Next stop at our walk on the Royal Way is the Charles Bridge. Before we step on it we pass through the Old Town Bridge Tower. This was built at the same time as the bridge and symbolizes the „arch of triumph at the way to coronation”. The Charles Bridge the oldest standing bridge over the river Vltava is in Prague and the second oldest well-kept bridge in the Czech Republic. In Bohemia it has been the fourth stone-built bridge after the Judith Bridge and the bridges in Písek and Roudnice. The Charles Bridge replaced the previous Judith Bridge that was broken down in 1342 by the spring ice melting. The construction of a n ew bridge started in 1357 thanks to the effort of the King Charles IV and was completed in 1402. The Charles bridge was the only communication point across the Vltava until 1841 (except the ferries and wades), when the bridge named after the Emperor Franz Joseph I was built. Also thanks to the new stone bridge Prague became an important stop of European business journeys.
The bridge was decorated with 30 statues and group of statues. Originally he was called only The Stone Bridge – Kamenný or Prague Bridge – Pražský most. The name Charles Bridge was used only after 1870 due to the idea of Karel Havlíček Borovský.
At the other side of t h e bridge there are the Lesser Town Bridge Towers. The elder one was built in the Romanesque style and i t was earlier the part of the Judith Bridge, that’s why is called „the Judith Tower”. Higher of the towers, the gothic one, was built altogether with the Charles Bridge.