossele Golem. He functioned like everyone else - see, hear and understand - but he could not speak. The Maharal alone activated the Golem, using a piece of parchment he placed under the tongue of Yossele Golem with the name of God.

Every night the golem would go out to the streets of Prague to uncover plots against the Jews of the city. He did so diligently, in the Rabbi's orders, and saved many Jews.

However, every Sabbath eve, the rabbi used to take the spirit of life out of the Golem, for fear that he would spoil the Sabbath. Thus the Golem lay like a lump of clay until the end of the Sabbath. One Friday the Rabbi forgot to take the spirit of life out of him and the Golem came out and desecrated the Sabbath, endangering the gentiles of the city. The rabbi who was chasing him managed to reach him at the entrance to the ancient Altneuschul Synagogue in Prague. The Golem was shattered to pieces after the Maharal took out the spirit of life from his body.

According to another version, when the blood libels ended, the Maharal removed the piece of holy parchment from the mouth of the Golem, turning it back into a mound of earth and whose remains were buried, according to legend, in the attic of the Altneuschul Synagogue in Prague. And instead of the remains of the Golem, some old furniture was found there ...

The Golem who saved the Jews of the community from conspiracies and blood libels, often acted on behalf of the Maharal to help establish order and peace within the Jewish community itself.



Here is a Video About the Oldest Synagogue in Europe:

http://youtu.be/llZ0IK-9DgQ
Spanish Synagogue
#About the Spanish Synagogue

The Spanish Synagogue (Starovoná Synagoga, or the Spanelska Synagoga), also known as the Temple or Der Tempel, is the synagogue that replaced the old Altschule Synagogue, which was built in the 12th century and served the Jews of Spain who fled to Prague from persecution of the Inquisition. It is located in the Jewish quarter of Josefov, in Prague. The funny thing is that in recent centuries, despite the name of the synagogue, not Sephardic Jews prayed there, but Ashkenazi Jews.

The architectural style of the Spanish Synagogue is Moorish, built-in 1868 and completed in 1893. This is reflected in his gold decorations and colored tiles. It has an impressive glass dome and a great deal of luxury. Notice the stained glass windows and the large organ, which is a result of the 19th century, which the Reform congregation of Prague began to use, though not on the Sabbath. At that time, certain synagogues in Europe began to put an organ in the synagogue for Jewish prayers.

The building, designed by the architect Wojciek Ignac Ulman, had 4,000 seats. To write the synagogue regulations, Leopold Tsunz was hired during the renovations. The prayers, accompanied by the organ, were led by a choir conducted by Michael Zacks.

During the World War II, the synagogue served the Nazis to store Jewish ritual objects that had been looted throughout Europe, for Hitler's plan to establish, after the destruction of the Jews, the museum of an extinct race. In the decade following the war, the synagogue was restored to the Jewish community of Prague and renovated in the 1990's and reopened in 1998.

Today the synagogue is no longer used for prayer, but for the Jewish Museum in Prague. From time to time there are concerts. It displays an exhibition of religious objects and silverware stolen by the Nazis and looted from Jewish communities that were destroyed in Europe. Thanks to its beauty, the synagogue attracts many visitors, both Jewish and non-Jewish tourists.



A Video About the Spanish Synagogue of Prague:

https://youtu.be/arP_tgm6-hg



A Closer Look at the Spanish Synagogue's Exterior:

https://youtu.be/1UW-rShdU50
Prague Astronomical Clock
#About Prague's Famous Astronomical Clock

The Prague Astronomical Clock (Pražský orloj) is the oldest working clock in the world. This is a mechanical miracle of late medieval engineering. It is an astronomical clock that has been operating since the Middle Ages, and at every hour attracts crowds of excited tourists waiting to watch the wonder.

The clock on the tall municipality building at Stormska Square in the city was installed in 1410. It indicates the time in central Europe and the exact date of the month and year. The zodiac signs beneath the clock reveal the location of the stars and symbol that is currently dominating the zodiac. The outer ring of the clock calculates the time, according to the sunset.

