If European cities were a necklace, Prague would be a diamond among the pearls!
Medieval heart of Prague bustles with tourists. No wonder — Old Town Square, the astronomical clock, the churches and the cobble stone side streets are so charming that it would almost be a crime not to walk around and soak up the history.
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Reason’s To Visit Prague –
3. Music – Prague is where Mozart composed his jewel!
4. Unique Czech Beers – Czech Saying – “Beer makes beautiful bodies”
5. Old Cafes
6. Breathtaking Views
Must Do’s –
Old Town – The Old Town (Stare Mesto) is like a wonderland for anybody who likes history, architecture, unique places, cathedrals, antique and souvenirs shops, restaurants, the choices are endless. Definitely a walking town!
We visited the old town at Christmas and it was truly amazing. The Christmas market was fantastic and had a great atmosphere. The food and mulled wine were amazing. The lights & Architecture were most Excellent and Joyful.
A Carriage ride is a Must…really Special!
Church of Our Lady before Týn – Amazing Gothic Architecture!
If you are in Prague Square, you will not miss seeing this magnificent church. Gothic in style. At night it is wonderfully lit up.
The entrance is hard to find but totally worth it! The main entrance is located on the church’s western face, through a narrow passage between the houses in front of the church.. To find it, enter between the table of the outside restaurants off the square. You go by a book store on the left and then straight back to enter.
Fact – The two spires are not symmetrical. This is characteristic of the gothic architecture of the time and is a representation of both the masculine and feminine sides of the world.
Astronomical Clock – The Astronomical clock is beautiful and on the hour every hour(till 9 PM) the little doors open with bells sounding and the twelve apostles move around in the ports. The functions and features of the clock are great. However, if you did not have a local guide to point out the clock features and the movements you likely would not observe or appreciate just how intricate this clock actually is. It was great to see and an experience to remember.
Fact – Legend has it that the creator of the mechanical parts, Master Hanus, was blinded afterward so he could not replicate it elsewhere.
Charles Bridge – Too crowded, but classic!
The Charles Bridge is one of the most historic and famous bridges around the world.. Absolutely an immortal space of history and art. From there you can see most of the beautiful panorama of the town. The bridge has many monuments that create a special atmosphere. Great views, great sculptures, THE landmark, but too crowded.
The unique figures give a very nice Suchet for photographs. also looks brilliant because you can see the many lights of the old city of Prague in river shine and sparkle.
Tip: Go in the evening. The mood is calm and relaxed! You will fall in love with Prague.
Prague Castle – The original seat of Czech kings — and now, Czech presidents — is a beautiful complex of palaces, churches, towers and gardens offering splendid views over the city. Saint Vitus Cathedral will leave you speechless and the tiny houses on Golden lane will give you a shimmering sense of its centuries-old history.
If you’re expecting a ‘castle’ in the medieval sense, you will be let down as it really is just a group of buildings. Personally, I would suggest just walking around the buildings, cathedral and gardens for free and enjoy the wonderful views over Prague and then continue across to Petrin Hill for more views.
Great city views if you walk up to the castle.
Fact – Rolling Stones sponsored to light up Prague castle
Letna Park – Letná Park is on a hillside, providing spectacular views of Prague’s Old Town.
Lesser Quarter – The really enjoyable part of this area is to wander as many of the back streets as you can, and to do this I suggest ignoring the map and simply wandering around. Lots of different architecture, apparently different levels of wealth.
Mala Strana was my favorite area of Prague. Beautiful cobble stone streets will take you to hidden gardens and palaces, while cozy restaurants and cafes will soothe your body and soul.
Kampa Park – Park offers a great deal of greenery and is a popular place for locals and students to hang out.
Lesser Quarter is less crowded than old town. Wonderful little bistros around every corner. Great shops and sites. A wonderful way to spend an afternoon or morning, or both. stroll around the silent quarter to break from bustling old town,admire the kafka museum, the john lennon memorial and the beautiful buildings
Jewish Quarter – Walking through the quarters and hearing about the history of this area made a great combination. It is unbelievable how the Jewish Quarter used to be a slum, how the conditions changed during different regimes to finally reach its current status(Most expensive and posh area in Prague)..
Historical synagogues, beautiful old cemetery on the one hand – very commercial on the other – Jewish mascots, kitsch souvenirs, a lot of designer stores and fancy restaurants. All dedicated to mass tourism.
Jewish Cemetery – A moving walk through history in Prague’s Jewish Cemetery.
This cemetery tells a lot about life — and death — in Prague’s Jewish Ghetto. The Ghetto’s boundaries were fixed and could not be expanded. So, the cemetery had to accommodate more bodies than the space allowed. That meant that graves had to be layered. There are approx 14 layers of graves.
Wenceslas Square -It is the perfect location to visit the city. With its art nouveau houses lining the almost 700 meter long boulevard, this is the cultural and shopping heart of Prague. The statue of Saint Vaclav is the famous meeting point where all the adventures start.
The side streets near Wenceslas Square are full of strip clubs.
Petrin Tower – See Prague from a high-end!!
