The city has more than ten major museums, along with numerous theatres, galleries, cinemas, and other historical exhibits. An extensive modern public transportation system connects the city. It is home to a wide range of public and private schools, including Charles University
in Prague, the oldest university in Central Europe
Prague is classified as an "Alpha-" global city
according to GaWC
and ranked sixth in the Tripadvisor
world list of best destinations in 2016.
In 2019, the city was ranked as 69th most liveable city in the world by Mercer.
In the same year, the PICSA Index ranked the city as 13th most liveable city in the world.
Its rich history makes it a popular tourist destination and as of 2017, the city receives more than 8.5 million international visitors annually. In 2017 Prague was listed as the fifth most visited European
city after London
, and Istanbul
The mythological princess Libuše
prophesies the glory of Prague.
During the thousand years of its existence, Prague grew from a settlement stretching from Prague Castle
in the north to the fort of Vyšehrad
in the south, to become the capital of a modern European country.
The Prague astronomical clock
was first installed in 1410, making it the third-oldest astronomical clock in the world and the oldest one still working.
Around the fifth and fourth century BC, a Celtic
tribe appeared in the area, later establishing settlements including an oppidum
in Závist, a present-day suburb of Prague, and naming the region of Bohemia, which means "home of the Boii people".
In the last century BC, the Celts were slowly driven away by Germanic tribes
and possibly the Suebi
), leading some to place the seat of the Marcomanni
, in southern Prague in the suburb now called Závist.
Around the area where present-day Prague stands, the 2nd century map drawn by Ptolemaios
mentioned a Germanic city called Casurgis
The construction of what came to be known as Prague Castle
began near the end of the 9th century, expanding a fortified settlement that had existed on the site since the year 800.
The first masonry under Prague Castle dates from the year 885 at the latest.
The other prominent Prague fort, the Přemyslid fort Vyšehrad
, was founded in the 10th century, some 70 years later than Prague Castle.
Prague Castle is dominated by the cathedral
, which began construction in 1344, but wasn't completed until the 20th century.
The legendary origins of Prague attribute its foundation to the 8th-century Czech duchess and prophetess Libuše
and her husband, Přemysl
, founder of the Přemyslid dynasty
. Legend says that Libuše came out on a rocky cliff high above the Vltava and prophesied: "I see a great city whose glory will touch the stars." She ordered a castle and a town called Praha to be built on the site.
At the site of the ford in the Vltava river, King Vladislaus I
had the first bridge built in 1170, the Judith Bridge (Juditin most), named in honour of his wife Judith of Thuringia
This bridge was destroyed by a flood in 1342, but some of the original foundation stones of that bridge remain in the river. It was rebuilt and named the Charles Bridge.
In 1257, under King Ottokar II
, Malá Strana
("Lesser Quarter") was founded in Prague on the site of an older village in what would become the Hradčany
(Prague Castle) area.
This was the district of the German people, who had the right to administer the law autonomously, pursuant to Magdeburg rights
The new district was on the bank opposite of the Staré Město
("Old Town"), which had borough
status and was bordered by a line of walls and fortifications.
The era of Charles IV
Charles IV ordered the building of the New Town
(Nové Město) adjacent to the Old Town
and laid out the design himself. The Charles Bridge, replacing the Judith Bridge destroyed in the flood just prior to his reign, was erected to connect the east bank districts to the Malá Strana and castle area. On 9 July 1357 at 5:31 am, Charles IV personally laid the first foundation stone for the Charles Bridge. The exact time of laying the first foundation stone is known because the palindromic number
135797531 was carved into the Old Town bridge tower having been chosen by the royal astrologists and numerologists as the best time for starting the bridge construction.
In 1347, he founded Charles University
, which remains the oldest university
in Central Europe.
He began construction of the Gothic Saint Vitus Cathedral
, within the largest of the Prague Castle courtyards, on the site of the Romanesque rotunda there. Prague was elevated to an archbishopric in 1344,
the year the cathedral was begun.
The city had a mint
and was a centre of trade for German and Italian bankers and merchants. The social order, however, became more turbulent due to the rising power of the craftsmen
(themselves often torn by internal fights), and the increasing number of poor.
