Written by local experts Adriana & Matěj
Adriana and Matěj Halouskovi are travel bloggers behind the successful blog Czech the World.
Matěj was born in Prague and has lived here his entire life and Adriana moved here 6 years ago.
We have traveled to more than 60 countries, but if we could tell you what place we know the most, it is our city.
Welcome to our ultimate guide on how to experience the best of Prague in just 24 hours!
Unlike typical travel bloggers who pass through the city for a brief visit, we are locals who have explored every nook and cranny of this enchanting city.
We’ve walked these streets countless times with our international friends, and we know exactly what makes Prague special. In this guide, we’re not just going to show you the must-see spots; we’re also going to share some secret tips that only locals know.
From good and affordable restaurants with typical Czech dishes to less crowded viewpoints, we’ve got you covered. So, if you’re looking to see Prague through the eyes of those who know it best, you’ve come to the right place. Let’s dive into a day you’ll never forget in the city of a Hundred Spires!
Quick Note: For each monument/sight, I also include details about admission (opening hours, price), but you’ll likely manage to visit just a few of them. Our recommendations are Petřín, Klementinum, and Old Town Hall.
1 Day in Prague Itinerary Map – The Best of Prague in 24 Hours
We have prepared for you 3 different routes for your 24 hours in Prague:
A) The laidback route (red color)
- The straight route without any detours.
- Choose this route if you don’t want to rush or are a slow-walker
B) Route with Petřín Hill detour (blue color)
- The longer route, where you will visit Petřín hill with a lookout tower.
- Choose this route if you like walking in the green park and want to see views from the lookout tower.
C) Route with Jewish Quarter detour (yellow color)
- The longer route, where you will visit the Jewish Quarter.
- Choose this route if you are into history and want to visit many significant Jewish landmarks.
B+C) Route with both detours
- If you are very fit and like walking, you can manage to visit both Petřín Hill and the Jewish Quarter, but it will be a very long day.
Here we have prepared for you a detailed map of one day in Prague itinerary.
Why should you follow the suggested route?
This route through Prague is designed so that you can see as much as possible in one day and also to save you even in terms of elevation, as it starts up at the Castle and you will gradually descend to the river and into the Old Town. Moreover, it ends at Wenceslas Square, from where it is one metro stop to the Main Station, or you can directly board the green metro line and head to the airport.
Practical tip from locals: Don’t go to Letná park or Vyšehrad
Many 1-day Prague itineraries suggest going to these two places. Don’t get me wrong, they are beautiful. However, they are far from the main walking route and if you have only 24 hours, there is not enough time to visit them. I would recommend skipping them and enjoying fully the most important sights without rushing.
Letná and Vyšehrad are great places to visit if you have more than one day in Prague.
1) Start Your Day at the Prague Castle
You have two options, where to start:
A) Malostranská metro and tram station
- It’s closer from the the city center and directly from the subway.
- You need to climb a lot of stairs.
B) Pražský Hrad tram station
- It’s a little further away (but still just a few minutes tram ride).
- You don’t need to climb stairs.
Entrance to the Prague Castle Complex is free. In case you wish to visit also interiors you will need a ticket. The basic ticket for the Castle is around 250 CZK, all the information regarding tickets can be found here.
The Castle area is open from 6 AM to 10 PM, but the historical buildings open from 9 AM to 5 PM.
- Svatovítská Katedrála (St. Vitus Cathedral): This iconic cathedral is a must-see. It’s an architectural marvel captivating from both the outside and inside with its stunning Gothic design. While you can enter the initial part of the cathedral for free, a more comprehensive tour requires a ticket.
- Bazilika sv. Jiří (St. George’s Basilica): A Romanesque church with stunning interiors. Entry is included in the Castle ticket.
- Zlatá Ulička (Golden Lane): Known for its colorful houses and cobblestone streets. Morning is the best to avoid crowds.
- Watch Changing of the Guard: This takes place every hour. The grand ceremony is at noon.
- There is a panoramic view of Prague from Hradčanské Square: The last thing you want to do in this area is to snap pictures from the gorgeous view at the end of Hradčanské Náměstí.
