Prague's Charles Bridge a romantic sight
Posted on Monday 27 August 2012
in Czech Republic, Romance, Prague
The Czech Republic's capital city of Prague is one of the most historic and important centers in Europe. The city was constructed between the 11th and 18th centuries and stood as one of the centerpieces for medieval culture. Today the influence of the Middle Ages can be seen in the city's architecture and culture, and no one attraction celebrates them both quite like the Charles Bridge.
The Gothic structure was built after the original Judith Bridge collapsed in 1342, and since that time it has withstood wars, floods and foreign invaders. Now it is a must-see for travelers on Prague holidays.
Crossing over the Vltava River, the 510-meter-long bridge connects the "Old Town" and "Lesser Town" sections of Prague. Even after centuries of use, it still serves as the main pedestrian connection between the neighborhoods, and the Charles Bridge is one of the most significant structures in the city.
Statues have lined either side of the bridge since the 17th century. Today mostly replicas remain, with many of the originals on display at nearby museums. The most popular piece is a sculpture of St. John of Nepomuk, a Czech martyr who was thrown off the bridge by King Wenceslas IV. Touching his statue is supposed to bring good luck and guarantee a return to Prague.
Strolling across the bridge at sunrise or sunset provides one of the most beautiful vistas in the city, and it is the perfect cap to romantic getaways in Prague.
Each end of the bridge is guarded by a historic tower. The Old Town side has a tower that was completed in 1380 and was an integral part of the old system of protection in Prague. Visitors can climb the 138 stairs to the top for a stunning view of the surrounding river and neighborhoods.
On the opposite end of the bridge sits the Lesser Town Tower. Guarding a quaint section filled with restaurants, shops and bars, it was built in the 15th century. Inside the tower are exhibits dedicated to the bridge's long history. Also connected to this structure is Judith Tower, the only remaining remnants of the original 12th century bridge.
Prague stands today as one of the world's most stunning cities, and its oldest bridge is one of the capital's most visited sites. With many cheap flights to Prague available, curious travelers have plenty of opportunities to take in this vibrant city for themselves.
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