The Czech capital is notorious for a debauched, stag-and-hen, 24 hours intoxication experience but to label the beautiful city as just a party destination is to miss it’s true beauty and a culture as vibrant as Barcelona or Vienna. A stunning vista full of amazing sights and substantial amounts of hidden gems, heading off the beaten track in Prague is an approach which can really pay off. A much-Instagrammed city you might be forgiven for assuming you’ve seen it all. But even though millions flock here every year, there are still so many hidden corners, un-noticed works of art, quiet vistas and brilliant little eateries to find. Discovering your own little slice of this wonderful city can be very addictive, so if you manage to avoid the tourist traps, you may find yourself wanting to come back time and again. Finding the true Prague can be as easy as coming away from the beaten track and opening up your eyes…
Find The Modern Art
If you can tear your gaze away from the baroque splendour of the architectural beauties surrounding you, then Prague is also the ideal spot to hunt for art of a different kind. The city is home to a rich legacy of modern art, and the trail of some incredible pieces can lead you on a new journey around the familiar streets. Along the Žižkov TV Tower, you can spot some giant babies crawling along this behemoth of the city’s skyline, while fans of psychotherapy will be fascinated to seek out the life-sized Sigmund Freud statue which dangles from a roof high above the old town. There are also plenty of other remarkable art installations in Prague, from an upside down horse high above the rooftops to a giant pair of splayed legs that you can climb up. Meanwhile, repurposing former industrial spaces is a trend which has swept the city in recent years. Quite often you’ll find pop-up exhibitions which appear and disappear rapidly, creating an unique experience to enjoy. Vnitroblock is a multi-functional cultural centre featuring striking art exhibits, a design shop, a trendy cafe, a dance studio and an underground cinema for the last word in quirky cool. And if you still haven’t had enough art after seeking out Prague’s sculpture trail, then how about discovering some of it’s street art? Těšnov is a legal graffiti wall open to anyone who wants to make their mark. Go and tag the space yourself of simple flood your Instagram feed with some of the more artistic contributions. There is also the art district of Pragovka located in Prague 9. A collaborative forum for ideas, artists, filmmakers and other creatives come together here, and it’s open to curious members of the public too. The area is full of galleries to work your way around and there are often events running where you can enjoy live music, performances and street food as well.
Have A Foodie Experience
Despite being arguably better known for it’s drinking establishments, Prague is also a haven for foodies, from well-regarded restaurants to local delicacies. It’s worth seeking out Tredlnik, which is a type of sweet bread in a cylinder which is dipped in nuts, sugar and cinnamon. It’s a treat that many visitors to the city don’t get to try, but it’s well worth trying to find. Vendors can be found selling the sweet on street corners and if you’re even more of a sugar field jam and Nutella filled versions are also available! If you’re into authentic local produce, you could also plan a visit to the Farmer’s Market on the River embankment near Palacký Bridge each Saturday morning. With everything from fruit and vegetables to meats, cheeses and bakery option you can also grab a morning pilsner from one of the beer stalls! Coffee is also available, so it’s a great place to grab breakfast on the go. Plan an evening out in style by finding a limo service in Prague and heading to Manifesto Market, a very cool place which is still largely off the tourist radar. This gastro and cultural paradise is one of the first cashless open air markets in Europe. Previously a derelict plot, the space is now full of re-purposed shipping containers tastefully done up into a wide array of dining and shopping experiences. Time your visit for one of their ‘Food N Beats’ events, where up and coming DJs provide the tune while you browse, or try to catch one of their regular film screenings.
Take A Dip
If the sun is shining, you might want to pay a visit to Biotop Radotín, which is Prague’s first eco-friendly public swimming pool. Instead of being filled with chemicals like chlorine, Biotop Radotín pool uses substrate and water plants as natural filters to keep the water clean. The man-made reservoir is a unique bathing experience located along the banks of the Berounka River and definitely worthy of a visit. Even in the winter, you will find a sauna which can be reserved, and people tend to cap off a visit there with an exhilarating cold plunge into the pool! Round off your visit with an extravagant hot chocolate in one of the many little cafes for the perfect afternoon’s entertainment.
Discover The Microbreweries – And The Wine
While Prague might be better known for quantity – the nation downs more beer per head than any other in Europe – there is definitely quality to be found too, with Czech microbreweries springing up all over the city in the past few years. Dark ales and wheat beers are a folk speciality which were repressed under Soviet rule, but since the 90s they have been slowly coming back into production. You can now find some beautiful, subtle, multifaceted beers which are sweet, nutty and highly potent! And what most people really don’t know is that Czech wine is really rather good. With warm, long summer growing seasons and south-facing hillsides the area has a wine growing history dating back more than 1,000 years. Visit the Vinicni Altan, a vineyard set in a beautiful pagoda in the grounds of a breathtaking 19th century villa with vistas over the city and a distinctive local wine offering. Definitely a secret worth discovering!