Hampton University (Mark)



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    Prague and Gateways

    By Mark_M
    Feb 29, '08 1:26 AM EST

    I leave for Prague on Saturday to spend my spring break in the cold. I’m traveling with 15 other students from mixed years ranging from 2nd to thesis students. Hope fully we will get to see all everything our proposed itinerary.

    MALA STRANA / SMALL QUARTER* (Fodor’s p. 61)
    • Valdstejnsky palac + garden – do not miss (Fodor’s p. 138, Both are free! Palace open Sat & Sunday 10-5. Gardens closed except April-Oct.)
    • Terraced gardens (Furstenberska, Palffyho, Kolovratska, Ledeburska), $
    • After the Valdstejn palace + the garden, and walk thoroughly that part of town Small Quarter (Mala Strana). It is probably the most charming part of the city. See the churches in this part of town, park Kampa, try to walk the streets around the Charles bridge and walk up the hill maybe not just Nerudova street, which is the most famous one. You can also see the American embassy here.
    (If you want to see inside the Tynsky chram / Tyn Church in the Old Town, doors open 30 minutes before 9 PM service on Sunday, see Fodor’s p. 114.)

    NOVE MESTO - NEW TOWN* (Started mid 14th century. Fodor’s p. 62)
    • Narodni Museum / National Museum* – interior spaces, $ (Fodor’s p. 95. Cost 100Kc = $5.82, Free first Monday, open 9-5; Steves p. 84 says collection is dull but the Czech Revival Neo-Renaissance building is great and that to the left of it is Radio Free Europe, a communist era building, p. 87.)
    • Vaclavske namesti / Venceslav Square – There are many buildings with large windows, department stores where you can go up and may be look down and draw the outside (for ex. Bata store – multi story shoe store, see Fodor’s p. 136; description of architecture of square Steves p. 88).
    • Pasaz (passage) Koruna – (I can’t find this one.)
    • Vodickova Street – Explore passage, including Palac Lucerna (Steves p. 89 – it also has Lucerna Music Bar nightly) and Franciscan Garden (Fodor’s p. 136, Open 8-7; Steves p. 89 says its down the mall to the left from Lucerna) and Na Prikope Street (Cerna Ruze) (Fodor’s p. 93; Steves p. 90, one of best art noveau sites). (Seems like Kostel Panny Marie Snezne is also nearby Fodor’s p. 104-5 & 136, also p. 62 & 97, Open Mon-Sat 9-5:15, Free.)
    • Obecni dum / Municipal House at the end of Na Prikope Street – interior (Steves p. 91, “pearl of Czech Art Noveau,” offers two hour-long tours in English per day shows “halls and murals you won’t see otherwise.” Fodor’s p. 100-1. Cost for guided tours of ceremonial rooms 150Kc = $8.74, Box office and info on guided tours open 10-6) (Walk 1, Fodor’s p. 199, begins here and includes St. Nepomuk below. Tour as lots of good places to stop to eat and recommends stop at Grade Café Praha p. 234-5 with views of the Orloj / Astrological Clock.)
    Or see Obecni dum / Municipal House while we’re in Old Town – may make nice finish to that day.
    - Dum u cerne matky bozi / Museum of Czech Cubism* (Rick Steve’s p. 72, 100Kc = $5.82, closed Monday, open Tues-Sun 10-6, free access to upstairs Grade Café Orient.) (Fodor’s p. 70, This Museum is the New Town so you might wan tot see it now, but it is also free first Wednesday 3-8PM, although that is also the same time that the Anezsky klaster has free admission.)
    (Rick Steves notes that in Old Town musicians have jam session at 5PM at St. Martin in the Wall, and cover is free at Roxy’s music club at 8PM. Many lesser sites are closed on Mondays, including Bethlehem Chapel, Museum of Czech Cubism, Loreta Church, and Museum of Medieval Arts at St. Agnes Convent. Terezin is open.)

    HRADCANY* / CASTLE (Fodor’s p. 60)
    • Prazsky Hrad / Prague Castle* – get tickets to the whole complex and walk around freely to the different parts of the complex, concentrate on the Plecnik’s work, garden and Valech, $ (Fodor’s p. 106111. Outside areas free and open 6AM-11PM. Cost for inside varies: Tour A 350Kc= $20.38, Tour B 220Kc=$12.81, Tour C 50Kc=$2.91 or free after 4PM in winter)
    • Villa Muller, not far from Hradcany, but it is expansive and you have to schedule a tour in advance, but it is very interesting.
    • Strahovsky klaster / Cloister Strahov* (actually in Small Quarter, Fodor’s p. 61) – great view of the city, you may be able to get inside of the main library (Fodor’s p. 118-9, Libraries* open 9-12 daily, Cost 80Kc = $4.66. Picture gallery Tue-Sun 9-12 and 12:20-5, Cost 50Kc=$2.91)
    • Church of St. Nicolas / Svatevo Mikulas (Rick Steves says its closed Nov-March, but Fodor’s p. 122-3 says its open daily 9-4, Church cost 50Kc and Bell tower costs 50Kv=$2.91 each. Guided tour of church no additional fee, but book two weeks prior
    • St. Thomas’ Church / Svatheo Tomase* (Open by appointment, Fodor’s p. 125)
    • St. Joseph’s Church / Svateho Josefa* (Fodor’s p. 124, Open Mon-Fri 10-4:15 and Sun 2-4:15)

