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Airport – Vaclav Havel
City – Prague
If you’ve never been …
… You’ve apparently never been on a banter-heavy, 20-utter-legends-in-matching-t-shirts, mad-for-it, oi-you-idiot-did-you-spill-my-pint-piss-off-it’s-only-a-joke-i’m-not-racist-but lads’ weekend or stag party. And for that, you’ve gone up in my estimation and I’m sure you’re a charismatic and cultured human.
Actually, I have to declare an interest here. I live in the Czech Republic and am British and therefore tarred with the cretin brush through no fault of my own. Well, whatever, Prague is a wonderful and charming place to spend two days or two weeks, either exploring the Old Town or getting out of the city to discover the surroundings.
Find the smaller parts
You’ll naturally gravitate towards the old town, and that is pretty, but if you cross the river and go to Malá Strana, you’ll find one of those interesting areas that is touristy in a single-stream type of way. Turn off the main cobbled hill and head down any of the side streets to find cosy, wood-panelled pubs to try huge plates of traditional Czech food.
Walk over Mánesův most and head up to Letná
Yes, Charles Bridge is the most famous, but it’s a hideous tourist trap of crap buskers and even worse caricaturists. However, if you go up the river and cross over using the next bridge, you get a lovely view back down the river to take photos of Charles Bridge with the castle behind. Then head up to the wooded area of Letná on the far bank and sit in the park with a beer.
To the tower!
On the west bank of the Vltava, you can walk up to Petřín tower (it’s the one that looks like a mini Eiffel Tower). In this park you can find all sorts of weird distractions including a mirror maze, a rose garden, a cathedral and, amazingly, the world’s largest stadium!
Visited Prague before? Dive in a bit deeper with these ideas…
Catch a (smaller) game of football
Sparta and Slavia are the two big Prague teams, but for a more intimate experience, head to Dukla (historically very successful), Bohemians (lefty, socially-conscious club) or Viktoria (with their stadium of scaffolding). You’ll generally be welcomed a lot more warmly than at one of the big teams.
Get historically horny
At Kozna 1 is the first and only museum in the world dedicated solely to mechanical sex devices. Over three floors, you’ll marvel / squirm at some of the things humans have designed purely to get their rocks off. Helpfully, even if you can’t get around how some of these things work, there are plenty of mannequins posed in demonstrative positions.
Give peace a chance
Opposite the French Embassy is what’s known locally as the Lennon Wall. Despite the objections of the local police, this graffiti-covered wall has become a landmark as it is constantly changing with Beatles-related daubings. Sketches, lyrics and quotes cover every inch of this piece of anonymous, suburban Prague.