48 Hours in Prague – 2 Day Itinerary
Spending a weekend in Prague is one of the best city break options in Europe. Nicknamed “The City of a Thousand Spires”, Prague’s historic centre is a UNESCO World Heritage Site with tons of beautiful and historic buildings. On the other side of the coin, it’s Czech Republic’s bustling capital with almost 1.5 million residents. It’s got a thriving nightlife scene, shops, museums, and tons of other things to do so you know your 48 hours in Prague aren’t going to be boring.
Over 48 hours in Prague, you can explore the city’s most famous landmarks like the famous astronomical clock in Old Town Square. You can discover Prague Castle, cross the great Charles Bridge over the Vltava River, and learn more about the Jewish history of the city. Not forgetting the Czech Republic’s greatest export, there are plenty of bars and restaurants to sample a glass or three of Czech pilsner lager before painting the town red.
This 48 hours in Prague itinerary covers everything you need to know to spend 2 days in Prague. It will show you how to get around Prague, where to stay, and the best time to visit Prague. This guide will also tell you all the top places to visit in Prague, things to do, and tours you can join in Prague to have a fantastic trip.
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The Czech Republic has a “moderate continental” climate. This means that Prague enjoys warm to hot, dry summers and cold, drizzly winters. July is usually the hottest month with an average high of 24°C (75°F) and an average low of 14°C (57°F). January is the coldest month with an average high of 2°C (35°F) and an average low of -3°C (25°F).
The peak summer season, July and August, has the best weather but it’s also the busiest time of year to visit. Flights and accommodation prices will be more expensive too. The weeks leading up to Christmas will also be busy and more expensive due to Prague’s Christmas Markets.
The shoulder seasons of April – June and September – October are the best times to visit Prague. The weather will be warm and pleasant but the accommodation and flight prices will be cheaper. However, Prague is a year-round destination because it’s a capital city. Attractions and restaurants don’t close down! So, if you don’t mind cold and rainy weather then you could find plenty of cheap deals by travelling in January or November.
Though Prague is a huge capital city, it’s much more walkable than you might think. There are lots of pedestrianised squares, streets and bridges and most of the landmarks are in close proximity to each other. So if you don’t have any accessibility needs, then you should be able to get around most places by walking.
Prague is also well-connected by bus, tram, and metro. Most of the public transport services are integrated which means you can use the same tickets for each type of transport, except for historic trams. Tickets are cheap (30 CZK or around €1.20 for a single 30-minute ticket) and you can buy them on the PID Lítačka app or from ticket machines.
Prague has Uber and taxis are inexpensive compared to other European capital cities. Expect to pay around 36 CZK (€1.50) per km. River cruises aren’t used as public transportation, only leisure tours.
There are two main municipal districts in Prague, simply called Prague 1 and Prague 2. Prague 1 covers many smaller neighbourhoods including Old Town and the areas around Prague Castle across the river. Prague 2 is just south of Prague 1 on the west side of the river and includes the Central Station. Both neighbourhoods are great places to stay in Prague.
Sophie’s Hostel – Budget Travellers won’t struggle to find fantastic, cheap accommodation in Prague. One of the best is Sophie’s Hostel which is in a fantastic location in Prague 2 near the National Museum. The decor is modern and they have a guest kitchen where you can cook your own food to save money.
Dancing House Hotel – This isn’t just a hotel, it’s a landmark! Many tourists snap photos of this 4-star hotel because it has an intriguing design but it’s also a great place to base yourself for a city break in Prague. Room rates start from around €70 per night and it has modern yet cosy decor. It’s in a great location on the border of Prague 2 overlooking the river.
The Grand Mark Prague – Prefer elegance and luxury over sleek and modern hotels? The Grand Mark is a five-star hotel in the heart of Old Town close to the main square. Room rates start from around €250 per night and for that, you get a great breakfast, spa, and pool in a stunning Art Nouveau building.
Explore Prague’s Old Town Square
Let’s kick off this 2-day itinerary for Prague with the most well-known part of the city, Prague’s Old Town Square. It dates back to the 10th century and it’s where you’ll find other popular landmarks like the Church of Our Lady before Týn and the 600-year-old astronomical clock.
This medieval clock is the third-oldest in the world and the oldest that is still in operation. Make sure you’re in the square as the clock strikes on the hour (from 9:00 until 23:00) so you can see the 12 apostles in motion. There are lots of other interesting attractions in the square like Prague’s meridian line and The House at the Minute which is novelist Franz Kafka’s former home.
Walk Across the Charles Bridge
There’s been a bridge on this site since 665, but the current Charles Bridge opened in the 15th century. Its former name was simply the Prague Bridge or the Stone Bridge but since 1870 it’s been named after King Charles IV. It’s a wide, majestic bridge with many statues and ornate decorations. During the peak summer season, you can find artists, performers, and tradespeople along the bridge too.
Make Your Mark on the John Lennon Wall
Some cultural events seem to happen for no obvious rhyme or reason. For example, why does Prague have a wall dedicated to John Lennon, a city he was neither born nor lived in? Well, after the assassination of hippie John Lennon in the 1980s, the youth of Prague felt so moved that painted this wall with his lyrics and symbols of peace.
The John Lennon Wall was, in a way, a non-violent protest against the communist regime at the time. Today, the wall is a forever-changing work of art as people are free to bring paint and add their own stamps. So, don’t lean against it when you get your picture taken as you might stain your clothes!
