If you visit the Prague Castle, you should definitely see the view from the ramp at the Castle Square. It is one of the best lookout places in Prague. The Castle Square is the large area in front of the Prague Castle entrance gate. There are several important palaces in various architectural styles there. The square maintained its arrangement from the middle ages.
There is a Marian Column in the middle of the Castle Square. It was made by F. M. Brokoff in 1726 and it allegedly also expresses intercession of Castle District citizens for a son and heir of Emperor Charles VI. You can also see a statue of the first Czechoslovakian president T. G. Masaryk at the Castle Square.
Splendid palaces at the Castle Square
The Archbishop´s Palace at the square is one of the most ostentatiously decorated palaces in the Castle District. It is a seat of Prague´s archbishops since the 16 th century. The Sternberg Palace (No.57/15), standing next to it, belongs to the National Gallery in Prague. Old European art is exhibited there.
On the opposite side of the Castle Square stands the Schwarzenberg Palace (No.185/2), a typical Renaissance building decorated with sgraffitoes. It is one of the largest buildings in the Castle District. Originally an aristocratic residence built in 1563, it is being modified for the National Gallery in Prague at the present time. The Empire Salm Palace (No.186/1) stands next to it.
New Castle Saircase
The Church of Saint Benedict, situated to the right of the Schwarzenberg Palace, belongs to the Carmelite Convent. The City Hall Staircase next to the church leads from the Castle Square to the Nerudova Street. A gateway between the Lesser Town and the Castle District used to stand there in the past. Another staircase, leading from the square to the Lesser Town, starts at the lookout ramp. It is called the New Castle Staircase, as opposed to the Old Castle Staircase on the eastern end of the Prague Castle.
Martinic Palace and other impressive buildings
Another impressive palace at the Castle Square is the Martinic Palace. It was built in Renaissance style in the 16 th century for the imperial vice-regent Borita of Martinic. It is a sort of replica of the Old Royal Palace at the Prague Castle – the Banqueting Hall imitates the Vladislav Hall. It was probably intended as a glorification of the vice-regent.
The Canon´s Residence (No.65/6) is where St. John of Nepomuk reportedly used to live. The Tuscany Palace (No.182/5) closes the Castle Square, standing opposite the Prague Castle. It was built in Baroque manner by J. B. Mathey between 1689 and 1691. Statues by Jan Brokoff decorate it. Tuscan dukes possessed the palace for two centuries since 1718.