Every hour, from 8 am to 8 pm, Jesus and his twelve messengers appear from the clock. It has various figures visible from the window, once an hour. Among them you can see the skeleton symbolizing the Angel of Death with his hourglass, a Turkish symbol of the Church's enemy, the miser merchant with the bag of coins in his hands, an angel, an astronomer, a rooster reading aloud and more.

If you go up to the clock inside the tower, you will enjoy a close look at the show of the 12 apostles of Jesus, who come out of the clock every hour, moving in a circle and peering out of the watch. And by the way, in the town hall you can also go up to the panoramic view of all of Prague.



#History of the Prague Astronomical Clock

The Prague Astronomical Clock is considered to be the world's best-kept watch of ancient astronomical clocks. The amazing thing is that the original mechanical mechanism still operates there, from 1410 until today.

The original mechanism of the clock was installed in 1410, by a clockmaker Mikulash Makadan. He created it with Jan Schindel, professor of astronomy at the University of Karl. In 1490 they added the calendar and dolls, made by a master in the name of Hanos. Legend has it that city councilors were so enthusiastic about Hanos's work, they feared that he would build a similar clock in another European city, and this lead them to make him blind. So there would be no other clock like this anywhere in the world.

The clock has worked continuously since then, except when in 1886 it underwent a major renovation. It was then that a Cronometer was added, built by Romuald Buzek. In the middle of the 19th century, Joseph Manes, a Czech national revivalist, added the calendar to the clock, with the natural paintings depicting the four seasons.

Another renovation took place after World War II. This is because the city hall was burned down and the clock was badly damaged.



#A Tour of the Town Hall in Prague

A tour inside the town hall takes place several times a day. On the tour, you can go first to the top of the tower above the town hall and view the historical center of Prague.

Later on you can stroll through the beautiful city halls and see the chapel of the town tower. You can look at the statues of the astronomical clock's apostles closely and then descend into the subterranean rooms beneath the building. Here you can visit the ruins of the Gothic and Romanesque periods, where there is a maze of streets, shops and old houses.



#How Many Municipalities Does One City Need?

You may have already noticed that there is a town hall across the Marianske Square, and another one next to the Powder Tower, and they are not the only ones. So what the hell is going on here?

The story is that until the 18th century Prague was a collection of four cities, each with its own town hall. Once they were united into one big city, the separate townhouses remained in each quarter. In Prague, as in other ancient cities, there was also a new town hall, so this city contains, in any case, a rather impressive collection of town halls.




A Closer Look at the Prague Astronomical Clock:

https://youtu.be/BeXLoHoVZmk



This is How it Looks Behind the Scenes:

https://youtu.be/Ef_WCsJGThM



A Further Look Back:

https://youtu.be/QAq_0y4uhi4
Powder Tower
#About the Only Gate Tower Left of the Gates of Old Prague

You are right in front of the Powder Tower (Prašná Brána), one of the most impressive examples of the fortifications of Old Prague, built in 1475. It is the only one left from that period out of the 13 gates of the entrance to the Old City.

The Powder Tower, which by the way is near the Town Hall of Prague, is 65 meters high. But when it was established, it was called the "New Tower." The reason is that it was then new in relation to the bridge tower of the Old City, which was built about a hundred years before it.

The name of the tower was replaced in the 17th century to the name "Powder Tower " because gun ammunition used to be stored here.

Today the tower is open to visitors. Those interested can see it at the exhibition, where you can learn about the history of this impressive building.




If you wish, you can climb the 186 steps to a beautiful observation point, with a view of the entire old city.


https://youtu.be/3mqUKAxCn2E


A Closer Look:

https://youtu.be/_xi0XsDzKAc?t=4m22s&end=5m45s



Another Look:

https://youtu.be/-jZ9Idihgvc
Wenceslas Square
#About the Luxurious Protestor's Square in the Heart of the New City

Wenceslas Square (Václavské Námestí) is a long square in the center of Prague, also known as the "Republic Square." This is a long walkway, about 750 meters long, that has a wide open space starting in the old city, leading towards the South-East. It begins at the National Museum, in the old Parliament Building, and arrives at the shopping street Ma Prikope.

