Perhaps every state has its larger or smaller national museum. The Czech one is located in Prague and includes several buildings that are part of it. The main building of the museum in Prague is an undoubtable dominant of the Wenceslas Square that is impossible to miss.
History of the National Museum in Prague
The Neo-Renaissance building on Wenceslas Square, bearing elements of French Classicism, was built in 1885-1890 directly for the needs of the National Museum, led by the architect Josef Schulz. The monumental exterior and interior aims to amaze the visitors and encapture them in the midst of history.
The inception of building a national museum dates back to the beginning of the 19th century of Bohemia. Similarly, as elsewhere in Europe, a group of enlightened noblemen stood at the birth of the idea and they established the Society of the Patriotic Museum for this very purpose. The leading figure of the company was Count KM Sternberg, who, together with other members, founded the National Museum in Prague in 1818. They received confirmation from the then government and the Emperor to build the Museum in 1820. During the first half of the 19th century, the museum resided in various buildings. After 1890 it finally settled in building on Wenceslas Square as its main residence.
Exhibitions & Collections in the National Museum
At present, the museum is present in six buildings. The museum houses permanent exhibitions covering all historical periods of the Czech history, that is very rich. It is worth mentioning, for example, the anthropological exposition, counting a huge amount of skeletal fossils from prehistoric times to the present. Another large exposition is also the osteological exhibition, where you can see, for example, the skeleton of a Blue Whale. The Museums collections are so extensive that enthusiasts of almost every field will find something just for them.
National Museum in Prague closed for reconstruction
Currently, the main building of the museum is closed. From 2011 there is a general reconstruction, which should be completed at the turn of 2018/2019. Expositions of the National Museum are accessible within other building of the National Museum in Prague. You can visit the exhibition in the New Museum building, located on Vinohradská třída No. 1, or you can visit Výstaviště Holešovice, where the museum Lapidarium is located. Other interesting buildings that are part of the National Museum in Prague include Náprstkovo Museum, dedicated to Asian, African and American cultures, located on Bethlehem Square, music lovers will appreciate the Antonín Dvořák Museum in Ke Karlovu Street or the Bedřich Smetana Museum on Novotný lávka. Full list of the buildings along with opening hours can be found on the official website of the National Museum in Prague.
Prague’s National Museum is not too far from our residences with short-term apartments to rent in Prague’s city centre. The main building on Wenceslas Square is within walking distance of 15-25 minutes. Other expositions are conveniently accessible by public transport, which is at a very good level.
Expositions of the National Museum in Prague are very wide and are suitable for visitors of all ages. We recommend visiting to everyone who wants to learn more about the Czech history or see how the mammoth looked like in its full life-size. There is something for everyone, we recommend!