Hradčany was built long after Old Town and Lesser Town, but it offers something no other district of Prague can. A major portion of Hradčany consists of Prague Castle, which according to the Internet Guinness Book of Records is the largest castle complex in the world.
Her Majesty’s Cathedral
The Castle, probably founded around 880, covers an area of almost 70,000 m² and is, together with the historic center of Prague, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The entrance to the courtyard of honor includes Castle Square and Park, a Baroque Marian column and a monument to T. G. Masaryk, the first president of the Czechoslovak Republic. However, before you enter the castle area, stop on the south side of the square and enjoy the magnificent view of the sea of rooftops in Lesser Town, Old and New Towns, Petřín and the Vltava River.
Practically no domestic or foreign travel agency leaves out a tour of the Castle and this most-visited of Prague’s landmarks is occasionally bursting at the seams. The mandatory stops especially include St. Vitus Cathedral, Golden Lane, and the Royal Garden with Belvedere or Queen Anne’s Summer Palace and the Singing Fountain.
Hradčany is more than just Prague Castle
Hradčany also includes the noteworthy Archbishop’s Palace, the imposing residence of the archbishops of Prague, and Schwarzenberg Palace, the most beautiful Renaissance palace building in Prague. You can also have a look at it from the inside, where the National Gallery exhibits a collection of Baroque art. You know the House of Canons from the famous Forman film Amadeus – this was the home of W. A. Mozart in the movie. Loretánská Street will lead you to Loreto, an important pilgrimage site, and also to the Premonstratensian monastery at Strahov. Another very impressive place to visit in Hradčany is the picturesque New World Lane.