The Hunger Wall, a substantial fortification wall south of Malá Strana and the Castle area, was built during a famine in the 1360s. The work is reputed to have been ordered by Charles IV as a means of providing employment and food to the workers and their families.
Charles IV died in 1378. During the reign of his son, King Wenceslaus IV
(1378–1419), a period of intense turmoil ensued. During Easter 1389, members of the Prague clergy announced that Jews had desecrated the host (Eucharistic wafer) and the clergy encouraged mobs to pillage, ransack and burn the Jewish quarter. Nearly the entire Jewish population of Prague (3,000 people) was murdered.
Depiction of the "Prague Banner" (municipal flag dated to the 16th century)
, a theologian and rector
at the Charles University, preached in Prague. In 1402, he began giving sermons in the Bethlehem Chapel
. Inspired by John Wycliffe
, these sermons focused on what were seen as radical reforms of a corrupt Church. Having become too dangerous for the political and religious establishment, Hus was summoned to the Council of Constance
, put on trial for heresy
, and burned at the stake in Constanz
During the Hussite Wars
when the City of Prague was attacked by "Crusader" and mercenary forces, the city militia fought bravely under the Prague Banner. This swallow-tailed banner is approximately 4 by 6 feet (1.2 by 1.8 metres), with a red field sprinkled with small white fleurs-de-lis, and a silver old Town Coat-of-Arms in the centre. The words "PÁN BŮH POMOC NAŠE" (The Lord is our Relief) appeared above the coat-of-arms, with a Hussite chalice centred on the top. Near the swallow-tails is a crescent-shaped golden sun with rays protruding.
One of these banners was captured by Swedish troops in Battle of Prague (1648)
, when they captured the western bank of the Vltava river and were repulsed from the eastern bank, they placed it in the Royal Military Museum in Stockholm
; although this flag still exists, it is in very poor condition. They also took the Codex Gigas
and the Codex Argenteus
. The earliest evidence indicates that a gonfalon with a municipal charge painted on it was used for Old Town as early as 1419. Since this city militia flag was in use before 1477 and during the Hussite Wars, it is the oldest still preserved municipal flag of Bohemia.
In the following two centuries, Prague strengthened its role as a merchant city. Many noteworthy Gothic buildings
were erected and Vladislav Hall of the Prague Castle was added.
Prague panorama in 1650
In 1526, the Bohemian estates elected Ferdinand I
of the House of Habsburg
. The fervent Catholicism of its members brought them into conflict in Bohemia, and then in Prague, where Protestant ideas were gaining popularity.
These problems were not pre-eminent under Holy Roman Emperor Rudolf II
, elected King of Bohemia in 1576, who chose Prague as his home. He lived in the Prague Castle, where his court welcomed not only astrologers and magicians but also scientists, musicians, and artists. Rudolf was an art lover too, and Prague became the capital of European culture. This was a prosperous period for the city: famous people living there in that age include the astronomers Tycho Brahe
and Johannes Kepler
, the painter Arcimboldo
, the alchemists Edward Kelley
and John Dee
, the poet Elizabeth Jane Weston
, and others.
In 1618, the famous second defenestration of Prague
provoked the Thirty Years' War
, a particularly harsh period for Prague and Bohemia. Ferdinand II
of Habsburg was deposed, and his place as King of Bohemia taken by Frederick V, Elector Palatine
; however his army was crushed in the Battle of White Mountain
(1620) not far from the city. Following this in 1621 was an execution of 27 Czech Protestant leaders (involved in the uprising) in Old Town Square and the exiling of many others. Prague was forcibly converted back to Roman Catholicism
followed by the rest of Czech lands. The city suffered subsequently during the war under an attack by Electoral Saxony
(1631) and during the Battle of Prague (1648)
Prague began a steady decline which reduced the population from the 60,000 it had had in the years before the war to 20,000. In the second half of the 17th century, Prague's population began to grow again. Jews
had been in Prague since the end of the 10th century and, by 1708, they accounted for about a quarter of Prague's population.
In 1689, a great fire devastated Prague, but this spurred a renovation and a rebuilding of the city. In 1713–14, a major outbreak of plague
hit Prague one last time, killing 12,000 to 13,000 people.
In 1744, Frederick the Great
of Prussia invaded Bohemia. He took Prague after a severe and prolonged siege in the course of which a large part of the town was destroyed.