2) (Optional Detour) Head to Petřín Lookout Tower
This is a beautiful but optional detour from the standard route. We highly recommend it if you are “the walking person”. If you prefer a more relaxed day with some café or people-watching stops, you can continue by the Castle Staircase down to the heart of Lesser Town.
If you opt for this picturesque detour, head from Hradčanské náměstí by Úvoz Street towards Strahov Monastery.
Strahovský klášter is the oldest Premonstratensian monastery in Bohemia, founded in 1143. It has a beautiful library, but for such a short visit to Prague, enjoy at least its exteriors and several viewpoints of Prague. From Strahov Monastery continue to Petřín Observation Tower.
Our TIP: If you want a viewpoint where you might be even alone, it’s this one.
The Petřín Tower is an iconic landmark of Prague, built as part of the Jubilee Exhibition in 1891. It is a free scaled-down replica of the Eiffel Tower in Paris, with a ratio of 1:5. Standing at a height of 58.70 meters, the tower features 299 steps that lead to its peak, which is at the same altitude as the actual Eiffel Tower. The view from the top offers a panoramic outlook of Prague.
You can visit it every day for a fee of around 220 CZK (there is an extra fee in case you want to use the elevator). I think that once you are at the base of Petřín Tower, the entry fee is worth the views!
Petřín Hill Orchards or Petřín Funicular
After you enjoy views from Petřín Tower, walk down the Petřín orchards all the way to Újezd Street. The walk itself is beautiful with more stunning views of Prague.
It’s pretty steep though. If you don’t want to walk, you can ride down the Petřín funicular (one ride costs 60 CZK).
The Infant Jesus of Prague
Continue Újezd Street to the north (left) and you will pass around the Church of Our Lady Victorious, where is the famous Infant Jesus of Prague.
After that, continue further north to Malostranské náměstí (Lesser Town Square).
3) Exploring Lesser Town
By walking from Petřín Hill or down the stairs directly from Prague Castle, you will arrive at Malostranské náměstí (Lesser Town Square). The dominant building of this square is the St. Nicholas Church.
Kostel sv. Mikuláše is one of Prague’s most iconic landmarks. The church is renowned for its intricate interior, which includes a 70-meter-high dome (20 meters in diameter) and stunning frescoes. The interior height to the top of the lantern is over 49 m, making it Prague’s tallest interior. The main altar, pulpit, and organ are also elaborately decorated.
Guided tours cost around 200 CZK, entry without a guided tour is cheaper. But you won’t probably have time for it anyway. But if you want to come back one day – nice concerts take place there.
Lesser Town Bridge Tower
Before we turn to Lázeňská Street to find the Lennon Wall, you can take pictures of Lesser Town Bridge Towers. Later you will have a chance to take pictures of it from Charles Bridge too. If you have enough time, you can even walk up the tower for a beautiful view of Charles Bridge. The price is 190 CZK (95 CZK in the first opening hour)
Secret Tip: If you are here early enough, you can have a 50 % discount if you come during the first opening hour.
This is a place for street art lovers. Hidden by the side of the royal road at Velkopřevorské náměstí, The John Lennon Wall, is a symbol of peace, love, and artistic freedom. Originally a regular wall, it became a canvas for political dissent during the Communist era in Czechoslovakia.
After the assassination of John Lennon in 1980, the wall was transformed into a tribute to him and his ideals. Over the years, it has evolved into a vibrant collage of graffiti, lyrics, and messages from people around the world.
The wall is continually changing, with new layers of paint and messages appearing regularly.
As you continue to Kampa island, you will encounter Velkopřevorský mlýn at the Čertovka Canal. The Mill is one of the last remaining functional water mills in Prague. It dates back to the medieval period and has undergone various transformations over the years. The most interesting is the mill wheel, which you can see from the bridge.
4) Charles Bridge, Klementinum
As you continue to Kampa Island, soon you will finally encounter the Charles Bridge! Climb up several ancient stairs to the bridge from the nice little square “Na Kampě”. Here you are at probably the most famous sight of Prague.
