Disclaimer: This is a trip taken back in 2018. Considering the present COVID19 situation, I don’t endorse any travelling. Even though travelling across some countries is allowed in Europe, please check with every local attraction before planning your vacation. Many of them are still temporarily closed to facilitate social distancing!
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Before I start discussing the things to do in Prague – the city of red roofs, as I like to call it, I have a confession to make. While I have many places on the travel list, which I would love to visit in this lifetime, Prague has always had a special place on that list. Did you ask why? Prague Castle happens to be the largest ancient castle in the world. I am a sucker for ancient history (the reason why I went to Athens for my honeymoon!) and castles. This place offers both!
Also, we had a two day stop at Prague, which made it a li’l difficult to understand the local culture and sights. So, forgive me as this post might not be as exhaustive as my other posts. Also, some really bad pictures – but that’s all I had. It was not a trip for Instagram!
Fun Things to do in Prague: Things to know before you go!
Back to the topic, I will take from where I left. We boarded the bus from Budapest to Prague early in the morning. It took us around eight hours to reach Prague via Flix bus. Before I dig deep into our adventures in Prague, here are a few things you should keep in mind:
- Best time to visit Prague is late spring and early fall. Though we visited in late September, we ended up facing chilly winds. It’s always a good idea to pack some warm clothes
- Prague is a notorious city for tourist. Be very careful – with your belongings, with the cabs, local travels, currency exchange scams – with basically everything
- Learn to say Prague. It’s “Pra-ha” in the local language and that is how you must say it
- The public transport network is well spread but we did not use it. Since we were a group of five, we preferred travelling by cabs because it’s economical. Uber works well in Prague
- The local currency is Crown (Koruna) but prefers using your credit card in Prague
- Tip your waiters in restaurants
- Exploring the bylanes of Prague on foot is a good idea. Also, it saves time
- Prague has beautiful sunsets! But avoid the crowd in Prague. Enjoy the sunrise instead!
Where did we stay?
We stayed in Hostel Ananas, which is now permanently closed. Hostel charges are nominal with around $20-$25 per night per bed. I won’t call it the best or the cleanest of the hostel, but it was a reasonable stay. Always keep your belongings locked. Prague, like Budapest, is cheaper than other European cities. You will get a decent hotel for $150-$200 per night.
We stayed in close vicinity to the Old Town Hall – roughly half a kilometre away. It’s on the east side of the river Vltava, the longest river in the Czech Republic. If you plan to shop in Prague (because why not?), this is an excellent locality to stay with a lot of local shops, street food and malls. We were living right across a five-storied Bata showroom. And that is precisely when I got to know that my favourite “Indian” brand is perhaps a Czech brand. Never paid attention to my marketing classes in college, did I?
First Day in Prague
We reached the bus station in Prague at around 6 PM in the evening. We took an Uber to our hostel. We decided not to waste the rest of the day and ventured out to the market around to grab some local delicacies.
Prague: What to Eat and Drink!
You might have read a lot about the Trdelnik or chimney cakes. While tourists are fooled by calling it a traditional Czech dessert, it originated in Slovakia and the favourite snack of Prague!
They are certainly Instagram-worthy and everyone will share the Trdelnik picture at-least once!
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This is one of the best desserts I have had in a long time. Chimney Cakes! Refined flour, slowly cooked over coal oven, sprinkled with sugar crystals, filled with whipped cream and made using Grandma’s secret recipe, this is certainly a treat to both your eyes and taste buds. You will find Li’l shops selling these everywhere in Prague. Also, these cakes are served with ice cream, whipped cream, fresh fruits and various other condiments. Trust me, your journey to this historic city is incomplete without having one of these. . . . . . . . . . #MyDessertProject #chimneycake #prague #desserts #czechrepublic #icecream #whippedcream #dessert #yummyinmytummy #foodgasm #instafood #instahappy
Also, the next thing that fascinated me the most was this beauty called svařák or hot wine! It’s basically your regular mulled wine but a li’l warmer than usual. Traditionally, this is a Christmas drink made with spices and citrus fruits infused in red wine. But you will find it in the local markets all year round!
Fun Things to do in Prague: Nightlife
We did check out a strip club in Prague and it was everything but shady! The only thing which made us check out a strip club in a notorious was the fact that we were in a group of five.