Eat Traditional Czech Cuisine
Like other Central European countries, traditional Czech cuisine is warming and hearty. Meat stews, pickled vegetables like sauerkraut, dumplings, and schnitzel are all staples. Even pickled cheese! Pork knuckle is a delicacy in the Czech Republic so if you see it on a menu, you have to try it.
One of the more crowd-pleasing Czech treats is the trdelnik. This is a popular sweet snack in many countries in Central Europe like Austria and Hungary and is sometimes called chimney cake. It consists of strips of fried dough in a cylindrical shape with cream piped into the middle dipped into a crunchy sugary substance. What’s not to love?!
And of course, if you drink alcohol then you cannot visit the Czech Republic without sampling some lager or Czech wine. Despite the country’s famous lager originating in Plzeň and most of the wineries being in the South Moravian region, you should seek out both in Prague!
Climb To the Top of the Petrin Tower
Prague is a gorgeous city. So, at some point during your 48 hrs in Prague, you need to witness its beauty in its entirety. One of the best viewpoints in the city is the Petrin Tower in the west of the city. There are 299 steps to climb up this 378m tower but it will be worth it when you see the vista in front of you from the lookout deck. Head there at sunset for the best light.
Watch a Puppet Show
Puppets date all the way back to the Ancient Greeks. But for some reason, they play a significant role in Czech history when travelling entertainers from the 1800s used them in their shows. You can experience a show for yourself at the National Marionette Theatre in Prague. It’s a real craft and not just for kids.
Your itinerary for Prague has to include Prague Castle. It’s not just one building but a huge complex of buildings from the last few centuries with different architectural styles. It’s in the Guinness Book of Records as being the largest ancient castle in the world!
One of the buildings is St Vitus Cathedral, an impressive Gothic structure and the final resting place of many saints. Golden Lane is a quirky street within the complex with brightly coloured cottages with little shops and exhibitions. Lobkowicz Palace is a baroque building that houses the private art collection of its namesake family. Head to this landmark at midday to watch the Changing of the Guard ceremony.
Old Jewish Cemetery
Like many cities across Europe, Prague had a thriving Jewish community before WWII which tragically isn’t the case anymore. There are many places you can visit in the former Jewish Quarter to learn more about the history of Jewish people in Prague, like the Old Jewish Cemetery and The Old-New Synagogue.
There are over 12,000 tombstones in the cemetery dating back to the 15th century. You can also buy a dual ticket to the cemetery and the Jewish Museum in Prague. This will enable you to see more artefacts as well as a few buildings that have been preserved or restored to how they would have looked hundreds of years ago.
Wenceslas Square isn’t on most people’s Prague itinerary but a lot of history went down here. It’s a popular site for protests and demonstrations including ones against the Soviet invasion in 1968. The Prague Uprising in 1945 turned many of the buildings into ruin. But today, it’s a fully rebuilt square with the National Museum building looming over it.
Vltava River Cruise
You could join a walking tour in Prague, but it’s such a big city you might need a lie down afterwards. Opt for a more leisurely tour by setting sail on a cruise down the Vltava, the river which runs through the middle of Prague. There are lots of islands in the river you can sail around and you’ll be able to appreciate the beauty of the city from a different angle too.
Pilsner Beer Tour and Tasting
You won’t be able to visit all the best bars in Prague during your weekend city break, so you should let an expert take you to all the best ones! You’ll try lots of samples and learn about different types of pilsner lager, which is the Czech Republic’s signature beer.
Day 1 in Prague
Start your 2 days itinerary in Prague with brunch at Bistro Monk. Next, head over to the Old Town Square to explore the area before the crowds. Find a good spot for when the astronomical clock chimes the next hour and explore the Church of Our Lady before Týn too. Next, hop on a Vltava River Cruise and see the city from a different perspective whilst having a nice, relaxing sail and learning the key historic events in Prague’s past.
Time for lunch! Head to The Prague Beer Museum (a restaurant, not an actual museum) by the river for a flight of the finest Czech beers and some light bites. Stop at Good Food Coffee & Bakery afterwards for your first trdelnik of the weekend. Next, head up to the Old Jewish Cemetery and explore the museum too.
Slowly make your way across the Charles Bridge and up the Petrin Tower for beautiful views of the city. When you’re ready for dinner, head to the original Original Budvarka restaurant (Budvar is a Budweiser beer) to feast on traditional Czech cuisine. Book a ticket to the nightly string puppet shows at the National Marionette Theatre if you’re in the mood for some light entertainment before calling it a night.
Day 2 in Prague
Cathedral Café has a beautiful outside terrace for you to enjoy brunch before walking over the Charles Bridge to spend your morning at Prague Castle. Don’t forget to stroll through all the cobbled streets and check out St Vitus Cathedral, the palace, and the Toy Museum too. Stick around for midday to watch the Changing of the Guard ceremony at the castle.
There are lots of traditional Czech restaurants near the castle but Restaurace U Mlynáře is a great choice. They have lots of outside seating and often have a performer playing the piano in the corner. Once you’re done, walk over to the John Lennon Wall and see what people have added recently. Snap a few selfies before walking over to Wenceslas Square. You can buy a ticket to the National Museum if you’d like, or head to a pilsner lager tasting tour.
Grab dinner when you can at U Fleků which has medieval-style decor and even sells Budvar beer-flavoured ice cream. Don’t forget to drink lots of water in between drinks and you’ll remember your 48 hours in Prague fondly.
Recommended tours in Prague
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