Prague, Jindrisska Street With Trams And Tower


Prague, Jindrisska Street With Trams

Saint Henry Tower (Jindřišská věž in Czech) is a 65 metres (213 feet) high belfry of the Church of Saint Henry (Svatý Jindřich, see Henry = Jindřich, of Henry or Henry’s = Jindřišská :) on Senovážné Square and at the beginning of Jindřišská street (which literally means Saint Henry Street).

And it’s the sky again that caught my eye (also see this post). A beautiful red sky in the evening. (No Photoshop or any other colour enhancing! I think yo can tell the pic is pretty raw as it came out from my camera).

Feeling stressed, dreary or generally worn out by everyday hassle? Find a sec, stop for a while and just look up at the sky!

There’s a fairly good chance what you’ll see will make you feel better and improve your mood instantly. (Given it’s not a starless night or a middle of a blizzard, of course :)

The one look at the clouds and infinite skies will make your problems look insignificant, reminding you we’re all on this huge rock that is just whizzing through the endless Universe and therefore there’s no need to worry about the “small” Earthy stuff. At least it works for me that way sometimes and I always marvel at the beauty of clouds, sunsets, flocks of birds or what have you.

But hey, that’s just me. If you have a different mood picker-uppers during the day, just let me know in the comments. :-) Thank you!

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Another view of Jindrisska street.

Now back to some historical facts for those of you interested:

The church of St Henry does have its own steeple (46 metres high). However, when it was built, it was clear that its walls were not strong enough to suspend heavy bells. Therefore it was decided to build a detached bell tower, which we today know as Saint Henry Tower. The foundation of this tower was laid in the time of King Wenceslas IV, but the building works were interrupted during the Hussite wars. Its construction was completed under the rule of Vladislav II. The belfry then became the pride of New Town.

Across the centuries the tower saw many adversities including the weather and enemy bombing. The tower in all its grandiosity was an easy target. Bells suffered during wars not least because they represented an easy supply of metal. In fact every bell in Prague were confiscated except for the bell known as Marie here on Saint Henry Tower.

The bell tower steadily deteriorated and in 20th century its use was minimal. In the mid-1990s the Henry Tower Society Ltd. entered the scene, and acquired a long-term lease of the tower on the condition that the former belfry will be accessible to citizens and visitors of Prague. A self-supporting iron-concrete construction was built inside the tower. This tower within a tower is equipped with air-conditioning, lighting and a high-speed lift. On its ten floors there are coffee shops, restaurants and sanitary facilities. The restored historical bell Marie is a part of today’s restaurant Zvonice. On the 10th floor, (the highest) under the ancient roof, is an exceptionally beautiful observatory. A chime made of ten bells and created by bell founder Petr Rudolf Manoušek is also housed here. This chime has in its program hundreds of different melodies. It is possible to play it through a fingerboard or manually. At the end of March 2003 the tower clock started to work again. The clock has four mechanisms. Every clock-face has its own mechanism and they are synchronized together by computer.

The highest detached belfry in Prague was made accessible to the public on 7th December 2002.

The tower is open daily for the tour from 9am to 6pm. It is very central being located at the end of Jindrisska street which is itself just one tram stop from Wenceslas Square. Alternatively one can easily walk there passing the magnificent Post Office along the  way as well as the breathtakingly beautiful New Jewish Synagogue which is just a few yards  from the tower along a pretty side street. For a tower experience with a difference this is one worthwhile and very fulfilling stop during your stay in Prague.

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