This weekend was practically like summer in the Golden City, so I decided to head out on a tourist-free sightseeing walk of Prague Castle. My route started at Letná Park, took me past Létohradek Summer Palace, and through the Royal Gardens where I was rewarded with stunning views of Prague Castle. Was I overrun by tourists along the way? Hell no! That’s why I want to share this with you: the chance of seeing Prague and Prague Castle from a unique perspective. This walk will take 1-2 hours depending on your pace, mood, and the number of beers you have along the way.
Letná Park is known for its leafy pathways, breathtaking views and multiple beer gardens. I recommend starting this walk at Letná Beer Garden and enjoying the views or at least grabbing a beer to go. From there head towards the Metronome. Climb up to the top, again for phenomenal views, and take in the space around you which used to be home to the world’s largest Stalin statue. Now, though, you’ll find under the Metronome, Stalin, the newest and coolest alternative cultural center in Prague. This is the place to be for electro dance parties under the stars. It might be hard to leave, but continue on passing Hanavský Pavilion on your left and crossing over the small foot bridge.
Now you’re getting closer and closer to the castle. Take your time though to wander through this mini park: take in the views of the city and Létohradek. To explore Létohradek you will need to exit the park at the street.
There is currently a security check to get into the castle grounds. My secret tip for you: enter at Létohradek because this will be by far the shortest line. I waited all of 30 seconds. Létohradek is a summer renaissance palace that King Ferdinand I built for his wife Anna Jagellonská. Later, the esoterically-inclined Rudolf II built an astronomical observatory here. Continue on here to the Royal Gardens and play hide and go seek with the castle which will be peeking out at you at every bend and turn.
It had been a long time since I had wandered around the Royal Gardens and I have to say that I was in awe. When you take your time, you will be rewarded with a lot of hidden nooks and crannies. The Míčovna (Ball Room) is worth a look too – a beautiful renaissance building which, believe it or not, was used to play various games with…balls. Medieval dodge ball, anyone? Take a seat near the fountain and get lost in the intricate sgraffito adorning its walls. A few steps further and you’ll get your most up close and personal look of Prague Castle yet. And guess what? There will be very few tourists bumping elbows with you.
At this point, it’s up to you. Exit the Royal Gardens and merge with the tourist masses for an even closer look of Prague Castle. Or why not just head back to Letná Park and get lost in its many beer gardens? The choice is yours!