Czech Republic

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

When we started traveling as a family four and half years ago, we had never seen a single place in Europe. Everything was new, so of course we started with places that, as North Americans, we had heard the most about. (E.g., Amsterdam and Paris were two of our early choices.) However, the longer we lived in London, the more open we became to branching out and visiting places we hadn’t heard much about prior to our move. Prague was one of those places for us.

The only thing I knew about Prague before beginning to plan this trip was that it was the capital of the Czech Republic, literally nothing else. And yet it kept being recommended to us over and over by other travelers, so we decided, sort of on a whim, to see what all the fuss was about and booked it for our autumn break. And, oh my goodness, if we didn’t choose the perfect time of year to visit. Prague is beautiful in the fall. The city is full of trees and parks and all of the leaves were so rich in color, they almost didn’t even look real. I have quite a few more posts in the works from Prague showcasing just how gorgeous this city is this time of year, but before I get to those, I want to share our three day Prague itinerary with you.

Prague marked the first time ever that we actually slowed down on a city trip and really savored the experience vs packing in as many sights as we could, and we loved it. We stayed across the river from the Old Town*, close enough to the most popular sights that we could walk to all of them in under 10 minutes, but far enough away that the vibe was noticeably more laid back. Our central, but not too central, location allowed us the option to return to our apartment anytime during the day and rest, which we did often.

While our Prague itinerary may still look quite busy, I assure you we had hours of downtime every day. Prague is a compact city, so you won’t waste much time walking from place to place, and some sights probably won’t take you very long to see. Of course, everyone’s definition of slow travel will be different, but for us, this was it. In three days, you can easily see all of Prague’s most famous sights, some of its lesser known gems, and still have plenty of time to sit in a warm cafe, watching the world pass by through a foggy window. In my opinion, that’s pretty much the definition of a perfect city break!

*Our Prague itinerary starts from this location. If you’re staying elsewhere, you might have to switch things up a little!

DAY ONE

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

LENNON WALL

It’s dirty, and it’s grungy, and yet it’s always packed with people, so the first place you’ll want to stop in the morning is the Lennon Wall. (This was only steps from our apartment. Details about where we stayed at the bottom!) Since the 1980’s, the Lennon Wall has been continuously painted over and over again with John Lennon-inspired art and Beatles lyrics, among other graffiti. These days it’s hard to make much of anything out anymore, but still, it’s worth a quick stop for a photo, especially if you’re in the area.

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

LOVE LOCKS

Right next to the Lennon Wall is a popular spot for lovers to leave a love lock behind. We saw the first of these love lock bridges in Paris, but have since found them in pretty much every large European city. Romantic gesture or nuisance, whatever you think of them, they’ve become an increasingly popular thing to do, especially for tourists. We’ve never left one behind, but I still like seeing them when we travel. These locks are found on a small bridge over the stream surrounding Kampa Island.

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

PETRIN HILL & OBSERVATION TOWER

When possible, one thing I like to do early on over a city break is find a place where I can climb up above the city and see it in panoramic view. It’s a great way for my navigationally-challenged self to get my bearings before trying to navigate from sight to sight. One of the best places to view the whole city of Prague from above is the observation tower on top of Petrin Hill. There is a small fee to climb the tower, but it’s worth it! As is taking time to walk through Petrin Park afterwards, especially if you’re visiting when the leaves are changing colors.

More photos from Petrin Hill here!

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

LUNCH IN OLD TOWN

After a walk through Petrin Park, it’s time to head across the river to Old Town where you’ll find the Old Town Square is a mecca for delicious Czech street food. (Although, admittedly, you probably will pay more for it than you would elsewhere.) I recommend treating yourself to one of the kebabs with chicken and fresh veggies. Then, if you remember nothing else from this guide, then at least remember this – try the trdelníks. But beware, these little sugar and spice-coated pastries from heaven are crazy addictive! I don’t even want to tell you how many times I ate these instead of real food while we were in Prague.

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

OLD TOWN SQUARE

Old Town Square is Prague’s prettiest, but also busiest, public square. Quite a few of the sights Prague is most famous for can be found here. There’s the astronomical clock that puts on a show for hundreds of tourists every hour, the Church of Our Lady Before Týn whose towering spires are one of the most recognizable features of the city, and the smaller, yet possibly more beautiful St Nicholas Church. It’s easy to spend a couple hours exploring here, so I recommend seeing anything that interests you and then finding a place nearby to get dinner. (For traditional Czech on a budget, Karlova 30 is good!)