In 1757 the Prussian
destroyed more than one quarter of the city and heavily damaged St. Vitus Cathedral. However a month later, Frederick the Great was defeated and forced to retreat from Bohemia.
The economy of Prague continued to improve during the 18th century. The population increased to 80,000 inhabitants by 1771. Many rich merchants and nobles enhanced the city with a host of palaces, churches and gardens full of art and music
, creating a Baroque
city renowned throughout the world to this day.
In 1784, under Joseph II
, the four municipalities of Malá Strana, Nové Město, Staré Město, and Hradčany were merged into a single entity. The Jewish district, called Josefov
, was included only in 1850. The Industrial Revolution
had a strong effect in Prague, as factories could take advantage of the coal mines and ironworks of the nearby region. A first suburb, Karlín
, was created in 1817, and twenty years later the population exceeded 100,000.
The revolutions in Europe in 1848
also touched Prague, but they were fiercely suppressed. In the following years, the Czech National Revival
began its rise, until it gained the majority in the town council in 1861. Prague had a German-speaking majority in 1848, but by 1880 the number of German speakers had decreased to 14% (42,000), and by 1910 to 6.7% (37,000), due to a massive increase of the city's overall population caused by the influx of Czechs
from the rest of Bohemia and Moravia
and also due to return of social status importance of the Czech language.
First Czechoslovak Republic
World War I ended with the defeat of the Austro-Hungarian Empire
and the creation of Czechoslovakia. Prague was chosen as its capital and Prague Castle as the seat of president Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk
. At this time Prague was a true European capital with highly developed industry. By 1930, the population had risen to 850,000.
Second World War
Prague liberated by the Red Army
in May 1945
In February 1945, Prague suffered several bombing raids
by the US Army Air Forces
. 701 people were killed, more than 1,000 people were injured and some buildings, factories and historical landmarks (Emmaus Monastery
, Faust House
, Vinohrady Synagogue
) were destroyed.
Many historic structures in Prague, however, escaped the destruction of the war and the damage was small compared to the total destruction of many other cities in that time. According to American pilots, it was the result of a navigational mistake. In March, a deliberate raid targeted military factories in Prague, killing about 370 people.
On 5 May 1945, two days before Germany capitulated, an uprising
against Germany occurred. Several thousand Czechs were killed in four days of bloody street fighting, with many atrocities committed by both sides. At daybreak on 9 May, the 3rd Shock Army
of the Red Army
took the city almost unopposed. The majority (about 50,000 people) of the German population of Prague either fled or were expelled
by the Beneš decrees
in the aftermath of the war.
After the Velvet Revolution
Prague high-rise buildings at Pankrác
In 1989, after the riot police beat back a peaceful student demonstration, the Velvet Revolution
crowded the streets of Prague, and the capital of Czechoslovakia
benefited greatly from the new mood. In 1993, after the Velvet Divorce
, Prague became the capital city of the new Czech Republic. From 1995 high-rise buildings began to be built in Prague in large quantities. In the late 1990s, Prague again became an important cultural centre of Europe and was notably influenced by globalisation
In 2000, IMF
and World Bank
summit took place in Prague and anti-globalization riots
took place here. In 2002, Prague suffered from widespread floods
that damaged buildings and its underground transport system.
Bridges over the River Vltava, as seen from Letná
The Czech name Praha is derived from an old Slavic
, which means "ford
" or "rapid
", referring to the city's origin at a crossing point of the Vltava river.
The same etymology is associated with the Praga district of Warsaw
Another view to the origin of name is also related to the Czech word práh
(in the mean of a threshold
) and a legendary etymology connects the name of the city with princess Libuše
, prophetess and a wife of mythical founder of the Přemyslid dynasty
. She is said to have ordered the city "to be built where a man hews a threshold of his house". The Czech práh
might thus be understood to refer to rapids or fords in the river, the edge of which could have acted as a means of fording the river – thus providing a "threshold" to the castle.
Another derivation of the name Praha
is suggested from na prazě
, the original term for the shale
hillside rock upon which the original castle was built. At that time, the castle was surrounded by forests, covering the nine hills of the future city – the Old Town
on the opposite side of the river, as well as the Lesser Town
beneath the existing castle, appeared only later.
