Browsing: City Quarters

City Quarters
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The Four Quarters of Prague

Prague, until around 1800, just consisted of 4 separate towns that had 4 town squares, which were all divided by defended walls. Every town had distinctive qualities, that originated from the personalities of the individuals who settled in them initially. These days, most of the charm of Prague endures within the unique spirit of all of its’ towns.

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The Old Town

The Old Town (Staré Město) creation was consummated after the year 1230 by building fortifications around the town area. For two to three centuries, there have been settlements of merchants of Romance origin, of Germans and Jews, surrounding the main Prague market.

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Hradčany and Castle

Hradcany were, as the third town of Prague, founded at the beginning of the 14th century by a Royal Count Berka from Dube. At that time, however, there was already the Prague Castle, formerly called Royal Castle, a historical-political and cultural dominating feature of not only Hradcany and Prague, but of the whole Bohemia, influencing with its significance the whole Central Europe for centuries, whose foundation dates back sometime after 880 A.D.

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Lesser Town (Malá Strana)

The Little Quarter (Mala Strana), originally called the New Town of Prague and later on called The Minor Town of Prague, was founded by the king Pfemysl Otakar II, in the year 1257. However, as early as in the 8th century, there was a market settlement here.

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Josefov

Josefov, formerly Jewish Town, came into being from a settlement of Jewish traders and moneychangers that was adjacent to the ancient ford over Vltava River on the north tip of the “Slavic Flood Island” which extended from a place presently opposite to the National Theater (Narodni divadlo) as far as Kaprova Street in the original riverbed of Vltava.

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The New Town

The New Town (Nové Město) was founded by the emperor Charles IV, in the year 1348. It was the most extensive urbanistic act in Prague and a unique one in the world. In this act, he merged all local settlements from the period of Romanesque style spreading from Těšnov to Vyšehrad and laid the fundamentals of the regulation of the new development which serve up until now without any change.

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Vyšehrad

Vysehrad was founded sometime in the 10th century, undoubtedly later than Prague Castle (Prazsky hrad) had been founded and for centuries it also remained in a position subordinate to Prague Castle.

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Vinohrady

Vinohrady is situated in the administrative and municipal districts of Prague Two, fairly near to the centre of the city. The historical area of Prague’s major train station is located on the margins of Vinohrady.

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Smíchov and Anděl

Smíchov is a residential and industrial area of Prague famous for its shopping mall, brewery, industrial architecture, cinemas, cozy restaurants, bars and nightlife. Smíchov is located on the west bank of the Vltava River. The Staropramen Brewery is located in Smíchov and is a popular place to visit if you are a beer lover.

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Žižkov

This district is named in honour of Jan Žižka, the leader of the Hussite army. It is located southwards of Žižkov Hill, which was the area where the Vitkov Hill Battle occurred, on the 14th July 1420. In this battle, Žižka’s army of peasants decisively beat the troops of the Holy Roman Emperor, Sigismund.

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Karlín

This is surrounded by the Vltava river and Holešovice on the northern side, Žižkov and Vítkov hill on the southern side, New Town on the western side, and Libeň on the eastern side.

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Holešovice

Tucked into a U-bend in the River Vltava, this dense, built-up neighbourhood dates from the late nineteenth-century, but for centuries was an area of fields and meadows. Still today this suburb of Holešovice boasts two huge areas of green: Letná, overlooking the city centre, and, to the north, Stromovka, Prague’s largest public park, bordering the Výstaviště funfair and trade fair grounds. A stroll through the park brings you to the Baroque chateau of Troja

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