17. 6. 2014
To the Charles Bridge in search of the essence of romance
The Charles Bridge will never cease to fascinate the artists, photographers and poets who pay homage to it in their works. When the day’s first rays of sunlight touch the cold cobblestones and illuminate the monumental Gothic towers at both of its ends, you would be hard put to find a more romantic location. With the powerful silhouette of Prague Castle in the background and the gallery of Baroque statues on both sides, it is no wonder that this is one of the most beautiful places in Europe.
One of the many legends tells that construction of the Charles Bridge was started by the Czech king and Roman emperor Charles IV on precisely 9/7/1357 at 5.31. The reason for this was the allegedly auspicious constellation of the sun and Saturn and also the fact that this date corresponds to the sequence of odd numbers from one to nine and back. Maybe it was precisely this magical combination of numbers 1-3-5-7-9-7-5-3-1 which ensured the bridge’s endurance, magnificence and the admiration of millions of visitors from all over the world. Another of the legends tells that eggs, wine and milk were added to the mortar when the bridge was built. All of this was supposed to ensure its perfect stability for many centuries.
A Baroque gallery in the open air
You can step onto the Charles Bridge from the Old Town or Lesser Quarter side. The entrance from the Old Town is guarded by the elegant Old Town Bridge Tower, the decoration of which ranks it among the most beautiful in the world. Don’t forget to climb to the top and indulge yourself in the wonderful view of the whole 516 m long bridge and panorama of Prague, city of a hundred spires. Just past the tower, a unique Baroque gallery awaits you in the open air.
Don’t forget to take a bit of luck away with you!
From the 30 statues on the Charles Bridge, it is above all the statue of St. John of Nepomuk which stands out. Don’t forget to stroke its bronze relief work at the base. By doing so, you can be certain that you will take a little bit of this Prague luck away with you! This statue is not here by chance. It was precisely from the Charles Bridge that this saint was thrown into the Vltava. Legend tells that he did not want to divulge the queen’s secret to the king and was martyred for it. The other end of the bridge ends with the twin Gothic bridge towers of the Lesser Quarter, which have framed a million wonderful photographs taken home by visitors to Prague every year.
A morning walk to the rhythm of jazz
What is the best way to enjoy one of the most beautiful medieval bridges in the world? Get up and set out for the Charles Bridge at dawn when you will have it all to yourself. Together with the first buskers, artists or sellers of charming souvenirs, you will thus get to know the true atmosphere of this Gothic gem which has joined the two banks of the Vltava for more than 650 years.