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The 15 Best Experiences in Prague

Prague is super Instagrammable with its classic red rooftops
Prague is super Instagrammable with its classic red rooftops | ©ATaiga / iStock
Prague’s charm, unique atmosphere and historical beauty draws millions of visitors each year. These are some of the must-do activities to help you navigate the Czech capital without the feeling of having missed out on anything.

From Prague Castle and Old Town to trendy eateries in upcoming residential neighbourhoods, Prague has something to offer every taste. Follow the old Royal Route through the heart of the city’s historic district, learn about the effects of Stalinism, enjoy some of the best Czech brews or find out why Czechs excel at ice hockey – all this and more activities will make your visit to Prague a time to remember.

Stroll across Charles Bridge to Prague Castle

Historical Landmark

Whether it’s your first time in the Czech capital or you’re an experienced Prague visitor, this stroll is a must. Start in Old Town, cross the fabled Charles Bridge spanning the Vltava River and ascend to Prague Castle along the route that the Kings of Bohemia used to take to their coronation in St Vitus Cathedral. This stroll involves a fair amount of walking, but the views are well worth it.

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Take a River Cruise on the Vlatava River

Natural Feature
Vltava River at Dusk
©Dindrtahl / Alamy

One of the best ways to see Prague’s top sights and feel the unique mystique of the capital is from a boat on the Vltava River. Some cruises start from the New Town embankment and follow a route past the Smíchov neighbourhood, and then under the medieval Charles Bridge; other boats go along the river as far as the zoo. All of them offer breathtaking views of the city’s spires. This particular cruise offers a luxurious buffet-style dinner on board, others simply offer a glass of wine or beer. The live jazz music cruises are particularly romantic.

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Old Town Stroll

Architectural Landmark, Historical Landmark
The Astronomical Clock was first installed in 1410, it's the third oldest astronomical clock in the world and the oldest one still in operation
©Joe Daniel Price / Getty Images

Back in the day when Prague consisted of five independent boroughs, Old Town was the most affluent and imposing among them. Take a stroll through the maze of little cobbled streets and alleys, explore the majestic Old Town Square, climb to the top of the Old Town Hall Tower, and observe the medieval Astronomical Clock. You can also enjoy a cup of coffee or a glass of beer in some of the area’s plentiful cafés, pubs and bars. Take a walking tour of the city and learn all about the history and culture of Prague from your knowledgeable guide.

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Old Town mysteries at night

Historical Landmark
Prague - Charles bridge in the night
©Jozef Sedmak / Alamy

Centuries of history have left deep traces in the Czech capital. Legends says that at night, some of the historical characters come to life and haunt the streets that are bustling with life during the day. Visit an old Gothic church, a medieval cemetery and more on a night-time walking tour in Prague’s Old Town.

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Vítkov Memorial

Historical Landmark
Equestrian statue of Jan Žižka in Prague
©Gwengoat / iStock

One of Prague’s most peculiar sites, the Vítkov National Memorial, offers a journey through the turbulent modern Czech history, from the formation of Czechoslovakia in the aftermath of World War I, until the fall of Communism in 1989. Built in the 1930s as a memorial to the Czech and Slovak soldiers who fought for the country’s independence, it was turned into a mausoleum for Czechoslovakia’s first communist president, Klement Gottwald. The building’s observation deck offers spectacular views of the city from an unusual perspective.

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Go on a Golem hunt

Historical Landmark

Search for the legendary Golem in Prague’s Jewish quarter. According to the legend, Rabbi Loew created the giant and terrifying artificial being during the Renaissance era from clay to protect the city’s Jewish community. When the Golem got out of control, he deactivated the monster and stored his huge body in the attic of the Old New Synagogue, the oldest functioning Jewish shrine in Europe. Explore the history of the Jewish community of Prague, and see the grave of Golem’s creator in the Old Jewish Cemetery.

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Classical Music Concert at Lobkowicz Palace

Concert Hall

Czechs are very proud of their classical music heritage, and Prague has a wide choice of venues to hear the masterpieces of Antonin Dvorak, Bedrich Smetana, Leos Janacek and other famous composers. Classical music concerts are held in the Lobkowicz Palace in the Prague Castle district, in the Municipal House, or some of the many churches in the historic centre of the city. If you feel like an even more regal experience, check out performances at the Rudolfinum Concert Hall, the National Theatre or the Estates Theatre where Mozart’s Don Giovanni premiered in the 18th century.

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Learn all about the Cold War

Historical Landmark

Experience the grim times of the Cold War when Prague was one of the capitals of the Warsaw Pact. Learn about the Stalinist era of the 1950s, and about the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968. Visit a nuclear bunker, explore the Museum of Communism and see some of the sites of the Velvet Revolution that toppled the communist regime in 1989.

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Live like a local

Building
Prague, Czech Republic. 08th Sep, 2017. Happening of sustainable fashion named Slou Fashion Days has began in Prague, Czech Republic, on September 8, 2017. The happening is a part of accompanying program of the Mercedes-Benz Prague Fashion Week. Visitors
©CTK / Alamy

In recent decades, several of Prague’s residential neighbourhoods, just outside the city centre, have undergone major transformation from shabby, poorly kept areas, into trendy zones with fashionable eateries, chic cafés and expensive apartment boutiques. Letná, on the left of the Vltava Vršovice, to the south of the centre, and on the right bank, are places to visit if you want to experience the vibrant thrum of the new more fashionable local scene.

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Savour local flavours

Building
Glazed pork knuckle with beer.
©Konstantin Kopachinskiy / Alamy

In recent years, many restaurants in Prague have reinvented typical Czech food that used to be seen as outdated and too heavy. Avoid the tourist trap restaurants and go for a refreshing new take on some of the Czech classics such as fried cheese, beef in cream sauce, and pork knee with dumplings.

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Take a traditional Czech cooking class

Market
Learn to cook typical Czech dishes
©Alberto Bogo / Stocksy

Explore Prague’s food markets and stock up on delicious ingredients, before using your freshly bought produce to cook up a traditional Czech feast! Some popular Czech dishes are easy enough to make, and if you want to bring a special souvenir from Prague, why not make it a recipe that will amaze your family and friends.

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Explore the Czech beer scene

Brewery
Freshly tapped Prague beer glass Czech Republic
©Cum Okolo / Alamy

No visit to the Czech Republic is complete without beer, arguably the country’s top product. There are dozens of large breweries and hundreds of craft brewers all around the country, including the capital, so when you want to sample some, make sure you go beyond the mass-produced commercial brands. There are hundreds of pubs in Prague alone that will help you navigate through the world of Czech beer.

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Enjoy the Czech nightlife

Building

Since the wild 1990s saw the return of artistic freedom to the country, and a major influx of influences from abroad, Prague has built up a lively club scene offering anything from electronica and rap, to jazz and folk music. Some of the best clubs are located in the very heart of the city, others are in former industrial sites that can be reached by public transport. Or you can take a tour of some of the trendy clubs in the capital.

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Support local hockey teams

Sports Center
Support a local hockey teams at a Champions Hockey League match
©Sparta Prague/Champions Hockey League via Getty Images

Czechs love hockey, and the country has a thriving professional competition. If you are here during the season and feel like watching some fast action on ice, Prague has one of the most modern hockey venues in Europe, home to the legendary Sparta Prague hockey club. Catch one of their home games against long-time rivals Brno or Kladno. Prague also has a number of hockey rinks with skates rentals where you can glide on the ice all year round.

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These recommendations were updated on February 6, 2020 to keep your travel plans fresh.