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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 drinks 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
Arcibiskupsk Palc
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 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
U Zlate Studne
U Zlate Studne
#About the House that Scares Away Epidemics

The U Zlate Studne, in the small district of Mala Sterna, 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.

Prague

Vysehrad
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 an 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
Pinkasove Synagoga
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 buildings 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
Jan Palach Square
Jan Palach Square
#About the Square Dedicated to the Student who Set Himself on Fire in a Protest

In the Jan Palach Square, the student is memorialized for setting himself on fire and dying in 1969. The suicide was in demonstration of the Soviet invasion into Czechoslovakia that occurred before in 1968. An invasion that symbolically happened exactly 30 years after the German Wehrmacht invasion into the Czech.

The Soviet invasion into Czechoslovakia happen a year earlier, in the violent Communist suppression of the "Prague Spring" in Czechoslovakia, the relaxation towards the Czechoslovakian people by the leader of those days, Alexander Dubček. Soviet tanks then invaded the city, under direct orders from Moscow, and abolished the relative freedom allowed by the Czech regime and later ousted the leader.

Palach's funeral in Prague was for a leader demonstrator in the mass public protest of the Soviet invasion, opposing the strict Communist rule, that was controlled from Moscow. A month after Palach's stunt, another student set himself on fire as well, named Jan Zajíc. Later, another patriotic youth also set himself on fire in the city, Evžen Plocek.

The shock that this suicide brought, mostly to the free and democratic Western world, was not felt by the Soviet occupier, that was not affected by the arson operation and did not weaken its stand in the slightest.




The Memorial in Memory of Jan Palach and His Heroism:

https://youtu.be/kHo20eri3l0
Planetarium Praha
Prague Planetarium
#About the Planetarium that Shows Space to the Children of Prague

If you enjoy planetariums and star gazing, or space and science in general, then in Prague's new planetarium (Planetarium Praha) you can see a new exhibit on the solar system, galaxies and stars using modern technology.

The big dome is decorated as a fake sky, and underneath is a fascinating intergalactic performance that uses laser tricks and space visualization.

The planetarium has many exhibits and activities for children, a laser show during the evening hours, and different exhibits. Most of the activities, sadly, are all in Czech, though during the summer months there are also shows and performances in English.



A Closer Look at Prague's Planetarium:

https://youtu.be/Ydbj7uAQ-90


Kostel Panny Marie Vtzn
Church of Our Lady Victorious
#About the Saint Mary Church of Victorious

You are located in the Saint Mary Church of Victorious (Kostel Panny Marie Vítězné) where there is a famous wax statue of baby Jesus.

The church walls around the alter are covered by marble slates. These were placed as a thank you by believers who enjoyed the miracles of the sculpture baby Jesus. The statue of baby Jesus was brought from Spain in 1628 and is well taken care of in the church. Every few days the baby's clothes are changed, by pilgrims who come and donate the clothes from all over the world. The baby statue is located in a glass container, in a magnificent and impressive altar.

The entrance and looking over the church treasures is allowed during all opening hours, except during prayer.



A Closer Look at the Church:

https://youtu.be/_cZYknTvSLc



Video Presentation:

https://youtu.be/D7zFk5RVsVk



Another Look:

https://youtu.be/kDTJyom0kIU
Jan Palach Memorial
#About the Sqaure Where a Hero Burned Himself

You are next to the memorial for the national hero named Jan Palach. Palach was a Czech student who lit himself on fire right here, in 1969.

The memorial in the shape of a cross marks the place where Palach lit himself and died. Further down the square, after the statue, you can see another corner for the memorial of the students of the revolution, who burnt themselves in demonstrations of the Soviet invasion in Czechoslovakia, after Palach's death.



#Who was Jan Palach?

Jan Palach was an idealist student who wanted to protest the invasion of Czechoslovakia by the Soviet army after the "Prague Spring" - the attempts of the Czech leader Dubček to allow freedom and rights for his citizens.

