The small but delightful Kampa Island offers a green oasis in the middle of busy tourist Prague. The island, formed by a branch of the Vltava River, is accessible from steps on the side of Charles Bridge (left-hand side as you walk towards the castle) and offers a park, riverside cafes and a museum of Modern Art. There is also a picturesque waterway, called the Devil's Stream (Certovka) which is known as the 'Venice of Prague' because of the houses that sit on the water's edge.
The Island was a collection of gardens and working watermills, and until the 17th century only the poor had homes here. The island gained its name in the 17th century when Spanish soldiers involved in the 'Battle of White Mountain' set up camp ("campus") here.
During the 17th century nobles began to build their homes on the Island. The most impressive house still standing is the Lichtenstein Palace, which is now home to the music faculty of the Academy of Performing Arts. The park to the North of the Island was created in 1940's from private gardens that once belonged to the homes of the rich.
Museum Kampa is a gallery for modern Czech and Eastern art. The museum is housed in the historical Sovas Mills complex, the oldest water mill in Prague. When you look across the river Vltava River from the opposite bank, the museum is easily spotted by the 6-metres-high sculpture of a wooden chair that sits at the water’s edge outside the museum. Other art instalments around the grounds of the museum include a line of yellow plastic penguins and sculptures of giant crawling babies.
From Charles Bridge one can take a 'Prague Venice boat trip,' that offers you views of Prague from the river, and which also take you along the Devil's Stream, allowing you close up views of the houses and old water mills. Legend says the waterway is so called because of a woman who lived in the nearby "seven Devil's House' who became famous for her wicked temper and cursing tongue.
Kampa Museum Entrance Price
Kampa Museum Opening Times
Daily 10am - 6pm
Kampa Museum Address
1 – Malá Strana
118 00 Praha
Tel: +420 257 286 147
How to get there
Metro: Staromestska -line A (Then walk over Charles Bridge)
Prague Venice boat trip:
Look for the men dressed as sailors as you approach Charles Bridge.
Cost: 250CZK 30 minute trip.
35 CZK for 60 minute trip
Official Kampa Museum Web Site