Obora Hvezda Prague

by Czech Republic

Obora Hvezda Prague

Obora Hvezda is one of the best forest parks in Prague. It was originally a game reserve, established in 1534 by Ferdinand I on land owned by nearby Břevnov Monastery. Its name, Hvězda, means ‘star’, the shape of the fascinating Renaissance summer palace (Letohrádek Hvězda), one of the most stunning examples of Prague architecture from the 16th century.

Hvezda Prague is popular with locals, and it’s a world away from the most popular Prague attractions a few miles away. If you’re on a longer Prague itinerary – five days or more – or are visiting Prague with kids – Hvezda Park Prague is a wonderful place to escape the crowds and get back to nature for a couple of hours or so.

What Is There To Do in Hvězda?

Image of an avenue of trees at Hvezda Park Prague
One of the lovely avenues of trees through Obora Hvezda Park

Much of the reserve is forested, and there are three main wide tree-lined avenues, each leading to the small Garden outside the Summer Palace.

Image of a playground at Obora Hvezda Park Prague
The playground near Hvezda Summer Palace

There are two great playgrounds in the Park – one a three-minute walk from the northern entrance, in the middle of the forest, and the other next to the Garden, facing the Summer Palace. The forest one is full of wooden climbing frames, a superb place for the kids to clamber and run amok for a while.

Image of the Summer Palace at Hvezda Prague
The distinctive Summer Palace, or Letohradek, at Hvezda

The forest is a great place to explore, with plenty of paths criss-crossing the reserve. We first visited in summer, the trees providing welcome shade from the burning sun overhead. The forest is a superb place to experience Prague in autumn, along with Divoká Šarka and, on the other side of town, Pruhonice Park.

The Summer Palace is well worth a closer look, and during the summer months it hosts art exhibitions. The café across the courtyard is a shady spot to enjoy some refreshments.

Where is Obora Hvezda in Prague?

Image of treetops at Obora Hvezda Prague
The view skywards from the forest at Hvezda

Obora Hvězda is located in the west of Prague, close to the suburb of Petřiny. It’s around 6 km (4 miles) west of Prague city centre, and 2 km from the magnificent Břevnov Monastery. It’s also just 1 km from Divoká Śarka, a larger forested Prague park to the north.

Getting to Obora Hvezda

Image of a statue of Jan Rohac in Hvezda Prague
Bohemian knight Jan Rohac – take a right towards the Summer Palace when you see him

The nearest tram stop is at Sídliště Petřiny, where trams 1 and 2 terminate. From there, turn left onto U Hvězda, continue to the T-junction and turn right. The entrance to Hvezda Park is across the street (Na Vypichu) on the left – a total of around 400 metres from the tram stop. Tram 2 stops at both Staromestská and Malostranská, either side of the Manes Bridge, so it’s very easy to reach from the centre. Tram 1 passes through Holešovice, to the north of the river.

Trams 22 and 25 also stop within a similar distance to Hvezda. Confusingly, the Vypich tram stop is more convenient than the Obora Hvezda one – a path leads directly from there to one of the three main avenues through the Park.

Are There Places To Eat in Hvězda?

Image of Moravian sparrow dish at restaurant near Hvezda Prague
‘Moravian sparrow’ from U Holecku restaurant near Hvezda

There is a small café serving sandwiches, cakes, drinks and ice cream next to the Summer Palace.

We also heartily recommend Restaurace U Holečku, 50 metres from the Hvezda entrance. They serve excellent traditional Czech food (svičkova, duck, pork, dumplings and more) at around half the price you would pay in Prague Old Town Square.

DAVID ANGEL

DAVID ANGEL

AUTHOR

David Angel is a British writer, historian and photographer. He has been travelling and photographing Europe for over 20 years and his work is regularly featured in worldwide media including the Guardian, BBC, Times and Sunday Times.

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