So the Czech student Jan Palach came to a decision to do something radical that would draw the attention of the world to the trampling of Czech people's rights by the Soviet regime. He decided to sacrifice his life and set himself on fire in 1969, a year after the Prague Spring.

Palach's self-burning began with protests and demonstrations by masses of students, and his own funeral turned into a mass demonstration of resistance against the Soviet occupation. The young student became a symbol of the struggle for Czech independence, followed by two other students who set themselves on fire later this year. But nothing helped. The Soviets continued to rule with an iron grip over the Czech Republic, and all the countries of Eastern Europe.

Today, years after the Czech Republic was able to become a democratic country once again, Palach is considered a national hero. The Czech see in him as symbol for opposing and self-sacrificing for his country. Once a year there is a national ceremony in his memory in Wenceslas Square, where Palach died, next to his memorial.

Not far from here you will see Jan Palach Square, where Jan is remembered as one of the great founders of the nation.



#What was the Prague Spring?

The Prague Spring was a beautiful and open time for political openness in Communist Czechoslovakia. During the spring, the Czechoslovakians began showing signs of independence under the leadership of Alexander Dubček. The Czechoslovakian government began showing a greater understanding and openness towards its people, in opposite of the strict communism that characterized the other member countries of the Warsaw Pact, which in effect were controlled by the Soviet Union.

However the Soviet leadership saw the attempts of the Czechoslovakian rule a threat for its rule over Eastern European countries. And so, the Prague Spring that started in January 1968 and continued until August, ended with the Soviet army invading Czechoslovakia in August, what ended the demonstrations for good.

In demonstrations against the Soviet invasion, a Czech student named Jan Palach lit himself on fire and died. After his suicide several other students made attempts of lighting themselves on fire as well, as a measure of extreme protest against the invasion that stopped Prague's short spring.



The Song in Memory of the Protest Against the Soviet Invasion:

https://youtu.be/s5Pq0_xTfWA



A Short Video About the Prague Spring of 1968:

https://youtu.be/_FfR64aJ7fI
Dancing House
#About Prague's Dancing House

The Dancing House (Tančící Dům) is a building in Prague built in a distorted shape, giving it the feeling of a dance move.

This house is also known as "Fred and Ginger Building," for the Hollywood stars Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. Another name the building received is "the drunk house."

But the building is most known for its main name, the Dancing House. It's an office building, and the idea for the building came from the President of Czech at the time. He was among the leaders of the revolution in 1989 who brought democracy to the Czech Republic. He worked for the building to symbolize the delicate point in time and it's meaningfulness to the country's history.

This picturesque building was designed by the Czech-Croatian architect Vlado Miluni, and Canadian-American architect Frank Gehry. It was built over a destroyed building from the end of World War II by a stray American bomb.



A Video of the Dancing House in Prague:

http://youtu.be/hlZA8bTvpiw



The Inspiration for the Building, the Pair of Dancers Ginger and Fred:

http://youtu.be/MsS7B8nyw5Y?t=59s
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 statues 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 see 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 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
Black Theatre
#The Black Theatre

The Black Theatre is its own unique genre in Prague, performing a variety of shows with black light illusions. The hands of the operators create a wonderful effect, combined with the content of an entertaining and fun show.

The art in this special technique, that takes light, shade, and darkness, has gathered up popularity to such extent in Prague, that the Black Theatre has a few new competitors around the city. At the Black Theatre you can enjoy a show of the highest quality.

For those interested, there is also the Black Theatre in the old city, named Ta Fantastika. Enjoy!



A Closer Look at the Black Theatre:

https://youtu.be/HAqarCIIIVo
Municipal House
#About Prague's Municipal House

One of the most beautiful buildings is the Municipal House (Obecní Dům). It was designed by the city's leading artists in the Art-Nouveau style. This is a complex with concert halls, cafes and restaurants, and many events are held here (exhibits, concerts, balls) all throughout the years.

If you think the build's exterior is impressive (as the building's facade is decorated with colorful mosaics), it is truly only an appetizer of what is awaiting inside. Grandeur and wealth around the interior, with the sounds emanating from the grand Smetana Hall, probably belonging to some concert that is playing here.

