Marking Time In Prague

Like all European cities, the Czech capital of Prague has timepieces everywhere.

From clocks on towers…

A clock tower in Prague's Old Town

A clock tower in Prague’s Old Town

… And churches…

This is actually the Cathedral of St. Vitus, inside Prague Castle

This is actually the Cathedral of St. Vitus, inside Prague Castle

… To a giant metronome on a hill above the Old Town.

The metronome in Letná Park

The metronome in Letná Park

Each year there’s one moment in time that, in many ways, has more global significance than most others. The strike of midnight on December 31st, which marks the end of one year and the beginning of another.

A few years ago, Sue read somewhere that Prague was one of the Top 10 places in the World to celebrate New Year. I’m not sure who gave the person writing the list permission to make this bold statement, but we decided to see if there was any truth to the claim.

We actually began the evening by going back in time, at least 500 years back in time, in one of the many restaurants located in a Medieval cellar within the city’s UNESCO World Heritage area.

Down in the Medieval cellar

Down in a Medieval cellar

The was even Medieval entertainment (ignore the rowdy bunch in the background)

The was even Medieval entertainment
(ignore the rowdy bunch in the background)

Looks like these candles have been burning since the Middle Ages!

Looks like these candles have been burning since the Middle Ages

Enjoying the festive cheer!

Enjoying the festive cheer!

But where is the best place to see in the actual New Year? In New York it’s Times Square. In London it’s Trafalgar Square.

I turns out that in Prague, the place to ring in the New Year is in front of the Astronomical Clock on the Old Town Hall.

Prague's Astronomical Clock

Prague’s Astronomical Clock

The Old Town Hall, much of which dates from the 14th Century, is located on Staroměstské náměstí, the Old Town Square.

The Old Town Hall's Tower

The Old Town Hall’s Tower

At the base of the Old Town Hall’s gothic tower is the famed Astronomical Clock. The ancient chronometer was first placed there at the beginning of the 15th Century, but underwent several phases of tinkering before the thumbs up was given to the final version in the mid 16th Century.

Clock and tower

Clock and tower

We arrived in Staroměstské náměstí with plenty of time to look around the stalls before making our way through the huge crowd to a spot right in front of the Astronomical Clock.

Staroměstské náměstí, with the Church of Our Lady Before Týn on the far side

Staroměstské náměstí, with the Church of Our Lady Before Týn on the far side

10... 9... 8...

10… 9… 8…

At midnight, the intricate workings of the clock went through their motions to the accompaniment of fireworks being launched all over the city.

Midnight!

Midnight!

IMG_6524IMG_6534IMG_6530As I said earlier, I’m not sure who gave that writer the authority to compile a Top 10 list of places to spend New Year. But in the case of Prague, they might just be right!

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

This post was inspired by this week’s photo challenge of Time from Lignum Draco of The Daily Post.

Sorry the photos are a little grainy, but they were taken with an older camera.

If you’re the sort of person that loves experiencing history but with a twist on your travels, why not sign up and follow my continuing Journeys here at Jaspa’s Journal (on WordPress or Bloglovin’), or through my website, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr?

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About Jaspa

Star of my own award-winning adventure novels, Jaspa's Journey. Geocaching addict & F1 fan. Adventure Journeyer & blogger extraordinaire. Check out my website: www.jaspasjourney.com And don’t forget to download the books and see what the buzz is all about!
This entry was posted in Europe, History, Jaspa's Journey, Travel, UNESCO World Heritage Site and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Marking Time In Prague

  1. Pingback: Time (Book Reader) | Chris Breebaart Photography / What's (in) the picture?

  2. I remember lovely scenes like this in Prague, thanks for jogging my memory

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