Prague is known as the Golden City all year round, but at Christmastime the Czech capital shines even brighter. You will see what we mean when you visit the Christmas market at Oldtown Square.
Attracted by the festive smells, even more visitors than usual find their way to the famous square with its Astronomical Clock. A great variety of treats is waiting for them, from sausages and roasted chestnuts to mulled wine, grog, and mead. Don't miss out on the traditional pastries as well: while trying to say it might get your tongue in a twist, it will be generously compensated by the first bite into a sweet trdelník. You might also find some Christmas presents or souvenirs at one of the many stalls offering traditional Czech crafts. Handmade nativity scenes, straw figures, and glass art enchant every visitor. The market also features a varied entertainment programme, a merry-go-round, a life-size nativity scene, and a petting zoo.
The centre of gravity at Oldtown Square around Christmas time is the giant tree. It is decorated according to a different theme every year. The formal tree lighting ceremony at the opening night is a highlight for locals and tourists alike. Tens of thousands of spectators come together at the square, making some of the surrounding alleys essentially impassible. In an attempt to reduce the crowds, the city has hence stopped publishing the exact time of the illumination.
Other Christmas Markets in Prague
A city like Prague has more than its one central Christmas market in store of course. Right around the corner, at Wencelas Square, for example, you can find the second biggest one. If your main goal is to get the most of Christmas dainties, then Náměstí Republiky is the place to go – its Christmas market features the best selection of food and drinks.
Looking for a more peaceful atmosphere? Náměstí Míru, the locals' favourite Christmas market spot, is a tad smaller, but beautifully situated right behind the Church of St. Ludmila. The Christmas market at Prague Castle has arguably the most romantic winter atmosphere in town. Reward yourself for climbing the castle hill with a great view of the city and a christmassy treat.
How to get there
Flights to Prage are often relatively cheap, and available from most European airports. Within the city, it is best to walk, or use public transport. Oldtown Square is Prague's central square, and easily accessible on foot. The nearest metro station would be Staroměstská.