Prague is a city of rich variety, where stunning architecture and imposing monoliths sit alongside verdant parks and the fast-flowing Vltava River. Home to eccentric artists and prominent intellectuals across history, it boasts influences from art nouveau to freeform jazz. We’ve compiled this A-Z guide to Prague, to help you explore its cobblestoned streets on your next visit.
The Old Town Square’s astronomical clock has struck every day since 1410, with a procession of 12 apostles and figures representing vanity, greed, death and lust doing a clockwork dance every hour.
Prague’s architecture features everything from Gothic to Renaissance and Rococo, but the Baroque buildings are particularly impressive. Explore the Baroque style at the Church of St Nicholas or the Troja Palace, with its vineyard and hedge mazes.
A stroll across this busy 14th century bridge is a must in Prague. Overlooking the Vltava River, Baroque statues stare at you as you pass the Gothic tower bridges. Visit at sunrise to experience it relatively undisturbed.
Prague’s enfant terrible, David Černý’s witty works are dotted around the city. A sculpture of Sigmund Freud swings from a beam above the streets and his peeing statues sculpture proves as provocative as it sounds.
Albert Einstein lived in Prague for a short period, where he rubbed shoulders with Jewish intellectuals like Kafka and Max Brod. A plaque in the Old Town Square marks where he used to play his violin.
Prague is the hometown of writer Franz Kafka, who now has his own walking tour and not just one, but two monuments dedicated to him. Immerse yourself in his vision of the city at the Kafka museum, which describes how the city shaped his life and works.
Or Don Giovanni, to be precise. This Mozart opera premiered at the Estates Theatre in 1787, one of many blockbuster productions to come to the city. The National Theatre, the Prague State Opera and the Estates Theatre are all worthy destinations for opera fans.
It’s no wonder the Czech Republic drinks the most beer in the world when theirs tastes so good. Enjoy an ice-cold bottle al fresco in the beer gardens of Letna Park, a popular spot with locals for enjoying a chilled pivo.
According to legend, a small waxwork figure of baby Jesus protected Prague from plague and destruction during the Thirty Years’ War. Today, pilgrims from all over the world come to see which of his many outfits he has decided to don that day.
Prague’s Jewish Quarter encompasses six synagogues, a cemetery and a large museum. Take a walk around the area to remember this important part of history and admire the Moorish style of the Spanish synagogue.
An enthusiastic collector of KGB artefacts has put his private collection on display. It’s a treasure trove of old soviet artefacts. Don’t miss haunting photos of Prague in the 1960s.
At first glance, the Lennon Wall might look like any other graffiti mural. However, many young Czechs during the communist regime looked up to John Lennon as an advocate for pacifism and free speech, and wrote political graffiti next to his image after his death. Fans still do today.
The Malá Strana is Prague’s oldest neighbourhood, with cobblestoned side streets leading to ancient burgher houses. Take the funicular up Petrin Hill and climb the observation tower for an impressive view of the city.
Every Saturday, locals and visitors flock to the Naplavka farmers market on the riverfront. It’s the perfect place to buy high-quality ingredients like goat’s cheese, freshly baked bread and preserves for a picnic on the riverside.
All kinds of beauty come together in Prague’s Old Town Square: the silhouette of the Týn Cathedral, the Gothic spires of town hall, the Rococo Kinsky Palace and much more. In the centre, a patina-Turquoise Art Deco statue of Jan Hus watches benignly over the square.
An ancient symbol of the Czech state, Prague Castle was first built in the 9th century. It’s the largest castle in the world, encompassing cathedrals, museums and palaces within its stone walls.
Until 1800, Prague was made up of four separate towns divided by defended walls. Nowadays, those towns make up the city’s four quarters: Castle Quarter, Little Quarter, Old Town and New Town.
Located on the banks of the Vltava River, the Rudolfinum is a neo-Renaissance architectural beauty dedicated to art and music. Home to the Czech philharmonic orchestra, it also features a kunsthalle hosting temporary exhibitions by major artists.
Built over the course of 600 years, St Vitus Cathedral is Prague Castle’s piece de resistance. With its Gothic architecture adorned by golden gates and stained glass, it’s been the seat of Prague’s archbishop and saw countless religious services and royal coronations over the centuries.
Indulge your sweet tooth and pick up some trdelník at a street food stall. Pastry is wrapped over a stick and dusted with sugar, nuts or cinnamon before being roasted over an open flame.
Prague is nicknamed ‘the City of a Hundred Spires’, for good reason. Having survived the destruction of War World II, its entire historic town centre is included in the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites.
This National Museum showcases 20th century Czech art, including abstract, surrealist and cubist works. Due to an artistic relationship between France and Czechoslovakia during the interwar period, it is also home to many of the French masters, such as Renoir, Pissarro and Cézanne.
More of a boulevard than a square, Wenceslas Square is where Czechs come to make history; from the creation of the new Czechoslovak Republic to the 1989 Velvet Revolution marking the fall of communism.
Like its eastern neighbours, Czechoslovakia was under communist rule until the 1989 revolution. At the Communist Museum, you can learn more about the life behind the Iron Curtain.
A new generation of young designers and visionaries is channelling entrepreneurial spirit by opening gallery spaces and showrooms. Shop central European fashion brands at Vnitroblock, or visit the multifunctional theatre hall, Jatka 78, for some contemporary circus.
This communist-era TV tower was originally built to block Western broadcast signals. The looming spire is Prague’s tallest landmark, from which you can see panoramic views of the city. The surrealism reaches new heights with Černý’s sculptures of babies crawling up the tower.
As you throw open the curtains each morning and survey the cityscape below, you can smile to yourself knowing you saved 15% off by booking in advance. Secure your stay at least seven days ahead and enjoy the sublime comfort of your room for less.
Prague is the perfect city to celebrate New Year’s Eve for its beautiful, elegant character, and all-round festive, family cheer. As you wander down fairy-tale cobbled streets, you’ll no doubt experience the real magic of Prague. The celebratory atmosphere can be felt throughout the city; on the streets, on the river, in the squares, and in the bars, clubs and restaurants. Below, you’ll learn more about this enchanting city and what it has to offer on this special evening.