World history and over-the-top fairytale charm collide in the culturally rich city of Prague. Thirty years after the Velvet Revolution pulled back the curtain on its intoxicating maze of twisty cobblestone streets, the ‘City of a Hundred Spires’ continues to thrill visitors with its dramatic Gothic architecture, sparkling river, statue-bedecked bridge and insane food and cocktail scene. In fact, few cities have as much to offer as Prague. The Old Town itself is a joy to explore and you could ramble around for days admiring its old houses. But what if you only have a few days (or hours!) to explore this incredible jewel in Eastern Europe’s crown?
No need to stress because, by engaging an awesome travel planner like me, together, we can make sure you maximize both time and money. If you have just one day in Prague, focus on the major sights and start early. But, if you’re lucky enough to have three days, following is my tried and true day-to-day itinerary to make sure you see the very best of this ridiculously pretty city.
Day One. Start early and stop by the Astronomical Clock for the hourly chiming. Next, wander through the Old Town Square, taking in the dazzling array of architectural styles. Afterwards, grab a coffee and pastry at Bakeshop Praha before taking a short stroll through Josefov, the former Jewish ghetto.
Wander through the winding alleys of the Old Town on your way to one of Prague’s most famous landmarks, Charles Bridge. Stop to take photos of the Vltava River while crossing the statue-lined bridge with the magnificent Prague Castle rising over the spectacular cityscape. And don’t forget to make a wish at the plaque on the statue of John of Nepomuk! Touching the falling priest on the plaque is said to bring good luck and ensure your return to Prague.
Hike up to the castle by way of Mala Strana, one of the city’s oldest districts, and spend the afternoon visiting the haunting St. Vitus Cathedral and the castle’s gardens.
For dinner, treat yourself to a meal with a view. Villa Richter is near the castle, or you can walk back down to Mala Strana for upscale Czech food at Augustine. If it’s Christmas season, walk back down to the Old Town Christmas market for a cup of hot honey wine and wurst under the glow of thousands of twinkle lights decorating one of the most jaw-dropping Christmas trees you’ll ever see in your life.
Day Two. Spend the morning exploring the quaint backstreets and Kampa gardens of Mala Strana. Catch the Petrin Funicular and enjoy sweeping views from the Lookout Tower at the top of Petrin.
From here, you can find the path that crosses over to the Strahov Monastery and then head downhill along the Wallenstein Garden where you can treat yourself to a late lunch at a lovely riverside restaurant.
After lunch, cross the river via Manes Bridge. Check out the famous synagogues of the Jewish Museum and then take a break with tea and cake on the balcony of the striking Grand Cafe Orient. Once refreshed, stop by the box office of the National Theatre to ask if any last-minute tickets are available to the opera or the ballet. Before the show, enjoy a light meal at Cafe Louvre. Afterwards, go for a classy nightcap at Hemingway Bar.
Day Three. Start with coffee at the famous Kavarna Slavia. Choose a table overlooking the river with a view of Prague Castle. Make your way to Slav Island where you can explore the river by paddleboat before heading south to see the Dancing House.
From here, walk back to Wenceslas Square, taking time to do some souvenir shopping (Hint: Czech puppets!). Nearby sights include the National Museum, the Jan Palace Memorial and St. Wenceslas Statue. In the mood for beer and burgers? Head to Jama.
From here, it’s an easy metro ride to Vysehrad and Vysehrad Citadel. You can wander around the ruins and visit the graves of Dvorak and Mucha in the cemetery, as well as take in some wonderful views of Vitava and Prague Castle. Afterwards, head back into town and spend the evening doing some last-minute Christmas shopping if its the season, or simply grab a beer at the Riegrovy Sady Beer Garden.
With a population of just over one million, Prague covers approximately 200 square miles and its geographical position at the center of Europe makes it a convenient base from which to explore many other major cities such as Vienna and Budapest. Prague is also the historical capital of Bohemia. So, it comes as no surprise that the Czech people are as cool and laid back as they come. Without question, Prague is must-see city and, with some careful planning, together we can make the most of whatever time you do have in this postcard-perfect city.
Ready to book YOUR Eastern European adventure? Hit me up! I specialize in Europe and the Exotics and I’m very good at what I do. Warmly, Sandy, #TheSandyPapers, (703) 975-1747