The Royal Canonry of Premonstratensians at Strahov is one of the oldest monasteries of the Premonstratensian Order in the world. It has been a working monastery practically ever since it was founded in 1143. Fire, the Hussite Wars, religious wars, and the Communists all failed to shut down this institution. Even when the members of the monastery were unable to live within its walls, they gathered wherever they could and nurtured the spirit of their House until they were able to return to the monastery complex.
Besides its spiritual services and abbey life, Strahov Abbey also plays a role in the cultural life of society. The famous Strahov Library and the reopened Strahov Picture Gallery are cultural institutions proving to the world that the Strahov Premonstratensians have always cared for the development of culture and education.
From Tripadvisor.com reviews of the Royal Canonry of Premonstratensians at Strahov:
“Must visit“: This monastery has a great atmosphere and it is located close to the Prague castle. You can purchase a ticket and see the inside of the very old library with one of the oldest books. However, don’t be disappointed that they won’t let you walk inside the rooms, you can only peak an eye on it.
“Beautiful Libraries“: I understand that this is not for everybody, but we loved it. There are basically only two rooms to see and you have to wait in line to just get a few seconds to view and take photos, but it is worth it. The art in the libraries are incredibly beautiful. A downside to the Monastery is that it is away from other attractions, so it is a bit of a time commitment.
Strahov Library - Historic Library Halls, Cabinet of Curiosities and Connecting Passage. Strahov Library is the second oldest church library in the country. You can visit the Philosophical and Theological Halls and see a collection of glass, porcelain, weapons and crafts in the Cabinet of Curiosities. Open daily: 9:00-12:00, 13:00-17:00 • Strahov Gallery halls and the historic Strahov Monastery. Permanent exhibition of paintings from the 14th to 19th centuries. “Present and Past of the Premonstratensian Monastery” Exhibition, including a rotating 1:100 scale model of the Strahov Monastery and a cycle of ten monumental paintings (from 1626-1630) with scenes from the life of St Norbert, the founder of the Premonstratensian Order. Open daily: 9:00-12:00, 12.30-17:00