Charles Bridge (Karlův Most)

Probably the most iconic place in Prague is the Charles Bridge. Built in the 14th century, it’s still an impressive site. I can’t imagine what it must have been like coming from the countryside on your horse drawn carriage, seeing this massive, beautiful bridge leading up to the castle on the hill.

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The Charles Bridge, or Karlův Most in Czech, spans the Vltava River and connects the Old Town with Malá Strana. Although it’s packed with tourists most of the time, it’s so beautiful and there’s so much to see, you almost don’t even notice. Aside from great people watching, there are street performers, artists selling their work and musicians.

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Here’s a video of the band above as well as another musician.

There are 30 statues “protecting” the bridge.

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According to lore, if you rub the plaque on the statue of Saint John of Nepomuk with your right hand, it will bring you good luck and you will return to Prague. Worked for me when I rubbed it 10 years ago!

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The plaque is actually of a man being thrown off the Charles Bridge. Those ancient Czechs were brutal!

On the castle side, the bridge ends right at the base of the street leading up to the Prague Castle. When I studied abroad and my parents came to visit, we stayed at a wonderful boutique hotel just steps from Charles Bridge.

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The best street performers were actually situated right here.

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Jillian and I stood for a long time trying to figure it out. Our final hypothesis: the arms are fake and attached to a steel rod. The top “arm” is attached to a ledge upon which the man sits and the bottom “arm” is attached to another steel rod and platform that the bottom guy sits on, supporting the whole thing. Still, really impressive!

I crossed the bridge many times over the month and each time, I was in awe looking out over the sides…

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…or up towards the bridge from either side of the river.

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