Click here for 5 Fun Things To Do In Prague’s Historic Old Town Square!

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

PRAGUE AT NIGHT

After dinner, it’s time to head back to the Old Town Square to see it glowing at night, and then head over to the Charles Bridge which is equally as stunning after dark. The view of Prague Castle across the Vltava River is brilliant from the Charles Bridge! Prague also has a pretty good nightlife (or so I hear) if that’s your thing, but since we were already up and out doing things by 9am every morning, I can’t tell you anything about it! :)

DAY TWO

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

CHARLES BRIDGE

Besides the Lennon Wall, one other place you’re probably going to want to visit early in the day if you want crowd-free pictures is the Charles Bridge. There are 17 bridges crossing the Vltava River in Prague and the only one anyone ever uses is this one. Kidding, of course, but if you try to walk across it mid-day during Prague’s high season, it’ll feel that way! So on your second morning, I recommend starting the day here, preferably before 9am if you can. That’s when the buskers start setting up, and shortly after that it gets busy.

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

PRAGUE CASTLE

If you’re staying on the Kampa side of the river, you won’t actually cross the Charles Bridge because Prague Castle is on the agenda for today. And as it’s the largest ancient castle complex in the world, it’s going to be practically the only thing on the agenda. (FYI – Those who don’t buy one of the various tickets offered will probably be in and out much quicker.) Since we wanted to see a little more of the castle than just its most popular sight, St Vitus Cathedral, we opted for Circuit B tickets which included private areas of the cathedral, St George’s Basilica, Golden Lane, and Rosenberg Palace. (The Old Royal Palace is usually on this ticket, but it was closed for renovations, so we saw Rosenberg Palace instead, which I found pretty boring.)

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

GOLDEN LANE

If you buy a ticket into the castle, one of the first places you’ll want to stop is Golden Lane. Getting here early is key, because once the tour groups start descending on this narrow street, it gets nearly impossible to walk down. (At least comfortably, anyway.) It’s hard to imagine people living in the tiny homes that line Golden Lane, but they did for many centuries. Now-a-days they are little miniature museums to the lane’s past, but as these houses put the new “tiny house movement” to shame, moving around in them is difficult. Another reason to arrive early!

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

ST VITUS CATHEDRAL

St Vitus Cathedral is open to all castle visitors, but if you purchase a ticket, you’ll have access to private (read: far less crowded) areas of the cathedral. Those without tickets are only allowed into the cathedral’s entrance, which turns into a madhouse pretty quickly. St Vitus is the Czech Republic’s largest cathedral, and even though I haven’t seen the others, I can’t imagine them being prettier than this one.

Click here for a full tour of Prague Castle and more photos of the magnificent St Vitus Cathedral!

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

ST GEORGE’S BASILICA

St Vitus Cathedral may hold the title of largest church on the Prague Castle grounds, but the oldest goes to St George’s Basilica. To enter this church, a ticket is required. Out of all the places on our ticket (besides St Vitus), this one was my favorite. St George’s Basilica is not a large church, by any means, but I loved all the natural light and shadows inside it. It was so much fun to photograph! (FYI – The colorful exterior is completely at odds with what you’ll find inside. We almost missed this one because we couldn’t even tell it was a church from the outside!)

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

CHANGING OF THE GUARD

Every day at noon, the Changing of the Guard ceremony is performed in the first courtyard of Prague Castle. There is a musical performance, as well as a parade. It’s nowhere near as large a production as the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace, but it’s still worth your time to see since you’re already at the castle!

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

PRAGUE CASTLE MOAT

Prague Castle’s moat has got to be its most underrated feature. Technically called the Stag Moat (due to the deer breeding that happened here in the 17th century), the castle’s moat is actually two – an Upper Moat and a Lower Moat. In both you’ll find the prettiest, forested walking trails in the city, and they’re open free to the public, no ticket required. When we visited in late October, some of the trails were completely blanketed in colorful leaves, making this one of the most beautiful places we saw while we were in Prague!