The square, the main square in the new city of Prague, is a center for protest and celebrations for the Czech Republic, the beating heart of the country, what is known as the "square of demonstrations," where several major events took place in the history of the Czech Republic. In 1918 the Czech Republic announced its independence. Here the Czech protested against the Nazis before they occupied Czech. Years later, this is where the end of World War II was announced. Here the Czech also demonstrated against the Communist rule, and the two students Jan Palach and his friend are commemorated here, who lit themselves on fire in protest of the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia and the violent Communist suppression of the "Spring of Nations" in the country.

In 1989, right here in the square, the famous protest was here, the Velvet Revolution, which eventually overthrew the Communist rule in the country and brought democracy to the Czech Republic. Look up at the balcony of house number 36, called the Melantrich Building. Now allow yourselves to imagine Václav Havel and Alexander Dubček standing next to Nablus and announcing the end of the Communist regime in the country at the end of the Velvet Revolution.

The square is packed on a daily basis, filled with tourists. However the square is also a center for night life. The majority of the city's fancy restaurants are here, with stores, and the big clubs in Prague.

In the square you can be impressed by two of its well-known symbols. The first is the bronze statue of Václav Havel, and the second is that National Museum of the Czech Republic. Both are located at the edge of the square.


#What Can be Seen in the Square?

In the square that is a sort of rectangular boulevard, are a few national statues that are important to the Czech Republic. Among them can be seen the bronze statue and Václav Havel, and the church named after it. Václav, the king of the Czech in the 10th century, is considered the one who connected tribes in the area and create the nation. In the eyes of the Czechs, the king is on the same level as a saint, and a protector of the region of Bohemia, in general and the city of Prague in particular

Next to the statue of Václav Havel you can see more statues of other saints that are related to the city of Prague. For instance, the statue of Agnes, a 12-year-old girl, who became a saint after she refused to marry the son of the Roman ruler. Legend says that as punishment for refusing the marriage, she was thrown into the streets naked. According to faith she stayed a virgin, after an angel answered her prayers and covered her up with her hair. Agnes was later put to death, and became a saint.

Another statue is of Ludmila, the mother of Wenceslas himself, who is considered the Holy Mother of the Bohemians, who by the way, are not the warlords but the people of Bohemia, including the inhabitants of Prague.

In the square are also the statues of Adelbert, a past Bishop of Prague, and of Prokop, a Christian saint born in Jerusalem who succeeded in converting 6,000 barbarians to Christianity by presenting them with the cross.



#Tips

We recommend getting to the square around the evening, when the square is full with people and locals, and the statue and museum are lit up beautifully.



A Closer Look at Wenceslas Square:

https://youtu.be/3W7OGUEuv7Q



The Square During Christmas:

https://youtu.be/idSuMs976CY



The Monument in the Memory of Jan Palach in Winter:

https://youtu.be/yZQKpxHaj-w
Vyšehrad Fortress
#About the Fortress, a Symbol of Czech Nationalism

On a hill above the eastern bank of the Vlatava River, sits the fortress of Vyšehrad, the "Upper-Fortress," or "citadel of the saints." This is the second fortress of Prague, which is unfairly less known than the more famous Prague Castle.

According to the legend, the Holy Princess Libushe was ordered to construct the fortress, after seeing a vision of a huge city that would be established one day on the hill of Vyšehrad.

This fortress was built in the 11th century, only 70 years after the fortress of Prague was erected. King Vratslav II, a Prince of Bohemia who belonged to the Przemysl dynasty, built it in 1085 and turned it into the new fortress of Prague. Only forty years later his successor left the fortress of Vyšehrad and returned to Prague Castle.

Since then, the complex has been a symbol of Czech nationalism. Over the centuries, many buildings were built there, many of which were destroyed in wars. During the 17th century, the Vyšehrad Fortress was renovated, after the Austrian Habsburgs took control of the Czech lands following the Thirty Years War. Later, it served as a training center for the Austro-Hungarian army. It was not until 1883 that the hill became an official part of Prague. This is even though it was the most settled part of the city.

