Prague is the capital city of the Czech Republic and is bisected by the Vltava River. Nicknamed “the City of a Hundred Spires,” it’s known for its Old Town Square, its historic heart, with colorful baroque buildings, Gothic churches and the medieval Astronomical Clock. Finished in 1402, Charles Bridge is lined with statues of Catholic saints that is a grand bridge crossing the river connecting the two halves of the city. The bridge is some of the best views of the city and the river. Prague has a special place in my heart from my time there in Europe because it is where my husband proposed to me at 6 am on the foggy Charles Bridge.
How to get there
Taking the Bus/Metro to Prague City Center from the Airport
The Prague airport called, Václav Havel Airport Prague, is about a 30 minute drive outside the city center. Bus No. 179 goes between the airport and Nove Butovice, which is a stop on the yellow, or B, metro line. It takes 45 minutes. Another option is the Airport Express bus, which runs between the airport and Hlavni Nadrazi, Prague’s main train station, located in the heart of the city. I took the bus to the metro line and then took the metro in to the city center. It was fairly simple and straight forward with maps and asking locals for confirmation. The tickets were cheap.
Things to do
This is the iconic 14th century bridge on the Vltava river running through the middle of the city. The Charles Bridge is a landmark stone bridge linking Prague’s Old & New Towns, with street artists & entertainers. This is one of the most iconic places in Prague with the best views in the city. The early morning is the best time to visit the bridge since there are herds of hundreds on and crossing the bridge in the afternoons. There are lots of historic statues and figures all along the bridge along with a large beautiful stone gate entrance.
Prague castle is a huge castle complex with buildings revealing architecture from Roman-style to Gothic & 20th century. St. Vitus Cathedral is on the Castle grounds as well, a gorgeous as well as two European art galleries with beautiful art collections. The castle grounds are a half day or day trip to explore in and of themselves with all the historical buildings, chapel and art galleries. Prague Castle is considered one of the largest castles in the world . It is from the ninth century, and is 18 acres including cathedrals, chapels, royal palaces and ornamental gardens. Castle free map here.
Hours: 6am-10pm Castle daily, 9am-4pm visitor areas daily
Price: $7-$15 USD depending on ticket type. For guided tours the price will be: CZK 50 / hour / person in Czech language (min. CZK 200) and CZK 100 / hour / person in foreign language (min. CZK 400).
Prague Castle – Circuit A
Old Royal Palace, The Story of Prague Castle, St. Basil’s St. George, Golden Lane, St. Vitus Cathedral Of Vitus, Rosenberg Palace
Prague Castle – Heading B
Old Royal Palace, St. St. George, Golden Lane, St. Vitus Cathedral Vitus
Prague Castle – Circuit C
St. Vitus Treasure Exhibition, Prague Castle Picture Gallery
Exposition Story of Prague Castle
St. Vitus Treasure Exposition
Prague Castle Picture Gallery
The Great South Tower of Sts. Vitus – observation tower
|Ticket type||Full admission||Discount (*)||Family ticket (**)|
|Prague Castle – Circuit A||350 CZK||175 Kč||700 CZK|
|Prague Castle – Heading B||250 CZK||125 CZK||500 CZK|
|Prague Castle – Heading C||350 CZK||175 Kč||700 CZK|
|Exposition Story of Prague Castle||140 Kč||70 CZK||280 CZK|
|Prague Castle Picture Gallery||100 CZK||50 CZK||200 CZK|
|Powder Tower – Exposition of the Castle Guard (closed due to the reconstruction of the tower until approx. 08/2019)||70 CZK||40 CZK||140 Kč|
|St. Vitus Treasure Exposition||250 CZK||125 CZK||500 CZK|
|The Great South Tower of Sts. Vitus – observation tower||150 CZK||–||–|
How to get there: In order to get to the castle, tourists most often use the tram no. 22 Prague Castle (option 1). After the tour they leave the Old Castle Steps to the Malostranská metro station (option 4). Full options for transportation and directions here.
St. Vitus Cathedral
This is the gorgeous cathedral that is a part of the Prague Castle historical grounds. This cathedral is the Gothic resting place of saints including Vitus, Wenceslas & Adalbert as well as the state treasury. The entrance to the cathedral is included in your castle tour and entrance fees as shown above.
John Lennon Wall
The Lennon Wall is a monument. It is a wall that, since Communist days, has been covered in graffiti, often politically focused messages. The wall is covered with art, words and pictures that are changed and draw over year after year. The wall is an open air wall to the public that is not charged an entrance fee or separated off for private viewing.
Strahov Monastery & brewery
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Strahov Monastery is a hilltop, medieval monastery with a stucco-panelled theological hall, vast library & Baroque church. This monastery also has a brewery that serves drinks in the restaurant on top of the hill. You can reach the monastery by walking up through Petrin Hill Lookout Park as written about below. There is a beautiful vineyard with views of the city and plenty of tables in a gorgeous outdoor terrace to have a drink from the brewery. Klášterní pivovar Strahov is the name of the brewpub on site that is a 17th century brewery restored and re-opened as a craft brewery in 2000 with a restaurant and courtyard. This spot is open 10am-10pm and is the most killer spot for a drink overlooking the city.
