Prague Choral Meetings
Prague Choral Meetings 2018
Spring Choral Meeting
Summer Choral Meeting
Autumn Choral Meeting
Advent Choral Meeting
Prague Choral Meetings 2017
Prague Choral Meetings 2016
Prague Advent Choral Meeting 2015
Prague Advent Choral Meeting 2014
November 20-23, 2014
Prague Summer Choral Meeting 2014
July 17-20 , 2014
Prague Advent Choral Meeting 2013
November 21-24, 2013
November 22-25, 2012
December 1 - 4, 2011
December 2 - 5, 2010
December 3 - 6, 2009
Prague is the capital and largest city of the Czech Republic. Situated on the River Vltava in central Bohemia, Prague has been the political, cultural, and economic center of the Czech state for over 1100 years. The city proper is home to more than 1.2 million people.
Prague is widely considered to be one of the most beautiful cities in Europe and is among the most visited cities on the continent. Since 1992, the extensive historic centre of Prague has been included in the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites. According to the Guiness World Records, Prague Castle is the largest ancient castle in the world.
Prague is traditionally one of the cultural centers of Europe, hosting many cultural events. Significant cultural institutions: National Theater, Estates Theatre, premiere of Mozart's Don Giovanni was held there, The Rudolfinum (home to the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra), State Opera, National Museum. There are hundreds of concert halls, galleries, cinemas and music clubs in the city.Basic Info
How to get there:
Prague's transport system is incredibly reliable, and covers a very large percentage of the metropolitan area and surrounding outskirts. Using a combination of bus, tram, train, and metro it is possible to get to within a five minute walk of essentially any part of the central city. The public transport infrastructure consists of an integrated transport system of Prague Metro (with 55 stations in total), Prague Tram System (including the "nostalgic tram" no. 91), buses, the Petrín funicular to Petrín Hill.Currency
Currency is the Czech Crown /CZK/. Exchange rate of November 2008: 1 EUR is approx. 24 CZK.
Exchange rates - www.cnb.cz
Money can be exchanged in hotels, exchange offices or banks. However the rate of exchange and charges can differ greatly.
The Czech language is a west slavic language. Older Czechs often speak German or Rusian, for younger people, English is the most popular foreign language.
Just like in most European nations, as well as numerous countries around the world, Christmas is among the biggest and most popular holidays in the Czech Republic. Over the centuries, Czech Christmas traditions, customs and ceremonies have developed into somewhat of a cultural phenomenon.
It is believed, in many European nations, that during long winter nights the powers of the earth, wind and sky fight a fierce battle with demonic creatures. During this time of year the Sun, it seems, has lost the battle. Throughout the entire month of December, folk Christmas traditions are abound with mysterious creatures and characters, all shrouded in hidden symbolism. People often dress up like these characters strolling from house to house and through the dimly lit streets during the evening hours. These characters include:
Barborky (St. Barbara’s Day)
The evening before St. Nicholas Day, December 5, St. Nicholas strolls around the city, accompanied by an Angel and a Devil, visiting children and handing out presents. First, he asks the children whether they have been good and if not, they must promise they will be better next year. In Central Europe, there is no association of this St. Nicholas with the Western character of St. Nicolaus, also known as Santa Claus (like in England, USA, Sweden or elsewhere) who brings presents at Christmas. The St. Nicholas tradition is based on the legend of St. Nicholas, a bishop who lived in the 4th century in Asia Minor and was renowned for his religious life and charity. St. Nicholas gives presents in all Slavic countries. This tradition became very popular and the character of St. Nicholas, dressed in a long coat with a crosier in his hand, is now always accompanied by a devil and an angel, representing the antimony of good and evil.
Christmas tree and Christmas Eve
Christmas trees are usually decorated on Christmas Eve, December 24, or earlier in some families. Nativity scenes are arranged, Christmas presents are wrapped and preparations for Christmas dinner are made. The Czech traditional Christmas dinner consists of fish soup, breaded fried carp fillets and potato salad. As the Christmas menu varies from region to region as well as family to family, there are indeed a whole host of recipes used. Tourists can also enjoy the Czech Christmas atmosphere as most of the restaurants and hotels offer traditional Czech Christmas meals.
