The Clementinum – Historic Buildings in Prague

Image of the Mirror Chapel in the Clementinum

The history of the Klementinum, a massive complex of historic buildings goes back to the 11th century and the Chapel of St Clement. Nearby was a Dominican monastery which was later taken over by the Jesuits in the 16th century. The Jesuits brought with them a vast library and starting acquiring the surrounding buildings which make up todays complex. It now houses Prague’s National Library with it’s beautiful Baroque interior, an observertory where famous astronomers such as Kepplar worked, and two chapels.

Image of view from Klementinum astronomical tower
You can only view the interior of some of the buildings via the Astronomical Tower tour or by attending a concert. The Astronomical Tower tour will take you all the way to the top of the tower where you’ll get a panoramic view of Prague city. It is worth a visit but like all old towers, the steps are steep and narrow. Although there is a lift to get to higher floors, the final climb up an 87 step steep ladder is not for those with unsteady legs or fear of heights.

Entry into the Mirror Chapel is only possible if you attend a concert. The Dvorak Symphony Orchestra (Chamber) plays at the Klementinum (and also at the Municipal House) and concerts are held almost everyday at 6pm and last for 1 hour.

Members of the Dvorak Symphony Orchestra playing Eine Kleine Nachtmusik by Mozart at the Mirror Chapel.

Getting to the Klementinum is quite easy if you get your bearings right and know exactly where to head to. In fact you’ll pass the Klementinum on your way to Charles Bridge probably without even knowing it. However, as the complex is quite large and there aren’t many signs around, here’s a map of the entry points and tower location.

Klementinum Tour

Timing : Every half hour from 10 am- 4.30 pm.
Duration : 45-60 minutes
Price : 220 CZK (approx US$8 or 8 Euros)
Entry points : From Krizovnicke Square, Karlova street or Marianske Square

Mirror Chapel Concerts

Time : 6pm
Duration : 65 minutes
Price : 600 CZK (front rows) & 700 CZK (back rows)
Free seating so it’s best to be there on time.
More information: Dvorak Symphony Orchestra

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