Sumptuous monuments, among them one of the largest castles in the world, buildings that are true architectural masterpieces and a river that along its entire length is crossed by 18 incredible bridges. This is Prague, a capital that, in addition to offering this film scene, still exudes a lot of history, art, literature and music from all sides.
In fact, prepare your camera or cell phone, because beautiful images will not be missing, no matter the time of year. The Astronomical Clock Tower, in the Old Town Square, is one of the attractions that most attract flashes. In addition to marking the date and time, the 1410 clock records the position of the sun, astronomical cycles, moon phases and holidays on the Christian calendar, not counting the hourly mini-show featuring the device.
Another tourist spot and symbol of the city is the Charles Bridge, a Gothic construction on the Vltava River that connects the two parts of the city – Staré Mesto and Malá Strana. Commissioned by King Charles IV in 1357, the bridge has 30 replicas of Gothic statues and Catholic saints throughout its length. One of them, that of São João Nepomuceno, has a worn bronze plaque, as everyone who passes by there rubs the figure “for luck”.
Malá Strana, in fact, is a district below one of the city’s most famous attractions, the imposing Prague Castle; seat of power that housed Bohemian kings, sacred Roman emperors and presidents of Czechoslovakia and the Czech Republic. The MD’s tip is that you reserve a period of the day or an entire day to explore this complex, where the old Royal Palace, the Gothic Cathedral of São Vito are still located – be sure to climb to the top to have one of the most beautiful views of the city – and even a street, better known as Rua do Ouro.
In this district, visitors can take the opportunity to explore the island of Kampa, on the banks of the Vltava River, and perhaps even take a boat trip. Known as the Venice of Prague, Kampa has beautiful trees, ideal lawns for picnics, sculptures like the “babies” of the famous Czech artist David Cerny, as well as a square surrounded by cafes and restaurants. Remembering that many people choose to stay in this area to enjoy this atmosphere of tranquility.
If you are passionate about art in all its forms, you will surely be enchanted by Prague. In the city, two of the greatest composers in the world were born, Antonín Dvořák and Bedřich Smetana, moreover, it was in the capital of the Czech Republic that Mozart premiered the opera Don Giovanni, more precisely on the stage of the beautiful Municipal Theater. In addition to the theater, however, several churches in Prague hold classical music concerts, including the Church of St. Nicholas.
Those who enjoy literature will like to know that one of the great names in world literature, Franz Kafka, is also a son of the city. And to find out all about the writer’s history, just visit the museum in Malá Strana, where you can find the first editions of Kafka’s works, letters, diaries and manuscripts, as well as photos and drawings never revealed before. All of this gathered in a super-modern exhibition, with 3D installations, a special soundtrack and much more.
Ah, in front of the museum, there is one of the most famous sculptures by the controversial Czech artist, David Cerny: two mechanical men, who rotate and urinate at the same time on a map of the Czech Republic. Two other well-known works by Cerny, scattered throughout the city, are the extremely modern bust of Franz Kafka and the realistic Hanging Man.
Tourist pass ( City Pass )
Are you going to stay in Prague for a few days and want to see various sights saving time and money? Then tourist passes can be a good alternative for you. In Prague, there are two options: the Prague City Pass and the Prague Card, both of which allow entry free of charge and without queuing at tourist spots, discounts, in addition to the use of public transport and some tours. Check out each of the benefits below:
Prague City Pass – with this card, the visitor has free admission to sights such as Prague Castle, St. George’s Basilica, the Jewish Museum and Josefov’s synagogues, check them all out here. Not to mention that the package includes two tours: one by bus through the city center and the other by boat along the Vltava River. The benefit costs 1390 CZK (adults), 990 CZK (children) and can be purchased online.
Prague Card – with this benefit, the visitor also has access to attractions such as the Castle, the Old Town Hall and the Petřín tower, without counting on the unlimited use of public transport. According to the website, when using the card, the visitor would save 1,520 CZK over three days. The Prague Card is available in two versions, three and four days, see here the prices and click here to get your advance.
The country’s official language is Czech, but with basic English for tourism – or German – it’s possible to get around Prague’s tourist areas. If you want to spend a day or a few hours exploring areas further away from the center, chances are there is a need to know something in Czech or to use gestures and mimics. Having a book or an app on your cell phone, with some emergency phrases, helps a lot!
The Czech Republic has the Czech koruna (koruna) as its official currency, not the euro. Koruna, represented by the acronyms Kč and CZK (internationally), is available in banknotes of 100, 200, 500, 1000, 2000, 5000, 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 coins and can be purchased at currency exchange and ATMs around the city.
Some establishments in Prague even accept the euro as a form of payment, but it is good not to count on it during your stay there, always having a sufficient amount of crowns in your wallet. Ah, well-known debit and credit cards are also widely accepted in this tourist destination. Find out more about Prague money and prices here.
Prague is a safe city for tourists, the tip, however, is to pay attention to bags, wallets and items such as cameras and cell phones when visiting very tourist and / or busy areas. Pickpockets tend to keep an eye on the outlaws!
Where to eat
Street food is very common in the capital of the Czech Republic and is part of the experience of tourists visiting the city. The good news is that, in addition to trying these and other delicious delicacies, the visitor spends less than if he went to a conventional restaurant. A huge French type bread, with paprika sausage and mustard or ketchup, for example, costs around 70 CZK. The traditional trdelník – sweet bread baked on a spit, then passed on sugar and cinnamon – costs between 70 and 80 CZK. To find out more about local foods and where to try them, click here.
When to go
Prague can be visited all year round, but what is known is that one of the most pleasant periods to visit the destination is between late spring and early European autumn. Those who choose the second half of May, for example, will enjoy much milder temperatures (average around 13 °C), little rain and will also have the opportunity to visit a more flowery city.
The months of July and August arrive with a lot of heat (average temperature of 18 °C), sunny days, a series of events throughout the city; on the other hand, prices are higher and a huge number of tourists invade the streets. A good alternative to enjoy a little bit of good weather – and a slightly more empty city – would be the beginning of autumn.
If, however, you are the type of traveler who wants to spend less and loves cold weather – who knows, even snow – you may end up choosing to spend the winter in the capital of the Czech Republic. Note, however, that to visit the city from December to February, you will need clothes such as coat, underwear (better known as second skin), scarf, hat, gloves and shoes suitable for the cold, as the average temperature, in January, is -5 ° C. To check the weather in Prague right now, click here.
Want to know more about Prague? In this guide, we show you where to stay, how to get there and also the best ways to get out of the airport to the center of the capital.