Prague is known for its unique architectural style. Dancing house is a strong example of it. Created by Czech architect Valdo Milunic and Canadian Frank Gehry, it coincides a female dancer swaying in the arms of her male partner. It is located on the bank of the Vltava River and Resslova Street. Dancing House serves as a private office building, except for a restaurant on the 7th floor, the Celeste, which is open to the public.
Prague astronomical clock
Prague’s astronomical clock is a highlighting feature of Old Town Square. It reveals Old Bohemian time, Babylonian time, sidereal time and German time. It also reveals sunrise and sunset, the Sun’s position in the zodiac and the phases of the Moon. The clock was crafted in 1410 by a clockmaker and a professor of mathematics. It has been repaired and maintained for over 600 years, making it the third oldest clock in the world. The figures of the Apostles, which are shown in the two upper windows every hour, were added in 1865.
When the clock strikes the hour, bells ring, the Walk of the Apostles begins, the Gothic sculptures move, a cock crows and a trumpeter blast sets off an attention seeking show. This looks most attractive at noon and at midnight.
Located between Wenceslas Square and the Charles Bridge, Prague’s Old Town Square is the place to be. Czech’s long history comes across through the rich medley of architectural styles: Romanesque, Baroque, Rococo, Gothic and Renaissance, are all represented in the uniquely designed buildings around the square. Soaring Gothic towers that rise from Tyn Cathedral stand in complete contrast with the Baroque style of St. Nicholas, while Old Town Hall consists of a collection of Gothic and Renaissance buildings.
It is often bustling with tourists and locals in the summer. Enchanted tourists wander through the square, chilling at one of the outdoor cafes or studying the square’s central statue of Jan Hus, church reformer and martyr.
The Prague Castle is the most significant Czech monument and an important cultural institution in the Czech Republic. According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the Prague Castle is the largest coherent castle complex in the world, with an area of almost 70,000 square metres. It is a UNESCO World Heritage site, and consists of a royal palace, a cathedral and three churches, a basilica, a monastery, defensive towers, royal stables, a tiny lane where craftsmen worked and magnificent gardens. The castle buildings span centuries and are made of various architectural styles, from Roman-style buildings from the 10th century through Gothic modifications in the 14th century.
The cathedral in the castle complex is a magnificent example of Gothic architecture. Kings and emperors are buried here.
The 65 metre, 213 feet tall Powder Tower was first built in the 11th century. During the 17th century, the tower was used for storing gunpowder, and hence the name. It also served as the royal route; the coronation route of the Bohemian kings started at the tower, through Old Town, across the Charles Bridge and up to Prague Castle and St. Vitus Cathedral, where the kings were crowned.
Powder Tower is connected by a covered bridge to the palace of King Vladislav II, who rebuilt the tower in 1475. The palace now serves as the Municipal House. Inside the tower is a 186 steps spiral staircase, which leads up to the gallery where visitors can catch the breathtaking view of Old Town.