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

NERUDOVA STREET

After leaving the castle, head towards Nerudova Street nearby. On the way, you’ll pass an overlook with gorgeous views over the city. Then continue on to Nerudova, one of the most colorful streets in Prague. Unfortunately, due to the narrow nature of the street, I got zero good photos, so you’re just going to have to take my word that it’s adorable. Back in the day, houses in Prague were signified by symbols instead of house numbers, so if you lived here, you told people you lived at the House of the Two Suns or the House of the Red Lion vs just boring, old 47 Nerudova Street. Most of the house symbols in Prague have since been taken down, but they remain on Nerudova Street, which is pretty cool to see. This street also has the best trdelníks we tasted (and we tasted a lot), so there’s that reason to visit, too.

St Nicholas Church (not the same one that is in Old Town) is located in the square at the bottom of this street. Considered one of the most important Baroque churches in Central Europe, visitors are allowed in for a look around for a fee. We were pretty churched out by the end of our second day, so we skipped it, but I just wanted to mention it since it’s so close by!

DAY THREE

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

WENCESLAS SQUARE

Our itinerary for our last day in Prague began in Wenceslas Square, the furthest sight away from where we were staying across the river in Kampa. This square lacks the same charm the Old Town Square has in spades, but a few of the buildings and hotels in Wenceslas Square stand out from the rest due to their colorful designs and unusual architecture. You’ll find lots of retail stores and restaurants over here, as well as the National Museum Building, but unless you go in, Wenceslas Square will probably be a quick stop.

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

HAVELSKÉ STREET MARKET

After Wenceslas Square, head over to Havelské Street Market where you’ll find all sorts of unique souvenirs to bring home. The market is open every day from 6am and vendors sell everything from wooden toys and puppets to fresh fruit and vegetables. It’s located off Melantrichova Street which connects Wenceslas Square and Old Town Square, so if you go that route, you can’t miss it!

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

LUNCH AT SISTERS BISTRO

Sisters Bistro came highly recommended to us before our trip, so we made a point to eat there for our last lunch in Prague and it definitely didn’t disappoint. Serving up chlebíčky, traditional Czech open-faced sandwiches, the hardest decision we had to make at Sisters was which sandwiches to try. There were so many choices, and every single one looked good! (Well, maybe not the herring and wasabi, but you get what I mean.) Two chlebíčky are perfect for a light lunch. The cafe is located at Dlouhá 39.

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

JEWISH QUARTER

The Josefov is Prague’s Jewish Quarter. Once a walled ghetto, the Jewish Quarter today is mostly a tourist attraction, one with a pretty steep admission fee if you want to gain entrance into the Jewish Museum, the synagogues, or the Old Jewish Cemetery. I hear the ticket price is very much worth it if you’re interested in hearing the history of Prague’s Jewish population, but as we had plans to visit Poland (a trip focused on Jewish history) a few weeks later, we decided to skip buying tickets and instead simply see what we could see walking through the streets of the Josefov. (Which isn’t a whole lot, to tell you the truth. If you’ve got time, tickets are probably the way to go!)

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

LETNA PARK

We ended our trip to Prague similarly to how we began it – in a park overlooking the city. Letna Park (or Letenské Sady) is a beautiful public park across the river from the Old Town with tree-lined walking trails that offer multiple look-out points overlooking the Vltava River and city below. In some places in Letna Park, the views are even better than they are from Petrin Tower. (And they’re free here!)

More photos from Letna Park here!

Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

WHERE TO STAY

Our love affair with Airbnb began on this trip to Prague. We’d used Airbnb once before (in Sorrento, Italy), but we had such a fabulous experience in Prague that we never again stayed at a hotel while traveling in Europe. (And probably would have continued that in Asia if hotels weren’t as cheap as they are here!) We chose a lovely apartment in Prague only steps from the Charles Bridge. (It’s this one here.) Our apartment had everything going for it – location, comfort, quiet, and less important, but still worth mentioning – it was adorably decorated and delightfully cozy.

And if you’re trying to decide when to go, choose autumn. I mean, if the only time you have to visit Prague is July, then still go. But if you’ve got a choice, go in the fall!

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Three Day Prague Itinerary For Slow(ish) Travelers

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  • Coralia Varga

    Prague has long been on my Europe bucket list. We are still to visit! It looks just so beautiful. I’m going to save this for when we make it there (hopefully sooner rather than later!). We might take the train from Vienna :D

    • From one beautiful city to another – that sounds like a great idea! :)

  • Bernie

    I’m definitely saving this for future reference. What a beautiful trip and such a stunning place! I love the thought of houses known by their symbols; I’m updating my address to have a sign of a holly tree immediately. Thanks for the heads up about the beautiful airbnb too.