In 1918, in this building, the declaration for the Czech Republic was announced, and through the 20th century many Communist party meetings were held here.

Notice the building's facade, decorated with colorful and impressive mosaics, called "Homage to Prague," all done by hand by an artist.

You can enjoy a variety of concerts and restaurants in the building. If you want to go inside, you can sign up for a organized tour.



A Closer Look at the Municipal House:

https://youtu.be/fJNj70_zyX0
LEGO Museum
#About Prague's LEGO Museum

The LEGO Museum in Prague is one of the very few modest museums of their kind around the world. This is actually a private museum, it's all a one-man initiative, a real LEGO nut, who decided to build a museum of all the LEGO models he had built. The museum is located under the LEGO store, in the basement. There are thousands of models, of all different shapes and sizes, all impressive and fascinating, and extremely well organized.

The place without a doubt a worth a visit for all LEGO lovers, including "Star Wars" fans, who will have a whole floor dedicated to the series. Don't let the modesty of the museum bother you, and not the high-priced ticket either, especially for adults...children will enjoy this museum immensely.




A Closer Look at Prague's LEGO Museum:

http://youtu.be/EeOgvVkfMic



Another Look at the LEGO Museum:

http://youtu.be/h4fb4wnMP1w
House of the Black Madonna
#About the Fascinating Cubist House

House of the Black Madonna (Dum u Cerne Matky Bozi) is an excellent example of a cubist building, an architectural style that was influenced by Picasso's and Braque's Cubism.

On the fourth and fifth floor in the House of the Black Madonna you can see the museum dedicated to the Czech Cubism.

The Cubist Houses of Prague are known around the world. Actually, Prague was the only city in the world to build Cubist houses.

There are more houses in this style, the unique Cubist style, located on the river, north of Vyšehrad, in Rossi Novo Square, 6, 8, 10, on Neklanova Street 30, and Livosina Street 3.



A Closer Look at the House of the Black Madonna:

https://youtu.be/wU48lX3s_ME



Building Description in English:

https://youtu.be/5niuHWVOc34
MECCA
#About Prague's Hot Club

If you like going out and are looking for hot places for after-hours, MECCA is one of the places you have to visit. The night club is considered the number one in Prague. All the leading DJ's in Europe come here, and there are many collaborations with fashion channels, that bring special guests here.

The truth is that usually in Prague there isn't a tough selection into places, but here at this popular place, the selection must contribute to the club's status as the best in the city.

In the entrance to the club is a large bar and further back is the dance floor. On the second floor you can see the VIP rooms.

Address: U Prùhonu 3, Praha 7
Telephone Number: 420602711225



Close Look at the Club

https://youtu.be/TmFTLfbaLW4



DJ Nifra in MECCA:

https://youtu.be/HMAjcG_V7k0


Jan Hus Memorial
#About the Memorial for the Memory of Hus, That the Church Burned at the Stake After He Exposed Corruption

The big Jan Hus Memorial was built by Ladislav Šaloun, and was built for the memory of Jan Hus, the Czech reformist, at the mark of 500 years since his killing. Hus was a national and religious awakener. He used to voice, to cry out and to fight for the miserable social situation of the city's citizens against its wealth as a trading city. He also talked quite a bit the corruption in the church.

In 1415 Jan Hus was brought to the stake, which led to the outbreak of the bloody Hussite wars. Try to imagine the tough scene, where a well-known priest and leader from the Bethlehem Church, dressed in rags and humiliating clothes, without his clerical symbols, is taken to the stake. In the square were two sides - church supporters and Hus supporters who came to pay last respects.

The current monument, in the Art-Nouveau style was built in 1915, about 500 years after Jan Hus was captured and executed by the church in 1415. The monument today is one of the known symbols of Prague, since Jan Hus has turned into a tortured saint, and a national hero. His day of death, July 6th, is a national holiday.

Around the memorial are many benches, where you can sit and take a small break from walking around.



