The history of Prague begins with the Castle, founded in the 9th century by Prince Borivoj. Its commanding position high above the river Vltana soon made it the center of the lands ruled by the Premyslids.
The buildings enclosed by the Castle walls included a palace, three churches and a monastery. After a fire in 1541, the badly damaged buildings were rebuilt in Renaissance style and the castle enjoyed its cultural heyday under Rudolph II. Since 1918 it has been the seat of the Republic.
Little Quarter is the part of Prague least affected by recent history. The quarter is rich in splendid Baroque palaces and old houses with attractive signs. Founded in 1257, it is built on the slopes below the Castle hill with magnificent views across the river to the Old Town Hall. The center of the Little Quarter has always been Little Quarter Square, dominated by the Church of St. Nicholas. The Grand Priorís millwheel at Kampa Island still turns, pilgrims still kneel before the Holy Infant of Prague in the Church of Our Lady Victorious, and music rings out from churches and palaces as it did when Mozart stayed here.
The religious buildings of Prague vividly record the cityís changing architectural styles, and many are treasure houses of religious art. Prague also boasts an amazing number of palaces and gardens, spanning centuries. Comparatively, few palaces were lost to the ravages of war. Instead, they tended to evolve in style during renovation, enlargement or restoration.
Prague will amaze you like no other city.