Whenever you are looking for a cheap city break, one place which seems to be mentioned on every list is Prague. As part of my #Europe12in12 challenge, I bagged a short trip away to Prague and I was excited to see if it was as good and cheap as everyone says. I've put together some top reasons why you should also add Prague to your travel plans.
Head to the Astronomical Clock
The Astronomical Clock is a huge tourist attraction but be prepared, it’s over almost as soon as it starts! It’s worth a visit just to admire the huge crowds that gather to see the clock chime on the hour. Whilst you’re there, explore the square which is full of beautiful traditional buildings. We visited in Easter, which meant the square was packed full of Easter decorations. It was a small hint at what it might be like to visit at Christmas, one of the most popular times to visit Prague, and I can imagine why!
Walk Over Charles Bridge
Charles Bridge is another must in Prague and packed full of tourists ambling across the famous bridge which is pedestrian only. If you want to avoid the crowds, you need to get up early! Make sure you stop and look at the intricate metalwork and statues along the bridge, including the many saints and patrons which line the bridge.
Explore Prague Castle
Once you’ve crossed the bridge, you can visit Prague Castle. Personally, I found it a bit overrated. Entry was expensive and staff were rude, although it is a grand collection of buildings. However, it is the main destination to visit in Prague and you should visit it if it's your first trip to the city - everybody will ask you if you've been!
The best part of the castle is Golden Lane. It’s a tiny street within the castle walls, where the goldsmiths would have lived. The tiny buildings are painted in bright colours and they are now recreated scenes from the original houses or shops for tourists. Of course, it reminded me of Diagon Alley!
Pretty Pastels and Gothic Architecture
I adored the pastel, intricate buildings of Prague. The streets were stunning, packed full of tall, gothic and baroque buildings in a variety of pretty colours. Some of my favourite spots were in the quieter parts of the city and I loved exploring the gorgeous streets.
The style of Prague is impeccable; we stayed in a modern, chic apartment from AirBnb which was the perfect base for our break, just a short walk from the old town. If you haven't joined the AirBnb bandwagon yet, you need to give it a go - sign up here to get £25 off your first stay.
Try The Cuisine
For a traditional meal, head to Mlsnej Kocour for dumplings, boar, sauerkraut and Pilsners. I normally love some carbs, but the Prague cuisine wasn’t my favourite and therefore, we ate more mainstream food for the rest of our trip. For great burgers, head to Dish, a hipster burger joint which was conveniently close to our AirBnb full of trendy locals. Our favourite meal was actually at Taverna Toscana, an Italian restaurant just around the corner from the Astronomical Clock. I expected it to be touristy and poor quality, but instead we were treated to simply prepared, delicious fresh pasta and good quality wine at reasonable prices.
There is one traditional dish I would highly recommend; Trdelnik. This cone of pastry, cinnamon and almonds is filled with creamy vanilla ice-cream.. You can choose chocolate, strawberry or apple flavours but I stuck to the classic and ended up devouring one every day! There are Trdelnik stands all over the city to get your sweet fix whenever you want it.
The Lowdown: Stay, Eat, Visit
Stay at an AirBnb. There are plenty of cheap apartments to choose from in Prague but we opted for this modern and central 2 bed apartment. The quieter location of Prague 2 was ideal for us and it was still close enough to the city centre to explore easily.
Eat at Taverna Toscana for incredible, fresh pasta. Yes it isn’t traditional Prague cuisine but it was certainly tasty! If you do want something traditional, then you must try the famous Trdelnik. My favourite thing about Prague!
Visit the Astronomical Clock and the Old Town square. Yes it's a classic of every guide to Prague, but it's on every list for a reason!