(ENG only) I had the chance to spend 3 days in beautiful Prague in April during the Easter break, so I thought I would share with you everything about my recent travel experience. This post wants to be a bit of a travel diary, a guide with some tips for sights and food that you cannot miss and a postcard with some pictures I took whilst there.
With the complicity and help of a wonderful springlike weather, we were able to have a great time during our stay and do plenty of things despite the short time at our disposal and without running here and there all the time to avoid the FOMO. And of course we decided to take advantage of this beautiful weather to spend as much time outside as possible.
Prague is just 4 hours away by bus from Berlin so we thought it would be the perfect long weekend getaway destination. Despite not being as cheap as a few years ago when I first visited it (I’ve spent two days in 2015 but haven’t had the chance to explore it properly, so I didn’t know the city well), Prague is still pretty cheap compared to many other European capitals and has plenty of fascinating things to offer. I would recommend, if possible, to not visit it during big international holidays as the town gets very crowded (it is one of Europe’s most visited cities), but as a matter of fact you can still get a lot done even in just a handful of days without necessarily feeling overwhelmed (or at least that how we felt because we don’t like very touristy spots when we travel). The most famous sights are probably inevitable but worth seeing if you’ve never been there. Also there are plenty of cheap accommodation options (we found a lovely Airbnb studio apartment with balcony conveniently located very close to the central bus station, subway station and a supermarket). We were able to do plenty of walking around and we relied on public transportation only when needed.
After going for a quick grocery shopping spree for to the Billa supermarket close to our Airbnb, we officially started our first day in Prague by taking a stroll around the city center: we stumbled upon some markets (there were quite a lot around town due to the Easter holidays) and quickly hit some of the most famous spots of the city center like Republic Square, Old Town Square and then all the way to the most famous bridge in town, Charles Bridge. This bridge is surrounded by an amazing atmosphere and offers a breathtaking view over the river and the surroundings, but it gets insanely crowded so we didn’t spend much time there. We walked to the other side of the bridge and stopped into a small park to enjoy some sun and have a snack while waiting for our upcoming walking tour.
We booked the Alternative Prague Tour on the “Like A Local” website and it was definitely worth making. We normally like to do free walking tours and this wasn’t a free one, but we decided to book it anyway as it had amazing reviews, wasn’t very expensive and could be a great opportunity for us to see a part of town we haven’t visited before and wouldn’t be able to see otherwise if it wasn’t for a local. Our guide Sany was very nice, funny and gave us plenty of info and insights on the underground side of Prague, on the graffiti culture in town and showed us spots and areas that otherwise wouldn’t have been on our radar (she is also the director of a documentary called “Girl Power” about female graffiti writers around the world, as she has been passionate for years about graffiti and involved in the graffiti community, which is unusual for women. More info on girlpowermovie.com). Our tour hit the non-touristy neighborhoods of Karlín, Libeň and Holešovice and ended in Cross Club, which is a very cool underground bar during the day with delicious food and drinks (I had a delicious vegan burger with baked potatoes for around 7 euros and the portion was massive!) and an electro/techno club at night. Also, I find that starting our stay in Prague with an alternative tour was an awesome, less obvious way of getting to know the city better.
After the tour, we decided to take Sany’s advice and go hang out in Riegrovy park, where we spent the rest of the afternoon and waited for the sunset with many other locals there whilst enjoying a fresh drink sitting on the grass. It is the perfect location as it is on a hill and offers a wonderful view of the city.
We ended up our day by walking back to to our Airbnb neighborhood and stopped in a lovely Vietnamese restaurant called Pho Viet, where we had a delicious Vietnamese meal (Pho Bo and rolls) for a good price. Thanks to the tour we did earlier with Sady, we learned that the Vietnamese community is the second largest community in Prague and that they are well integrated in the society, so plenty of Vietnamese restaurants and shops are available all over town. And of course the Vietnamese food is vegan friendly, so it’s not hard to find vegan options in such restaurants.
On our second day, we had another activity booked. Despite both of us already visited Prague already years ago, we decided to make a free walking tour around the city center. We love talking free walking tours when traveling, especially if we know that we won’t staying very long in a place: these tours are made by locals that know a lot about the history of their city and know how to move around town well. Also they are a wonderful, budget friendly way of concentrating the most important history facts and sights in just a couple of hours. Like I said, we don’t like doing a lot of touristy things when traveling, but we still like to find out more about the place we’re visiting. The concept of these free walking tours is simple: you are free to pay how much you want if you’ve enjoyed the tour. Our guide, Chris, was informative, funny and easy to follow both around and while he was speaking. The tour started at Republic Square and proceeded to the Basilica of St. James, Old Town Square, Jewish Quarter and stopped at the Philharmonic Orchestra close to Charles Bridge.
