The Best Time to Visit Prague (& Top Activities for Every Season!)

The Best Time to Visit Prague (& Top Activities for Every Season!)

Why visit Prague?

Whenever someone asks me this question, I want to say so many things at once that I barely make sense anymore. Let me try and give you more structure in this article!

I will start by giving you an overview of some of the must-visits but you are interested to visiting Prague off the beaten path, I provide tips on that below!

The Old Town and tourist hot spots

You are a tourist going to Prague, the Czech Republic’s capital, for the first time. So of course you have to see the Old Town and all the stunning medieval and baroque magic Prague is famous for before doing anything else.

Prague is often nicknamed the “City of a Hundred Spires” because of its many spires, towers, steeples and turrets. Despite its dark past, and perhaps also because of it, this town oozes romance and one of the first things you should do is simply stroll through it and soak up the atmosphere. This relatively small city has a long list of must-sees and if you only have a couple of days, allow yourself to visit the following places.

  • The Old Town Square: Home to the 15th Century Astronomical Clock, Church of Our Lady Before Tyn and Old Town Hall Tower, this remarkable square is also the location for wonderfully atmospheric Christmas Markets during the holidays and Easter Markets during Spring.
  • The Charles Bridge: Walk along one of the most stunning bridges in Europe! Constructed in 1357 and lined with dramatic Baroque sculptures, you do not want to miss this historical monument crossing the Vltava river.
  • Prague Castle: Visit the largest castle complex in the world! Originally built as a fortress in the 10th century, Prague Castle is most notable for being the seat of power mixing Baroque and Mannerist styles. Today, it still serves as the official office of the Czech president.
  • Saint Vitus Cathedral: This is not just any normal cathedral, but rather an eclectic work of art boasting over 500 years of history. While construction of the cathedral started in the 13th century, it took a total of 525 years to finish. Marvel at the St, Wenceslas Chapel’s stained glass windows and its altar covered in over 1000 precious stones. You can also climb the 280 steps of the main tower and enjoy a view of the city.
  • Wenceslas Square: This giant square named after Bohemia’s patron saint, is located in Prague’s New Town. This historical site has seen Prague’s most notable demonstrations as well as protests and celebrations.
  • The Lennon Wall: The Lennon Wall is also known as the favorite tourist photo wall. This colorful, graffiti explosion was originally an ode to John Lennon, but has since assumed a life of its own.
  • Vyšehrad: This fortress dates back to the mid-10th century and overlooks the Vltava River. Now the original fortress is nothing more than ruins but you can enjoy the atmosphere and visit the Saint Peter and Saint Paul Basilica and the cemetery.
  • The Dancing House: Designed and built in the 1990’s, the Dancing House is one Prague’s first (and successful!) expressions of modern architecture. The so called “Fred and Ginger” resembles a dancing couple to many people, hence the reference to the old movie stars.
  • Strahov Monastery: This 12th century gem holds a huge collection of medieval manuscripts, globes and maps as well as the Strahov Monastery Brewery. Have a cold one!
  • Namesti Miru: While Prague has more squares than you can count, Nemesti Miru, or the Peace Square, is the bustling epicenter of the  popular Vinohrady District. Next to the Neo-gothic church, you can also find the deepest metro station with the longest escalator in the EU.
  • Jewish Quarter: Originally a slum, the Jewish quarter was modernized in the 19th century and holds three major synagogues as well as the Old Jewish Cemetery with graves dating back to the 15th century. However, the most interesting feature is the 2003 Kinetic Franz Kafka sculpture by Jaroslav Rona. Kafka’s most famous work, “The Metamorphosis”, seems to be symbolically sculpted into his skin which is in perpetual motion.
  • Petrin Park: Petrin Park features the highest point in the city and is most notable for the Petrin tower, a replica of the Eiffel Tower. This parks is also an important site for the below mentioned annual Witch Night.
  • Zizkov TV Tower: Why did I put this eyesore of a transmitter on the list? Well, even though it breaks up the otherwise elegant Prague cityscape, it now has multiple uses for the tourists including a restaurant, hotel and observatory.

Natural heritage close to Prague

If you visit during Spring, Autumn but especially Summer, you might enjoy a day out exploring some of the Czech Republic’s rustic natural sites. Bohemian Paradise tops the list with its dreamlike rocky formations and castle ruins. The 182 km² park is bordered by the towns of Mnichovo Hradišt?, Ji?ín and Turnov. Krkonoše National Park features the highest mountain range in the country and lies just at the border with Poland and holds fascinating hiking trails as well as mountain-biking routes.

