The Klementinum and Strahov Monastery Library are two beautiful libraries in Prague that you’ve got to see. The first time I laid my eyes on them – boy, I had sheer goosebumps! From the floor to the walls and the ceilings, everything seems to scream beauty, art, and grandeur. The bookshelves are stacked with books written and published from centuries ago. They are truly magnificent! Both libraries are on the same building and are a few steps from each other.
If you really want a full experience of the two libraries, you must book ahead. By booking ahead, you will be able to join the tour that gets you to walk in and around these libraries. You will be able to see the books up close and personal and, perhaps, your photos will be much better than I have below. It will be a bit more expensive, of course, but the thrill and the experience of being there inside should be priceless. Can’t join the tour? Don’t worry. You can still get to buy a general admission ticket, but your viewing is only limited by peeking from/through the doors.
This is the Klementinum Library. It is the first one you will see after the attendants checked your tickets.
And as you can see, it is a Baroque Library. Everything here is intact for centuries.
Since the 17th century, the library has amassed 20,000 books that are mostly on theology.
Can you see the balconies above the tall bookshelves in this room?
This library is also called the Theological Hall.
It has 200,000 volumes of books, maps, manuscripts, etc.
One of the most visible things here is the presence of massive astronomical globes. The Jesuits handcrafted them, and as you can see, their artistic value is undeniable.
Look up to the ceilings of both libraries and the incredible frescoes will never fail to make you gasp!
If you look closer, the frescoes have mix paintings related to science, religion, and Jesuit Saints.
At the Library Hall, you’ll find a display of a Romanesque Gospel.
The interiors of both libraries have delicate designs of wood carvings that will blow your mind away.
Don’t miss looking at the displays at the main hall that connects the two libraries. You’ll find interesting stuff that is worth telling a story.
And when you’re done, go to the nearby church. Then, walk all the way down to the city cente. The views of Prague will dazzle you.
I stayed at Cosmopole Hostel in a busy area where public transport to and from the train station is just a few steps from the door. The Old Town is around 20 minutes walk, passing by some of the city’s unique architecture. The hostel is surrounded by shops and cafes that are even late at night. The rooms are quite small, but with only four people in it, you can still move around comfortably. Be aware that Prague is pretty expensive, so finding cheap accommodation can be a challenge. It’s also super touristy here, the earlier you book, the better you have the chance to get a bed space.
These hostels are in the center of the Old Town: SafeStay Prague and Hostel Homer. If you can afford, the Corinthia Hotel Prague is for you.