Today, the complex is a park full of trees and beautiful green gardens. In the fortress itself you can find several walls, fortifications and churches, the St. Pauls and St. Peters Churches, and the St. Martin's Rotunda, which is a Romanesque and cylindrical structure. On the hill there is also the cemetery of the nation's greats, where many of the most important Czechs are buried.



#About the Story of the Pillar Broken by Satan

If you walk on the hill, behind the churches of St. Peter and St. Paul, you will see a Roman pillar divided into three parts. The local legend tells of Satan, who spoke with the father of the young priest who was delivering a sermon at the time.

After the devil bragged to the father that he could win the young priest's soul, if he wanted to, the father offered the devil a bet, of which he advised St. Peter himself-if the devil could bring the Roman pillar from the Church of Saint Peter before his son finished the sermon, the devil could take the soul of the son, the young priest carrying the sermon in the church. The devil went to fetch the heavy pillar and, after discovering that he was late to arrive, and the priest finished the sermon, the devil in anger broke the pillar on the floor. On the wall inside the church, by the way, a large mural is drawn, showing the devil figure from the legend of the broken pillar.



A Closer Look at the Vishrad Fortress:

https://youtu.be/kt2CIEP_WGI



A View from Above:

https://youtu.be/fA1PIP70DeA


Old Royal Palace
#About the Palace of Kings

The Old Royal Palace (Starý Královský Palác), established in the 9th century, was used by the kings of Bohemia, who did not stop renovating it to suit them. This is why, if you examine it carefully, you will find that it contains a variety of architectural styles - Romanesque style, early Gothic style and late Classical construction.

The magnificent and impressive Valdislav Hall was built in the 16th century and is best known for its vaulted ceiling. The entire hall was built in Gothic style. During the cold winter days of the Middle Ages, spear fights were fought here.

The governor's room, actually connected to the door with the hall, was the place where the Thirty Years War began in 1618. The reason was the "second throwing from the window" - the pushing of two members of the Catholic Council through the window to the canal below.

Today the hall is used for special parliamentary sessions where Czech presidents are elected.

At the far end of the hall, you'll see the Chapel of All Saints. It was designed by Petr Parléř, after the fire of 1541 destroyed many of the fortress buildings. The chapel was rebuilt in the Renaissance style and boasts a number of examples of 17th century German paintings.

On the second floor added to the hall is the archive of the palace (once the royal archives) where Czech documents of historical significance are kept.

Most parts of the palace are open to tourists, and you will find the National Gallery, a collection of Baroque artworks, an exhibition dedicated to Czech history, a Prague Castle photo gallery and more. Every hour there is an exchange of guards. At 12:00 pm, the exchange includes all the guards in a full lineup accompanied by an orchestra and trumpet.



A View of the Palace from the Inside:

https://youtu.be/y75acxmv_OA
Franz Kafka Museum
#About the Museum in Memory of the Renowned Author

The Franz Kafka Museum, or Kafka Museum, is a museum devoted to the life and works of the famous writer who was born and lived in Prague. Kafka, a Jewish writer who wrote somber and somewhat cynical stories, became, after his death, a symbol and pride of the city of Prague.

The museum is located in the birthplace of the well-known Jewish author, the home of the Jewish community of German origin who lived in Prague. The exhibition with audio presents of Kafka's letters and tells the story of the esteemed author, whose life has not been sufficiently appreciated.

The cynical Kafka would have liked to draw, in his characteristic sharpness, the story of his public image in the eyes of the Christians. If in his lifetime the Czechs saw him as a German Jew and the Germans thought of him as a Czech Jew, only after his death did the Czechs and the Germans want to "take ownership" of him. When they discovered the greatness of the genius Jewish writer, each nation emphasized the roots belonging to each country and made him dear to their nation ...

The museum also illustrates the identity crisis of the European Jewry in the 19th and early 20th centuries. The tour of the museum illustrates the feeling of "alienation" that accompanied not only Franz Kafka but many of the educated and successful Jews of the period. After all, the Jews felt the difficulty of integrating into the general population, however successful they were. The reason is mainly because of their religion.

