Prague, also known as the “City of a Hundred Spires”, is famous for its particular architecture, traditional food, and delicious beer. But apart from such aspects, the city also hides many treasures, stemming from its medieval past up until its liberation from communism, that are worth experiencing.
Thinking of visiting Prague or already in town? I personally visited this incredible city and the following are my top picks for the best things to do in Prague, Czech Republic.
Table of Contents
- Visit the Many Museums
- Check the Astronomical Clock
- Taste the Delicious Czech Food
- Rest at the Franciscan Gardens
- Try the Local Pilsner Beer
- Stroll across the Charles Bridge
- Take a tour of the Prague Castle
- Admire the Head of Franz Kafka
- Learn About Czech History
- Climb the Powder Tower
- Visit the City’s Synagogues
Visit the Many Museums
From Alchemy to Communism, there are many interesting museums to see in Prague. And believe me, none of the ones I visited were even close to being boring.
For some reason, Prague is very fond of creating visuals representations of events, instead of simply displaying clothing and historical items in general. When you visit an alchemy museum, you will see the laboratories as they looked when operating; when you visit the Museum of Torture, you will hear screams and see representations of executions (be prepared for that).
So, if you want an authentic experience, Prague is the place for you when it comes to museums and historical discovery.
Check the Astronomical Clock
The Pražský Orloj (Prague Orloj) is a 15th-century astronomic clock located in the Old Town Square. The clock consists of two dials; the astronomical, representing the medieval view of the universe, and the calendar, describing the measurement of time across the year.
Local legend says that the entire city will fall into a curse if the maintenance of the clock is neglected, a ghost sitting on top of the clock will give the sign of its doom.
Taste the Delicious Czech Food
From luxurious cafes such as Cafe Louvre to traditional restaurants like Lokal, there are plenty of places to enjoy good food while visiting Prague.
The food here is mostly based on meat and roots, like in most countries in Central Europe. But what makes it unique and gives it a delicious taste is the assortment of creams and natural sauces that go with the main courses.
Rest at the Franciscan Gardens
Prague can be exhausting to explore, especially since the cobblestones that the streets are made of can seriously hurt your feet if you walk too much on a single day. For that reason, it is important to take breaks while exploring Prague.
Not every tourist knows that there are beautiful 14th-century gardens right on the side of Wenceslas Square. They are called Františkánská zahrada (Franciscan Gardens) and are the perfect place to take a break and eat some chlebíčky.
Try the Local Pilsner Beer
Czech beer is no joke one of the best in Europe, and perhaps of the world. There is a centuries-old tradition involved in crafting traditional Pilsner beer in Bohemia, a tradition that is reflected in the incredible taste.
Even the manner in which the beer is poured into the glass and created foam results in a difference in taste and experience. And these details are what make Czech beer so special.
Stroll across the Charles Bridge
Crossing the Vltava river, the iconic Karlův Most (Charles Bridge) serves as the main connection between the Old Town and the Prague Castle. It was built in the early 15th century to replace the old Judith Bridge, which had been badly damaged by a flood in 1342.
The bridge has a Gothic style, displaying Baroque iconography from the late 17th and early 18th centuries. Prominent Bohemian sculptors such as Matthias Braun, Jan Brokoff, and his sons Michael Joseph and Ferdinand Maxmilian, took part in its meticulous construction.
Take a tour of the Prague Castle
The Pražský Hrad (Prague Castle) was built around 880 by Prince Bořivoj of the Premyslid Dynasty (Přemyslovci). It is the largest castle complex in the world, with an area of almost 70,000 m², consisting of a large-scale composition of palaces and ecclesiastical buildings of various architectural styles, from the remains of Romanesque-style buildings from the 10th century through Gothic modifications of the 14th century.
Admire the Head of Franz Kafka
The Head of Franz Kafka is an outdoor sculpture by David Černý depicting Bohemian German-language writer Franz Kafka, author of the famous novel ‘Metamorphosis’. It is 11 meters tall and made of 42 rotating panels, each moving individually.
It is right on a square, so there are no ‘opening hours’. But be prepared to spend some time here, since you will have to wait for quite a lot until the sculpture actually forms the face of Kafka.
Learn About Czech History
You would be surprised by how easy it is to find books in English about the history of Prague and the Czech Republic as a whole.
From the influence of Alchemy in medieval science to the recent Velvet Revolution, you will find books on many interesting topics that will help you better understand the Czechs and how they see the world.
Climb the Powder Tower
Originally meant to be an attractive entrance to the city of Prague when it began being built in the 15th century, the Powder Tower was then turned into a gunpowder deposit during the 17th century.
The climb is a little bit tough, but once you get up there, you will have an amazing view of downtown Prague. My personal suggestion would be to visit at night since the city looks particularly beautiful at this time.
Visit the City’s Synagogues
Prague has a long story built together with the Jewish community, and it can be seen and experienced in the famous Jewish Quarter. There you will find beautiful synagogues, both ancient and new, that had an important role in constructing the identity of the city and its inhabitants. Part of this story and an interesting thing to investigate is the legend of the Golem of Prague.