Prague, a city we both fell in love with on our first visit in July 2014. After spending 4 months in Europe Prague was one of our favorite cities, and we couldn’t wait to go back. When we had the opportunity to go back to Europe we jumped on it. Our Christmas market Viking River cruise ended in Nuremberg, German, and Prague was only a 3-hour bus ride away. It was a no-brainer, we would end our 3 weeks in Europe in one our favorites – Prague. We read the Christmas markets in Prague are supposed to be some of the best, and they didn’t disappoint.
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Our favorite part of Prague is the Old Town, we love just getting lost walking down all the cobblestone streets. We decided to spend our first 3 nights right in Old Town at Hotel Josef. Situated less than a 5-minute walk to the Old Town Square our hotel was the perfect place to base ourselves. The Old Town Square is home to the largest Christmas Market in Prague surrounded by the city’s most famous buildings. Within a fifteen-minute walk from our hotel, there were 3 additional Christmas markets. Staying at Hotel Josef we were able to come and go from our hotel throughout the day, which was great as we didn’t have to carry all of Christmas purchases all over town with us.
No matter what time of year you visit Prague, stay in the heart of Old Town. There are so many restaurants, bars, museums, and attractions to keep you busy!
We were in Prague to see the Christmas markets and the best way to see the town’s best Christmas markets was to take a Christmas market tour with a local. Guidilo is a company in Prague where locals create their own authentic experiences and share them with visiting tourists. We wanted to visit the Christmas markets off the tourist path, and that is exactly where our tour guide brought us. We also had photographer Matej from Localgrapher there to capture us in the moment!
As we walked from Christmas market to Christmas market our guide Martin gave us some brief history of Prague and the Czech Republic. He made sure to point out key landmarks and little-hidden gems as we strolled past them.
We learned Czech holiday traditions, like carp being their main course at Christmas dinner. BUT first, they bring the carp home and let is swim in the bathtub for a few days! The children even play and name the carp before it becomes dinner.
We couldn’t walk through the Christmas markets without indulging in some of the local drinks. We warmed up with a small cup of local honey wine, a nice sweet treat to warm us up. There are tons of tasty treats to be had.
We finally tried a chimney cake, we have been eyeing them up all the way back in Budapest which was 3 countries ago. Here in Prague, there were vendors who smear Nutella in the middle, we went with the traditional. In Prague, they call them Trdelník, which are a must at a Christmas market in Prague. The rolled sweet dough was one of our favorite things we ate at the Christmas markets in Prague.
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We ended our tour back near Hotel Josef in Old Town Square at the largest Christmas market in Prague. We wandering through some of the stalls and noticed the differences between the markets. The Old Town square market is catering primarily to the tourist and the smaller local markets are where the people of Prague shop. The main difference was in the price, many items were only 10-20 crown more, and some of the local markets had unique locally made items too.
After 3 hours exploring the Christmas markets in Prague with our local Guidilo guide, it was time to say our goodbyes. We would have never ventured out to the local Christmas markets had we not gone with a local guide. We even returned to our favorite Prague Christmas market the next day to finish our Christmas shopping.
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There are so many amazing Christmas markets in Europe, we were lucky to visit them in four countries. We’ve heard great things about all the amazing London Christmas markets, think we might have to head there some winter.
Thanks to our photographer Matej from Localgrapher for capturing the day. Localgrapher has photographers all over the world if you’re heading off on vacation and want someone to capture it check to see if Localgrapher has a photographer available to book.
*We were guests of Viking River Cruises, Hotel Josef, Localgrapher and Guidilo, but as always opinions are our own*This post may contain affiliate links, see our disclosure