The Best Time to Visit Prague

Average daytime temperatures in Fahrenheit and Celsius.

January

February

March

April

May

June

July

August

September

October

November

December

37 F

2 C

40 F

4 C

47 F

8 C

58 F

14 C

65 F

18 C

71 F

22 C

74 F

23 C

74 F

23 C

67 F

19 C

56 F

13 C

44 F

7 C

37 F

2 C

If you ask me about the best time to visit Prague, I will tell you that if you want to experience less crowds and pleasant temperatures, it is best to visit in Spring and Autumn. Especially in April and May when the temperatures start to rise, you will experience mild weather and less people. In September and October, you will have similar temperatures. Summer, as you can see from the table, is still rather chilly compared to other parts of Europe, but this is high season and so the time price and visitors go up. Winter may only be appreciated for the Christmas markets, but for me, Prague is at its most romantic in the snow.

Spring (March – May)

Events

  • Easter markets (March-April)
  • Witches’ Night, traditional festival celebrating the change of seasons (April)
  • Prague Marathon (May)
  • Prague Spring International Music Festival (May)
  • Czech Beer Festival (May)
  • Mezi Ploti, Music and theater (May)
  • Prague Food Festival (May)

How To Best Experience Spring In Prague

As the months get warmer, the outdoor festival calendar get stacked. One of the most wonderful Spring Events for you to experience, are the Easter Markets and the Witches’ Night. The Easter Markets are an artisinal haven with hand-made Easter eggs, traditional nibbles and beautiful wooden toys. Witches’ Night is my favorite event on the list because I love witches and I love folklore. In Prague, the witch symbolizes winter and so the effigies are burned in order to symbolically enter Spring. Traditionally, the fire was also a cleansing spirit that wards off evil and people used to throw bad or unlucky objects into the fire.

There are several music festivals this season but the most interesting one for me is Mezi Poti (between the fences). This is a festival that takes place on the grounds of the psychiatric hospital and features musical and theatrical acts that focus on raising awareness for mental illness.

The Czech Beer Festival is the biggest gastronomic event in the whole country. Music, fast-food and beer are thrown together in this culture where they love beer just as much as we do in Belgium (that is saying a lot).

This is a beautiful time to travel to Prague and you will be able to experience some wonderful local events to boot. Keep in mind, however, that in late April and May, the chances of rain go up significantly. So pack accordingly!

Summer (June – August)

Events

  • Prague Fringe Festival, Comedy (June)
  • United Islands of Prague, Music (June)
  • Tanec Praha, Contemporary Dance (June)
  • Karlovy Vary International Film Festival (June-July)
  • Prague Proms, Music (June-July)
  • Bohemia Jazz Fest, Music (July)
  • Summer Festivals of Early Music (July)
  • Verdi Festival, Music (August)

How to best experience Summer in Prague

Summer is here and so are the warm temperatures, so be prepared for an increase in prices and tourists. That being said, there are some great events to keep you busy during this time and if you don’t mind the crowds, it could be worth it for sure.

Film festivals, comedy, music festivals and dance festivals define the summer months in Prague. Classical, Jazz, modern and historical music all have a place here. The Summer Festivities of Early Music is the culturally more interesting one since it offers you a glimpse of Czech music through the ages and historical stands.

Autumn (September – November)

Events

  • Vinobrani, wine towns celebrate the start of grape harvest (September)
  • Dvorak’s Prague Festival, Music (September)
  • Prague Autumn International Music Festival (October)
  • Czech Press Photo (November-January)

How to best experience Autumn in Prague

Autumn might look slim in terms of events, but it is a far more interesting month to explore the tourist hot spots. The months of September and October are still pleasant enough, though a bit chilly, and the tourists will have just left. While Spring is also a great time to travel for similar reasons, quite a few tourists will still be drawn to the unique festivals and events organized in these months.

One of the most interesting events during these months, is the Czech Press Photo. Here, master photographers will display the key events of the past year, national and international, as well as artistic expressions that stand out for their innovation.

Winter (December – February)

Events

  • Christmas Markets (December)
  • Prague Winter Music Festival (January)
  • Days of European Film (January-February)
  • Masopust, the “Czech Mardi Gras” (February)
  • St. Matthews’s Fair (February)

How to best experience Winter in Prague

Winter in Prague is cold cold cold! But that shouldn’t deter you as such. Charming Christmas Markets grace the Old Town Square in December. In February, you can experience what has been described as the Czech version of Mardi Gras, Masopust. Parades, theater performances and homemade costumes throw you into a frenzy of local celebrations.

