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Masked celebration  |  ©LenDog64 / Flickr
Masked celebration | ©LenDog64 / Flickr
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How to Celebrate Masopust in Prague

Picture of Diana Bocco
Updated: 10 February 2017
The Bohemian Carnivale, known in Czech as Masopust, is a week-long celebration that which takes place between the end of January and the beginning of February in Prague. We take a closer look at the main event, a huge masked parade through the city.

Masopust visitors will be treated to a visual spectacle of costumed revellers, giant marionettes and lots of unusual carriages. Traditionally, the parade was meant celebrate the upcoming spring. Although dates vary from year to year, the main parade usually takes place on the second Tuesday of February.

For paraders who want to be there right from the start to the very end, head straight to Žižkov neighborhood. Here you’ll find parade participants congregating in front of the church at the Náměstí Jiřího z Poděbrad metro stop. Stalls selling mulled wine and food will ensure that revellers get off to a good start, before the parade snakes its way through the streets of Prague.

Dressing up to celebrate | ©David Sedlecký / Wikimedia Commons
Dressing up to celebrate | ©David Sedlecký / Wikimedia Commons

The parade usually lasts about 90 minutes, ending at the u Viktorky Žižkov park, where the celebration continues well into the night. Late comers will still have the chance to enjoy some circus entertainment, including jugglers and fire breathers.

Masopust Parade | ©David Sedlecký / Wikimedia Commons
Masopust Parade | ©David Sedlecký / Wikimedia Commons

To join in the Masopust fun, paraders should first find a costume. There are no rules when it comes to dressing up for carnival, so if in doubt go for the brightest, strangest and most colorful garb you can find. While witches and ghouls are welcome, the focus of carnival celebrations isn’t on scary creatures, but on the strange and unusual. Head to the Halloween Store or create your own Masopust costume with whatever you can find from a thrift store.

Getting ready for the parade | ©Diana Bocco
Getting ready for the parade | ©Diana Bocco

Visitors who find themselves in Prague in the days preceding Masopust parade will also be treated to craft fairs, exhibitions, formal balls, live concerts, guided historical tours and other events. For specific dates, check the official Prague Carnival page.