Prague is a magical city, full of fairytale splendor and gorgeous photo-ops around every corner. So it’s no shock that tourists visit the Czech capital in droves, oftentimes overcrowding the city’s main tourist attractions. If you want to avoid the crowds, or have already seen the main tourist sites in the city, here is your guide to some of the best hidden gems in Prague.
Contribution: Bernadette, Explorer Chick
1. Sample Beer Ice Cream At U Medvidku
A cold glass of beer is a refreshing treat and is often enjoyed with a meal. At U Medvidku, one of the oldest establishments in Prague, they take their love for beer a notch higher with a beer ice cream dessert.
The restaurant has had many iterations through the years, first as a brewery and cabaret, then a beer house with a microbrewery and a hotel. The main draw, of course, is the traditional Czech food such as schnitzel, goulash, pork knuckle, and all kinds of dumplings. The meals are full of flavor and will give any traveler enough energy to tour Prague’s old town.
Beer is also part of the food menu and can be found in cheese, dips, and sauces. They also boast of the country’s strongest beer, XBeer-33, with an alcohol content of 11.8%.
Their most unique offering is the beer ice cream. It has all the creaminess of ice cream but with the bitter hoppiness of beer. For the uninitiated, the slightly bitter taste may turn them off. For beer lovers, it is a novel treat and they can definitely say they have tried beer in all possible ways after a trip to U Medvidku.
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2. Indulge To The Fullest At Bernard Beer Spa
Among the best hidden gems in Prague definitely includes a visit to one of Prague’s beer spas. If you love beer and you love spas, then this is a must-have experience on your next visit to Prague.
Bernard Beer Spa is a short drive from Old Town, easily reachable by Uber. Try to avoid taxis as they often take tourists on indirect routes. It is open 7 days a week from early morning until late into the evening. Most reservations are 40 minutes in length, although you can pay extra and get more time. You can easily book online.
You can book from one to six people. Opt for your own private room with one or two oversized wooden bathtubs, depending on the number of people in your party. Each bathtub can comfortably fit up to 3 people.
Each bathtub is filled with hot, bubbly water ladened with beer hops. Within easy reach are either one or two taps that you fill, at your leisure, with deliciously cold beer. You can drink as much as you want. Afterwards, you can opt for massages. As a parting gift, each person receives… you guessed it – more beer!
The cost ranges from $124 USD for one or two people sharing one tub for a normal 40 minute appointment and goes to $337 USD for 6 people sharing two tubs. It would be more if you add massages or want longer appointments.
This experience would be fantastic for a couple in the mood for a romantic night, or for a bunch of friends ready to have lots of laughs.
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3. Admire The John Lennon Wall
A really cool attraction and definitely one of the most unique places to visit in Prague is the John Lennon Wall. This is a colorful street art wall right in the city center, near the French embassy, that has been painted with sayings, love poems, drawings or political texts by locals and tourists since the 1960s.
Although John Lennon was never in Prague, he was still the hero of Czech youth! The wall was given the name John Lennon Wall when a single picture adorned it after the artist’s assassination. It was a symbol for freedom and for the political struggle against the regime of the times.
Formerly one of the best hidden gems in Prague, this wall is now pretty well-known among tourists. A photo of the John Lennon Wall is almost a must on every trip to Prague. Don’t forget your pens and paints, in case you also want to leave a little sign there!
Contribution: Veronika, Travel Geekery
4. Spend An Afternoon At Manifesto Market
Prague’s outdoor dining got a major overhaul with the launch of Manifesto Market in Florenc in 2018. The food market made up of shipping containers was built as a temporary project on a neglected spot due to become a major construction site in a few years’ time.
While the Florenc market became quite popular even among tourists, Manifesto’s second location in Smíchov received attention mostly from locals and became a favorite place to hang out, especially in summer.
The Smíchov venue has recently closed down, but Manifesto is currently opening another major concept – Manifesto food hall near Anděl, Prague’s major transportation and shopping hub. It’s so new that barely anybody knows about it yet. Set to open on August 17, the food hall for up to 500 people is sure to become locals’ favorite.
As with all Manifesto projects, it’ll be built using sustainable technologies, and even green walls with a hydroponic farm will decorate the venue. Modular kitchens will enable a rotation of 15 restaurants that can offer their food there as a pop-up. A special focus will be on Asian cuisine. Food will be served on porcelain plates made in the Czech Republic.
You can find Manifesto Anděl on Ostrovského 35, Prague 5. While the opening hours are not set yet, it’s likely to be open every day, probably from 11am until late night.
Contribution: Elena, Passion for Hospitality
5. Climb To The Top Of Petrin Tower
One of the best spots to observe the charming city of Prague from above is the Petrin Lookout Tower, one of Prague’s many hidden gems. The tower is located in the pleasant park of Petrin Hill.
The Petrin Tower was originally conceived as a miniature Eiffel Tower. It was erected above Prague in 1891 for the Jubilee Exhibition, two years after the completion of the original Eiffel Tower in Paris.
The total height of the Petrin Lookout Tower is 63,5 meters and you can enjoy sweeping views of the Czech Capital, from two different platforms. The higher platform is located at 55 meters of the steel tower.
To access the top of the tower you can either climb the 299 steps or take the elevator which costs 60 CZK for adults and half price for children and seniors. Either way, reaching the top of Petrin Tower is worth it. Not only will you be able to admire panoramic views of Prague and the beautiful surroundings of Petrin Hill, but on a clear day, it is also possible to observe the highest peak in the Czech Republic, Snezka.
On the lower platform of the tower, there is a small museum dedicated to a fictional famous Czech Character, Jára Cimrman. There is also a small café to grab a snack or something to drink.
