Prague, Czechia: The Glorious Past Part 2
Monarchy has reigned in Prague for several decades before the German annexation and Socialist rule. This is an important part of the Czech history retained until to this dates. Several buildings, structures and churches provides a glimpse of the rich past of the Czech nation. However, the fascinating transition of power from and to the Czech people in the recent centuries had shaped the country to what it is known today.
During my short visit in Czech Republic, I went to several places. This is the Part 2. Click here for Part 1.
1. Chotkovy sady
This is the first public park in Prague and spreads under the Summer Palace of Queen Anne. This park follows the English style in the creation of park, on which there are many pathways around the area, with multitude of plant varieties.
2. Letohrádek královny Anny
This is formerly called the Math House, which is Renaissance building in the Prague Castle in the Royal Garden. This was constructed for recreational purposes such as royal balls and festivities.
3. Belvedere Garden
This is a jewel in the Royal Garden. It uses Ionic columns and relics depicting Roman mythology. This was meant to be gift for Queen Anne from her loving husband Ferdinand I, the emperor of Holy Roman Empire.
4. Královská zahrada
The Royal Gardens was a former vineyard in the Medieval Period. Today, the garden has been changed to include several parts to cultivate various trees and plants. The garden is closed during the Winter season.
5. U Prašného mostu
This is the Powder Bridge, adjoining the North Side of the Prague Castle and the Second Courtyard. This was called Powder bridge because it was used to store gunpowder in the past.
6. Kaple svatého Kříže
The Church of Holy Cross is the central sacred space in the castle. The church served as the treasury for the crown jewels of the Roman Empire and religious relics collected by King Charles.
7. Zahrada Na Baště
This is the fourth courtyard of the palace. It is considered built for the Queen Maria Theresa. This courtyard has not been used for ceremonial purposes, and has served as an entrance to the Palace’s Spanish Hall.
8. Katedrála sv. Vita
The Metropolitan Cathedral of Saints Vitus, Wenceslaus and Adalbert is the seat of the Archbishop of Prague. The Gothic cathedral is considered the biggest and most important in the Czech Republic, since it contains the tombs of many Bohemian kings and Holy Roman Emperors.
9. Obelisk na Pražském hradě
This four-sided monolith in the third courtyard of the Prague Castle is considered a memorial to those who died in the First World War. The monolith took several decades before it was completed in 1996.
10. Archiv Pražského hradu
The Archives of Prague Castle houses a large collection of documents concerning the Castle, its history, research, construction, repairs and maintenance. The documents that gives details on the separation of the Republic of Czechoslovakia and Austria is also found in the building.
11. Bazilika svatého Jiří
This is Saint George Convent, a former Benedictine convent on the eastern side of the Prague Castle Complex. This has been used as a royal foundation school and sovereign reserve to supervise the monastery and the convent.
12. Queen Maria Theresa Entrance
This is the entrance to the first courtyard in the Castle and was dedicated for the Empress Maria Theresa. On the entrance, one will see several sculptures and columns, guarded by members of the Castle Guard.
13. Zahrada Na valech
Garden on the Ramparts is situated on the southern gardens of the Castle. The name gives an idea that beneath the garden lies the ramparts of the Castle between the trenches.
14. Matyášova brána
Matthias Gate is a ceremonial gateway to the courtyard, dedicated to the previous Emperor Matthias 1. The gate belongs to the Baroque architecture, which is considered one of the first secular structures in Bohemia.
15. Zámecké schody
The New Castle Steps is a public road for pedestrians, which marks the boundary between the civilian city district and the Prague Castle. There are annual cycling exhibition held in the area.
16. Sloup Nejsvětější Trojice
The Holy trinity column is Baroque column erected in gratitude after the plague epidemic in 17th century, During the epidemics, it is said that 200,000 people died due cholera and tuberculosis.
17. Kostel sv. Mikaláše
Saint Nicholas Church is considered the most impressive Baroque church in Prague. There was once Gothic church erected in the area in the 13th century.
18. Kostel svatého Josefa
Church of Saint Joseph is a Catholic Parish is considered a cultural monument of the Czech Republic. The church was built near the Carmelite monastery, following Baroque style of architecture.
This is an island in the Vltava river on the side of Mala Strana and is connected to the Old Town through the Charles Bridge.
20. Crawling Babies
These are creepy sculptures in Kampa Park. These symbolizes the communist rule in Czech Republic which like babies, are unable to reach adulthood.
21. Most legií
The Legion bridge was formerly known as the Bridge of Emperor Francis 1 or the Bridge of May 1, which was a commemoration of German Protectorate established by Adolf Hitler.
22. Dětsky ostrov
This is the Children’s Island on the Vlatave River and was formerly named after the Prague’s Jewish community who owned the island. The island was enlarged by the construction of the floodgates in the early 19th century.
23. Střelecký ostrov
The Shooter’s island is a centrally located island in the Vltava River, connected by two Legion bridges on each sides. It was used for recreational shooting before during the reign of monarchy in Bohemia. This has also served as important military installation, which protected the city in times of war.
24. Slovanský ostrov
The Slavonic Island is the third river island in Central Prague. The island was created by successive layers of soil eroded from the river. The island is occasionally hit by floods, wherein the last time was in 2002.
25. Národní divadlo
The National Theatre is known as the alma mater of Czech Opera and the national monument of Czech history and art. There are three artistic ensembles in the theatre, namely opera, ballet and drama.
26. Nová scéna
The New Stage of the National Theatre was founded during the Socialist rule in Czech Republic, and just after the destruction of the Second World War 2.
27. 28. října
This is a pedestrian connecting the commercial districts of Prague to the Horse Market, where Wenceslas Statue is located.
Prague is now one of the largest European countries, after almost over a thousand of years of history, Its rich history makes it a popular tourist destination and receives millions of tourists annually. Furthermore, the low cost of living makes it a good relocating country for expats in Europe. The history of Prague continues to unfold. It is a bustling economic center and melting pot of cultures, given its large foreign population, mostly coming from the former Soviet-controlled countries. It is without a doubt, Prague will remain an important city, not just in Europe but in the whole world.