Prague is made for walking. All sights are within walking distance and you don't need a guide. Just follow the Royal Route, Královská cesta, which is a three-kilometer walk. Be sure to wear comfortable shoes because the cobbled Prague pavements are high-heel catchers. And part of the walk goes uphill to reach the castle, so you may decide to do the walk in reverse order, permitting you to walk downhill instead. Schedule at least a full day if you want to include a visit of Prague Castle.
Start: Powder Tower at Na Prikope Street, metro Republiky
Finish: St Vitus Cathedral, tram 22
1. Obecni Dum (Municipal House) is the first thing you see when you exit Metro Station Republiky. Admire the lavishy Art Nouveau-style decorated façade.
Obecni Dum, Prague — Photo courtesy of Marianne Crone
2. The dark tower to the right of the Municipal House is the Powder Tower. The Mayor of the city greeted the new king here on coronation day.
3. Pass under the tower. You are now in Celetna Street. Halfway, on your right side, you will see the House of the Black Madonna, a masterpiece of Cubist architecture. It was built as a small department store, and you'll now find a café in Cubist style on the first floor and Kubista, a shop specializing in Cubists objects, on the ground floor.
4. Celetna ends in Old Town Square. Be sure to arrive here at the hour to watch the spectacle of the Astronomical Clock. The statue in the middle of the square is John Hus, considered to be the first reformer. The square buzzes day and night and is the perfect place to sample Czech beer in one of the outside cafes. Eye-catchers are St. Nicolas Church and Tyn Church.
Astronomical Clock, Prague — Photo courtesy of Marianne Crone
5. Continue on to Malesti Namesti and Karlova Street, crammed with souvenir shops. Look up at the façade of number 178 and you will see a small statue of Libuse who prophesied the foundation of Prague.
6. Charles Bridge is the continuation of Celetna. Have your camera ready because the view of Prague Castle is magnificent.
7. Once you have crossed the bridge, you have reached the Mala Strana district. This is the place where the new King received the keys of the city for the Lord Mayor.
8. Keep right and walk past St. Nicolas Church (the second St. Nicolas Church in Prague).
9. Walk across Malostranske namesti (Square) until you get to Nerudova Street. Turn right into Zamecka and climb Zamecke Schody, the Castle steps that lead to Prague Castle and St. Vitus Cathedral.