ASTRONOMICAL CLOCK (PRAŽSKÝ ORLOJ)

Monuments
Staroměstské Náměstí 1/3
  Prague
Czech Republic

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Petit Futé's opinion on ASTRONOMICAL CLOCK (PRAŽSKÝ ORLOJ)

Vintage plate 2020

You can't escape it. An old and complex mechanism, a show every hour, and it also gives the date!

Looking for a good crowd bath? There is no escape: in Prague there is the Charles Bridge, and the Astronomical Clock of the City Hall. Every hour, a dense and compact crowd gathers, mobile or camera in hand, to immortalize the setting in motion of this clock animated by a crowd of characters powered by a 600-year-old mechanism. This original mechanism operates skits: the 12 apostles march through the central window, while Death shakes his hourglass, the Miser (once a Jewish merchant, but fortunately the figure was modified after the Second World War) shakes his purse and the Vanity tilts his mirror. As for the Turk, who represents the infidels, he would refuse with a head movement to follow Death... These figures are recent since they date from 1948 and replace those destroyed by the Nazis in 1945. Frankly, it's not very spectacular, but it's a bit of a must during a visit to Prague. The central dial indicates, thanks to three hands, the position of the sun, the moon, the planets and still... the time. All this according to medieval cosmology.

The astronomical clock is composed of two distinct parts that allow it to be read. In the upper half are gathered the characters who attract attention, while in the lower part we can read the seasons and months of the year as well as the saint of the day. A large central dial still gives the time, but it must be admitted that it is very difficult to read it since the hands also give the position of the moon and the sun. To put it simply: thirteen lines divide two orange parts, the one at the bottom of which symbolizes the day. The thirteen lines thus divide each day into 12 periods. The sun running on the rings around it does not take the same amount of time to turn around the hours in summer or winter, which allows it to adapt to sunrise and sunset. The moon is also mobile and makes it possible to identify the different lunar phases. The set therefore assumes many graduations and series of numbers among which only habitus or specialists can find themselves.

It was the master watchmaker Hanus who created this magnificent technical masterpiece in 1490, based on a first clock designed in 1410, so that the feat could not be repeated in another city, it is said that the municipality of Prague blinded the unfortunate craftsman. It was therefore impossible for him to share his knowledge and experience with other City Halls. While Hanus took care of the technical part, puppets and their movements were only added in the 16th century. As the whole building was burned down by the Germans at the end of the war, the ones you admire today were replaced in 1948.

A little advice if you are agoraphobic: meet twenty minutes before the one-hour stop at the café of the Grand Hotel in Prague, located just in front of the astronomical clock. The coffee's bay windows overlook the astronomical clock and so you won't miss a single moment of the show, sitting comfortably in front of a coffee and a pastry shop! Or you can choose to spend the evening, since the clock runs until 11pm, but the details of the characters will obviously be less easy to identify.

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Opening time and information on ASTRONOMICAL CLOCK (PRAŽSKÝ ORLOJ)

Become animated at each hour with the procession of the figurines. Every day between 9am and 11pm.

Members' reviews on ASTRONOMICAL CLOCK (PRAŽSKÝ ORLOJ)

General note: 4.3/5
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84 reviews
5/5
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Visited in november 2019
Trés sympa à voir
c'est sympa d'assister chaque heure au show que propose cette horloge , faut arriver un peu plutot pour trouver une place dans la foule
Notice filed on 03/26/2020 
5/5
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Visited in march 2019
horloge de prague
Sublime chef d'oeuvre d’horlogerie, en plein centre ville toutes les heures une machinerie extraordinaire se met en marche. A voir on ne s'en lasse pas
Notice filed on 03/26/2020 
3/5
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Visited in november 2019
a voir
Si vous aimez la foule, allez voir cette attraction.
Sympa à voir mais rien d'exeptionnel
Notice filed on 03/02/2020 
5/5
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Visited in january 2020
vous ne verrez jamais plus autant de monde pour regarder l'heure !
c'est une attraction sur la grand place centrale du vieux Prague. Il vous faudra arriver bien avant l'heure juste où vous ne verrez rien de la gesticulation des automates. Si votre hôtel n'est pas très loin venez tôt !
L’horloge vaut bien ce petit effort ! c'est gratuit !
Notice filed on 03/01/2020 
5/5
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Visited in july 2019
Très belle horloge, on l'a préféré de nuit avec un éclairage parfait
Notice filed on 02/02/2020 
5/5
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Visited in april 2019
ding dang dong
Visite incontournable de l'horloge de Prague avec son cadran et ses 3 aiguilles qui montrent le soleil, la lune et les planétes
Notice filed on 01/31/2020 
4/5
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Visited in march 2019
A visiter absolument !!!
C'est l'un des monuments à voir absolument, aussi bien de l'extérieur que de l'intérieur !!! Depuis le sommet de l'horloge la vue à 360 degrés est magnifique, un super souvenir.
Notice filed on 01/31/2020 
5/5
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Visited in february 2019
Une magnifique ville
Une très belle ville, et cette visite en face de l'horloge astronomique de jour et de nuit, c'était très jolie. Il faut venir tôt le matin pour pouvoir faire des belles photos, car sinon il y a beaucoup des touristes
Notice filed on 01/31/2020 
3/5
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Visited in december 2019
jolie horloge mais qui attire la foule et provoque un énorme bouchon de ce côté de la place.
Notice filed on 12/30/2019 
3/5
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Visited in december 2019
Belle horloge, animations minimales
Un passage obligé, régler bien votre balade pour ne pas perdre du temps à attendre et faire en sorte de passer devant aux heures pile, car les cadrans sont superbes, mais les animations un peu décevantes. Je préfère celle de Strasbourg !
Notice filed on 12/30/2019 
4/5
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Visited in november 2019
L'horloge est magnifique avec tous ces petits détails. La petite scénette avec les automates quand sonne l'heure est amusante pour les enfants.
Notice filed on 11/24/2019 
4/5
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Visited in june 2019
Jolie mais...
L'horloge est très jolie, les apôtres sortent chaque heure pleine. Mais Prague regorge d'autres choses à faire.... Si vous êtes près d'une heure pleine n'hésitez pas à attendre mais attendre spécialement pour ça est inutile, j'ai regretté de l'avoir fait.
Notice filed on 11/04/2019 
5/5
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Visited in july 2019
Monument incontournable de la ville, sur la grande place. Chaque heure, on peut observer le mouvement des automates. A ne pas rater évidemment
Notice filed on 11/01/2019 
4/5
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Visited in march 2019
Beaucoup de monde mais à voir
Bon c’est à voir, car l’horloge est superbe ainsi que l’ensemble de ces mécanismes mais c’est très touristique !!! Donc comprimés par la foule. Je pense qu’il doit y avoir moins de monde tôt le matin
Notice filed on 11/01/2019 
5/5
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Visited in september 2019
Cette horloge est vraiment très belle. Beaucoup de monde aux heures fixes pour la voir s'animer mais elle fait partie des incontournables à faire à Prague !
Notice filed on 10/31/2019 

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