Charles bridge, Karlštejn, Prague castle, these are the usual suspects when it comes to Prague sightseeing. But even Prague locals often find places that genuinely surprise them. This article will focus on less known sights that Prague has to offer.
A place where almost exactly 600 years ago one of the great historical events occured. It’s located in Žižkov – a Prague district named after Jan Žižka. He defended Vítkov hill from the Pope and his crusaders with only a handful of men (and women). It reminds us of a time when real warriors walked our lands and when an underdog had the courage to stand up to those in power. Religious war that followed became ruthless and Jan Žižka himself participated in acts of cruelty. He remains, however, one of the key figures Czech people draw their sense of identity from.
Even though this place is right in the heart of Prague near Malostranská metro station, not so many people know about it. It’s worth going there just to pay respects to one of the most powerful military leaders Bohemia has ever had. Albrecht z Valdštejna was the supreme commander of Habsburg army and he managed to put together such a big military force barely anyone wanted to fight it. The strategy was to keep his soldiers happy, fed and numerous and use them as a negotiation tool to scare away any potential enemies. He took advantage of the infamous execution of Bohemian noblemen in the Old Town Square to enrich himself by seizing their lands. Towards the end of his career he became so powerful, the Emperor had him assassinated.
The oldest male monastery in Czech republic founded in 993 located outside the city centre. The good news is it’s easily accessible by tram 22 and they make their own beer there. In fact, they have done so for nearly thousand years. During the Hussite wars in 1420s (led by Jan Žižka) monastery and the brewery were nearly destroyed and the beer production stopped. During the thirty years‘ war (where Albrecht z Valdštejna took part) monastery underwent baroque renovation. At the time, huge Valdštejn’s army consumed substantial amount of resources, so ordinary people had to improvise and use more flour to make food. Thus the impact of history on Czech cuisine.
In case the relationship between food and history interests you, try Prague Culinary Tour. The name itself indicates this is no ordinary sightseeing tour. Food Walking Tour Prague will show you a few significant historic places. But more importantly, offer variety of local meals to demostrate Prague from culinary point of view.