Travel to Prague

Day 2 Mala Strana (Lesser Town)

After crossing the Charles Bridge we arrived at the Malá Strana, the Lesser Town, one of the oldest historical districts of Prague. It is located between the castle area and the left bank of the river Vltava. During the Middle Ages, Malá Strana was the most important center of ethnic Germans in Prague. It was also the site of settlement of various palaces of the nobility, as opposed to the people of the right bank, comparatively, were more bourgeois. The small town life always revolved around the market, located in the current Namesti Malostranske or Malá Strana square. In the cobbled streets of the neighborhood abound souvenir shops, typical Czech pubs, traditional restaurants, beautiful palaces and churches, including the Church of Our Lady of Victory, a major center of pilgrimage where you can find the Infant of Prague.

Prague - Mala Strana square

Praga - Mala Strana square

The Square of the Lesser Town (Malostranské námestí) is one of the liveliest areas of the city. Stresses in the center of St. Nicholas Church and sides of historic buildings with arcades (under which there are numerous bars and restaurants) and beautiful facades. The square is quite steep as it follows the gradient of the hillside. At the top of the square is a column of 20 meters dedicated in 1715 to the Holy Trinity as a symbol of gratitude to end an epidemic of plague and the Liechtenstein Palace palace, now headquarters of the Academy of Performing Arts. At the bottom is the main tram stop of Mala Strana.

Prague - St. Nicholas Church

Prague - St. Nicholas Church

The St. Nicholas Church in Malá Strana (Chrám sv. Mikuláše na Malé strane) is undoubtedly the most important building in this area. The Jesuit church of St. Nicholas was completed in the middle of the eighteenth century. The interior of the church is architecturally rich, based on the permeability of the solid figures. Inside the church, in baroque style, on the roof of the nave you can see paintings of John Lucas Kracker 1760, showing scenes from the life of St. Nicholas and St. Cecilia´s image in the vault of the choir. It also stands the four statues of the Fathers of the Church and a pulpit decorated full of golden cherubs. Has been preserved the Baroque organ at times played by Mozart during his stay in Prague.

Prague - St. Nicholas Church

Prague - St. Nicholas Church

In the lowest area of the square is a small door that allows to access to the Tower of the Church of St. Nicholas. The tower attached to St. Nicholas Church was completed in 1755 and has same height as the adjacent domes of the church. Currently you can access by a corridor located to 65 meters high climbing 299 steps. From here you have a breathtaking view of Prague Castle and all the Lesser Town in general.

Prague - Nerudova street

Prague - Nerudova street

Nerudova Street (Nerudova ulice) leads from the top of the Lesser Town Square and up the hill to Prague Castle. Mostecká and Nerudova streets were part of the Royal route. Without doubt, are the most picturesque streets of Mala Strana and is worth stopping to observe in detail the beautiful houses that border, with its interesting sites, ancient gates and signs adorned with historic houses such as reliefs, statues and boxes placed at the entrance that in the Middle Ages fulfilled the function of the current street numbering. According to their houses were also sign their names.

Prague - Nerudova street

Prague - Nerudova street

For example, we find the houses of Three Violins, Two Suns, the Golden Key, White Angel, Gold Cup or the Red Lion. The nobles built huge palaces, such as the Thun-Hohenstein Palace, which now houses the Embassy of Italy, whose entrance is guarded by two giant eagles. For its part, the Romanian Embassy is located in the Palace Morzin, in this case two atlases, two huge Moors, holding the heavy balcony. Jan Neruda (which gives its name to this street) lived on this street, in the House of the two Suns (where there is a plaque), one of the nicest located on the top. At number 24 we find the Church of Our Lady of Perpetual Help. At the end of the street can climb a stairs towards Hradcrany (Radnické Schody) that flank two large statues or the right ramp (Ke hradu) to go to the Castle.

Prague - Strahov monastery

Prague - Strahov monastery

The Strahov monastery (Strahovský klášter), of the Order of the Premonstratensians, was founded in 1140, although this was later burned down and rebuilt in Baroque style in the second half of the seventeenth and eighteenth century. Located on the hill west of the castle. Includes the churches of the Assumption of the Virgin and St. Roch. The jewels of this monastery are the rooms of the Philosophical and Theological Libraries, which house books of incalculable historical value. In the theological library of 1679, in Baroque style, highlight the stucco and frescoes of 1727 with the roof over various topics of human knowledge. It also has a valuable collection of astronomical and geographical globes from the seventeenth century. Philosophical Library, from 1784, is decorated in Rococo style with its roof completely covered with a fresco of the history of mankind.

Prague - Loreto Monastery

Prague - Loreto Monastery

The name of Loretta, Capuchin monastery, comes from Loreto pilgrimage site in Italy where you find the Holy Hut (the house of Nazareth that was inhabited by the Virgin Mary). The first thing we see when we enter in Loreto is the cloister in the middle of which we can see a pair of monumental fountains and a copy of the Holy Hut decorated with marble reliefs. On the upper floor surrounding the cloister is the Treasury where highlights the Custody of Diamonds which is decorated with 6222 diamonds and weighing 12 kg also highlights its 30 bells that chime every hour interpreting an old song, dedicated to Virgin Mary.

Prague - Wallenstein palace

Prague - Wallenstein palace

We finished the afternoon strolling through the gardens of the Wallenstein Palace. The original palace was built in the years 1623-1630 by Albrecht Wenzel von Wallenstein with the purpose to emphasize over the Prague Castle. The project was led by the Italian architect Andrea Spezza and Nicollo Sebregondi. The most valuable parts of this building in historical and artistic terms are the Main Hall, the Hall of Knights, the antechamber, the courtroom and the mythological and astronomical corridors. The palace remained in the Wallenstein family until 1945 became state property and was renovated to house the offices of the Senate. In the gardens we found a duck pond and a source of Adrian de Vries. The Sala Terrena, which performed concerts and theater, has three arches overlooking the garden and an avenue of bronze statues.