CITY OF A HUNDRED SPIRES - MARCH 1997
Prague, whose town centre was included in the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites in 1992, is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. Located by Vltava (Moldau) River in central Bohemia, it has been the political, cultural, and economic centre for the Czechs in the last 1100 years. In 1997, end of March, profiting from Easter holidays, we visited Prague. I've never seen so many Spanish adolescent/students together in my life...
"THE RUDOLFINUM, one of the most important neo-renaissance buildings in Prague, was constructed during the years 1876–1884 and named in honour of Rudolf of Hapsburg, Crown Prince of Austria, who presided the opening on February 8, 1885. It was originally designed as an art gallery and House of Artists and in 1946 it became the seat of the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra. However, from 1918 to 1938 and a short period after World War II (1945-1946), it also housed the Czechoslovak Parliament"
"CANAL CESTOVKA, quite close to the Vltava River"
"CHARLES BRIDGE - The construction of the bridge dates from the reign of the King of Bohemia and Holy Roman Emperor Charles IV, who, according to the legend, controlled everything up to the smallest detail. The oddest seems to be the date of its foundation: 5:31 am, 9. 07. 1357. Only odd digits and, except 9, all prime numbers!"
"UP THE HILL - View towards the Castle from the 1464 Lesser Bridge Tower"
"CHARLES BRIDGE - View from the same tower towards the Bridge"
"ROYAL ROUTE gets its name from the coronation processions of the Bohemian Kings, starting with George of Podebrady in 1458. It used to link the gates of Old Prague to the Prague Castle, a route full of houses with beautiful façades"
"TO THE CASTLE"
"ST. VITO - The Gothic cathedral, whose original name is St Vitus, St Wenceslas and St Adalbert Cathedral, is the biggest and the most important church in the Czech Republic. It's the place where the coronations of the kings of Bohemia were held until 1836 and also where saints, kings, princes and emperors of Bohemia are buried"
"BELL TOWER - View from the 14th century Bell Tower on the southern side of the Cathedral"
"GOLDEN LANE - The Street was created during the construction of the northern fortification at the end of the 15th century. In 1597 the emperor Rudolf II decided that the 24 marksmen who guarded the castle should live there. However, as space was at premium, the marksmen had to build very small houses for their families"
"PETRIN TOWER - Built in 1891 for the Jubilee Exhibition, this small version of the Eiffel Tower offers one of the best views of Prague and its surroundings. The tower, on the top of Petrin hill, is only 60m tall but you need to climb 299 steps to reach the platform for the magnificent view"
"OLD TOWN BRIDGE TOWER - Designed by Peter Parler at the end of the 14th century, it's a beautiful Gothic construction. Further to being an ornament for Charles Bridge, it was used as a watch tower and part of the defensive structure"
"VLTAVA RIVER, Charles Bridge and St. Vito Cathedral"
"OLD TOWN FAÇADE"
"WALLENSTEIN GARDEN was built in 1623–30, together with the first large secular palace of the Baroque era - the Wallenstein Palace, nowadays the seat of the Senate of the Czech Republic. Many statues that you see there, representing heroes from Greek mythology, are copies of the ones made by artist Adrian de Vries, as the original works were plundered by Swedish as war booty in 1648. The copies were brought to the garden only in 1912-1918"