After that I had a meeting with a friend that lives in Czech Republic and that was spending the weekend in Prague, and our meeting point was Manifesto Market, a very hip street food market that serves food and drinks in a cool location between Prague 1 and 3. It is not very touristy, there are lots of options (also quite a few vegan options available), beverages and plenty of place to sit outside. The weather was wonderful at that point and soaking up some sun was very pleasant while catching up with my friend. Note: prices are a bit expensive in my opinion, but the place is worth the visit. Also, it is a cashless market, so make sure to bring your credit card as it is the only form of payment accepted.
After meeting with my friend, we still had a good part of the afternoon ahead, so we took a very long walk trying to hit paths we still haven’t made during our previous walking tours. We had the chance to quickly see the Dancing House and snap a photo of it. We then proceeded to Peace Square, where we were told was a small market which locals tend to go during Easter Holidays. Unfortunately the market was closing when we got there, but since there was still people hanging out there and plenty of daylight, we decided to take in some of the relaxed vibe we had around us and chill on a bench for a while.
After more wandering around and a dinner that isn’t definitely worth mentioning in an asian restaurant (don’t even remember the name, my food was so spicy I could barely eat it and the service wasn’t the best), we took a stroll around the old town by night. Surprisingly even at night certain streets are incredibly crowded, but there’s something magical about Prague by night. We randomly stumbled upon an absinth bar (Green Devil) that had the craziest decor and atmosphere so we stopped by as babe wanted to try some. Absinth bars are widely spread in Prague as absinth consumption is legal. Despite not being a fan of it, I still enjoyed the place as the waiters showed and explained the whole preparation of it.
After another intense day of walking and exploring, we went back to our Airbnb ready to enjoy a good night’s sleep.
On our third and final day we decided to take things at a slower pace, since in the previous days we walked the heck out of ourselves (I don’t mind walking around a lot when traveling, actually it’s a core point of my traveling experiences, but still it’s nice to slower the pace sometimes). We walked to the John Lennon Wall which, let me tell you, despite being a symbol of peace and freedom, was a major disappointment in my opinion. The sight was overcrowded and there were no relevant or special graffitis worth mentioning, so we quickly left and moved to the next location. We climbed to the Metronome which I didn’t see the first time I’ve visited Prague. Despite being one of the city’s main sights, I absolutely recommend it. There is a stunning view of the city from the top and plenty of space to relax and hang out, so it’s not overwhelming at all. We prepared some sandwiches before leaving our place and decided to have a picnic with a view, enjoying the sun right there under the metronome, while sitting on the small wall overlooking the city. We even had some free entertainment thanks to the K-Pop cover band Oh My Girls shooting a videoclip. We hung out in the Metronome Park for a couple of hours, watching skaters doing their tricks, people passing by, taking a few pictures and enjoying the quiet surroundings. After that we went back to the city center and decided to grab an ice cream at Creme de la Creme. This was not only the best vegan ice cream I’ve ever had, but overall THE BEST ice cream I’ve ever had, no joke. For a little over 4€ I’ve got an ice cream that was the size of my head (no I’m not kidding!) so I recommend you to size down (the scoops are huge so don’t get carried away like I did, eheheh).
We then decided to move to the TV Tower and explore its surroundings. This area is definitely not touristy at all and it’s nice to take a walk around in a neighborhood that is inhabited just by locals. There were no actual “sights” there, but we still found it nice. We were able to take some pictures and observe a part of town that feels more authentic (we were told that the Old Town is so expensive in terms of rents that basically no local is able to live there anymore). We had a bite at at an asian restaurant we found on our path called Huong Sen (yes, we’re really into asian food, and in this case felt like a true support to the local community and a budget friendly option too), which was delicious and inexpensive. After our dinner we continued strolling around the area and decided to take one of Sany’s recommendations and visit the Bukowski’s Bar: awesome music, awesome atmosphere and drinks and hit basically only by locals. Definitely worth the visit!
We ended our visit to Prague by taking the bus back to Berlin on the following morning.
I hope this post will give you some travel inspo or useful information if you’re headed to Prague anytime soon. If you have any questions, feel free to ask! 🙂