Prague at 1900 Walking Tour: Art Nouveau and Cubist Architecture

3-Hour Tour

One of The Guardian’s 10 Best Architecture Tours in the World

Uncover the History that Prompted a New National Style

Explore the radical new design aesthetics that swept across Europe at the turn of the century, on this Art Nouveau and Cubist architecture tour of Prague. With your expert historian guide to lead the way, delve into the dramatic social and political changes that took place in the Czech capital over the 19th and 20th centuries – and discover the ways in which those changes manifested themselves in new design movements across the city. Art Nouveau was embraced by the nationalist cause, which also promoted the invention of Cubist and Rondocubist architecture (building styles unknown outside of the Czech Republic).

Learn to identify the features of Art Nouveau architecture in Prague, from gingko biloba leaves to elaborate lighting fixtures and curvy typography.

Visit the beautiful Lucerna bar (built by Vaclav Havel's grandfather), the elegant Grand Hotel Europa, and Prague's monumental Municipal House.

Admire exquisite interiors throughout Prague, as your expert art historian guide sheds light on the movement's impact on societies across Europe.

Discover key features of Prague's unique Cubist and Rondocubist architecture, including the House of the Black Madonna and the Legiobanka - built to house the accounts of the WWI Legionnaires.

See why this tour was featured in The Guardian as one of the ten best architecture tours in the world, and in The Week as one of the five best architecture tours in Europe.

Tour Details


Private tour – $315 USD (1-10 persons)
*your guide all to yourself

Small groups – $90 USD per person
*still intimate with 8 persons or less

Departure time

Private tours: daily at 10 AM and 2 PM


Small groups:

  • Tuesday 10 AM
  • Thursday 10 AM
  • Sunday 10 AM

Meeting point

Private tours include a pick-up at your central hotel or flat


Small groups: The House of the Black Madonna /
Grand Cafe Orient, Ovocný trh 19, Old Town, Prague 1




3 hours

Group size

Private tours: 1-10 persons
Groups of over 10 should contact us at in order to get a special rate for their party.


Small groups: 2-8 persons

Participation requirements

Our walks operate rain or shine, though, in the case of inclement weather, our guides often make alterations for our guests’ comfort.

What to bring

Comfortable walking shoes

About your guide

Read about our Prague guides

Cancellation policy

For cancellations 48 hours prior to your scheduled tour, Insight Cities offers a full refund. We cannot refund cancellations within 48 hours of a scheduled tour as we need to pay our guide.

Overview of Your Tour

large room in cafe with low hung chandeliers

Art Nouveau Across Europe

In France, it was known as Art Nouveau and Style Moderne, and when this modern manner came to prominence at the 1900 World Exhibition in Paris, it became known as Style 1900. It was also referred to as Style Métro (after Paris metro designer Hector Guimard) as well as Style Mucha (after the great Czech graphic artist whose posters are considered Art Nouveau par excellence). In Munich and Berlin, it was called Jugendstil, and in Austria-Hungary, it was known as the Sezession.

Call it what you will, the Art Nouveau movement left an indelible mark across Europe and it was eagerly adopted in Prague.

tour guide talking to group about large yellow building in background

Art Nouveau in Prague: a Whirlwind of National Revival Activity

At the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century, Prague was experiencing a whirlwind of national revival activity, and the movement was embodied in the form of Art Nouveau. From the Prague Main Railway Station and the monumental Municipal House, to the entire district of Josefov (the former Jewish ghetto), Art Nouveau architecture represents many of the city’s most significant sites.

During this Art Nouveau walking tour in Prague, you’ll learn to recognize the main features of the Art Nouveau style from ginkgo biloba leaves on building façades and orientalist influences, to elaborate light fixtures, and curvy typography on shop signs that echo contemporary magazine and poster graphics.

We’ll visit the beautiful Lucerna bar (built by Vaclav Havel’s grandfather) and the elegant Grand Hotel Europa examples of a moment of Czech optimism at the turn of the century signaling the region’s transcendence of older ethnic grievances, and its readiness to join Europe by participating in European-wide avant-garde movements.

long windows with copper green metal

Cubist and Rondocubist Architecture in Prague; an Important Parallel

As an important parallel, we’ll travel back to the emergence of the Czech Cubist movement and trace its progress as it ultimately became the “national style” and the only appropriate choice for the 1920’s Legiobanka, built to house the accounts of the WWI Legionnaires who fought for Czech and Slovak nationhood.

We visit examples of Prague’s Cubist and Rondocubist architecture (a building style unknown outside of the Czech Republic), including the House of the Black Madonna (created by Josef Gočár in 1910 as an urbane department store). In many respects, Prague’s Cubist architecture surpassed even Art Nouveau as a statement of the city’s newfound sense of modern sophistication and resurgent national identity.

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