Like I mentioned before, winter in Prague has something magical for me. The cold can be biting and the weather can be very gloomy indeed if you get stuck in storms and gray, dreary days rather than the bright skies and piercing white snow. In terms of activities and exploring the city in comfort, the other months will generally serve you better if you are here for the first time. Especially if you also intend to visit the beautiful nearby national parks. But I advise you at least visit Prague once during winter.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where can I visit Prague off the beaten path?

Traveling off the beaten path should be part of anyone’s travel experience. While even Prague’s hidden treasures have been written about quite excessively, there are many special places that don’t make it on the first time visitor list. The best way to experience city off the beaten path? Just walk. All-day. Everywhere. Walk so much until you get lost and ask locals about their favorite haunts. Remember, a city is more than a collection of historical buildings. It has a soul.
Explore the less-visited locations:
Olšany Cemetery: I adore old cemeteries for their art and ambiance and this one is a rare beauty in the list. Part of its charm is that they allowed to let nature run a little wild and the old sculptures are covered in moss and ivy, worthy of a Gothic novel.
Karlin District: The expression rags to riches can apply to cities too! The Karlin District was completely destroyed during the 2002 floods. Rather than seeing a disaster, the city saw a blank canvas a trendy district was born. Come here for stylish and modern restaurants, art nouveau buildings, bars and to hit some foodie hot spots.
Kotva department store: You might walk by this building and think it is the most hideous thing you have ever seen. And you may well be right. But what it lacks in aesthetic beauty, it makes up for in fascinating past. Built during the communist regime, much like the ugly above mentioned TV tower, this store is a symbol of the stifling of artistic endeavors and an oppressive regime that still wants to join the modern world. The communists emphatically hid everything the west was developing, but also didn’t want to fall behind. So they commissioned this so-called Czech interpretation of western, modern architecture.
The Bone Church: Although technically not in Prague, it is located at only a one hour train ride away in the town of Kutna Hora. Officially known as Sedlec Ossuary, this fascinating landmark has adopted the name of Bone Church because you guessed it, it holds a construction of human bones. It is a marvelous and dark monument to human cruelty with somewhere between 40,000 and 70,000 victims of the Bohemian Wars now decorating the church interior.
Explore the beauty in the detail and Prague’s strange and dark sense of humor


Prague has a dark past which has inspired some dark jokes. Make sure you spot these on your visit to Prague.
The upside-down horse: Prague’s communist era-inspired one of the most interesting, ironic monuments effectively disarming the idea of corrupt leadership. The Prague Post Office commissioned what they wanted to be an ode to patriotism from the artist and to them unknown rebel David erný. What they got, was King Wenceslas riding an upside-down dead horse made out of Styrofoam. Obviously the post office refused to receive this sculpture, and it is displayed in the Art Nouveau Lucerna Palace. The sculpture was to remain hanging while corruption ruled Prague and guess what, it is still there.
– The hanging Sigmund Freud: The same artist who made the most glorious horse sculpture ever, also made this little satirical joke in the Old Town. As you walk around admiring the buildings, don’t forget to look up and spot a tiny Sigmund Freud casually holding on to a plank deciding if he should let himself fall or not.
The thief’s arm in the church: The Basilica of Saint James holds a most unlikely relic and a true testament to Prague’s love of folklore. It is said that one night, a boy waited inside the church until after dark so he could steal the golden necklace adorning a statue of the Virgin Mary. As he reached up to take it, the statue came to life and grabbed his arm. The next day, the priest found the boy and cut off his arm, hanging it above painting to warn off future thieves.

What was Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s importance in Prague?

In a few words, his importance was in his genius. Whenever I talk about Prague, I talk about Mozart. They are intrinsically linked in my mind. I have loved his music since I was a child and spent many hours reading the letters he wrote to his family, friends, wife, artistic partners and employers. From this, I learned that Mozart was hailed as the musical genius he really was in Prague, unlike in Vienna where he was so eager to succeed.
In Vienna, he was snubbed. Hindered, even. In his experience, this was largely due to the Italian aristocracy holding an artistic monopoly and having no ear for the novelty of his work (which was no lie). But in Prague, his brilliant Don Giovanni, Le Nozze di Figaro, and La Clemenza di Tito received much acclaim. When Mozart died, it is reported that grief was a lot greater in Prague than any other European city. His first-ever memorial service, a monumental requiem, was given in Prague and attended by thousands.
If you love Mozart too, then this is the city to experience his music. Not only because they gave him the respect he deserved during his lifetime, but also because you can get super cheap tickets here compared to Vienna. Try booking a ticket at the Estates Theater for some intense historical vibes. This is where Mozart premiered two of his operas and received standing ovations. Mozart performances are regular here. For example, there is a performance of his Don Giovanni on August 16th for only 16 USD! You can also visit the Mozart Museum located in the house where the composer used to stay during his visits to the city. Fun fact, Milos Forman’s biographical movie Amadeus was shot at several locations in Prague.