Now let’s find out something about the bridge. But first, there is an important question:
Who was Charles?
Charles IV (1316-1378) was the King of Bohemia and Holy Roman Emperor, one of the most powerful rulers in European history. He founded Charles University in Prague, the first university in Central Europe, and was a patron of the arts and architecture. His reign was marked by diplomatic success and the expansion of his territories, thanks in part to his skillful marriage alliances.
- Charles Bridge is a stone Gothic bridge that spans the Vltava River. It’s a masterpiece of medieval engineering, featuring 16 arches and 30 statues of saints.
- According to legend, the foundation stone was laid by Emperor Charles IV at 5:31 a.m. on July 9, 1357. The timing, forming a palindrome (1357 9, 7 5:31), was believed to give the structure additional strength.
- The bridge has been the subject of numerous artworks and is a symbol of Prague. It’s a hub for local artists, musicians, and vendors.
- For several centuries, Charles Bridge was the only means of crossing the Vltava River in Prague, making it a critical passage for trade and military movements.
Cool superstition you can try
If you like those city legends, try this. Find the statue of St. John of Nepomuk, located here. The statue has a bronze plaque depicting St. John being thrown off the bridge. Rub the plaque to bring yourself good luck and ensure that you will return to Prague.
If you want to learn more, visit our article about the Charles Bridge.
The Most Famous View of Prague Castle (Most tourists miss this!)
One more place I don’t want you to miss is the famous view from the Bedřich Smetana statue, located here. Most tourists continue straight from Charles Bridge and miss this amazing place.
When leaving Charles Bridge, turn 2x to your right and you are there. It can be easily called one of the best Instagram spots.
If you’re a lover of old books and globes, this is a place you simply must visit! The Klementinum is a historic complex located in the heart of Prague. This architectural marvel is known for its Baroque library, astronomical tower, and stunning chapels.
The Baroque library is one of the most beautiful libraries in the world, it houses a collection of antique books, globes, and astronomical instruments.
There is also the longest continuously measuring meteorological station in the Czech lands.
From Klementinum follow Karlova Street, which will take you to Malé Náměstí, from where you can already see the Old Town Square.
By this time, you might be already hungry, so here are our tips, on where to eat some typical Czech food for great prices:
- Mincovna – restaurant directly at the Old Town Square. They have great prices for daily menus (lunch). In case you want to order something else from the cart, it is a little bit more expensive
- U Červeného Páva – another great restaurant with typical Czech food.
- Střídačka (The Hockey Bench) – a restaurant owned by two Czech famous ice hockey players. They offer only two meal options every day and that means the best quality and freshness.
5) Old Town Square
Welcome to the Old Town Square, the historical heart of Prague! There are so many things to discover just in one Square:
Astronomical clock (the show is every full hour 9 a.m. – 11 p.m.)
The Prague Astronomical Clock is a true masterpiece of medieval engineering and artistry. Dating back to 1410, it is the oldest astronomical clock in the world still in operation. The main highlight is the hourly show, where the clock comes to life as the Apostles make their appearance in the windows above the clock face, accompanied by the ringing of the bell.
What makes the Orloj clock truly unique is a display of astronomical information such as moon phases, zodiac signs, and mainly the animated procession known as „The Walk of the Apostles. “You can also spot a skeleton figure, symbolizing the passing of time, which rings a bell at the top of the hour. The hourly show is brief but enchanting, so don’t be late.
The Old Town Hall is the building where the Astronomical Clock is. But it offers more than just the clock. You can explore the historical halls, the chapel, the underground areas and most importantly, you can go to the tower, from which the views are incredible.
The entrance fee is 300 CZK, but it’s definitely worth it.
Here is a quick story about the crosses. On June 21, 1621, following the Battle of Bílá Hora, 27 leaders of the rebellion were executed in the square in front of the City Hall. These crosses serve as a memorial to those who were decapitated on that day, reminding visitors of the city’s turbulent past and the struggle for freedom and rights.