Hours: 9.00 a.m. – 5.00 p.m., lunchtime break 12.00 p.m. – 1.00 p.m.
Price: The main entrance is to the Monastery Gallery and Cloister and the Church entrance is for the Strahov Library. They each have separate entrance fees.The entrance fee for the Library is 100 Koruna (50 if students up to the age of 27) and add an extra 50 if you want to take photos inside.
Petrin Hill Lookout Park
This is a gorgeous huge park that takes up several acres in the city across the Charles Bridge. The park sits on a hill overlooking the bridge and the city with the best views. There is a small orchard in one section of the park with fruit that you can pick and eat in the summer that is like small plums. There are different parks and an observatory throughout the park. There are miles of walking trails and is a great spot to go for a walk and escape to some nature and peace from the city. There are also free water fountains in the park to fill up your water bottle!
Prague Astronomical Clock & Old Town Square
This is a Medieval timepiece on the facade of city hall displaying the twelve apostles as the clock strikes. The clock is in the old town square which is a historical beautiful plaza. The clock strikes every hour and puts on a show of the Apostles that come out of the clock. Come a few minutes before the hour to grab a spot and watch the show and be able to take pictures.
Old Town Square
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This square has market stalls for selling most of the time as well as many cafes and local shops. The medieval center of Prague holds the Astronomical Clock, the Old New Synagogue, the Rococo Kinský Palace and many other architectural beauties. Prague’s largest Christmas market is held here every December and there are many cafés and stores in the cobblestone streets. There is the famous Jan Hus sculpture in the square commemorating a 15th century martyr. The square holds Marian Column as well, a copy of the statue of the Virgin Mary on the top of the pillar, which was in Prague’s Old Town Square for almost 400 years. There is town hall and the old city underground of prague tunnels that you can tour. There are old churches and art galleries that fill the old town square. There are original family owned historical home landmarks and tons of history and character in this part of town.
Church of Our Lady Before Týn
This is one of the most beautiful gothic buildings and historical churches in Prague that dominates the Old Town Square. This church has been in the town square since the 1300s. The church also boasts Prague’s oldest pipe organ.
This is often noted as one of the most beautiful libraries in the world. This Baroque library is from the 18th century and is home to over 20,000 books. There are beautiful original frescoes covering the walls along with antique astronomical clocks.
Hours: 10am-6pm daily
Price: 300 CZK per adult ticket or $13 USD.
Zizkov Tower, Cerny Art
David Cerny is a Czech artist who is controversial in his expression. He has been arrested before for his freedom art expression in how he responded to models of Soviet tanks in the city. One of his famous statues is two men peeing into a puddle. On the Zizkov Tower there are baby statues crawling up the tall tower. There are some bizarre statues you can find all around the city.
Where to stay
Czech Inn Prague
This is a budget hostel for travellers and is all dorm style cheap housing that is clean and not much but decent for an expensive city. This is the ideal pick for travelling on a budget. There is the nicest trendy cafe that is a part of the hostel to hangout as well. The bunk rooms are brick and old school Prague mixed with modern decor and vibes. This is a great spot to go when alone to meet other people.
Price: $23USD/night, book here
Art Hole Hostel
This is a quieter smaller hostel that is for art lovers all over the world that is budget. This is a more quiet spot for those not looking for the party hostel scene. This hostel is close to the Spanish synagogue and in great walking distance of the central part of the city. There are cool painted murals all over the space and you can add your own art too if you wish!
Price: $31 USD/night, book here
The Roadhouse Hostel
This is a social boutique hostel in central Prague. This is a budget backpackers haven for people looking to travel and meet others. There are home cooked community dinners, community boardgames and hangout space and lots of group tours.
Price: $59USD/night, book here
Mid-Range to Luxury
The Emblem Hotel
This beautiful hotel is in Prague’s Old Town, and is an art deco hotel a 2-minute walk from a metro station and 8 minutes from the iconic 14th-century Charles Bridge. One suite has a library theme. Breakfast is free. There’s a sleek restaurant, plus a rooftop spa with a hot tub and a sauna. A 24-hour gym is on-site, as are a lounge and a game room.
Price: $376USD/night, book here
The hotel is a 9-minute walk from a metro station. This is a trendy design hotel that is modern and a 6 minutes’ walk from Old Town Square. The rooms have balconies looking over Old Town. There is a gym, a sauna, a bakery and a trendy bar. Parking is available. Breakfast is extra.
Price: $188USD/night, book here
This is a 5 star hotel on a hillside in the picturesque Mala Strana neighborhood. This is a 16th century hotel that is a warmer more cozy historical feel than the other modern hotel choices. It is a 6-minute walk from the nearest metro stop, 11 minutes on foot from the landmark Charles Bridge and 1 km from Prague Castle. The building still has original features like hand-painted ceilings. Valet parking is complimentary. A refined restaurant has 3 terraces with city views.
Price: $250USD/night, book here