Straight up: Prague is absolutely magical! I didn’t want to leave and I already want to go back… (it’s not going to happen this year, but a girl can dream – right?)
Secondly… 24 hours is not long enough. Not even close. I honestly wouldn’t recommend going for less than 2-3 days and I reckon you could easily fill 4-5 days (or more obviously – if you have the time – you lucky thing!!)
So, without further ado, here’s what we did in Prague along with tips for what you could do better. Detailed budget and additional information also included at the end of the post! Hope you enjoy 🙂
We were staying just off this square, so a pretty good location. Wenceslas Square is one of Prague’s main squares (thought it’s actually a really long thin rectangle) and it’s full of shops, cafes, restaurants and suchlike. (Including KFC, Starbucks, Burger King, McDonalds and all that jazz.) I can safely say, we didn’t visit any of these establishments, as we wanted to eat and drink local food…
So we visited Tramvaj instead. A cafe in a tram. (And no, I can’t stop giggling about the name either…)
Old Town Square
The next thing we did, like any good tourist, was head for the old town – and more specifically Old Town Square (Staroměstské náměstí). The perfect place to soak up some good old Czech culture as well as its architecture.
It’s got all the good stuff – the famous Astronomical Clock, and not one but two imposing churches! So, of course, it’s super-touristy, however there’s no one harassing you to buy things which was rather refreshing! There was a guy making bubbles which kids, photographers and bloggers enjoyed immensely! 😉
If you’re patient, you can probably wait for a gap in the crowds so you can take photos without 3,729 people in it. But, alas, patience is not a strong point of mine.
Church of Our Lady before Týn – also on Old Town Square – dominates the skyline. Aaaaand, I’m loving the bubble guy right now…
What you could do better: go back at night! We didn’t see the square or the church by night… sob!
The astronomical clock is over 600 years old and it’s famous for being the oldest one in the world which is still operating! See, I told you – all the good stuff is here! So many landmarks, monuments and statues (and clocks!) all on one square! And for that reason, it’s just a tad busy 😉
We didn’t go on the hour to hear the bells chime and see the show – which could’ve been a mistake – though it did mean we missed the (worst of) the crowds.
What you could do better: Go on the hour, so that you can see the four figures in motion. If you can stand the crowds that is…
Boat Trip with Prague Boat Tours
This cost 299 CZK which is about €11 / £9.50 for an hour and the boat took us from Čechův most (Czech’s Bridge) up to the Charles Bridge and back again. If the weather’s nice – like it was when we visited – then I highly recommend it! We got to see lots of pretty views from the water and enjoyed being away from the crowds, if only for an hour!
Walk along the Vltava
The Vltava is the longest river in the Czech Republic and it runs right through Prague, crossed by 18 bridges. We loved walking along its banks in the glorious sunshine, as did many locals and tourists – though it never felt crowded. (Until we got to Charles Bridge anyway! More on that below!)
Old Town Bridge Tower
Climbing up this tower cost 90 CZK (an absolute bargain at just €3.30 / £2.80) and was definitely worth doing! Super cheap and the views were amazing!
What you could do better: I wish we’d also gone to see the views from Petrin Tower and the Old Town Hall. I would’ve paid to see the view from all angles, but sadly, timing was our only issue. I’ve seen pictures of Týn Church from the Old Town Hall at night and they are simply stunning! I’m really kicking myself we didn’t do this.
If the above wasn’t touristy enough already… then Charles Bridge is the icing on the cake with a cherry on top! Hawkers, artists, musicians, beggars – anyone and everyone trying to sell you something. Or just beg for money. But y’know, it’s gotta be done! No trip to Prague would be complete without crossing this bridge!
When we walked back over the bridge after sunset it was a much more pleasant experience! Highly recommended!
What you could do better: avoid peak times. Go early in the morning or late at night if you want to avoid swarms of sweaty bodies!
Pražský hrad is on loads of ‘Top 10’ lists as a must-see and we were planning on going here – but the heat got the better of us – and we flaked.
Instead we sat in a bar drank lots (and lots) of beer and Bohemia Sekt (sparking wine, the Czech equivalent to Cava or Prosecco). For some reason, wine isn’t cheap in Prague (we found prices to be about the same as in NL) but the sekt was cheap as chips! We never paid more than €2 per glass!!
[When we got back from our trip, my best friend and I were texting, as she’s also been to Prague and when I said we didn’t make it to the castle she replied: “The castle was boring old shite anyway, so you didn’t miss much.” So I’ll leave that decision up to you!]
John Lennon Memorial Wall
This has got to be done! Again – yes it’s busy and touristy – but no one will regret having their picture taken in front of this spectacle!
What you could do better: don’t go when it’s dark unless you have a good camera for low light. The iphone is rubbish.
Or then again… maybe it was just the beer.
Speaking of beer… you HAVE to taste the wonderful beer in Prague! The Czech Republic has the highest beer consumption per capita in the world. (Thanks Wikipedia!) And with good reason… it tastes so, so good. We certainly had our fair share of booze… and lots of food! I feel a dedicated food & drink post coming up… stay tuned!
Have you been to Prague? What should I put on my list for next time? Comment below or tweet me @travelintcolour!
THE LOWDOWN – How much does a weekend in Prague cost?
Accommodation – we stayed at Pragapart which is about 15 mins walk from Old Town. It cost us the equivalent of €35 a night for two people. (We were in a two bedroom apartment, sharing with 2 friends.)
Transport – we drove from the Netherlands, as we were going on a camping trip immediately afterwards. From Hilversum it took us 8.5 hours to drive to central Prague and cost around €120 (return) in fuel. This will vary massively depending on what car you have, obviously. But as a guide – ours is a 1.8 diesel.
Parking – €18 per night via our accommodation.
Boat trip – 299 CZK which is about €11 / £9.50. We turned up and paid a few minutes before the boat was about to depart, but here’s their website: prague-boats.cz
Old Town Bridge Tower – 90 CZK (an absolute bargain at just €3.30 / £2.80).
[Prices correct as of August 2016.]