Most people associate Prague with the famous Prague Castle or the gorgeous Charles Bridge. This amazing city however has much more to offer and anyone planning a trip here should definitely explore beyond the main tourist attractions to have a truly unique and special experience here. Prague is a city that possesses a large and eclectic mix of culture, art and nightlife. With so many options for a first-time traveler, it can seem overwhelming. We’ve compiled a list of the top 10 must-see and must-do sights, activities and places for a first time visit to the amazing city of Prague.
1. Walk Across the Charles Bridge
When we think of things to do in Prague one of the first activities that comes to mind is taking in the views from the Charles Bridge. This is an unforgettable experience that will doubtlessly stay with you for years to come. Walking across the Charles Bridge is an absolute must for first time visitors of the city. Yes, the bridge will be crowded with other tourists, but so what? That won’t detract from the amazing history and cultural beautify of this landmark.
2. Go Back in Time at Malá Strana
No matter what season you visit the city walking this neighborhood is one of the top things to do in Prague, so you are likely to run into many tourists on the main streets of Mala Strana. Don’t be afraid to jump off the main thoroughfares to turn into a side street and follow your curiosity. There is much to be discovered in this gorgeous neighborhood beyond overpriced food and cheap souvenirs
3. Saunter Through Prague’s Old Town
Prague’s Old Town Square is one of the most spectacular squares in Europe. The square has seen centuries of history with some of it’s Gothic buildings dating back to the 14th century. This impressive Old Town square managed to survive World War 2 mostly unscathed, which is rare for European cities, but for which we can all be thankful. Parts of it are so well preserved you might wonder if you took a step back into time.
4. Marvel at the Meet Factory
The Meet Factory is the creation of David Černý who has compiled an amazing collection of alternative art pieces. View the amazing murals and public sculptures and get inspired by some off-the-wall art.
5. Hang out at the Cross Club
If you’re looking for a fun nightlife adventure, the Cross Club should definitely be at the top of your list. From the interior and exterior décor made of futuristic mechanical sculptures and frameworks to the cool and eclectic music selection, which includes live bands, reggae, dubstep and a variety of electronic music. The club gets its name from its original intent to be a crossroads for different subcultures, so expect all manner of artsy people at this one.
6. Walk through Golden Lane
Located within the Prague Castle complex, Golden Lane was probably the highlight of my experience there. Comprised of 11 historic houses, each house is staged to show the life of the artisans that once lived and worked there, from the 15th century through the 1900s.
7. Visit the Vltava River
This amazing river offers a relaxing place to have a bite to eat or even to just hang out at. In the summer, there are live bands and more beer stands than you can count! You can also book a live jazz dinner cruise if you’re feeling extra adventurous.
8. Snap a photo at St. Vitus Church
The Roman Catholic Cathedral is within the walls of the Prague Castle complex. The Gothic Cathedral dates back to the mid-1300s, with earlier religious structures on the site dating back 300 years earlier. Be sure to walk around the entire Cathedral. The spires, gargoyles, and flying buttresses are worth your time! Once inside, admire the Cathedral’s stained glass windows. They’re long and colorful, filling the Cathedral with light. The Cathedral also holds the remains of past Kings and Emperors.
9. Grab a beer at an ancient pub
Prague has amazing beer (and amazingly cheap too!). There are so many pubs littered throughout the city that are decades old. You can pop into nearly any one of them, grab a great drink and marvel at the decor and architecture of some of the most beautiful bars and pubs in Europe.
10. Visit the Vrtbovská Zahrada Garden
These public gardens are a very serene and peaceful place to take a walk through or just sit with a good book and enjoy the beauty of it all. It is a common destination for weddings and photo shoots because of how photogenic it is. This is also a great place for the photographer in the group as there will be no shortage of amazing shots to take here. Also, it is generally free from tourists and foreign travelers. Definitely more of a local spot!