The tradition of decorating Christmas trees is not very old in the Czech Republic. Legend has it that the first Christmas tree in Prague was erected for Christmas in 1812 at the Liben Chateau by the director of the Theater of the Estates J. K. Liebich for his guests. Soon after, the Czech aristocracy and wealthy townspeople followed his lead and in the 1840, the tradition of Christmas tree decorating was wide-spread. In the past, trees were decorated with sweets, various folk ornaments made from wood, ginger bread or dough, although nowadays they have mostly been replaced by blown glass and colorful tinsel. However, traditional ornaments made from natural materials are slowly making their comeback including straw ornaments, apples, nuts and the orange fruit of the Chinese lantern plant. Originally, the Christmas tree was hung tip-down, not standing upright. Nowadays, the trees are taken down on the day of the Magi or the following Sunday.
Christmas is a family holiday where no one should stay home alone. That’s why the entire family usually meets at the Christmas dinner table and if someone lives alone, they are invited over by friends or neighbors. The festive dinner is followed by the special moment which children look forward to all year long - unwrapping the presents from under the tree that were left by baby Jesus. To get the presents they wished for, many children write letters to baby Jesus before Christmas. On Christmas Eve, baby Jesus enters each home and leaves presents under the tree. He lights the candles and lights on it and then disappears without being seen just before the Christmas bell rings. Christmas carols are usually sung under the lit Christmas tree. The most famous are: Christ the King is Born (originated in the 15th century), Wanting Him to Fall Asleep (17th century), Merry Feast of Yuletide (late 17th century), Come All Ye Shepherds (from 1847) and Silent Night (originally Austrian from 1818), as well as Czech carols: Pujdem spolu do Betléma (Come Together to Bethlehem), Stojí vrba kosatá, Dej Buh stestí (May God Bless You).
There are numerous special Christmas events organized throughout the city. Exhibitions, concerts in churches and concert halls, advent music festivals, fund raisers, special programs for children - something for everybody. Czech Christmas cannot be complete without the Czech teacher and composer Jan Jakub Ryba’s (1765 - 1815) Christmas Mass with folk and pastoral elements Hey, Master. It is performed in churches throughout the advent season.
Most visited sights
Prague Castle, Prazsky Hrad A castle was established on this site in the 9th century, and a Romanesque palace was erected in the 12th. In the 14th century, under the reign of Charles IV, it was rebuilt in the Gothic style. The final reconstruction of the Royal palace took place under the Jagellons at the end of the 15th century, and at that time the builder Benedikt Rejt added the now-famous Vladislav Hall, also in Gothic style. The castle was enlarged in the 16th century, especially after a big fire in 1541. The Spanish Hall, in a new part of the castle, was added in the reign of Rudolf II, and it took its final form in the time of Empress Maria Theresa, under the direction of the architect M. Pacassi. After World War I the interior and gardens of the castle were renovated by the architect J. Plecnik. Today the Castle is the seat of the President of the Czech Republic, and it serves as the historical and political centre of both city and state.
Charles Bridge (Karluv most) Started in 1357 by Master Otto and completed by Petr Parler, this is the oldest bridge in Prague. The statues and the groups of statues are mostly from the 18th century. Best-known are works by Matthias Braun and Ferdinand Maxmilian Brokof. Altogether 30 statues or sculptural groups line the bridge, 15 on each side. On the right side of the bridge, the Crucifixion scene includes a large 17th century Hebrew inscription, paid for by a rich Jew accused of blasphemy. Midway across the bridge, the oldest statue, cast in bronze in 1683, honours a local martyr St. Jan of Nepomuk.The bridge is 515 metres long and 10 metres wide.
Josefov - Prague Jewish Town Dates to the 13th century but its presents appearance is mainly the result of a vast redevelopment action undertaken between 1893-1913. Only a few most sifnificant buildings were saved, the living testimony of the history of Prague Jews which lasted for many centuries. Yet these buildings form the best preserved complex of Jewish historical monuments in the whole Europe (The following sights are open to the public: Old-New Synagogue, Old Jewish Cemetery, Pinkas Synagogue, Maisel Synagogue, Klaus Synagogue, Spanish Synagogue).
The Old Town Hall with the Astronomical Clock The Town Hall was founded in 1338. In 1364 the tower was joined to the chapel, and in 1470 the Town Hall was refurbished in Gothic style. The clock dates from the beginning of the 15th century; on the hour, a procession of the Twelve Apostles appears the window in the upper part. In the lower part are 12 medallions with the signs of the zodiac, created by Josef Manes (1865). The eastern wing of the Town Hall was destroyed on May 8, 1945, and has not been rebuilt yet.
