The South Gardens
The three gardens: Paradise Garden, Garden on Ramparts and Hartig Garden spread in front of the face of the Prague Castle. This series of gardens extend the northern Royal garden, creating a frame of greenery around the fortress. Their shapes are works of Slovenian architect Josip Plečnik who was called for their reconstruction soon after the origin of the Czechoslovak Republic. They represent a unified landscape while preserving the majestic trees and the little belvederes of previous centuries. They lead to the unique Baroque terrace gardens, a place of the lavish aristocratic life in the Lessee Quarter District in the 18th century. One can enter the gardens through the gate in opening of the Castle Stairs into area of the Hradčanské Square.
First you’ll get through the wide stairs into the Paradise Garden. Most of the area is taken by lawn in the shape of trapezoid, lined with high granite edge stone. There is a huge decorative bowl of one piece of Mrákotín granite dominating the lawn. Between Paradise Garden and Garden on Ramparts there is Matthias arbour from 1617, and a sculpture Good Shepherd by Josef Kalvoda from 1922 nearby. Noteworthy is the pompous entrance to the gardens from the Bull Steps, also built by Josip Plečnik to connect the gardens directly to the third courtyard of the castle.
The Paradise Garden laid out in the 16th century by archduke Ferdinand is dominated by a Greek-style granite basin, designed by Plečnik as well. The entrance to the Garden on the Ramparts is marked by the little Mathias pavilion. This long and narrow garden is enriched with several pavilions and terraces, which are ideal viewpoints of the city. The Garden on the Ramparts is infused with history. There are two Baroque obelisks, which remind the defenestration of imperial governors, which happened on 23rd May 1618.
The gardens are open to public at certain times and are ideal for a stroll in the otherwise quite crowded area.