Novy Svet – Our Favorite Street in Prague

Hidden away in the popular Castle neighborhood, Novy Svet was our favorite street in Prague.

Prior to our trip to Prague, I’d happened across a review on Fodor’s recommending visitors seek out Novy Svet. A captivating description of the charms of Novy Svet – “picturesque, winding little alley, home to castle workers and poor tradesmen” – was all it took to get it on the list.

Prague is a very walkable city, and we felt fortunate to have an entire day to wander on foot. We spent the first part of our morning in Old Town, crossed the famous Charles Bridge, and headed up the hill toward Hradcany, the Castle District.


View of Castle (said to be the largest in the world) with Charles Bridge to the left

Overshadowed by the more stately residences of Hradcany, many of which now house diplomatic residences and embassies, and dwarfed by the enormous Castle itself, Novy Svet turned out to be our favorite little street in Prague.

novy svet

Passing the lovely Loreta and the Zahrada (“paradise”) gardens of the Wallenstein palace, the entrance to Novy Svet is unassuming.

novy svet

Entering Novy Svet

Novy Svet, literally “New World” in Czech, is a tiny, quiet street lined on one side by a high wall. The quarter by the same name was founded as one of the three original towns of Prague, after Old Town and the Lesser Town (Mala Strana), in 1320. Nowadays, artists and writers live here with their families in houses that appear to be untouched since they were rebuilt after a fire in the 18th century.

I was fascinated by the doors of Novy Svet. Each had amazing period detail. Later, I learned that the houses were descriptively named: At the Golden Griffin, At the Golden Plough, At the Golden Grape, At the White Lion, At the Golden Pear.

Beyond the wall lies a “secret” playground, open during warmer months. Aren’t you tempted to try its door?

novy svet

Tips: Our short little walk through Novy Svet was part of a magical, romantic day we spent in the Hradcany District. Most visitors spend time at the Castle and government buildings, the Loreto, and the Wallenstein palace gardens. We’re happy we chose this glimpse of history instead. To get to Novy Svet, you can walk across the Charles Bridge from Old Town as we did. Just be aware this is a bit of a hike. Or take the tram #22 from subway stop Malostranska (Line A).

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  1. says

    Novy Svet is becoming more and more recognized, in large part due to an increasing number of online descriptions. It’s still just as quiet, especially early mornings or late afternoons to evenings – the best time of the day to come down and have a look. Because of the Habsburgs among others, it’s not surprising that this tiny avenue is called ‘Neuwelt Gasse’ in German. Thanks for writing about this beautiful part of the Castle District, and for linking to my “I love you” post to Prague! 🙂
    Henry | @fotoeins has an awesome blog post here: Germany’s urban G-E-M-S: BerlinMy Profile

    • Betsy Wuebker says

      Aloha Henry and welcome to PassingThru! We had far too short a time in Prague, and it’s because of the mood in Novy Svet that it’s on our list to return. So happy to know we have a kindred spirit with another Prague lover! Thank you for visiting and commenting. 🙂

    • Betsy Wuebker says

      Aloha Nat and welcome to PassingThru! Thank you so much, yes, there is so much wonderful to Prague. Great food, friendly folks, and good beer! 🙂

    • Betsy Wuebker says

      Hi Lis – yes, these were taken in January on our way to the Winter Olympics in Sochi. We loved Prague, but like you, wonder about returning in the summer months. Perhaps In spring or fall for warmer temps.

    • Betsy Wuebker says

      Aloha Suzanne and welcome to PassingThru! Yes, Prague had long been on our list and we were smitten in short order. You’re right, each door must have a fascinating story. It would be fun to interview the homeowners to find out, wouldn’t it? A reason to return!