Prague is also called the "City of a Hundred Spires"
, based on a count by 19th century mathematician Bernard Bolzano
; today's count is estimated by the Prague Information Service at 500.
Nicknames for Prague have also included: the Golden City, the Mother of Cities and the Heart of Europe.
Prague has an oceanic climate
with humid continental
) influences, defined as such by the 0 °C (32 °F) isotherm.
The winters are relatively cold with average temperatures at about freezing point, and with very little sunshine. Snow cover can be common between mid-November and late March although snow accumulations of more than 20 cm (8 in) are infrequent. There are also a few periods of mild temperatures in winter. Summers usually bring plenty of sunshine and the average high temperature of 24 °C (75 °F). Nights can be quite cool even in summer, though. Precipitation in Prague (and most of the Bohemian lowland) is rather low (just over 500 mm [20 in] per year) since it is located in the rain shadow
of the Sudetes
and other mountain ranges. The driest season is usually winter while late spring and summer can bring quite heavy rain, especially in form of thundershowers. Temperature inversions
are relatively common between mid-October and mid-March bringing foggy, cold days and sometimes moderate air pollution. Prague is also a windy city with common sustained western winds and an average wind speed of 16 km/h (10 mph) that often help break temperature inversions and clear the air in cold months.
Map of Prague cadastral and administrative districts
Prague is the capital of the Czech Republic and as such is the regular seat of its central authorities. Since 24 November 1990, it is de facto again a statutory town, but has a specific status of the municipality and the region at the same time. Prague also houses the administrative institutions of the Central Bohemian Region
Until 1949, all administrative districts of Prague were formed by the whole one or more cadastral unit, municipality or town. Since 1949, there has been a fundamental change in the administrative division. Since then, the boundaries of many urban districts, administrative districts and city districts are independent of the boundaries of cadastral territories and some cadastral territories are thus divided into administrative and self-governing parts of the city. Cadastral area
(for example, Vinohrady
) are still relevant especially for the registration of land and real estate and house numbering.
Prague is divided into 10 municipal districts (1–10), 22 administrative districts (1–22), 57 municipal parts, or 112 cadastral areas.
According to the 2011 census, about 14% of the city inhabitants were born outside the Czech Republic. That is the highest proportion in the country.
However, in 2011, 64.8 per cent of the city's population self-identified themselves as Czechs
, which is higher than the national average. Even though official population of Prague hovers around 1.3 million, the real number of people in the city is much higher due to only 65% of its residents being marked as permanently living in the city,
these data were taken from mobile phone movements around the city, and bring total population of Prague to about 1.9–2 million, and with additional 300,000 to 400,000 people coming to the city for work, education or shopping, on weekdays there are more than 2 million people in the city.
Development of the Prague population since 1378:
Historic Centre of Prague
The city has many world-class museums, including the National Museum
(Národní muzeum), the Museum of the Capital City of Prague, the Jewish Museum in Prague
, the Alfons Mucha
Museum, the African-Prague Museum, the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague
, the Náprstek Museum
(Náprstkovo Muzeum), the Josef Sudek Gallery
and The Josef Sudek Studio
, the National Library
and the National Gallery
, which manages the largest collection of art in the Czech Republic.
There are hundreds of concert halls, galleries, cinemas and music clubs in the city. It hosts music festivals
including the Prague Spring International Music Festival
, the Prague Autumn International Music Festival
, the Prague International Organ Festival
, the Dvořák Prague International Music Festival,
and the Prague International Jazz Festival
. Film festivals include the Febiofest
, the One World Film Festival
and Echoes of the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival
. The city also hosts the Prague Writers' Festival
, the Prague Folklore Days, Prague Advent Choral Meeting the Summer Shakespeare Festival
the Prague Fringe Festival
, the World Roma Festival
, as well as the hundreds of Vernissages
and fashion shows
Many films have been made at Barrandov Studios
and at Prague Studios. Hollywood films set in Prague include Mission Impossible, xXx, Blade II, Children of Dune, Alien vs. Predator, Doom, Chronicles of Narnia, Hellboy, EuroTrip, Van Helsing, Red Tails,
and Spider-Man: Far From Home
Other Czech films shot in Prague include Empties
and The Fifth Horseman is Fear
. Also, the romantic music video "Never Tear Us Apart
" by INXS
, "Diamonds from Sierra Leone
" by Kanye West
was shot in the city, and features shots of the Charles Bridge and the Astronomical Clock, among other landmarks. Rihanna
's "Don't Stop the Music
" video was filmed at Prague's Radost FX Club. The city was also the setting for the film Dungeons and Dragons
in 2000. The music video "Silver and Cold
" by AFI
, an American rock band, was also filmed in Prague. Many Indian films have also been filmed in the city including Yuvraaj
. Early 2000s europop hit "Something
" by "Lasgo
" was filmed at the central train station in Prague.