    • Oh, a holly tree! How lovely, and what a good choice! I think I’d choose some sort of bird myself! :)

  • I’m so in love with these photos! Prague is the best. I’ve been twice and did pretty much all the things on your itinerary. really great roundup of all the important must dos!

    • How lucky for you getting to go twice! I’d love to return someday! And thanks so much for the lovely compliment on my photos!

  • What a cute post. My friends have been raving about Prague and I can now see why. Your photos capture its beauty perfectly well. What camera do you use? Also those tradelnicks look scrumptious.

    • They ARE scrumptious! I have a wicked sweet tooth, so I’ll eat just about anything with enough sugar on it. ;)

      Thanks for the compliment on my photos! I use a Canon 6D, and I’m pretty sure all of these shots were with the kit lens that came with it – 24-105mm.

  • Stunning! Your photos are gorgeous and your guide is super informative. Prague is near the top of my travel wishlist right now, I hope I can head there soon and use your suggestions!

    • I hope you can, too! I think you’ll love it! And thank you for the kind compliments! :)

  • BabiesWithBackpacks

    Love this post! Prague looks beautiful, I can’t wait to get there some day!

  • Snow to Seas

    Your photos are gorgeous! I also visited Prague in the fall a couple of years ago, and totally agree that it’s one of the best times to visit the city. The fall foliage is spectacular.

    • Thank you! I’m so glad you were able to visit in the fall, too. It’s such a perfect time to visit pretty much any city in Europe!

  • I have been wanting to visit Prague for a long long time and it still hasnt happened yet. For a second though it looked a bit like Warsaw or Tallin and those sausages are making hungry.

    • Tallinn does have those same orange-colored roofs, doesn’t it? I love those!

      Oh my gosh, those sausages WERE good. I love this part of Europe’s emphasis on meat and veggies. Reminds me of home! :)

  • Kavita

    This is very much how we like to travel, seeing a fair bit but still relaxed and slow meandering and plenty of down time. I visited Prague as a teenager in the late 1980s and have been reluctant to go back, wondering how it would compare with my memories of a Prague before the international chain stores hit. But at the same time, I so want to go back and your photos just make me long to even more!

    • I can understand that feeling very well. I grew up in Singapore in the 90’s before moving back to my birth country just before the turn of the century. When the opportunity came up to move here again (almost 20 years later!), I was excited, but hesitant. It’s normal to not want your memories to be spoiled, but after being back here for 1.5 years, I can safely say I’m glad we came back! It’s fairly easy to separate Singapore of the 90’s from Singapore of the 2010’s. Hopefully it would be the same for you with Prague. :)

  • Valerie J. Wilson

    Loved this, but your photography blew me away! I loved looking at the photos :)

  • Great tips! We only had about a day and a half in Prague so really had to cram things in, but were able to do most of these! Definitely a city I’d like to get back to one day!

    • That’s tough when you have such a short time to spend in a place, but better to go for a short trip than not go at all! Prague is nice in that you can certainly spend a week-long trip here, but if you only have a weekend, that’s okay, too!

  • Julie

    I loved all the street food, especially since most of it was cooked over an open fire! I still dream about the taste of the tredelniks!

    There were so many places I missed (we only had four nights there, and one of the days we visited Terezin camp, I’ve always been immensely interested in the Holocaust), but my favorite areas to explore were probably the Jewish Quarter (seeing the names of all the Czech victims of the Holocaust inside Pinkas Synagogue was heartbreaking) and Malá Strana, I was no expecting such vibrant colors right in the midst of Central Europe.

    It’s such an amazing city, I can’t wait to return one day.

    • Julie

      P.S. I forgot to add that Sisters Bistro was one of the stops on our Prague food tour. So good!

      • I am not surprised you made time to fit in a food tour in Prague. :) I wish we had, but we still got to try all sorts of delicious things on our own, too!

        I’ve never heard of Terezin, but I’m sure it was a sobering day trip. We visited Auschwitz in Poland a few months after this, and I don’t think I’ll be visiting another concentration camp ever again. That was a really rough experience.