Prague is quite known for its beautiful architecture, which ranges from its Gothic-style churches and cathedrals to the Rococo building of the Kinský Palace. However, it also has something to offer for lovers of the woodlands, parks, and gardens. In fact, this Bohemian capital has over 200 green spaces spread out all over the city, comprising 20% of its total area.
These places are also quite diverse: some are historical gardens, small orchards, expansive woodlands, and large park complexes. Besides offering a place for relaxation, they also host some exciting events like seasonal festivals, exhibitions, and culinary events.
Whether you’re visiting during the genially warm summer months or in autumn with its changing colors, here are seven of the most beautiful parks and gardens in the city that you can enjoy.
Parks and Orchards
Letná Park (Letenské Sady)
Situated up on a hill, this park gives you a breathtaking view of the city, a bird’s eye view of the Vltava River and its bridges, and mesmerizing sights of the Old Town. Besides its gorgeous sights, Letná park also doubles as a beer garden. You can grab a cup of beer for around 50 CZK, find a spot in any of the picnic tables, and just enjoy the day with the view around you.
The park is also a favorite spot for skateboarders, so you may see them racing around the giant metronome known as the Time Machine, which replaced an old monument of Stalin.
Petřín Hill (Petřínské Sady)
Petřín Hill is home to a wide variety of attractions, from its mini Eiffel Tower to its gardens, Mirror Maze, and funicular railway. It’s especially beautiful during springtime when the trees and the gardens are in full bloom. For flower lovers, head over to the Rose Garden at the summit or to the walled flower garden of Květnice, which you can find near the Observatory and Planetarium.
There’s also the Strahov Monastery nearby, which houses a library and a picture gallery for book and art lovers. For those interested in astronomy and natural science, the Štefánik’s Observatory is the place to learn more about the sky with its telescopes, domes, and exhibitions.
Situated on the island between the Vltava River and the Čertovka stream is the picturesque Kampa Park. Because of its unique location, you’re afforded a singular view of the river and the Lesser Town. The place itself is also a sight to behold with its fairytale-like atmosphere emanating from the palaces, ancient houses, little mills, and beautiful bridges.
The southern lawns are often used for cultural events and are favorite spots for picnics. Nearby is the Museum Kampa, which houses a collection of František Kupka’s works on abstract art. For something quirky, check out the alien baby sculptures by David Černý just north of the museum.
Průhonice Park (Průhonický Park)
The Průhonice Park is not only a fine example of European landscape architecture, but it’s also home to an extensive botanical collection with over 1,600 species of flora on its grounds. Located on the southeastern outskirts of the city, this park is a UNESCO Heritage Site since 2012.
Within the park grounds are ponds and lakes as well as backwaters filled with gorgeous wildflowers. Complementing the natural beauty of the place is a former medieval castle towering over the countryside. Because of its picturesque and romantic beauty, it’s been the favorite venue for weddings, and it’s not uncommon to see couples strolling down the walkways.
The park is especially captivating in springtime when the rhododendrons are in full bloom.
Historical and Botanical Gardens
Prague Castle Gardens (Zahrady Pražského Hradu)
Visiting Prague is incomplete without dropping by the stately Prague Castle. The good news is that while here, you’ll also be treated to the cluster of gardens surrounding the famous landmark. The Paradise (Rajská) and On the Ramparts (Na Valech) gardens on the southern part are open to the public and still retain the original 1920s layout.
Along with the lush greenery, you’ll be treated to gorgeous gazebos and sculptural elements, such as the Bull Staircase connecting the courtyard of St. Vitus Cathedral to the garden. Also, be sure to check out the Plečnik pyramid and the Small Belvedere lookout, where you can sit down and simply bask in the sun.
During the summer, there’s a birds of prey exhibit, where you can have the chance to hold a hawk or an owl for 100 Kč.
Wallenstein Garden (Valdštejnská Zahrada)
The fairytale-like Wallenstein Garden is a hidden gem behind the Malostranská metro station. It’s the second-largest garden in the city, behind the Castle Gardens. It boasts architectural elements inspired by Greek and Roman mythology along with its beautifully complex, geometric hedges and gorgeous white peacocks roaming the garden. Upon entering, you’ll be greeted by the magnificent three-arch portico of the Sala Terrena, and on the pond is an island with a statue of Hercules.
For something more intriguing, visit the Dripstone Wall, which looks like a wall of dripping skulls from a distance. A closer look will reveal that it’s simply an assemblage of artificial stalactites, though it doesn’t make it any less disconcerting for some.
Prague Botanical Garden (Botanická Zahrada Praha)
On the hillside of Troja is the Prague Botanical Garden, which holds around 20,000 plant species in approximately 30 hectares. The place has different exhibition areas, like the Japanese meditation garden, Nordic pine groves, and the Ornamental garden with its brightly colored flowers.
The historic St. Clara vineyard, which is one of the oldest and largest in the city, is also located on the garden grounds. You can visit the winery cottage to buy wines made in the traditional way in the cellars below.
Perhaps the most famous attraction of the Botanical Garden is the Fata Morgana glasshouse. This glasshouse is divided into three areas of varying temperatures and humidity to faithfully simulate a lush jungle. Because of this, you can find exotic flowers and plants from different regions in the world, thriving all year long.