Prague Sights: Half-Day Itinerary
Only have half a day to see what Prague has to offer? These four hours will be busy and beautiful. Wear comfortable shoes, never shy away from small alleys—they often end in a beautiful courtyard—and once you’ve checked out the castle, bridge and Old Town Square, make it your goal to take the path less trodden. The magic and random discoveries of getting lost in Prague’s 1st district inspired Kafka’s heroes. Follow in their footsteps!
Prague Castle (from the outside), and the Charles Bridge
Walk up from Mala Strana via the streets lined with embassies, meander through the castle’s labyrinthine grounds, then make your way back down via the ramparts that overlook the Fuerstenberg Gardens. From here negotiate the windy streets that lead to the Charles Bridge. Stop to admire the Czech-made oddities at Artel (U Luzickeho Seminare 7, 30 feet from the Charles Bridge), then proceed across the bridge, remembering to pause and rub Nepomuk’s bronze toe.
Stare Mesto (Old Town) to the Old Town Square
From the far side of the Charles Bridge, most winding cobblestone streets that lead into the Old Town will bring you to the main square. Those that don’t will get you delightfully lost. Enjoy!
Prague Sights: Full-Day Itinerary
Have a little more time? Wander a little further to see a few off-the-beaten-path Prague sights.
Stamp Seller at the entrance of Villa Richter
Not only for people who collect stamps. This quiet man standing in front of a wobbly stall is the perfect excuse for a post-castle break. Take a few minutes to leaf through the stamp collections that vividly trace the country’s chaotic history. From Soviet Realism, via National Socialist ideals of beauty, to the bold colours of the Young Republic – everything is present (and cheap). If you can’t stand stamps, continue up the stairs of the Villa Richter for a refreshment.
The Strahov Stadium
Located at the top of the Strahov Hill and surrounded by other Soviet architectural “gems,” what the stadium lacks in esthetic appeal it makes up for in sheer size: the largest stadium in the world, this concrete behemoth has the capacity to hold 200,000 people and can fit nine full-size soccer fields inside. But it may not be a Soviet-era relic much longer: the long-neglected stadium is in line for a much-needed facelift.
Jirak’s Farmer’s Market
Stocked with veggies, local cheeses and meats and lots of snacks, this market populated mainly by locals is on a big square surrounded by cafés. Hard to go wrong. Bring the Herald Tribune and while away a morning. Located at nam. Jiřího z Poděbrad, Praha 3. Open Wednesday to Saturday, from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m.
Banner photo credit: Valerii Tkachenko