Visit Prague, Without Barriers

August 16, 2019 4:18 am729 commentsViews: 57

For centuries travellers from all over the globe have come to Prague for her ancient bridges, her soaring rooftops, her alchemistic leanings, her famous castles and her golden beer.

Visit Prague, Without Barriers

Where No Wheelchair Has Gone

But woe betide the unwary traveller who arrives with crutches, a wheelchair or a pram. Prague’s public transport is second to none in network and timing, but easy access trams have only become commonplace in the last five years or so. The sleek new, low trams are labelled as wheelchair accessible on the timetables at tram stops plus journeys can now be planned from their website with parameters available to only use wheelchair accessible trams. And, as improvements continue to be made to Prague’s integrated public transport network, more and more metro stations now have lifts. But what happens when you get onto the street?

Accessibility Atlas for People With Impaired Mobility

The name of the booklet may not trip off the tongue, but its detailed maps and comprehensive legend mean that mobility impaired visitors to Prague need not be limited to sitting on an open topped bus listening to bored guide intone history into his or her ear. The City of Prague with the Prague Organisation of Wheelchair Users and World Heritage have joined forces to let visitors to print this guide, the Accessibility Atlas for People With Impaired Mobility. Inside it’s shown that the ornate Loreta, for example, is inaccessible to wheelchair users, that the artistic Mucha Museum is totally accessible and to visit the bullet-scarred Crypt of the Church of Sts. Cyril and Methodius requires some previous arrangements.

Hidden Prague

The historic centre of Prague was registered in UNESCO’s World Heritage List in 1992 and her marvels constitute well over a thousand Heritage Sites and twenty-five national cultural monuments. Prague’s famous cobbles and listed buildings means layouts cannot be altered and lifts or escalators cannot be added but this no longer means certain visitors should miss out on Prague’s sites. Maps indicate difficult surfaces or whether a barrier-free entrance is at the front or the rear of a building. They show reserved parking, steep slopes, adapted toilets and even narrow doors. And these good people who spent a great deal of time cataloguing such details have even published four historic sightseeing routes around Prague specifically for the mobility impaired.

Prague Information Service

Users of this excellent booklet need not only be those in wheelchairs; mothers, the elderly, over-enthusiastic skiers with broken ankles, and many more can make good use of this information. This comprehensive booklet is available for free at the Prague Information Service (PIS) in Old Town Square. PIS might be an unfortunate acronym, but the good multi-lingual folk there can and do help with anything you need. They even have maps and guides on Prague in various languages in Braille.

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