Bambino - Infant Jesus Infant Jesus of Prague (Czech Prazske Jezulatko) is a famous statue of infant Jesus located in the Church of Our Lady Victorious in Malá Strana, Prague. Its history started in the beginning of the 17th century when a statue of the Infant Jesus was brought into Bohemia by a Spanish Princess. This princess had been given the statue as a wedding gift by her mother, Maria Manriquez de Lara of Spain, and the statue eventually was given to the Discalced Carmelites in Prague. The statue was set up in the oratory of the monastery, and twice a day, special devotions to Jesus were performed before it.
What are the opening hours of Prague stores? Most stores open between 9 and 10 a.m. and close between 6 and 7 p.m. There is usually no lunch break. Stores in the historical center are also open during the weekend.
Do Prague stores and restaurants accept the Euro? The Czech Republic is part of the European Union, but local currency is czech crown - ceska koruna. Some shops, restaurants and hotels accept payments in Euro.
What are some typical things to buy in Prague? The most typical handicrafts are glass, crystal, porcelain and ceramics. Stores selling this type of merchandise can be found everywhere in the city center. If you like Czech music, you can buy a CD of alocal edition of classical music. If you want to take home a gastronomic souvenir, there are the spa wafers from Karlovy Vary that come in a box, or you can taste them fresh and warm on the streets. There is also the typical Czech liquor (also from Karlovy Vary) called Becherovka.
Eat & Drink
Prague offer of hospitality is abundant. There are restaurants of different price categories here, with international cuisine, with all kinds of national cuisine, as well as restaurants specialized in fish, venison, vegetarian, kosher dishes, etc. At one’s disposal, there are wine-bars, beer halls, coffee lounges, internet cafés, confectioneries, tea-rooms and night-clubs with entertaining programmes. Culture and style of catering are always interesting in a foreign country. Therefore, the first place in the offer is represented by restaurants with Czech cuisine, which is highly appreciated by a majority of visitors.
A good dinner must be accompanied by the Czech national drink - beer, first and foremost worldwide known Pilsner beer, brewed in Plzen, the city in the Western Bohemia. But many other excellent light and dark beers also figure in the offer - Budvar, Radegast, Gambrinus, Smíchovské, Kozel, Bernard, Krusovice and tens of other brands. Some beerhouses brew their own beer and it is possible to order an excursion to a brewery.The selection of delicious Czech and namely Moravian wines is abundant as well. Men like to visit picturesque beerhouses, whereas women indulge themselves in neat confectioneries with a rich selection of sweet desserts and good coffee, but both agree on one of stylish wine cellars.
The main meal is usually dinner served at midday time or supper, which is served most often from 6 to 8 p.m. The day activity begins earlier then in the most of other European countries, but the development of tourism brings a progressive adaptation to custom practices in other countries. Smoking is allowed only in places, where there are ashtrays on tables.Waiters are tipped at the moment of payment and the service charge is set by rounding the paid sum and reflects the client’s satisfaction (at average ca 10 %). In the best-known and luxurious restaurants, the seat reservation is recommended, especially in the evening.
As it is usual also in other countries, the prices in restaurants differ - it depends on type, standard or locality of the catering establishment. The price of a menu usually ranges from 200 CZK to 500 CZK, in choice restaurants it generally exceeds 1 000 CZK.
From an enormous number of restaurants, beerhouses, coffee lounges, wine-bars, and tea-rooms being at present available in Prague, we present at least some selected establishments, according to the type of their special cuisine.
How does the city transport in Prague operate?
Ticket with limited transfer options 18,- Kc
The prices may be increased during the year.
These tickets are valid for all the city transport facilities and allow changes.
No transportation in Prague is included in the basic services. We feel it is very important to start your stay in Prague in the most comfortable way and would therefore like to offer you our transfer service from Prague airport or any railway station to your chosen accommodation. We provide safe and friendly service with English speaking drivers. Mostly you could be arriving by plane to the airport or by train to the railway station.
There are two international railway stations in Prague - Prague Hlavni nadrazi (Main railway station) and Prague Holesovice which are both near to the city center. Our driver and your guide will greet you at the time of your arrival at the platform of the station.
Prague airport Ruzyne is situated approx 16 km (10 miles) west from Prague city center. Our driver and your guide will greet you in front of the exit from the terminal gate inside of the arrival hall.
Transfer outside city
We also offer a transportation service to all towns in the Czech Republic.
Normally, your choosen package includes half day dightseeing of Prague /without entrance fees/
We are happy to offer you following additional options for your free time in Prague:
or dinner onboard a ship and a small cruise on the Vltava River - 2
of Black Light Theatre Image