Stromovka is the largest park in Prague and the ideal spot to while away a sunny afternoon. Be Czech with the Czechs and come here on a Sunday to stroll or cycle along leafy paths. No need to bring any food because charming beer gardens in the park are the best place to drink tasty Czech beer. Next to the entrance of Stromovka Park you will find the exhibition hall Vystaviště, a fairground with a fun fair and trade fair, the planetarium, Sea World and the Tesla Arena with concerts and hockey games, the Czech national sport.
7 Highlights in Stromovka Park
1. Walking, biking and age-old trees
Stromovka park known for its many trees and grassy fields is located to the north of the Holesovice neighborhood in Prague. Once the hunting grounds of the castle residents, now a haven for joggers, walkers and cyclists. The park is popular with young mothers, grandfathers and grandmothers who come with the kids to feed the ducks in the pond.
2. Walk to Troja Castle and the Zoo
Troja castle and the Zoo are a walkable distance away on the other side of the Vltava River. Follow the marked footpath, go under the railway bridge to Cisarsky Ostrov, the Imperial Island, a rather messy island with an equestrian centre and some businesses. The path leads on to Prague Zoo and Troja Castle. This is a truly surprising country walk and you would not think you are in the middle of Prague.
3. Stromovka Park and 3 Playgrounds for children
Vozova Playgound is on the south side of the Park near the planetarium you will find besides the playground also Vozovna Restaurant, The a playground has climbing frames, swings and balance beams. The big attraction is the two-carriage tram with musical instruments. Children can climb onto and into this play train and play conductor or they can wriggle through a tunnel to move to another carriage and check out the view through a telescope or communicate through pipes. For the tiny tots lots of sand to build castles.
U Stoly playground is usually less busy than the Vozovna one. There are swings, slides, monkey gym, sandbox, and a merry-go-round.
The Kastanek playground is located in the south of Stromovka park on Nad Kralovskou Oborou street, and has been here since the 1960s. The equipment is the work of two sculptors Eva Kmentová and Olbram Zoubek. Together they designed the concrete climbing frames. Kastanek’s equipment is made of not very child-friendly material, but it is aesthetically pleasing.
4. Prague Planetarium
The Prague Planetarium, with a 23 m high projection dome with a surface area of 843 m2, is one of the largest in the world. The stars are projected onto the ceiling above the visitors, opto-mechanical and digital systems create a perfect illusion of outer space.
Observatories and planetariums are not the same thing! At an observatory, you can view the actual sky with the help of a telescope. This can be done at the Stefanik Observatory on Petrin Hill.
5. Restaurant Šlechtova
The Šlechtova restaurant was built in the seventeenth century as the Royal Hall. At the end of the nineteenth century it became a restaurant. The last tenant was Václav Šlechta’s family, who ran the restaurant of the same name until World War II began. After the war, the restaurant was nationalized and fell into disrepair and closed in the 1960s. Two fires, a flood and neglect made the building unusable. Restoration started in 2017. It is scheduled to reopen in 2022.
6. Fitness and workout in the fresh air
Fitness equipment where you can exercise arms, back, and legs, and there are also strength ladders, and balance bars and a pulley and tripod workouts. Drinking fountains are near the children’s playground as are the toilets.
7. Picnic and Barbecue
A few minutes’ walk from the tram stop, you will find a picnic barbecue area. There are two electric grills, a sitting area with tables and benches and a drinking fountain. You can either bring your own barbecue equipment or rent it from the nearby Bistro NO.2 and buy ingredients for grilling. Booking via Park BBQ.
This is how it works:
1. book a date and time
2. you receive an SMS with payment instructions
3. after payment you receive an activation code
4. activate the code 30 minutes before the start of your barbecue
5. after sending the activation code, the button on the grill will light up to turn on the grill.
6. you do not have to monitor the temperature, because it is maintained automatically.
7. as soon as your reservation expires, the grill will switch itself off.
8. clean the barbecue after usage.
Stromovka Royal Game Preserve
Stromovka Royal Game Reserve was established in the thirteenth century as a hunting preserve. Today’s Governor’s Summer Palace was built on the site of a hunting castle. The heyday of the game preserve was during the reign of Rudolf II (1576-1612)
The original big pond was enlarged and in the middle of it an island was created known today as Oak Hillock. The Rudolf Tunnel supplied the big pond with water from the Vltava River. This tunnel is one kilometre long and runs under Letna Hill.
Today, the Governor’s Summer palace is part of the library of the National Museum.
Stromovka as Public Park
The original royal game preserve was gradually changed into an urban park. In the seventeenth century the Royal Hall was built whose interior was adorned with amazing frescoes. Late eighteenth century it became a restaurant and in 1882 Vaclav Slechta leased the building and his family ran the restaurant for several decades.
Address: Stromovka Park, Next to Výstaviště exhibition grounds, Bubenec, Prague
Public transport: tram 6, 14, 17 Výstaviště stop
Photos: Marianne Crone