|Conceived as a mini version of Paris's Eiffel Tower, the Petrin Lookout Tower (Petřínská rozhledna) was built in 1891 for the Jubilee Exhibition.|
The steel-framework tower is 63.5m tall, which doesn't seem particularly high until you factor in that it sits atop Petrin Hill, which is 318m (1043 feet) high.
Climb the 299 steps to reach the top of the tower and the view over Prague is magnificent; on a clear day it is possible to see the highest peak in the Czech Republic, Snezka, 150km away.
Surrounding Petrin Tower are landscaped gardens, including a sizeable rose garden. This is a calm and pleasant area to stroll around at any time of the year, in contrast to the hustle and bustle of the city below (and the views of Prague are still terrific, even without climbing the tower).
Other attractions at the summit include an observatory (which has a telescope and a museum open to the public), a hall of mirrors, a church, and several cafés. Small entrance fees apply for certain places, but there is no need to pre-book.
Much of the stone used to build the famous historical sights in Prague was quarried out of Petrin Hill. Today this is hidden beneath park and woodland that cover the hillside.
To reach the Lookout Tower and the other Petrin attractions, take the Funicular Railway. This departs from Ujezd street in the Lesser Town (Malá Strana), near Ujezd tram stop.
Other routes to the top: 1. take a 30 minute stroll up Petrin Hill - the climb is steep, but the walk is pleasant, passing through gardens and wooded areas; 2. take tram 22 or 23 to Pohorelec, then walk 10 minutes along Strahovska street; 3. catch a taxi.
Following a visit to the summit, it is worth strolling down to Nebozizek Restaurant, which is located on the side of Petrin Hill.
Alternatively, the funicular makes a halfway stop on its journey up and down Petrin Hill at Nebozizek Restaurant, to make it easy for people who wish to dine there.
Finally, at the base of Petrin Hill, near the funicular terminal, is a well equipped children's playground.
The funicular railway forms part of the Prague public transport network, so a single ticket for travel on trams, buses and the metro is also valid on the funicular. Tickets are available at the funicular terminals: Travel around Prague by public transport.