Abstract Czech Background

Prague Astronomical Clock

The Prague Astronomical Clock, commonly known as the Orloj, is one of the most popular sights in the Czech capital. It is very easy to find, because it is mounted on the Old Town Hall in the magnificent Old Town Square (Staroměstské náměstí). At full hours between 9 AM and 9 PM, you will see there crowds of tourists watching the parade of 12 wooden apostle statues appearing in two windows.

Getting There and Finding the Orloj

Old Town Square, where the Orloj is located, is the very center of the old part of Prague and as such you won't have any problems finding it. If you're visiting Prague as a tourist, it is hard to imagine not visiting that spectacular square. The nearest underground (metro) and tram station is Staroměstská. From there it is just a short walk to Old Town Square, as you can see on the map above. Bus no. 194 stops at Mariánské náměstí, which is a little closer to Old Town Square, but the difference is negligible. Obviously, the metro and trams usually offer more convenient connections and their routes are easier to learn if you're in the city only for a short time. Bus routes are also more likely to change.


The history of the Prague Astronomical Clock dates back to 1410. In that year, the astronomical dial and the mechanical clock (the upper part) were created by Mikuláš of Kadaň and Jan Šindel. The calendar dial with zodiac signs and the sculptures were added probably around 1490.

In the 15th century, this kind of object must have been considered "high-tech". From today's perspective, it is a fascinating combination of medieval scientific knowledge, technical skills and beautiful design.

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