    STARE MESTO / OLD TOWN* (Fodor’s p. 63; Steves p. 67 map)
    - Walk the old town thoroughly!
    - Charles Bridge*
    - Old Town Square* with Town Hall*, St. Vitas Cathedral*, Astronomical Clock (photograph), pastel houses, 27 crosses, Jan Hus memorial – from square you can go north on Parizska Street for “perhaps Europe’s finest Art Noveau neighborhood” (Steves, p. 80) – or you can go south on Melantraichova Street with its touristy market open 9-6 on to Wencelas Square and metro.
    • Tynsky chram / Tyn Church – interior, $ (Fodor’s p. 114, gothic, Doors open 30 minutes before 6 PM services on Wed, Thurs, Fri, also before 9 PM service Sunday) (Rick Steves says its open 10-13 and 15-17)
    • Kostel sv. Mikulase / St. Nicolas Church*, $ (Fodor’s p. 115, Tues-Sat 10-4. Baroque.)
    • Kostel sv. Jakuba Vetsiho / St. James Church (Fodor’s p. 124, free, Mon-Sat 9:30-12 and 2-4; Steves p. 71) on the way there stop behind Tyn Church is the Ungelt courtyard with a good student café (Steves p. 67)
    • Anezsky klaster / St. Agnes Convent complex* -interior and exterior, $ (Fodor’s p. 64. Cost 120Kc = $6.99, Open 10-6 Tues-Sun, Closed Monday, Free first Wednesday 3-8PM)
    • Pravnicka fakulta / law school building* – Jan Kotera (at Charles University, Steves p. 76-7)
    • Klementinum* and its National Library, main reading room is accessible, interior, exterior (courtyard) (Fodor’s p. 84, 10; Tours of Library Hall and Astronomical Clock cost 100 Kc=$5.83, they start on the hour Mon-Fri 2-6. Tours in English.) (Steves p. 74 says Klementinum’s Chapel of Mirrors is popular for evening concerts.)
    • Rurolfinum / art gallery and concert hall – interior, gallery $ (Fodor’s p. 105 &176, Gallery costs 100Kc=$5.83 and is open Tues-Sun 10-6. See,, now showing “American Art in the 3rd Millineum” in the lager gallery.)
    • Palac Goltz-Kinskych – interior, exterior, gallery $
    • Obecni dum / Municipal House – interior (Fodor’s p. 100-1. Cost for guided tours of ceremonial rooms 150Kc = $8.74, Box office and info on guided tours open 10-6) (Walk 1, Fodor’s p. 199, begins here and includes St. Nepomuk below. Tour as lots of good places to stop to eat and recommends stop at Grade Café Praha p. 234-5 with views of the Orloj / Astrological Clock.)
    • Kostel sv. Jana Nepomuckeho / St. Nepomuk church (Fodor’s p. 30, 198, 126)
    • Kostel Panny Marie Snezne (Fodor’s p. 104-5 & 136, also p. 62 & 97, Open Mon-Sat 9-5:15, Free.)
    (Please note that Museum of Czech Cubism, Fodor’s p. 70, is also free this day – first Wednesday 3-8PM.)

    See things we’ve missed above or some of these:

    - Day trip to CESKY KRUMLOV, probably one of the most beautiful little towns you can ever see. Lenka did a urban study based on transect for Phill Bess last year about this town (group project) and can send us her PPT file. She think we would learn more then in Terezin, even though that would be very powerful. She recommends a day trip outside of Prague because it is nice to see other parts of the country.

    - JEWISH QUARTER up Parizska Street (with its Art Noveau houses) from the Old Town (Steves p. 79-84. All seven sites 500Kc=$29.15, with is 300Kc=$17.49 for the six sites that make up the museum and 200Kc=$11.66 for the Old-New Synagogue*, Bethlehem Chapel*.) (Steves p. 59 recommends tour guide Silvie Whitman three-hour walking tour of the Jewish Quarter 630Kc=$36.73 includes entry to Jewish Museum.)

    - Day Trip to TEREZIN CONCENTRATION CAMP and nearby town of Litomerice (Rick Steves p. 171-175. Open daily 9-4. Entry fee 180Kc=$10.49 covers all parts of camp. See (This is a lot more expensive, but Steves p. 59 recommends tour guide Silvie Whitman six-hour trip to camp 1150Kc=$67.05 for transportation and all entries. By appointment, see

    HOLESOVICE (district north of Old Town)
    • National Gallery – the most important building of Czech functionalism, amazing, grand interior space, $ (There’s little info on this since it’s not touristy. See Fodor’s p. 5, area 3F on map inside Fodor’s front cover.)

    VINOHRADY (district west of New Town on Korunni Street)
    • Namesti Jiriho z Podebrad / George of Podebrady Square –
    • Chram Nejvetejsiho Srdce Pane / Church of the most Sacred Heart – by Plecnik, important to get inside (Prague’s most remarkable modern church, Fodor’s p. 145, 111; Free; Mass Mon-Sat – open 30 minutes before 8AM services and one hour before and after services 6PM services.)
    • Walk around the neighborhood

    Have a great spring break to those who made it this far. I leave you with Second year’s Gate project for building Science II.


    • justavisual

      Šťastnou cestu!

      Prague is my favorite...enjoy.

      Feb 29, 08 1:41 pm

      Yes, Prague is a great city. I was happy to find a wide variety of museums in Prague covering almost anything you can think of: national history, communism, historical Czech art, music, literature. To see all of Prague museums would take several days of staying in hotels in Prague for vacation. If you are interested in some specific area, you will easily find museum in Prague for your interests.

      Jul 15, 08 12:19 pm

      Prague looking a nice place to visit after reading it. I think I shall visit it.well nice stuff,keep it up.

      Jul 28, 08 12:02 pm

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