Dancing House -A very modern and interesting building to look at in Prague. If you see it, go inside and go to the rooftop bar. Its free to go up and the view of the city is amazing!!! .
While there is no doubt this is an unique and interesting building, that is also all it is. If this is the only thing you are going to see in the area, I probably would say: don’t bother.
Prague State Opera – Prague’s music scene is one of the things that took us there. Even if you’re not a huge classical music aficionado, it’s still worth trying to see a concert just to experience the venue. La Traviata , Carmen is recommended for the first timers
For Bollywood Fans – State Opera is one of the shooting locations for Rockstar
Walk & More Walk…
Prague’s charm lies in the experience of exploring it, so don’t be afraid to explore! When you come to an intersection, choose which way to go by which street looks more exciting. There are plenty of tiny stores (especially antique and hand-made craft shops), cute restaurants, and hip bars to explore on each and every street of Old Town.
The Royal Route….
Royal route used to link the gates of Old Prague, the Jewish Town,Lesser Quarter and the Prague Castle. The Silver line starts at the Powder Tower, in front of the Municipal House and finds its way through Celetna Street down to The Old Town Square.
On Celetna, one of the oldest Prague streets, stand evidence of the past beautiful historical houses decorated with breathtaking murals and house symbols and façades. The most interesting façades are At the Three Kings, At the White Lion, At the Black Sun and At the Vulture. Don’t miss also the Cubist façade on the House of the Black Madonna Cesky Krumlov.
The Royal route than leads into the Old Town Square (Staromestske namesti). Besides the well known attractions (The astronomical Clock, the Tyn Church, the statue of Jan Hus), you can stop for a while and climb the Tower of the Old Town Hall and take a look ever the historical center of Prague up to the Prague Castle and Vysehrad
Follow the silvery path through the narrow streets down Karlova Street to the famous Charles Bridge. statue of St. John of Nepomuk don’t forget to make a wish and touch the statue the royal route goes up to Lesser Quarter Square and continues through Nerudova Street, another magnificent place of historical Prague. The way up the Castle may be a bit tiresome.
The old path ends at the Matthias gate at the Prague Castle with a splendid view over Prague. After exploring the castle premises and the Castle Gardens you can set off on your way back, down the Castle Stairs (Zamecke Schody) to Lesser Town Square.
Where to stay
Take a hotel in the city center (Old Town) or Wenceslas Square, you will be able to reach most of the must-sees by foot. For trips further out, buy single tickets for each ride. Prague is cheap!
I can highly recommend the Radisson Blu Alcron Hotel (www.radissonblu.com/hotel-prague). It’s very central and you can walk to all the major landmarks.
Where to Eat
Cafes (kavarnas) – Cafe Louvre – This traditional café has a history spanning more than a hundred years, and its famous guests have included Franz Kafka, Karel Čapek and Albert Einstein. The café has preserved its ambiance, with a functionalist-style salon and a terrace, perfect in the summer, and here you can enjoy delicious food, an amazing interior and great service for a surprisingly low price.
Few More Cafes – MamaCoffee.. Café Lounge.. Café Café.. Můj šálek kávy.. Kavarna Slavia.. Karvarna Obecni Dum… Cafe Slavia..
Lunch/Dinner – Grossetto Marina, best view of the castle while enjoying a nice pasta
For an authentic Czech experience, try Lokál restaurant on Dlouhá street, which serves tank beer and food and is very popular with Prague locals.
Czech Pubs – Learn about Czech beer the old fashion way — by drinking it.. Bernard beers (one pilsner and the other half-dark) were our favourite. Old Town hides plenty of Czech traditional pubs where the locals hang out. If you do not mind crowds, smoke or standing while drinking, stop by the pub U Zlatého Tygra.
Few more Pubs – Lokál U Bílé kuželky…U Veverky… Kulový Blesk…Hostinec U Vodoucha…Zlý časy…Pivovarský klub…
Rooftop bars – U Prince on Old Town Square is the most famous, but it is a tourist trap. But worth it for the views!
Also Check out Cloud 9 at the Hilton and Oblaca in the Zizkov TV Tower.
#1 Tip: Try to avoid the restaurants in the tourist areas which target visitors. Just turn a corner and you are sure to find a place with better food and prices.
#2 Tip: Charles Bridge in the early morning or later at night. Prague is most beautiful at night(lights are turned off at 12:30 AM), with lots less tourist hordes. Walk the Royal Way from Old Town Powder Gate to the Charles Bridge.
#3 Tip: Although Prague’s Old Town and Lesser Town often steal the Prague tourist show (for good reason), it’s worth it to spend time poking around some of the surrounding neighbourhoods. The architectural stock in Prague’s residential neighbourhoods is impressive. Walk, look up and soak it up. Architectural period melange, details, mosaics, statues, paintings, are all standard fare.
#4 Tip: Get lost & explore the cobblestone labyrinths of Mala Strana.
#5 Tip: There is Classical concert in a baroque church (everywhere).
No matter how many countries you’ve traveled to or where your going, Prague will sweep you off your feet.
Did you enjoy this article? Have you been to Prague and have a special attraction that you loved? Leave a comment and let everyone know! I’m sure there are some little gems I missed.
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