Prague was the last destination of the Europe leg of my 2014 Europe – Asia trip! It is an extremely gorgeous, affordable place to visit. Everyone’s told me about the country’s beauty, so I had to witness it with my own eyes. Without further ado, here’s how I spent 3 nights in Prague.
I remember the experience of getting off the airplane and figuring out how to get to my hotel. I was nervous about the cold and a bit starved, so I went to a supermarket in the airport to pick up some food. I ended up buying a bottle of water and some sourdough bread, which was marked 2 CZK. I had no idea how much that meant. Later I checked the currency exchange rate on Google with the airport Wi-Fi and realized I had just bought sourdough bread for $0.08. Was this real life?!
The people working at the airport were friendly enough to teach me how to get around, drawing the route to my place of stay on a paper map they gave me. I purchased a pass for a single trip (30-min ticket) on the tram:
Short-term (tourist) passes
30 min ticket: 24 CZK ($0.97 in USD)
90 min ticket: 32 CZK ($1.29 in USD)
24-hour pass: 110 CZK ($4.44 in USD)
3-day pass (72 hours): 310 CZK ($12.52 in USD)
Long-term passes (issued with a photo-ID)
Monthly: 550 CZK ($22.21 in USD)
Quarterly: 1,480 CZK ($59.76 in USD)
5-month: 2,450 CZK ($98.92 in USD)
Annual: 4,750 CZK ($191.78 in USD)
Super cheap right? If you’re from America, 1 CZK = $0.04 USD as of 2015, so you pretty much divide your CZK amount by 25 to get your USD amount.
Getting to the Hotel
Getting off the tram, I felt the freezing cold at full force. For a California girl, I was not used to Prague’s weather. Yes, it was quite brisk throughout my Europe trip, but Prague was so cold in November that if I didn’t wear gloves, my fingers would actually hurt from the harshness. Because of this, I was so excited to arrive at my hotel (to warmth!) at the Vlkova Palace. I was thoroughly pleased with my experience there.
What to Do in Prague
During my 4 days/3 nights in Prague, I spent the first 2 days by myself and the last 2 days with my friend. Here were some fun things I did during my short stay:
Dinner Cruise on the Vltava River
You’re bound to check out the Vltava River if you’re in Prague, so why not take a dinner cruise to get the full experience? The cruise only costs around $30 and includes a dinner accompanied by an accordion player! If you’re going to Prague during the fall/winter, it’s a good way to see the sights without freezing to death :).
Daytime photo at the Vltava River
I’m normally not much of a sweets eater, but I found myself obsessed with Trdelnik. Trdelnik is a traditional Slovak cake and sweet pastry that originated in Transylvania, Romania but is now very popular in the Czech Republic. Trdelnik stands can be found all over the Old Town Square.
Isn’t it cool how they make it? They put the dough on these metal rods that roll above fire to bake.
Check Out the Astronomical Clock Tower When the Hour Strikes
The Astronomical Clock tower is again located in the Old Town Square. I didn’t know it was a thing until I saw everyone crowd around the tower. I checked my watch and the hour was about to strike so I figured something was going to happen then.
Astronomical Clock Tower on the left, Church of Mother of God before Týn on the right (all located in Old Town Square)
When the hour strikes, animated figures come out of the clock. It was very anticlimactic, haha, but if it’s close to the hour and you’re around the city centre, go check it out!
Absinthe at the Absintherie
If you haven’t tried absinthe before, you should check this off your bucket list at the Absintherie (a bit past the Old Town Square). With its natural green color and high alcohol percentage (45–74% ABV / 90–148 U.S. proof), the drink has been categorized as an addictive psychoactive drug and hallucinogen. However, I haven’t heard any stories of people hallucinating through absinthe, so maybe its high alcohol proof and color are the main defining factors of the drink. Since the shot I ordered was very diluted, I didn’t experience much of an effect…it felt like a regular shot to me!
Try the Food at U Fleků
U Fleků was founded in 1499 and is considered the oldest brewery in Prague. I ordered the 600 g Roast pork knuckle with vegetable garnish and told them to choose a beer for me, and this all came out to be around $15. They had an accordion player serenade us beautifully while we were eating. The entirety of my trip just made me appreciate accordions that much more. Just don’t get sucked into accepting the food/drinks they will continuously offer you – I think they try to trick tourists to thinking they’re included, but be warned, their offerings are not free!
I’m hoping to visit Prague again when it is warmer, but I had a really wonderful experience there regardless of the cold. Everything is so affordable, especially when you’re away from touristy areas! When I was visiting the bars and restaurants near the hotel, I purchased beer for $0.50 and an entree of fish and vegetables for $2. It was incredible. However, I did notice that people looked less happy in Prague than in other countries I had visited. The waiters and waitresses looked like they hated their jobs. And because of people’s stern and uninviting demeanor I felt less willing to approach people for a conversation. I also found many people were smoking in restaurants, and a lot of the building walls were lined with graffiti. It definitely was a different environment than what I was used to, but I still thought the country was beautiful.
Have you been to Prague? Let me know what you think in the comments!