Prague is the beautiful capital city of the Czech Republic. Despite it’s geographical location in WW2 , the city and it’s beautiful architecture miraculously escaped unscathed from 1939-1945. It remains today, what many other European countries would have looked like if they weren’t bombed in WW2.
For some time, Prague has had a reputation for staging endless stag parties and hen nights with it’s cheap booze and brothels. I have always been curious. But as I say, there’s no better way to find out what a place is like, other than go explore it yourself. Oh and bring your husband and kids!
Quite frankly, this city is beautiful. Located only 1 hour and 35 minutes away (approximately) and with massive bargains in flights and accommadation, there’s no excuse not to explore this amazing place.
As always, I find filling half term holidays and other seasonal breaks from school, difficult. I struggle to find things for the children to do and when I do, it ends up costing a fortune. I also find it easier and cheaper to get away from it all and take them someone different. This seemed the perfect time to head to Prague.
Lots of airlines fly to Prague. I research all the deals and found a great one on Expedia. We flew from Gatwick with Smartwings, who, despite their somewhat checkered reputation, were absolutely brilliant. With a free 15Kg checked luggage allowance and 7kg carry on luggage (these things are very important to me!) it’s better than any of the other budget airline I know. Generally speaking, other budget airlines offer 10kg, but after that, you pay. Check in is 2 hours before the flight and is super quick. Flight was 1 hour and 35 minutes and everything went smooth. At £45 per person, this was an absolute bargain!
Despite my son taking the wrong suitcase from the airport luggage belt (my life wouldn’t be the same without drama!) we made our way to the hotel. This was a simple journey on the tube and bus which took 35 minutes and cost £1.00 per adult and 50p per child.
We stayed at the Residence La Fenice Hotel and again, I can’t recommend this enough. It was about 12 minutes outside the centre but had a metro 2 minutes walk away so you can hop on and off as you please. We bought a 24 hour ticket which cost 110Kr or about £3.50 (roughly) per adult and half price for a 7 year old. 4 year olds go free. You can hop on and off for 24 hours and that includes trams and buses also. It’s a very simple metro system and the kids loved it.
The Hotel included a free breakfast which was perfect and included both hot and cold breakfast. The room was like a mini suite with the children getting their own room too. It was spotless and the staff were super helpful with perfect English. All this for £190 in TOTAL for 4 nights! Another bargain!
Eating out is a very diverse thing in Prague. I found the restaurants were of very mixed quality and mixed price. We were advised to stick to local Czech restaurants and we found this information to be spot on. We found one located in the old town, right in the heart of everything which was so cheap. The local dish (below) which is duck, dumplings and red cabbage was 135Kr, which works out at about £5.00. It’s £1 a pint in the same place and £1.20 for a half carafe of wine! Another bargain.
This dish is the local speciality and is amazing. It’s delicious and cheap and my son devoured it!
There are so many food options too though. We went to a noodle bar one night for a change but this was super expensive compared to the local restaurants. We also tried a pizza restaurant which served the biggest pizzas I’ve ever seen (which were the same size for children). Both places were good but I think sticking with the authentic Czech restaurants is the way to go. Alternatively, I often find that children just prefer grabbing a slice of pizza on the go – just something to fill a gap. There are loads of bakeries and deli counters all over the place so they won’t go hungry!
Despite Prague’s reputation for stag nights and hen parties, we didn’t see one. However, what is true is the price of alcohol! Again, like the food, it varies massively from one place to another. In one place we got a beer for £1 while in others it could go up to £2.50 – still cheap but the prices vary. In many places, it’s actually the same price to get a beer as it is a soft drink! Go Prague!
Exploring the City
When we travel with the kids, we generally tend to squeeze in an aquarium trip or a zoo trip at some point. I often find that children get bored wandering around and need other stimulation. But this time, to my astonishment, we didn’t need to bother with the aquarium or zoo. They were more than happy wandering through the beautiful streets and exploring.
This is such a fantastic city for just wandering, that we didn’t need to find other things to do. It’s quite a large city, so getting a map, walking and taking it all in was enough this time. There are loads of markets, stalls and an abundance of shops to browse in along with such beautiful architecture and buildings, you can spend hours just wandering through the streets.
Charles Bridge is one of the main attractions and is a focal point for many. Building first commenced in 1357 and was eventually finished in the beginning of the 15th century. This beautiful bridge crosses the Vltava river and has loads of beautiful cobbled side streets branching off on both sides, each street as intriguing as the next. Also on the bridge are artists who will paint your portrait or caricature for about 30 Euro? (prices vary). You can easily walk from one side to the other and explore both sides.
Overall this is a great city and I will definitely go back. It’s enchanting, lively and interesting. It’s perfect for walking and exploring and a great place to take children for half term break. Sometimes it’s best to keep it simple. Just get up, have breakfast, get a map and go exploring. This is often how you find the best parks, restaurants and sites. If that’s your thing, then this city is for you. With stunning architecture, captivating atmosphere and amazing food, this city will certainly keep you and and the little ones busy!