St. Nicholas Church (Kostel sv. Mikuláše)
Another St. Nicholas Church (not to be confused with the more famous one in Lesser Town). A Baroque church, known for its intricate interiors, impressive frescoes, and distinctive green dome. The church houses a historic organ, played by Mozart, and offers concerts showcasing its rich acoustics. You can find it in the South-West corner of Old Town Square.
If you have already visited Prague pre-covid, you will be surprised (like I was) to find and new monument in the Old Town Square. The Mariánský Sloup, or Marian Column was originally erected in 1650 as a symbol of gratitude for the city’s defense during the Battle of Prague. However, it was demolished in 1918 due to its association with monarchy and Catholicism. After facing numerous challenges, the column was successfully reconstructed and re-erected in 2020.
Týnský Chrám, also known as the Church of Our Lady before Týn, is one of the most iconic landmarks in Prague’s Old Town Square. Dating back to the 14th century, this Gothic masterpiece is easily recognizable by its twin spires reaching 80 meters into the sky.
The interior is equally impressive, housing a stunning altarpiece and the tomb of the famous Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe. I can be visited every day, except for Monday during opening hours for a voluntary fee.
The next location is Pařížská (Paris Street), which begins at the St. Nicholas Church and is the city’s most prestigious and luxurious shopping boulevard. Lined with beautifully preserved Art Nouveau buildings, you can go window-shopping high-end boutiques, designer stores, and exclusive brands.
When you finish admiring the Old Town Square, head towards Celetná Street, one of the oldest and most significant streets in Prague. Celetná will lead you directly to the Powder Tower.
6) (Optional Detour 2) – Jewish Quarter
If you are not tired yet and still thrilled to discover as much as you can, you can head to the Jewish Quarter.
The Jewish Quarter, also known as Josefov, is located between the Old Town Square and the Vltava River, this district is home to some of the most well-preserved Jewish historical monuments in Europe.
Although you might not have time to enter all the sites. It is really lovely to stroll at least around those sites and buildings:
- Old-New Synagogue: The Old-New Synagogue is the oldest active synagogue in Europe, dating back to the 13th century.
- Old Jewish Cemetery: One of the oldest Jewish cemeteries in Europe, with tombstones dating back to the 15th century.
- Jewish Museum: Comprises several buildings including the Maisel Synagogue, Pinkas Synagogue, and the Ceremonial Hall.
- Klausen Synagogue: Houses an exhibition on Jewish customs and traditions.
- Spanish Synagogue: Known for its Moorish interior and a museum on the history of Jews in Bohemia.
7) Powder Tower, Municipal House
Celetná Street will lead you directly to the Gothic gate which once served as a gunpowder storage facility. It marks the boundary between Old Town and New Town.
The Powder Tower, or Prašná brána, is one of the original city gates of Prague which was initially built in the 11th century and was later reconstructed in the 15th century. It served various purposes over the years, including being a ceremonial entrance for Czech kings and a gunpowder storage facility, which is how it got its current name.
Next to the Powder Tower, there is a Municipal House, one of Prague’s most stunning examples of Art Nouveau architecture. This grand building serves as a cultural and social hub for the city. It was inaugurated in 1912 and has since been a significant venue for concerts, exhibitions, and other cultural events.
A guided tour is well worth it. You marvel at the intricate mosaics, stained glass, and elaborate chandeliers that adorn the interior. The Smetana Hall, the main concert venue within the Municipal House, is renowned for its exceptional acoustics and opulent decor. The building also houses several cafes and restaurants, offering a blend of Czech and international cuisines.
Just opposite the Municipal House, there is the building of the Czech National Bank. While the building itself is not typically open to the public due to its function as a financial institution, its exterior is worth admiring for its intricate details and grandeur. It combines elements of Neo-Renaissance and Neo-Baroque architectural styles.
Once you finish admiring more historic buildings, Na Příkopě Street will take you to Wenceslas Square.
8) Wenceslas Square (Václavské náměstí)
Welcome to Wenceslas Square, a square where history was written. In 1918, the independence of Czechoslovakia was declared here. On January 19, 1969, student Jan Palach self-immolated here in protest against the Soviet Union invasion to Czechoslovakia in August 1968.
