prague day 5


On our last full day in Prague we planned to knock a couple more sites off of our list, but mostly just enjoy a leisurely day in what had quickly become one of our favorite cities in the world. A visit to the Old Jewish Quarter revealed a colorful and unsurprisingly tragic history for Jews in Prague. Now only representing 1% of the city’s population, there was once a thriving Jewish community living in Prague and at a time in the early 18th century Jews accounted for about one-fourth of Prague's population. Unfortunately the havocs of WWII left their mark on the community as most Jews were either deported and/or killed by the Nazi Germans during their occupation of the country starting in 1939. The Jewish Quarter is worth a visit for its rich history and architecturally notable Synagogues. Although situated outside of the Old Jewish Quarter, we particularly enjoyed the sight of the Jerusalem Synagogue pictured here; built in 1906 and designed in Moorish Revival form with Art Nouveau decoration. It was an interesting contrast to the Old New Synagogue that we'd seen just minutes before in the Jewish Quarter, the oldest surviving and still-operating medieval synagogue in Europe and one of Prague's first gothic style buildings.


We ended off our city-wide viewpoint tour at Vysherad, a giant park built around and within old fortifications. This area is home to another drop-dead gorgeous cemetery and cathedral, great views of the city, and, whaddaya know, a beer garden. We sketched and read in the company of the warm sunshine before floating gently back through the city as it greeted dusk with the orange glow of streetlights.