With the growth of low-cost airlines in Europe, Prague has become a weekend city destination allowing tourists to visit its museums and cultural sites as well as try its Czech beers and cuisine.
Recent major events held in Prague:
(A.D. 1466), one of the oldest pubs in Europe
In 2008 the Allegro
restaurant received the first Michelin star
in the whole of the post-Communist part of Central Europe. It retained its star until 2011. As of 2018 there are two Michelin-starred restaurants in Prague: La Degustation
Bohême Bourgeoise and Field. Another six have been awarded Michelin's Bib Gourmand: Bistrøt 104, Divinis, Eska, Maso a Kobliha, Na Kopci and Sansho.
In Malá Strana, Staré Město, Žižkov
there are hundreds of restaurants, bars and pubs, especially with Czech beer. Prague also hosts the Czech Beer Festival
(Český pivní festival), which is the largest beer festival
in the Czech Republic held for 17 days every year in May. At the festival, more than 70 brands of Czech beer can be tasted. There are several microbrewery festivals throughout the year as well.
has a long history, with brewing taking place in Břevnov Monastery
in 993. Prague is home to historical breweriesStaropramen
(Praha 5), U Fleků
, U Medvídků
, U Tří růží, Strahov Monastery
Brewery (Praha 1) and Břevnov Monastery Brewery (Praha 6). Among many microbreweries are: Novoměstský, Pražský most u Valšů, Národní, Boršov, Loď pivovar, U Dobřenských, U Dvou koček, U Supa (Praha 1), Pivovarský dům (Praha 2), Sousedský pivovar Bašta (Praha 4), Suchdolský Jeník, Libocký pivovar (Praha 6), Marina (Praha 7), U Bulovky (Praha 8), Beznoska, Kolčavka (Praha 9), Vinohradský pivovar, Zubatý pes, Malešický mikropivovar (Praha 10), Jihoměstský pivovar (Praha 11), Lužiny (Praha 13), Počernický pivovar (Praha 14) and Hostivar (Praha 15).
Prague employs almost a fifth of the entire Czech workforce, and its wages are significantly above average (≈+20%). In 4Q/2020, during the pandemic, average salaries available in Prague reached CZK 45.944 (≈€
1,800) per month, an annual increase of 4%, which was nevertheless lower than national increase of 6.5% both in nominal and real terms. (Inflation in the Czech Republic was 3.2% in 4Q/2020.)
Since 1990, the city's economic structure has shifted from industrial to service-oriented. Industry is present in sectors such as pharmaceuticals, printing, food processing, manufacture of transport equipment, computer technology and electrical engineering. In the service sector, financial and commercial services, trade, restaurants, hospitality and public administration are the most significant. Services
account for around 80 per cent of employment. There are 800,000 employees in Prague, including 120,000 commuters.
The number of (legally registered) foreign residents in Prague has been increasing in spite of the country's economic downturn. As of March 2010, 148,035 foreign workers were reported to be living in the city making up about 18 per cent of the workforce, up from 131,132 in 2008.
Approximately one-fifth of all investment in the Czech Republic takes place in the city.
Tourism is a significant part of the city's economy
Almost one-half of the national income from tourism is spent in Prague. The city offers approximately 73,000 beds in accommodation facilities, most of which were built after 1990, including almost 51,000 beds in hotels and boarding houses.
From the late 1990s to late 2000s, the city was a common filming location for international productions such as Hollywood and Bollywood motion pictures. A combination of architecture, low costs and the existing motion picture infrastructure have proven attractive to international film production companies.