During the Velvet Revolution in 1989, “Václavák” became a key location where mass demonstrations took place. Václav Havel and other notable personalities addressed the people from the balcony of the Melantrich publishing house.
Today, Wenceslas Square is the commercial center of Prague. It is home to the most famous hotels, shops, and luxury restaurants.
Rotating Head of Franz Kafka
First, head to rotating head of Franz Kafka, an 11-meter tall kinetic sculpture by Czech artist David Černý. The sculpture consists of 42 independently rotating layers of stainless steel that form Kafka’s face. The artwork serves as both a tribute to the iconic writer and a visual metaphor for the complex themes in his works, becoming a notable landmark in the city.
Františkánská Zahrada is a hidden gem tucked away in the heart of Prague. This peaceful oasis offers a respite from the city’s bustling streets, with shaded pathways, colorful flowers, and a serene atmosphere.
The garden is open every day year-round, but it’s particularly beautiful in the spring when the flowers are in bloom.
Continue to another David Černý’s curiosity. Upside-down Horse sculpture symbolizes rebellion and social commentary, depicting Saint Wenceslas riding an upside-down dead horse. Unveiled by Černý, it has become an integral part of Prague’s art scene, serving as a reminder to question established narratives and engage with Czech history.
The sculpture can be found at Pasáž Lucerna, in Vodičkova Street.
St. Wenceslas Statue
The St. Wenceslas Statue, located in the iconic Wenceslas Square, is a striking equestrian monument dedicated to the patron saint of the Czech Republic. The majestic statue is a symbol of Czech identity and national pride. Standing at the top of Wenceslas Square, the statue is a focal point of this bustling urban space.
At the top of Wenceslas Square, there is one of the oldest and most significant museums in the Czech Republic – the National Museum. It’s a beautiful building, so the photo is worth it. Founded in 1818, the museum houses extensive collections across various fields, including natural history, history, art, and music. You can explore millions of items and discover the rich history of the Czech Republic.
Václavské náměstí is a strategic point where you can end your day tour to continue anywhere you need to. At “Muzeum” metro station, you are just 1 metro stop from Prague Main Train Station (Hlavní nádraží) and 2 stops from Bus Station “Florenc”.
You can also continue by green metro to “Nádraží Veleslavín”, where it is just a few minutes by bus 119 to the airport.
- Tower Entry Discounts: In Prague, the first hour of entry to many of the towers comes with a 50% discount. This is a fantastic opportunity to enjoy breathtaking panoramic views of the city while saving some money.
- Trdelník vs. Poppy Seed Cakes: While Trdelník with ice cream has become a popular treat among tourists, it’s not originally a Czech dessert, although it arrived in Czech lands in 17th century. And especially, it’s not traditional at all with ice cream! Instead, try the authentic and delicious poppy seed cakes, which are a true representation of Czech culinary heritage. These cakes are flavorful, rich, and a delightful experience for anyone looking to taste local cuisine.
- Mapy.cz: When navigating through the Czech Republic, consider using Mapy.cz, a Czech map (in English) service that offers detailed maps of the city, including public transport routes, points of interest, and walking paths. It’s a reliable and handy tool for exploring Prague like a local, helping you discover hidden gems and efficiently plan your route around the city (and you can use them worldwide). We personally think that these maps together with Locus are the best outdoor maps in the world! We are not their affiliates, but they are simply the best.
- Don’t use Euronet ATMs: These are just scam ATMs, avoid them at all costs! Here you can watch the video, explaining why it is a bad idea to use them:
Where to stay in Prague
Budget private – Pension Akát
- Family-Run Atmosphere: You’ll experience the warmth and personalized service that comes with staying in a family-run establishment.
- Suburban Setting: Located in a quieter suburb, it offers a peaceful retreat from the bustling city center, ideal for couples seeking tranquility.
- Public Transport: The pension is close to public transport, so you can still easily access Prague’s main attractions when you want to explore.
Budget hostel – Bunker Factory
- The Cheapest Accommodation Option: The pricing is budget-friendly, making it a cost-effective option for solo travelers who want a unique experience without a hefty price tag.
