The Bridges of Prague

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Located on the banks of Vltava River, the historic city of Prague and the capital of Czech Republic is said to be one of Europe’s best preserved cities. Practically untouched by the devastating wars of the 20th century, Prague has retained many of its historic buildings, castles, cathedrals, towers and bridges, which for the last thousand years, has been the shinning example of Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque architecture.

Prague is known as the “city of hundred spires” for its many gold-tipped towers and medieval church spires that puncture the skyline, but you may as well call it the city of hundred bridges. According to Prague.net, there are over three hundred bridges in the city. Eighteen of them span across river Vltava, and hundreds of other lead over many smaller rivers and brooks, and valleys.

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Bridges over Vltava River in Prague. Photo credit: Miroslav Petrasko/Flickr

The most famous is the Charles bridge, which began construction in 1357 under the auspices of King Charles IV, and completed in the beginning of the 15th century. But it wasn’t known as Charles Bridge until 1841. It was originally called the Stone Bridge or the Prague Bridge. The bridge replaced the old Judith Bridge built 1158–1172 that had been badly damaged by a flood in 1342. For more than 450 years, until 1841, it was the only bridge connecting both banks of Vltava. Today the bridge has its own museum.

Also see: Hamburg, the City of Bridges

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Charles Bridge. Photo credit: chris.chabot/Flickr

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Charles Bridge. Photo credit: Miroslav Petrasko/Flickr

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Charles Bridge. Photo credit: torbus/Flickr

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Charles Bridge. Photo credit: Moyan Brenn/Flickr

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Charles Bridge. Photo credit: Miroslav Petrasko/Flickr

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Charles Bridge from top of the Bridge Tower. Photo credit: Florin Draghici/Flickr

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The Legion Bridge is a granite bridge between the National Theatre and Újezd. From the bridge you can get to Střelecký Island, an island in the middle of the Vltava river at this place. Photo credit: Dave Putz/Connie Sieh/Flickr

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The Mánes Bridge, named after the Czech painter Josef Mánes whose statue is by the Rudolfinum, joins the Lesser Quarter and the Old Town. Photo credit: Guillaume Speurt/Flickr

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The Railway Bridge at Výtoň right under Vyšehrad doesn’t have an official name but is sometimes called the "Vyšehrad Bridge". Photo credit: Christian Bredfeldt/Flickr

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The Palacký Bridge is the third oldest still functioning bridge in Prague, built in 1876 during the industrial boom at Smíchov. Photo credit: Waymarking

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The Svatopluk Čech Bridge connects the districts Holešovice with the Old Town. At 169 meters it is the shortest bridge in Prague. Photo credit: Brian Snelson/Flickr

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The Troja Bridge is the youngest and the most modern bridge in Prague, completer in 2014. The bridge serves tram and car traffic and has walkways for pedestrians and cycle paths on both sides. Photo credit: Petr Chudoba/Panoramio

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The Troja Bridge. Photo credit: www.bauforumstahl.de

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Photo credit: Sylke Ibach/Flickr

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Photo credit: Deepak/Flickr

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Photo credit: www.private-prague-guide.com

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