Wallenstein Palace - an example of secular baroque in Prague


Wallenstein Palace is the largest palace and park complex in Prague. Since 1992, the Czech Senate has been sitting in it. The palace was founded by Duke Albrecht Wallenstein - the generalissimo of the empire, admiral of the fleet.

Wallenstein Palace (Valdštejnský palác) is the largest palace and park complex in Prague, located on Mala Strana. Its dominant feature is a three-story building with two courtyards.

The history of the construction of the Wallenstein Palace

The palace was built for the Duke of Albrecht Wallenstein, Generalissimo of the Empire, Admiral of the Fleet. For this, several private plots, 26 buildings, 6 gardens and a brick factory were purchased. The residence, as conceived by Valentschein, was to overshadow the city of Prague.

The project was developed by Andrea Specz. Nicolo Sebergoni, J.B. Marini, Giovanni Pieroni. The facade was made in the mannerism style, in the interior of the building were used Renaissance and Baroque elements. The palace was built in 1623-30.

The core of the building was the luxurious Knight's Hall on two floors. On his ceiling is the duke himself on a chariot, in the image of Mars. The motifs of the frescoes reflected the motifs of the epic "Aeneid" of Virgil.

The duke's study is decorated with murals depicting the chariot of Apollo and the symbols of the four seasons.

The picturesque decor of the chapel contains scenes of the life of St. Wenceslas (the altar of the palace chapel is considered the oldest in Prague).

The corridors of the building are decorated with plot murals on the themes of Ovid's poems and astrological images.

Wallenstein Garden

The palace garden was modeled on Italian early baroque gardens. Immediately after the entrance, a maze formed by evergreen shrubs opened to visitors.

An artificial stalactite wall with grottoes and an aviary was created in the southern part of the complex, an arched pavilion-gallery Sala terrena, decorated with frescoes by Baccio del Bianco, was built.

Alleys of the garden were decorated with sculptures of Adrien de Vries on mythological themes (now these statues have been replaced with copies - the originals, stolen by Swedish soldiers in 1648, are in Drottningholm Park).

In the western part of the garden are a swimming pool, a conservatory and an exotic bird pavilion.

Until the end of World War II, the palace was a family nest of the Wallenstein family. Then it became the property of the state.

Opening hours

The Senate Exhibition Hall and Trchkovskaya Gallery (entrance - from Wallenstein Square) are open:

November - March: on the first weekend of the month from 10:00 to 16:00,
April, May, October: from 10:00 to 17:00,
June - September: from 10:00 to 18:00.

Open door days are held on May 8 and October 28 from 09:00 to 16:00.

The garden awaits visitors daily from 10:00 to 18:00. Free admission.

You can take pictures in the palace.

From the history of the Wallenstein Palace

The commander-in-chief of the imperial army Albrecht Waldstein realized his desire to have a residence in Prague in 1623-1630. To please his personal ambitions, Waldstein chose a place in close proximity to Prague Castle.

But the owner’s stay in his palace was too short. From the time of the final construction work until his sudden death in 1634, Albrecht Waldstein spent a total of no more than twelve months in the palace.

The construction of the palace was done by Italian architects. Andrea Speczza began construction, and then the work was continued by Nicolo Sebregondi. The new palace was built on the foundations of an old mansion. Albrecht Waldstein bought more than two dozen houses in Malaya Strana to realize his ideas. Almost all of them were demolished to make way for new buildings, but the main palace building relies on the solid foundations of the early Middle Ages.

Palace architecture

The facade of the baroque palace with a length of 60 m overlooks a small area of ​​the Lesser Country, called Waldstein. Above the main entrance there is an image of the Virgin Mary with a baby and expressive sculptural decoration, emphasizing the status of the Wallenstein family.

In the left wing of the palace is an arch leading to the courtyard of the building. Through the same arch you can enter the Wallenstein garden, as a small square courtyard is a passage:

There are magnificent halls in the Wallenstein Palace: Knight's, Mirror, Audience Hall, mythological corridor.

From the side of the gardens, the palace ends with the excellent open hall Sala Terrana, which serves as a concert venue and is accessible to all the museum of frescoes. More than three dozen mythological subjects adorn the walls and ceiling of the pavilion:

The palace buildings stretched from Sala Terrana to the stalactite cave, which completes the southern side of the complex. Also, the north side of the palace ensemble is limited by a wing belonging to the Waldstein Palace.

How to get there

It is most convenient to go to the Wallenstein Palace from Malostranskaya Square along Tomasska Street. It is also convenient to get from the metro station Malostranska, but in this case, it’s better to immediately enter the Waldstein garden through the southern entrance near the station, take a walk in the garden and find yourself in front of the palace terrace. In the corner wall to the right of Sala Terrana, steps lead to the courtyard. Opening hours of the Waldstein complex - from 10.00 to 17.00 or until 18.00, depending on the time of year.

Photo and description

Not far from the metro station "Malostranska" in Prague's Mala Strana district, there is the magnificent Wallenstein Palace, surrounded by the garden of the same name. This garden did not arise spontaneously, but was built according to a clear plan, so it still amazes visitors with the thoughtful arrangement of fountains, alleys and flower beds. You can enter the garden through several walkways, it is considered public, you can walk around it for free. True, this garden is closed for the winter, so those tourists who want to see it should visit it before November.

A favorite attraction of travelers is the search on a specially created stalactite wall for small images of animals - there is a snake, a frog, and so on. Near the wall there is an aviary with live owls, peacocks walk around the garden paths.

Both the garden and the palace were built in the middle of the 17th century for the famous commander and friend of Emperor Ferdinand Albert Waldstein. Today, the palace belongs to the Senate, so you can see the luxurious interior interiors only on weekends. During the tour, guests are shown an impressive two-story Knight's Hall, where a fresco depicting the first owner of the palace, a palace chapel, an audience hall and a lobby decorated using astronomical symbols has been preserved.

They say that the Wallenstein Palace has its own ghost. Some impressionable citizens saw in the garden the ghost of a headless man. According to legend, this is a former herald who used to wake the owner of the palace, for which he paid his head.

Peacocks in the Wallenstein Garden

The true decoration and even pleasure are the peacocks living in the park area. Anyone can feed them.

True, these “little birds” scream so that my hands twitched in surprise and horror when shooting a video)) See for yourself on instagram (you need to scroll through the first photos).