Visiting Prague with friends: art, culture and hefty amounts of beer
Prague is one of the best cities to visit with friends. The Czech capital ticks all the boxes for an incredible multi-day trip, perfectly combining cultural activities and nightlife, as all good European cities should strive to do. If you haven’t made your mind up yet, this article will list a few ideas that will make you choose Prague for your next holiday with friends.
Central and Eastern Europe are brimming with attractions that make for the perfect trip. These countries—which are within a two or three-hour flight from British airports—are affordable destinations, where a lavish dinner or a good hotel won’t set you back too much. Here, you will find buzzing street life and the perfect balance between culture and leisure activities.
It’s worth remembering that Prague is one of the 10 most visited cities in Europe, with no signs of dropping from this list despite growing competition. There’s probably a reason for that.
Visiting Prague with friends
Is Prague the perfect place to visit with friends? It really is. First, because two days are enough to see the beautiful sights of this city, which feels like it’s been taken right out of a fairy tale.
Starting from the Old Town (Staré Město), you can cover a simple route which takes you to each of the city’s main landmarks: the Old Town Square, St Vitus Cathedral, the Astronomical Clock, the Powder Tower, Charles Bridge and Prague Castle, which stands at the top of the Malá Strana district. Prague is a perfectly walkable city, so don’t worry about long distances or having to take public transport.
On this intense first day, you’ll be left open-mouthed by the immense beauty that is only exuded by cities such as Prague. In the afternoon, we recommend treating yourself to an afternoon snack at the Café Savoy, where you can immerse yourself in the Bohemian nature of this historic capital city.
Prague, Jews and the Second World War
You’ll need a second day to discover the rest of Prague’s hidden charms. This might be a good time to focus on a specific period of the city’s history. As is the case with many European cities, many tourists are interested in learning about its role in the Second World War. Visitors to Prague can go on a fascinating tour around the city, learning about the key events that took place here during the defining period of the twentieth century.
First, to understand the notable presence of Jews in the city throughout history, we recommend visiting the Jewish cemetery and the synagogues. Then, head to Wenceslas Square and Saints Cyril and Methodius Church, where you’ll receive hints and hear some interesting anecdotes about the various events that took place in the city during the war and the subsequent communist era.
Restaurants for dining with friends
Don’t you find that learning about history gives you an appetite? Once you have finished sightseeing, we recommend eating in a historic restaurant that combines typical Czech cuisine with a delicious unpasteurised beer. If you head to U Medvídku (Na Perštýně 345/7), you can enjoy a delicious pork knuckle and then wash it down with the world’s strongest beer. This drink is sold in this historic restaurant, which first opened in 1466 as a brewery. If your group of friends want to sample some great beers, you could also pay a visit to Lokal (Dlouhá 33). Here, beer is poured directly from a tank with an expiry date.
After recharging your batteries, you could cross the Vltava river along the nearby Legion Bridge (Most Legií), taking you in the direction of Kampa Island (link interno). This pleasant part of the city gives visitors the opportunity to enjoy the peaceful flow of the river. This charming district of noble houses is pierced by a canal, which will take you to the John Lennon Wall (link interno), with a Bohemian and youthful energy. This, in turn, will serve as your introduction to the Malá Strana neighbourhood. Do you fancy a beer in a pub dedicated to the former Beatle?
Malá Strana is Prague’s oldest and most charming district. The best way to explore it is to lose yourself in its maze of winding, narrow streets. One idea is to head to Malostranské Square in the heart of the neighbourhood, before heading up one of the several streets that lead to Prague Castle. If you’ve still got fuel in the tank by the time the sun starts to set, why not finish the day by enjoying the views of Prague offered by Petřín Hill, famed for its Eiffel Tower-style viewing tower.
Beer tours in Prague
Czech people are the world’s biggest consumers of beer. This will become very clear during your trip to Prague! Beer has been brewed in the Czech Republic for centuries, with the centre of Prague being home to many different breweries. These provide a fantastic opportunity for you and your friends to sample a wide range of different beers.
If you’re going on a trip to Prague with friends, we highly recommend doing a beer tour. The route will take you to Prague’s beer meccas, providing an opportunity to learn a bit more about the city’s beer culture and history and the ways in which Czech beers differ from their European counterparts. These routes usually include four or five beers in carefully chosen bars or restaurants, which are significant in the city’s beer scene.
These beer routes are a great opportunity to strengthen bonds within your friendship group, and also serve as a chance to meet new people as you further explore the city.
New Year’s Eve in Prague
Do you like the idea of spending New Year’s Eve in Prague? How would you like to celebrate it in a fairy-tale city dusted with snow, with Christmas decorations stretching as far as the eye can see? It goes without saying that Prague also has its fair share of Christmas markets. The Old Town Square is home to the city’s most important market, alongside a huge illuminated fir tree.
The climax of Prague’s New Year’s Eve celebrations is its fireworks display, where colourful rockets are fired into the sky from the upper part of the city. One great idea is to have a New Year’s Eve dinner aboard a boat, as it sails up and down the Vltava river. The city’s skyline set against a backdrop of fireworks is a sight that is sure to live long in the memory.