, the most expensive street among the states of V4
The modern economy of Prague is largely service and export-based and, in a 2010 survey, the city was named the best city in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) for business.
In 2005, Prague was deemed among the three best cities in Central and Eastern Europe according to The Economist'
s livability rankings.
The city was named as a top-tier nexus city for innovation across multiple sectors of the global innovation economy, placing 29th globally out of 289 cities, ahead of Brussels
for innovation in 2010 in 2thinknow annual analysts Innovation Cities Index
is the most expensive street among all the states of the V4
In 2017, with the amount of rent €2,640 (CZK 67,480) per square meter per year, ranked on 22nd place among the most expensive streets in the world.
The second most expensive is Pařížská street.
In the Eurostat research, Prague ranked fifth among Europe's 271 regions in terms of gross domestic product per inhabitant, achieving 172 per cent of the EU average. It ranked just above Paris and well above the country as a whole, which achieved 80 per cent of the EU average.
Companies with highest turnover in the region in 2014:
Prague is also the site of some of the most important offices and institutions of the Czech Republic
Since the fall of the Iron Curtain
, Prague has become one of the world's most popular tourist destinations. Prague suffered considerably less
damage during World War II
than some other major cities in the region, allowing most of its historic architecture to stay true to form. It contains one of the world's most pristine and varied collections of architecture, from Romanesque
, to Gothic
, Art Nouveau
Prague is classified as an "Alpha-" global city
according to GaWC
studies, comparable to Vienna
and Washington, D.C.
Prague ranked sixth in the Tripadvisor
world list of best destinations in 2016.
Its rich history makes it a popular tourist destination, and the city receives more than 8.4 million international visitors annually, as of 2017.
Hradčany and Lesser Town (Malá Strana) Old Town (Staré Město) and Josefov
- The Astronomical Clock (Orloj) on Old Town City Hall
- The Gothic Church of Our Lady before Týn (Kostel Matky Boží před Týnem) from the 14th century with 80 m high towers
- Stone Bell House
- The vaulted Gothic Old New Synagogue (Staronová Synagoga) of 1270
- Old Jewish Cemetery
- Powder Tower (Prašná brána), a Gothic tower of the old city gates
- Spanish Synagogue with its elaborate interior decoration
- Old Town Square (Staroměstské náměstí) with gothic and baroque architectural styles
- The art nouveau Municipal House, a major civic landmark and concert hall known for its Art Nouveau architectural style and political history in the Czech Republic.
- Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, with an extensive collections including glass, furniture, textile, toys, Art Nouveau, Cubism and Art Deco
- Clam-Gallas Palace, a baroque palace from 1713
- Church of St. Martin in the Wall
- Colloredo-Mansfeld Palace, with elements of High Baroque and the later Rococo and Second-Rococo adaptations. Known today for its well-preserved dance hall
- Vyšehrad Castle with Basilica of St Peter and St Paul, Vyšehrad cemetery and Prague oldest Rotunda of St. Martin
- The Prague Metronome at Letná Park, a giant, functional metronome that looms over the city
- Prague Zoo in Troja, selected as the 7th best zoo in the world by Forbes magazine in 2007 and the 4th best by TripAdvisor in 2015
- Industrial Palace (Průmyslový palác), Křižík's Light fountain, funfair Lunapark and Sea World Aquarium in Výstaviště compound in Holešovice
- Letohrádek Hvězda (Star Villa) in Liboc, a renaissance villa in the shape of a six-pointed star surrounded by a game reserve
- National Gallery in Prague with large collection of Czech and international paintings and sculptures by artists such as Mucha, Kupka, Picasso, Monet and Van Gogh
- Opera performances in National Theatre – unlike drama, all opera performances run with English subtitles.
- Anděl, a busy part of the city with modern architecture and a shopping mall
- The large Nusle Bridge, spans the Nusle Valley, linking New Town to Pankrác, with the Metro running underneath the road
- Strahov Monastery, an old Czech premonstratensian abbey founded in 1149 and monastic library
- Hotel International Prague, a four-star hotel and Czech cultural monument
Top 10 tourism source countries in 2018
Nine public universities and thirty six private universities are located in the city, including:
Public arts academies
Largest private colleges
Science, research and hi-tech centres
As of 2008, there were 13,000 researchers (out of 30,000 in the country, counted in full-time equivalents), representing a 3% share of Prague's economically active population. Gross expenditure on research and development accounted for €901.3 million (41.5% of country's total).
