Vyšehrad is the older, majestic companion of Prague Castle situated on the right bank of the Vltava River. The two dominants tower above the city and offer both historical sites and exhibition spaces. Compared to the seat of the Czech president, however, Vyšehrad has a more relaxed atmosphere. Take a walk in its green vegetation where local residents like to spend their leisure time along the small groups of tourists. Come to have a beer with your friends or let off steam with your children.
Old myths and legends
Vyšehrad is a place of old legends and myths. According to ancient mythology, it was a place of refuge of the prince Krok, where his daughter Libuše foretold the future glory of Prague and the gallant horse Šemík later saved his master Horymír from execution.
The oldest surviving archaeological remains date the Vyšehrad settlements back to the third millennium BC. However, there is no scientific evidence that the first Czech statesmen from the popular legends, i.e. the 6-9th century AD, lived in this place. Despite this fact, the popular stories have been always attractive to its visitors.
A place for everyone
Romancing couples will be enchanted with the views and romantic walks. Families can find historic monuments and themed playgrounds in this place. And everyone will like the comfortable seating within the Vyšehrad fortifications and enjoy their beer or lemonade there. You can also visit the permanent exhibition dedicated to Prague fortifications in Cihelná Gate or the current exhibition hosted by the Vyšehrad Gallery.
Unusual experiences and lessons learned
Looking for an adventure? Visit the local casemates – the corridors 1.5 meters wide and 2 meters high in the fortress ramparts, which were used for military purposes. Do you like mysterious cemeteries? Then you shouldn’t miss the one at Vyšehrad – there are many tombstones bearing famous names, including Karel Čapek, Božena Němcová, Karel Hynek Mácha, and Milada Horáková… As if Vyšehrad, the memorial of the Czech national history, extended even here, in the resting place of the important personalities of modern history.
Jump like Šemík
Scenes from Chronica Boëmorum by Cosmas of Prague in the playground, remembered by many Czechs thanks to the Old Czech Legends written by Alois Jirasek, will delight both children and their parents. There is Bivoj with a boar on his back, the sisters Kazi, Teta and Libuše (with her husband Přemysl Oráč), the forefather Čech, and the brave Horymír – you can even “try” his leap into the river on horseback.
How to get there
Ideally by underground. Take the red C line to Vyšehrad, and walk to the area outside the fortification walls to Táborská Gate and Leopoldova Gate. If you go by bus or tram, take off at Výtoň or Albertov, and hike up the hill to Cihelná Gate. The premises are open from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. (November-March) or to 6 p.m. (April-October). Free movement of dogs and riding bikes or in-line skates is prohibited in most of the area of the National Cultural Monument of Vyšehrad.
Want to know more? Take part in a guided tour that will take you to all the secluded places of Vyšehrad to learn about the old legends associated with them.