- Community Vibe: The venue often hosts events and activities, creating a social atmosphere that’s ideal for meeting like-minded travelers.
- Central Location: The hostel is located directly on Wenceslas Square, making it convenient for you to explore Prague’s key attractions.
Midrange – Metropolitan Old Town Hotel
- Location: You’ll find yourself in a quieter part of Prague’s Old Town, offering a peaceful retreat while still being close to the action.
- Rooftop: Metropolitan offers rooftop bar with perfect view Prague historical sights.
- Accessibility: With easy access to public transportation, you can conveniently explore both the historic and modern parts of Prague. It’s also located close to two of the main train stations, therefore it’s great for day trips from Prague.
Luxury – Grand Hotel Bohemia
- Luxurious Experience: You’ll be enveloped in luxury from the moment you step in, with elegant interiors and top-notch service setting the stage for a romantic stay.
- Prime Location: Situated in Prague’s Old Town, you’re just a short walk away from iconic landmarks like the Astronomical Clock and Charles Bridge.
- Fine Dining: The hotel’s restaurant offers gourmet cuisine, providing an exquisite dining experience without having to leave the premises.
- Live Music: The hotel often features live music performances, adding an extra layer of sophistication and romance to your experience.
Foods to try in Prague
Svíčková is the most typical Czech dish that is beloved staple in households and restaurants, often enjoyed during festive occasions and family gatherings.
It consists of beef sirloin marinated and slow-cooked in a rich sauce made from root vegetables, spices, and often a touch of cream. The meat becomes tender and absorbs the flavors of the sauce, which is typically thickened and served alongside the beef.
The dish is commonly garnished with a dollop of cranberry compote and a slice of lemon, adding a tangy contrast to the savory flavors. Served with bread dumplings that soak up the sauce.
2) Vepřo – knedlo – zelo
Vepřo – knedlo – zelo is a classic Czech dish that captures the essence of the country’s culinary traditions, offering a balanced trio of flavors and textures.
The dish consists of three main components: roasted pork (vepřo), bread dumplings (knedlo), and sauerkraut or stewed cabbage (zelo).
Together, these elements create a satisfying and well-rounded meal that is deeply rooted in Czech culture, often enjoyed on Sundays, holidays, or any occasion that calls for a hearty feast.
3) Smažený sýr (fried cheese)
Smažený sýr, or fried cheese, is a popular Czech dish that offers a delightful contrast of textures and flavors, serving as a staple in both restaurants and street food stalls.
While not a traditional Czech dish in the historical sense, it has become an integral part of modern Czech cuisine and is particularly popular among younger generations and tourists seeking a quick, indulgent meal.
How to get around Prague
Prague has a huge advantage in that it has a historical center and most of the points of interest are very compact, which makes it easy to explore. You basically need to get to the starting point and then you only need your legs as a primary means of transport.
By Public Transportation
Prague boasts one of the best local transport systems in the world. You can travel around the city and visit its top attractions by metro, bus, tram, or even train. The metro system consists of three lines (Line A: green, Line B: yellow, Line C: red), all of which pass through the most popular destinations for visitors. Transferring between lines is straightforward, with transfer points clearly marked in the underground stations. Tickets for public transportation are readily available, and the system is known for being simple, safe, and one of the best in Europe.
Read our whole article: Prague Public Transport from A to Z: All You Need to Know!
Taxis and Uber are also available for those who prefer a more private mode of transportation. Taxis can be hailed on the street, but it’s advisable to use reputable companies or have your accommodation arranged for you to avoid overcharging.
Uber operates in Prague and can be a convenient and cost-effective way to get around, especially if you are familiar with the app. They made Uber to be the official taxi company for Prague airport because there were tons of taxi scammers who were overcharging tourists.
- A little day-pack Backpack
- Bottle of water (remember you can fill it anywhere; our tap water is perfectly fine to drink anywhere in the Czech Republic)
- Comfortable shoes (forget the heels, the beautiful cobblestone streets aren’t heels-friendly)
- Clothes according to the weather forecast
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