Following the visit to the Petrin Tower, it is worth strolling around the summit of Petrin Hill, which includes extensive landscape gardens, an observatory with a telescope, a hall of mirrors, a chapel, and cozy little cafés.
A small entrance fee applies to enter Petrin Hill, but there is no need to pre-book. The Tower opens daily at 10 pm and closing hours vary depending on the weather and month.
Contribution: Monique, Trip Anthropologist
6. Peruse The Strahov Library
The building believed to hold the world’s most beautiful library is a stunning hidden gem in Prague. Across the Charles Bridge you’ll find the suburb of Strahov. The imposing Strahov Premonstratensian Monastery dates from about 1138.
The Baroque Theological Hall, Classical Philosophical Hall and Cabinet of Curiosities are breathtaking. The arched ceilings of painted frescoes and maps and globes all contribute to making the Strahov Library the most beautiful library in the world.
The Strahov Library admission fee is 280 CZK adults, Concession 140 CZK, Family 500 CZK. Don’t forget the camera fee of 80 CZK (no flash photography allowed).
The library is open 9 am to 12 pm and 1 pm to 5 pm daily except 24 and 25 December and Easter Sunday.
If you only have a day in Prague, then the Old Town, Prague Castle and the Charles Bridge are must-see attractions. But for travelers with more than one day to spend in Prague or for return visitors, the Strahov monastery lets you see a beautiful part of the city. The library itself is an unforgettable sight, one of Prague’s best hidden gems.
7. Take In The Views From St. Vitus Cathedral
Prague is a beautiful city with countless viewpoints from which to appreciate its grace and elegance. One of the best views in Prague is from the South Tower of St Vitus Cathedral. The cathedral is located within the grounds of the Prague Castle. Prague Castle attracts plenty of visitors, but the cathedral’s tower is overlooked by the vast majority. Perhaps the 287-step climb is a contributing factor to this being one of the best hidden gems in Prague.
The advantage for those who venture to the viewing deck are rewarded with stunning 360-degree views of the grounds of Prague Castle, Vitava River, Charles Bridge, the Old Quarter (Staré Město), and the Little Quarter (Malá Strana).
Frequent breaks on the way up allow climbers to marvel at the bell-tower’s machinery, including Zikmund, the biggest of the bells in the tower. Cast in 1549, it’s so large that it needs six bell ringers to operate it – four to swing the bell into motion and two to manipulate the clapper.
Many views include the impressive rooster weathervanes associated with Saint Vitus, the patron saint against oversleeping. The striking background includes a multitude of red-roofed buildings and rich assortment of towers, steeples, and spires. The viewing deck attracts few visitors, so it’s possible to soak up the views at a comfortable and leisurely pace.
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8. Hike To Vyhlidka Maj
You’ve probably heard about the Horseshoe Bend in Arizona, right? Well, this is the European version! Located a little outside of the Prague city center is Vyhlidka Maj, a breathtaking viewpoint overlooking the Vlatava river bending around a beautiful green landscape.
It’s a great escape from the business and all of the tourists that wander around the city each day, the perfect hidden gem in Prague. If you’re aching to escape the city for a day, this viewpoint is an excellent option.
It is free to visit the viewpoint but you will have to pay to get there from the city if you’re using public transport. It should cost you around 30-40 CZK ($1.5) to take the bus one way. Take the bus to Teletín and walk right to the viewpoint or if you want to take a full-day hike to Vyhlidka Maj, you can take the bus from Prague to Štechovice instead and go from there.
You can visit the viewpoint any time of the day and any time of the year but the best times to visit are during spring or fall because of the beautiful colors of the landscape. The Czech Republic has all four seasons so if you go during early fall, the colors are magical! But at the end of the day, this is absolutely beautiful no matter when you go.
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9. Explore The City’s Vineyards
One of the more unique things to do in Prague is to visit a vineyard within the city limits. There are multiple to choose from, like St. Klára vineyard and the many small producers that are nestled seamlessly into the hillsides of the Vysehrad neighborhood. However, one of the best vineyards in the city is tucked away in Prague’s hip Vinohrady neighborhood.
In the green park of Havlíčkovy sady find the charming Grebovka wine cellar. This small producer is only open on Friday afternoons and boasts local wines to enjoy in the park or to take away (in plastic bottles). Sip a glass of wine with some of the best views in Prague among a lovely terraced garden space in the actual vineyard.
Havlíčkovy sady is also worth the stop to stroll through the park and enjoy the many fountains, young lovers playing music, and even an Italian influenced grotto. It’s undoubtedly one of the best hidden gems in Prague, among the city’s many well-kept secrets!
Contribution: Nina, Nina Out and About
10. Enter The Macabre World Of Kutna Hora
The Sedlec Ossuary, more commonly known as the “Kutna Hora Bone Church” is a true hidden gem. Although not technically in Prague, it makes for an epic day trip from the Czech capital.
This creepy attraction is oddly beautiful. The Catholic chapel, decorated entirely out of the remains of the dead miners from Kutna Hora’s historic gold boom, has become a secret attraction.
Arrive on your own or join one of the many bus tours visiting the larger chapel in Kutna Hora to visit this ossuary. You’ll be able to spot a chandelier made entirely of human bones and see where the artist signed his work in human femurs.
The Kutna Hora Bone Church should be insanely creepy, like the catacombs in Paris. However, it maintains an odd sense of spirituality. You’ll quickly find yourself forgetting about the macabre element and enjoying the interesting arrangements used to store these otherwise forgotten miners that shaped Kutna Hora’s history.
It costs 90 CZK to enter (about 3.20 Euros). Although it’s closed on Christmas, it’s a year-round destination. Opening times vary by season. Arrive between 9am and 4pm all year round to ensure it’s open.
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