No trip to Prague would be complete without visiting the impressive Prague Castle. From the Charles Bridge, you will get wonderful views of what is considered the largest ancient castle in the world. Located in the Hradcany neighborhood, it is easy to get to—but with so many important features, what should you see on your visit to the castle?
Top Things to See at The Prague Castle
Undoubtedly, this is one of the most important things to do in Prague. At the castle, immerse yourself in this medieval world where you will find everything from charming gardens to historical buildings—all a part of Czech history. In this list, we have covered the top things to see at the Prague Castle.
9. Lobkowicz Palace
If you come to the castle, do not miss visiting this palace built in the 16th century. It was owned by the Lobkowicz family until 1939 before being confiscated by the Nazis and later by the communist regime. It was finally returned to the Lobkowicz family in 2002. The palace has undergone a series of renovations and was opened to the public in 2007. So, you will love the decor! It has an elegant Italian style, walls adorned with beautiful fresco paintings, and figures of emperors.
You will also find exhibitions of famous paintings, unique collections, classical music concerts, exclusive merchandise sales galleries, and award-winning wines from the Lobkowicz Castle Winery. And finally, enjoy excellent Czech and international food at the palace’s café-restaurant, which has a Renaissance terrace with wonderful views.
8. Dalibor Tower
There are two important things you should know about this feared place. First, the Dalibor tower was a prison, built in 1496, and in operation until 1781. Second, it was named after the first prisoner, Dalibor of Kozojed, who was a Czech nobleman and knight.
A shocking feature of this tower is the circular hole with a pulley in the basement that was used to throw the prisoners to the bottom to torture them. To get to this Tower, walk to the end of the Golden Lane.
7. Golden Lane
The Golden Lane is a charming place with small picturesque houses where goldsmiths and the castle’s archers lived and worked. It is also popular with visitors because it was home to the important writer Franz Kafka. He lived in house number 22 for some time, and today it is a top spot for taking photographs. So, don’t forget to take a selfie at the famous blue house!
There were many theories about how the Golden Lane got its name. Some say it was due to the many goldsmiths who lived and carved gold there. Others attribute it to the alchemists who tried to make gold. But there are those that say the name could refer, ironically, to it being a poor lane. Currently, these houses serve as galleries and exhibition and souvenir shops.
Coming to Prague? Check out our guide on how to visit the Prague Castle and discover its fascinating history. Also, see the top things to do in the city to make your trip memorable!
How about a stroll through the gardens where royalty once wandered? In Prague, it is possible. Inside the castle, you will discover beautiful gardens where the kings used to take their walks and where you too can enjoy a stroll. A diversity of exotic plants, flower varieties, and fountains fill the gardens.
There are a number of different gardens, in particular the Royal Garden, the terrace of the riding school, the Garden on the Bastion, the South Gardens, and the Stag Moat. Also, take some time to explore the St. Wenceslas and Villa Richter vineyards, greenhouses, and orchards.
The top garden to visit is the Royal Garden because it is the largest. For context, it was created in 1534 by Ferdinand I of Habsburg. The Summer Palace of Queen Anne, the Lion’s Court, and the Ball Game Hall, which was used for ball games, are all examples of what you will see in this garden.
Next on your list should be the Southern Gardens, where you will get exceptional views of parts of Prague. These gardens measure around 500 meters and are comprised of smaller gardens like the Paradise Garden, Garden on the Rampart, and the Hartig Garden.
Throughout your visit to these beautiful green spaces, you will also find sculptures—the sculpture of Hercules, for example—as well as greenhouses to grow Mediterranean and indoor plants, and interesting Gothic and Baroque fortifications.
5. The Changing Of The Castle Guard
The changing of the castle guard is a must-see when visiting the Prague Castle. Do you want to know where this tradition comes from? It originated during the government of President Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk in 1918 when the first organic military unit was designed to protect the castle.
In this elegant ceremony, you will see the great fanfare and hear the roaring sound of the march of the castle guard as they exchange positions wearing their characteristic uniforms. It is quite a sight! During the months of May and October, the castle guard participates in the security of the Prague Castle Open Day. Then, visitors have the opportunity to see important spaces that are not normally open to the public.
4. The South Tower Of St Vitus Cathedral
The incredible panoramic views of the city from the south tower of the Saint Vitus Cathedral make the 280 stairs you have to climb to get up there completely worth it! This imposing cathedral is almost 100 meters high and is definitely one of the top things to see at the Prague Castle.
Also, the south tower has seven cathedral bells, one of which is the oldest and largest in the Czech Republic with a weight of 13.5 tons. All the bells are manually operated, and you can normally hear them ringing on Sundays.
3. The Old Royal Palace
Built during the 9th and 10th centuries, the old royal palace was home to important kings. It was also the place where kings’ coronation ceremonies were celebrated and where assemblies and important meetings were held. This Gothic palace has an interesting vaulted interior.
Additionally, you will find the Chapel of All Saints and the Vladislav Hall inside the palace. The hall was where banquets, coronation parties, knights’ tournaments, and art markets were held. However, today it hosts election ceremonies for Czech presidents, as well as important holidays in the Czech Republic.
2. The Saint George Basilica
Founded around 920 by Prince Wroclaw, St. George’s Basilica is considered the oldest basilica within the castle. It has a beautiful baroque façade, and within its walls, the first dynasty Premyslids are buried. And there is also the first Czech monastery.
1. St. Vitus Cathedral
Why visit the Saint Vitus Cathedral? Because it is the most important cathedral in Prague. Located within the Prague castle, it contains many objects of historical value to see. You will find treasures like the Czech coronation jewels, the mausoleum of the Czech kings, religious relics, and sculptures.
This beautiful cathedral is Gothic in style and has three towers. It served as an important scene for royal coronations, and many kings, archbishops, and patron saints were buried here. Also, it includes the Chapel of Saint Wenceslas.
Enter the cathedral through the western part of its façade to go through the beautiful bronze doors. Decorated with reliefs from its history, including Saint Wenceslas and Adalbert, they are a magnificent sight. At the south entrance of the cathedral, there is a hall where you can admire the mosaic of the last judgment.
Pro Tip: It is better to come in the early hours of the morning to avoid the long lines during the high season.
Complete List of Places at Prague Castle
- Cathedral of St. Vitus, Wenceslas, and Adalbert
- St. George Basilica
- Chapel of The Holy Cross
- Church of All Saints
- Holy Trinity Chapel
- Former Monastery of St. George
- Old Royal Palace
- The New Royal Palace
- Lobkowicz Palace
- Queen Anne’s Summer Palace
- Theresian Institution of Noble Ladies
- The Main Tower – part of the cathedral on its south side
- Powder Tower – Mihulka
- (New) White Tower
- Black Tower
- South Tower (gate)
- Golden Lane
- Powder Bridge
- Old Provost’s
- Chapter Deanery
- Riding Hall
- Lion Court
- Pavilion of Ball Games – Míčovna
- Zikmund’s Bell
- Deer Moat
- Garden Na Baste
- Royal Garden
- Lumbe’s Gardens
- Garden Na Valech
- Hartig’s Garden
- Paradise Garden
- Palace Gardens Below Prague Castle
- Garden On the terrace Riding stables
- Singing Fountain
- Kohl’s Fountain
- Hercules Fountain
- Eagle’s Fountain
- Bear Fountain
- A Well With A Renaissance Lattice