Prague was selected to host administration of the EU satellite navigation system Galileo
. It started to provide its first services in December 2016 and full completion is expected by 2020.
As of 2017, Prague had transport modal share
: 52% of all trips are done in public transport, 24,5% in car, 22,4% on foot, 0,4% on bike and 0,5% by airplane.
The public transport infrastructure consists of a heavily used Prague Integrated Transport
(PID, Pražská integrovaná doprava
) of Prague Metro
, and C
– its length is 65 km (40 mi) with 61 stations in total), Prague tram system
, Prague buses
, commuter S-trains
, and six ferries
. Prague has one of the highest rates of public transport usage in the world,
with 1.2 billion passenger journeys per year. Prague has about 300 bus lines (numbers 100–960) and 34 tram lines (numbers 1–26 without 19 and 91–99 ). There are also three funiculars, one on Petřín Hill
, one on Mrázovka Hill
and a third at the Zoo in Troja
The Prague tram system is the twelfth longest
in the world (142 km) and its rolling stock consists of 857 individual cars,
which is the third largest in the world behind Moscow
. The system carries more than 360 million passengers annually, the highest tram patronage in the world after Budapest
, on a per capita basis, Prague has the second highest tram patronage after Zürich
All services (metro, tramways, city buses, funiculars and ferries) have a common ticketing system that operates on a proof-of-payment
system. Basic transfer ticket can be bought for a 30/90-minute ride, short-term tourist passes are available for periods of 24 hours or 3 days, longer-term tickets can be bought on the smart ticketing system Lítačka
card, for periods of one month, three months or one year.
Services are run by the Prague Public Transport Company
(Dopravní podnik hl. m. Prahy, a. s.) and several other companies. Since 2005 the Regional Organiser of Prague Integrated Transport (ROPID)
has franchised operation of ferries on the Vltava
river, which are also a part of the public transport system with common fares. Taxi
services make pick-ups on the streets or operate from regulated taxi stands.
has three major lines extending throughout the city: A
(yellow) and C
(red). A fourth Metro line D
is planned, which would connect the city centre to southern parts of the city (as of 2021, the completion is expected in 2028).
The Prague Metro system served 589.2 million passengers in 2012,
making it the fifth busiest metro system in Europe
and the most-patronised in the world on a per capita basis. The first section of the Prague metro was put into operation in 1974. It was the stretch between stations Kačerov
on the current line C
. The first part of Line A
was opened in 1978 (Dejvická
– Náměstí Míru
), the first part of line B
in 1985 (Anděl
In April 2015, construction finished to extend the green line A further into the northwest corner of Prague closer to the airport.
A new interchange station for the bus in the direction of the airport is the station Nádraží Veleslavín
. The final station of the green line is Nemocnice Motol
), giving people direct public transportation access to the largest medical facility in the Czech Republic and one of the largest in Europe. A railway connection to the airport is planned.
In operation there are two kinds of units: "81-71M
" which is modernized variant of the Soviet Metrovagonmash 81-71
(completely modernized between 1995 and 2003) and new "Metro M1
" trains (since 2000), manufactured by consortium consisting of Siemens
, ČKD Praha
. The minimum interval between two trains is 90 seconds.
The main flow of traffic leads through the centre of the city and through inner and outer ring roads (partially in operation).
- Inner Ring Road (The City Ring "MO"): Once completed it will surround the wider central part of the city. The longest city tunnel in Europe with a length of 5.5 kilometres (3.4 miles) and five interchanges has been completed to relieve congestion in the north-western part of Prague. Called Blanka tunnel complex and part of the City Ring Road, it was estimated to eventually cost – after several increases – CZK 43 billion. Construction started in 2007 and, after repeated delays, the tunnel was officially opened in September 2015. This tunnel complex completes a major part of the inner ring road.
