Prague Travel Guide
Prague is fast becoming one of the most popular destinations in Europe and it's not hard to see why. The capital of the Czech Republic offers a winning combination of beautiful architectural and historical sights by day and a wide range of traditional and contemporary nightspots for the evenings - making it the perfect location for both laid-back sightseers and energetic fun-seekers.
The mid-western region of the Czech Republic in central Bohemia
Prague enjoys warm summers with a decent amount of sunshine but also feels the bite of freezing, snow-filled winters. Temperatures average between 12 and 22 degrees C in the summer months and have been known to plunge as low as -20 degrees C in wintertime.
The main international airport is located about 17 kilometres north of Prague. It can take up to half an hour to drive from the airport to the city, or up to 55 minutes if using the local bus system.
If you want to stay in the city centre, be prepared to fork out. A few moderately priced hotels are available in centre, but on the whole you can expect to find cheaper rooms further out. Prices can range from as little as £12 for a basic bed and breakfast room to over £250 for something a little more luxurious. If you're planning on travelling this autumn, bag yourself a room at the unique Pension Unitas & Art Prison Hostel (which is currently undergoing reconstruction work until later in the year), where as you might guess from the name you get the dubious pleasure of sleeping in a prison cell. However, this is relatively cheap, with twin rooms in the peak holiday season costing around the £40 mark.
The first thing you'll notice upon arriving in Prague is the stunning architecture, which provides the main point of sightseeing for most tourists in the area. The impressive Prague Castle - the largest ancient castle in the world - should be the first port of call, as well as the majestic Municipal House. Elsewhere, take a stroll through winding cobbled streets and visit establishments such as the Franz Kafka Museum and the National Museum.
While leisure goods such as CDs and clothing can be more expensive in Prague due to the higher VAT, holidaymakers would do well to stock up on the much cheaper essentials available to locals. If money is no object, have a look around for the various markets aimed at tourists, or slip into almost-hidden shops for traditional Czech clothes and beautiful items for the home.
Take a trip down the beautiful River Vlatava and see the major sights of Prague in one go, or wander around the magnificent fortress at Vysehrad, about two miles south of the city. The UNESCO World Heritage Site of Kutna Hora is an ideal place to visit for a day trip, offering up a spectacular cathedral and more beautiful buildings.
The castle is probably the most obvious place to take children with wild imaginations - its ancient walls offer the perfect confines within which to pretend to be a battling prince or a beautiful princess. Elsewhere, the charming Museum of Marionette Culture and Prague Zoo also offer amusement for all the family.
Walking is possibly the best way to see all that Prague's city centre has to offer, but if you fancy travelling a bit further afield, the city offers a local bus system and taxis, as well as trains that zip in and out of Prague to and from other parts of the country and Europe.