Many of them saw themselves as "citizens of the world" and tried to be less Jews and more citizens of the world. But to their dismay they suffered from anti-Semitic tendencies and alienation from the non-Jewish world. At the same time, they were moving away from the Jewish community and their connection to the Jewish religion was weakening, creating a constant feeling of belonging and alienation from every direction.


#What Can Be Seen in the Franz Kafka Museum?

In the Franz Kafka Museum you can see the writer's personal effects, including diaries, letters and pictures of him. Alongside these, his literary work is well preserved, including original manuscripts, personal notes and first editions of many of his works.

In addition, the identity crisis of European Jewry in the 19th and early 20th centuries is reflected in Kafka's multi-identity, the Jewish, immigrant, German and Czech identity, and God knows what else.

In the museum there are sound and audio pieces written and recorded especially for the exhibitions. In the museum shop you can purchase, along with souvenirs, pictures and postcards, also from Kafka's books and biographical and scientific books written about him.



A Closer Look at David Charney's "Peeing" Statue in Front of the Museum:

https://youtu.be/xMu98RRwAzs



Animated Film from the Museum:

https://youtu.be/7v5u2dOvOww
Old Town Square
#The Beautiful Central Square of Prague

Old Town Square (Staroměstské Náměstí) which many see as the most beautiful square in the world, is the Square of the Old Town. The square is considered one of Prague's main tourist attractions, and indeed it is the most beautiful square in Europe, perhaps the most popular in Prague itself.

The square is surrounded by magnificent buildings, including architectural pearls such as the Church of Our Lady before Týn, St. Nicholas Church and the Old Town Hall. The impressive buildings in the square are decorated in Gothic and Baroque style.

The history of Old Town Square begins in the 10th century. The square served as a bustling market area, and vibrant center of life in Old Prague.

In the center of the square stands a statue of Jan Hus, a reformer and an important figure in Czech history.

On the Old Town Hall is the Astronomical Clock, which rings every hour and magnetizes masses of tourists. When this happens, the square fills up with a crowd waiting to see the clock.


#Tips

Want to enjoy the show, without having to stand tight, with the whole audience? - Enjoy a round hour in one of the cafes opposite the clock and the old tower.



A Closer Look at Old Town Square:

https://youtu.be/zSmgwIkuovc



Another Look:

https://youtu.be/4-yNWTw3ZTQ
Archbishop Palace
#About the Renaissance Palace that was the Archbishop Palace

The Archbishop Palace (Arcibiskupský Palác), the original name, was the palace that served as the seat of the archbishop of Prague.

This is a home whose history has brought it to a constant change of style. After being originally built in the Renaissance style, it was rebuilt in the Baroque style. But in the 18th century it was renovated again, this time in the Rococo style.

The magnificent house is located in the Hradčany Square, which houses a number of buildings, in various styles of building, from Renaissance to Baroque to later Rococo.


The Archbishop of Prague Speaks from the Balcony of the Archbishop Palace:

https://youtu.be/qkR5jAv0-mg
Jan Palach Square
Prague Planetarium
Church of Our Lady Victorious
Jan Palach Memorial
Dancing House


אֵאוּרִיקַה - האנציקלופדיה של הסקרנות!

העולם הוא צבעוני ומופלא, אאוריקה כאן בשביל שתגלו אותו...

אלפי נושאים, תמונות וסרטונים, מפתיעים, מסקרנים וממוקדים.

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בואו לגלות, לחקור, ולקבל השראה!

אֵאוּרִיקַה - האנציקלופדיה של הסקרנות!

שלום,
נראה שכבר הכרתם את אאוריקה. בטח כבר גיליתם כאן דברים מדהימים, אולי כבר שאלתם שאלות וקיבלתם תשובות טובות.
נשמח לראות משהו מכם בספר האורחים שלנו: איזו מילה טובה, חוות דעת, עצה חכמה לשיפור או כל מה שיש לכם לספר לנו על אאוריקה, כפי שאתם חווים אותה.