How do I get around in Prague?



Prague is not a big town and most of the interesting tourist destinations will be within walking distance. But if you prefer to use public transportation, you can do so very cheaply in Prague. A public transportation pass of 24 hours will cost you no more than 2 USD. Taxis can be pretty pricey and if you prefer to take private transportation, it is better to take an Uber.

What is the local currency in Prague?

Prague’s currency is the Czech Crown (CZK). Some places will accept euros, but most places only accept the local currency. So make sure to have them on hand. Credit Cards are widely accepted in most touristy places.

Is Prague expensive for tourists?

Prague has become way more popular during the last couple of years and you would think the prices would follow. Well, they have a little, but not a lot. Prague is still a pretty cheap destination. To give you an idea, beer, very delicious and very important in Prague, will cost you less than 2 USD at this point if you visit non-touristy bars (this will be double in the touristy places). And the prices for food are often just as low.
What has already become clear is this: avoid the touristy places to buy things. Even a walk of a couple of hundred meters away from the tourist trap will give you the option to shop cheaper.
When it comes to accommodations, a bed in a hostel can range from 10 to 30 USD in the center. A simple hotel can start at 50 USD per night and will be cheaper during the offseason and a while outside of the city center.

Is Prague safe for tourists?

Yes, it is. Crime and violence rates are very low in Prague and a lot of the time it is even safe to walk out alone after dark. Take care of the tourist destinations, though. They are a breeding ground for pickpockets.

Are there typical drinks and food I can try in Prague?

Czechs love their meat and many dishes reflect this. Some examples are Drowned Men Pickled Sausages, roast pork, pork knee, bacon dumplings, … In terms of drinks, you may have already guessed beer is a staple. Pilsner Urquell is the most famous beer in the country and the one you should sample if you try only one. You might also like to try Kofola, which is the Czech Republic’s version of Coca Cola.
If you are a vegan, you may be scratching your head right now. I know I do that many times in many different countries. That being said, despite its meat-centric culture, Prague has a wonderful vegan culture that might surprise you. For some of the restaurants you might need to stray away from the tourist center, but here are some of the best vegan restaurants worth a visit!
– Moment Kavarna & Bistro
– Pastva
– Forrest Bistro
– Forky’s (vegan fast-food)
– Satsang
– Country Life
Disover all the vegetarian and vegan dining options on HappyCow! 

Czechs love their meat and many dishes reflect this. Some examples are Drowned Men Pickled Sausages, roast pork, pork knee, bacon dumplings, … In terms of drinks, you may have already guessed beer is a staple. Pilsner Urquell is the most famous beer in the country and the one you should sample if you try only one. You might also like to try Kofola, which is the Czech Republic’s version of Coca Cola.

If you are a vegan, you may be scratching your head right now. I know I do that many times in many different countries. That being said, despite its meat-centric culture, Prague has a wonderful vegan culture that might surprise you. For some of the restaurants you might need to stray away from the tourist center, but here are some of the best vegan restaurants worth a visit!

  • Moment Kavarna & Bistro
  • Pastva
  • Forrest Bistro
  • Forky’s (vegan fast-food)
  • Satsang
  • Country Life

Disover all the vegetarian and vegan dining options on HappyCow! 

Conclusion – When should I visit Prague?

Prague is a stunning place to visit all year round but you will save quite a bit of money and avoid hordes of tourists by visiting during spring or autumn. In my option, the spring months are the most interesting in terms of events and festivals in the Mezi Ploti and Witches’ Night, and autumn is more so to explore the tourist attractions. But of course, this depends on your personal tastes. If you want to visit the nature parks, summer months will be better for sure since even during this time, Prague is chillier than some other European towns. But whichever season you choose, you are sure to have a magical time.

Further read:

Mieke Leenders

Mieke is a writer and traveler from Belgium. After obtaining her master’s degree in art history, she spent several years working as a freelance writer, project worker, animal volunteer and hotel shift-leader. After she saved enough money, she quit her job and decided to travel through Asia and Latin America. While she was working as an assistant teacher in Costa Rica, she met her favorite student and now husband during an English conversation class. Mieke is currently residing in Costa Rica where she reconnected with her love for writing and is eagerly planning her next adventure.
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