Don’t be fooled by the elaborate Baroque façade: St George’s Basilica (in Czech Bazilika sv. Jirí) with its adjoining convent is the best preserved Romanesque church in Prague.
It is also the second oldest church in the city and, if we are to add a record, the oldest church within the Prague Castle complex. The adjacent St. George’s Convent is today home to a section of the Czech National Gallery.
St. George’s Basilica was founded around 920 A.D. by Prince Vratislav I, father of St. Wenceslas; the Benedictine monastery was added as early as 973 and the basilica was enlarged on this occasion. A first major reconstruction took place following the fire of 1142. The interior as we see it today is the result of major renovations in 1887 and 1908.
In 1782, as part of the reforms of Emperor Joseph II, the monastery was stripped of its function; from then on it was used as a barracks for many years.
In the heart of Prague Castle, the basilica and the monastery add art, history and culture to your visit to the city.
Theinterior of St George’s Basilica is austere and monumental, but is mitigated by a Baroque staircase leading to the apse, where you can admire frescoes dating back to the 12th century. There is also a small crypt, which you can catch a glimpse of from the arch under the stairs.
Buried inside the basilica are the Premyslid kings, Prince Boleslav II who died in 997 and Prince Vratislav, the founder of the church who died in 921.
Outside, Adam and Eve, the two marl towers, soar into the Prague sky. Eve, the southern tower, is slimmer than Adam and inclined by about 40 m; both reach a height of 41 m.
The building to the left of the basilica may look ordinary from the outside, but it is the oldest monastery in the Czech Republic. The walls, which once housed a convent of Benedictine nuns, now house a collection of Bohemian works, mostly from the 18th century.
Here you can admire Art Nouveau sculptures by artists Josef Myslbek, Stanislav Sucharda and Bohumil Kafka (the latter is no relation to the famous Prague writer Franz Kafka), portraits by Josef Manés and landscapes by Julius Mařák.
St George’s Basilica and Convent are located within the Prague Castle complex, so you need to buy a ticket to visit them. You can choose between a long and a shorter tour.
A visit to Prague Castle is a must on any visit to Prague! You can spend an entire day visiting historical, official and ecclesiastical palaces, fortifications, gardens and other picturesque places that make up the castle complex. We are sure you will not regret staying there for so long: the atmosphere is magical, like a walk back through the centuries.
For a small surcharge, you can take part in a tour of the castle with a certified professional guide.
If you plan to visit many museums and monuments during your holiday in Prague consider buying a Prague city card, such as the Prague CoolPass or Prague Visitor Pass, tourist cards that allow free or discounted access to more than 60 attractions, including the castle with access to the basilica, and free use of public transport.
Prague CoolPass / Prague Card
Prague Visitor Pass
Prague Digital Pass
|Attractions||Over 70||Over 60||Castle & Astronomical Clock|
|Trasport||Not included||Unlimited||Not included|
|Duration||1 to 6 days||48, 72 and 120 hours||Unlimited|
City Card allow you to save on public transport and / or on the entrances to the main tourist attractions.