After that, we went to a casino in a boutique hotel. We were lucky to have not fallen prey to some scams, which we later realized are very popular in the city of Prague. Make sure to be careful, not to indulge in heavy drinking and not carry a lot of cash/cards when in the casino or the strip clubs!
Our day ended with some amazing space cookies.You can buy them legally in the shops. They basically contain the psychoactive constituent of cannabis and are not addictive because of the low percentage in which it can be consumed in Czech. Cannabis in Czech is legal as long as it contains less than 0.3% THC.
Second Day in Prague
We started the next day early. Hop in Hop Off buses came to our rescue even here. The bus stop was at the Old Town Square, so we reached the place a li’l earlier to explore it.
The Old Town Square is a lively place in the heart of Prague city. There is no time of the day when there aren’t people at the Old Town Square! Featuring various styles of architecture in the buildings and the statues, this is a historic square to start with. The oldest functional astronomical clock, installed in the early 15th century, stands tall here. It gives a beautiful 360 – degrees view of the city.
The Jan Hus Memorial dominated the centre of this square. Jan Hus was an educational reformist of this country. This place has some more historical structural which speaks a lot about Czech history. Few of the notable buildings here are the St Nicholas Church, the Storch Housse and Gothic Church of Our Lady before Týn. This reminds me, Prague is a beautiful example of Gothic architecture. And this was the first time I found myself face to face with it.
Our first stop for the day was the Prague Castle – the sole reason for me to go to Prague! We started from the Palace gardens, which gives an enchanting view of the city and the castle. Prague Castle is right out from the fairytales, set up in the ancient times.
The castle complex has the typical stoned path, old buildings and churches and is officially the office of the President.
The Prague Castle complex is the largest ancient castle in the world, according to the Guinness Book of World Record. In fact, the most important religious place of ancient Prague, St. Vitus Cathedral, stands tall in this complex.
This Gothic cathedral consists of the main nave and the narrow side aisles – lined with chapels. The chapels have beautiful stained glass windows. The cult centre of the cathedral is called the St. Wenceslas Chapel.
Its magnificent decoration and the different conception of its architecture emphasize its singularity as the central point of the Cathedral with the tomb of the most important Czech patron saint.
After getting a lot of pictures clicked, we walked down to hog on some local snacks again. We stumbled upon the St. Wenceslas Wine Festival and I don’t have to mention the love for vineyards I have!
We walked down the Charles Bridge – they say this is one of the most important things to do in Prague! I don’t know where all we started walking and we ended up being at the Kampa Museum. I don’t have a lot of pictures but Prague is certainly a land of quirky art. From the John Lenon Wall to the Hanging Man to the various weird art installation around the city, this museum is a nice overview of that.
Here are a few pictures from the Kampa park, which is a very peaceful place to be!
Fun Things to do in Prague: Czech beer
One of the traditional things to do in Prague is to take a bath in a beer tub. I am not kidding!
Anyhow, we decided to hunt for some local beer places. Our first destination was this simple bar in the basement called the BeerGeek.
It had around 30 crafted beer out of which we ordered 5 or maybe 7. I never thought that the word gorgeous can ever be an adjective for beer. I realized it after coming to this place!
We headed back to our hostel while we enjoyed the sunset sky of Prague. It’s indeed enchanting!
I and the girls then ventured out at night on the streets of Prague while the guys ventured out to do their own things. We ended up spending an amazing night at the Prague Beer Museum.
The Czech Republic consumes the most extensive per capita beer. And this explains such dedicated museums in the capital city! It is 143.3 L of beer per person per year (Source).
We ended the day and the stay in Prague with another round of Trdelnik. Our next destination was Berlin.
Last Words: Things I missed doing in Prague
- Taking a bath in beer tub
- Visiting the John Lennon Wall
- Standing at the end of the infinite wormhole of books, which took Instagram by storm!
- Watching the iconic Hanging Man – a statue of Sigmund Freud
- Tasting the flavoured Absinthe
Fun Things to do in Prague: 7 things not to miss in Prague
- Prague Castle for it’s architecture and majestically wonderful complex
- Trdelnik and hot wine
- Take a stroll at the Charles Bridge and catch the sunrise/sunset – rather chase the sunset!
- Get clicked at the Old Town Square
- Drink Czech beer with traditional Czech snacks
- Enjoy the Gothic cathedrals
- Visit the quirky art museums and spots!
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