Here is the Monument for the Memory of Jan Hus:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vv7QURsa-XA
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, remain 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
Old Jewish Cemetery
#About the Most Ancient Cemetery in Europe

Inside the most ancient cemetery in Europe, the Old Jewish Cemetery (Starý Židovský Hřbitov), is no less than 12,000 tombstones and another 1,000 hidden graves (though there are assumptions that there are more hidden graves than this, about 100,000). The years give their marks in the shriveled graves and many of the tombstones are crumbling and some of them are slowly swallowed up in the ground. In general, there is even a little magic in this disorder, crowded and mess.

For more than 300 years this place was used as a cemetery, but in 1787 it was closed to use. It is surrounded by trees and the graves are very crowded, possibly even too crowded. Though the area was expanded more than a few times, the number of deaths gets larger than the available land. Today there are 12 layers of graves here.

The atmosphere here is special and mysterious, mainly it sends a shudder down your spine. Many see this cementery as the symbol for the destruction of the Jewish community in Prague during the Holocaust. It is one of the most important and preserved historical sites in the Jewish Quarter of Prague.



#Graves at the Cemetery

The oldest tombstone here was built in 1439, and it belongs to the poet Avigdor Karo.

Another grave that has become a popular spot (the candles lit all around here will testify to its popularity) is the grave of the Jewish Mahal of Prague, Rabbi Yehuda ben Bezalel Loew. He was an important rabbi and spiritual leader, teacher, and guide, and his name is involved with many stories and legends. The most famous of these stories is the story of the golem of Prague. Many visitors come here to ask for forgiveness, and blessings.

The tombstone that looks the best in this cementery is that of a women named Hendl Bassevi. Though it is very ancient (since 1628), it has been nicely preserved and has stayed whole, at its head is the sculpture of a lion.



#Who is the Golem from Prague

Rabbi Yehuda ben Bezalel Loew, the Maharall, was for many years the main rabbi of Prague. He dedicated his life to the welfare of the community and his goal was to was to purify the Children of Israel from the false rumors spread about them, that they used the blood of Christian children to knead the matzo dough on Passover.

One night, the rabbi heard a voice telling him, "make a human figure from clay and through it you will succeed in thwarting the plots of your enemies."

And so the rabbi did. He summoned his son-in-law and his best student and updated them with the vision he had experienced. They formed the Golem in seven days. In the Jewish year 5340, the three scholars went to the banks of the Holtba River and formed a human figure three cubits high from the clay. After they finished, the rabbi's son-in-law turned around the figure as he recited a Kabalistic prayer. After doing this several times, the Golem opened his eyes and came to life. The rabbi turned to him and said: "We have created you from the dust of the earth to protect the Israelites from their enemies and to prevent them from their sorrows and suffering." The figure received the name Yosef and he became a servant in the rabbi's court.

For most of the day the Golem was sitting in the corner of the study room, a bit like a fly on the wall. In order not to attract too much attention, the rabbi put a talisman around his neck that made him invisible. During the week leading up to Passover, the Golem began his mission - he walked around the city and checked every person who entered the quarter with packages. Quite a few times, he found a dead baby in them, which was supposed to serve as proof of the false plots against the Jews. The Golem served the members of the Jewish community in Prague.

He did so until the Jews finally arrived at the longed-for day, when it was widely declared that the plots were baseless and that persecution of future Jews was prohibited. At this point the rabbi decided to take back Yosef's life. They performed the ritual again and the Golem was once again a lifeless mass of clay. They placed it under a pile of books in the attic of the Alt-Noy Synagogue in Prague.



#Tips

The cementery is surrounded by a tall fence, so if you want to see the whole place, enter the museum for decorative arts, in the bathroom on the first floor is a window from which you can see the entire cementery.



A Closer Look:

https://youtu.be/HmPvyK78mMI
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 receive 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, accusat ions 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
Klausen Synagogue
The Narrowest Street of Prague
Lesser Town
Lesser Quarter
Golden Lane