- Outer Ring Road (The Prague Ring "D0"): This ring road will connect all major motorways and speedways that meet each other in Prague region and provide faster transit without a necessity to drive through the city. So far 39 km (24 mi), out of a total planned 83 km (52 mi), is in operation. Most recently, the southern part of this road (with a length of more than 20 km (12 mi)) was opened on 22 September 2010. As of 2021, the next 12 km (7 mi) section between Modletice and Běchovice is planned to be completed in 2025.
In 2018, 1–2.5 % of people commute by bike in Prague
, depending on season. Cycling is very common as a sport or recreation.
As of 2019, there were 194 km (121 mi) of protected cycle paths and routes. Also, there were 50 km (31 mi) of bike lanes
and 26 km (16 mi) of specially marked bus lanes that are free to be used by cyclists.
As of 2021, there are four companies providing bicycle sharing
in Prague, none of them is subsidized by the city: Rekola
(1,000 bikes), Nextbike
(1,000 bikes), Bolt
Prague is the site of many sports events, national stadiums and teams.
The city of Prague maintains its own EU delegation in Brussels
called Prague House.
The annual conference Forum 2000
, which was founded by former Czech President Václav Havel
, Japanese philanthropist Yōhei Sasakawa
, and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Elie Wiesel
in 1996, is held in Prague. Its main objective is "to identify the key issues facing civilization and to explore ways to prevent the escalation of conflicts that have religion, culture or ethnicity as their primary components", and also intends to promote democracy in non-democratic countries and to support civil society. Conferences have attracted a number of prominent thinkers, Nobel laureates, former and acting politicians, business leaders and other individuals like: Frederik Willem de Klerk
, Bill Clinton
, Nicholas Winton
, Oscar Arias Sánchez
, Dalai Lama
, Hans Küng
, Shimon Peres
and Madeleine Albright
Twin towns – sister cities
- Berlin, Germany
- Brussels, Belgium
- Chicago, United States
- Frankfurt am Main, Germany
- Hamburg, Germany
- Kyoto, Japan
- Miami-Dade County, United States
- Nuremberg, Germany
- Phoenix, United States
- Taipei, Taiwan
A number of other settlements are derived or similar to the name of Prague. In many of these cases, Czech emigration has left a number of namesake cities scattered over the globe, with a notable concentration in the New World
is sometimes referred to as "Little Prague" (German
). Although now in Poland
, it had been traditionally a part of Bohemia
until 1763 when it became part of Silesia
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Culture and society
- Becker, Edwin et al., ed. Prague 1900: Poetry and Ecstasy. (2000). 224 pp.
- Boehm, Barbara Drake; et al. (2005). Prague : the Crown of Bohemia, 1347–1437. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art. ISBN 978-1588391612.
- Burton, Richard D. E. Prague: A Cultural and Literary History. (2003). 268 pp. excerpt and text search
- Cohen, Gary B. The Politics of Ethnic Survival: Germans in Prague, 1861–1914. (1981). 344 pp.
- Fucíková, Eliska, ed. Rudolf II and Prague: The Court and the City. (1997). 792 pp.
- Holz, Keith. Modern German Art for Thirties Paris, Prague, and London: Resistance and Acquiescence in a Democratic Public Sphere. (2004). 359 pp.
- Iggers, Wilma Abeles. Women of Prague: Ethnic Diversity and Social Change from the Eighteenth Century to the Present. (1995). 381 pp. online edition
- Porizka, Lubomir; Hojda, Zdenek; and Pesek, Jirí. The Palaces of Prague. (1995). 216 pp.
- SayerDerek. Prague: Crossroads of Europe. London Reaktion Books, 2019. ISBN 978-1-78914-009-5.
- Sayer, Derek. Prague, Capital of the Twentieth Century: A Surrealist History (Princeton University Press; 2013) 595 pages; a study of the city as a crossroads for modernity.
- Sayer, Derek. "The Language of Nationality and the Nationality of Language: Prague 1780–1920." Past & Present 1996 (153): 164–210. in Jstor
- Spector, Scott. Prague Territories: National Conflict and Cultural Innovation in Kafka's Fin de Siècle. (2000). 331 pp. online edition
- Svácha, Rostislav. The Architecture of New Prague, 1895–1945. (1995). 573 pp.
- Wittlich, Peter. Prague: Fin de Siècle. (1992). 280 pp.
Last edited on 16 May 2021, at 19:46
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