How visiting Prague in early April turned into a Kinder Surprise. And some tips and recommendations.

kinder surprise in Prague header

We spent 3 months in Prague last summer, leaving for Asia as it was starting to get cold in late September. Coming back a week ago we didn’t know what to expect. We’ve never been in Europe this time of year. Our 6 days in Prague were what Spanky calls a ‘Kinder Surprise’ (after the Italian egg-shaped chocolate). The first reason is pretty obvious: we were arriving as Prague was preparing for Easter. The second reason is less obvious: we had no idea what we were going to get in terms of weather. And just like a Kinder Surprise we got a little bit of everything; spring-like sunshine, brooding grey skies interrupted by clear patches of blue, sporadic showers that would suddenly give way to warm rays. We even got a stuck in a ten minute snowstorm.

The result of the varied weather were some incredible lighting conditions. It made for interesting photography. I think we actually snapped more interesting photos over 6 days then we did over 3 months last summer. Have a look at some of the photos below.

Below: Painted Easter eggs and Easter decorations around the Old Town Square.

easter eggs in Prague, czech republic

easter in prague

easter in prague, czech republic 2

 Below: The sun setting over the buildings of the Jewish quarter.

views over the buildings of the jewish quarter, Prague

Below: Scary skies over the Charles Bridge.

views over the vltava river, prague

 Below: Views on the Charles Bridge. The sky would turn from dark clouds to clear blue skies within minutes.

views on the charles bridge, Prague

views on old town from the charles bridge

Below: Squares and streets in Old Town Prague.

streets in old town prague

Below: around the Old Town Square.

beautiful old town square, Prague

Views around the Old town square, Prague

square in Prague (2)

old town square, prague (2)

 Below: Views on the Vltava river, the light turning from summer-ish to winter-ish conditions on a dime.

views over the vltava river, charles bridge

Vltava river views

Below: Views of Prague’s great architecture.

building in prague

streets in Old Prague

buildings in prague (2)

buildings in prague, czech republic

What we missed most while in Southeast Asia was walking
(horrible sidewalks, intense heat, street dogs). We made up for it in Prague, walking hours every day. We even did what I call Prague’s most scenic walk, crossing one of the bridges to Letna Park and following the paths to Prague castle.

tram and prague castle

scenic walk in Prague

prague scenic walk views
lookout views, vltava river, prague

Prague castle and st.vitus cathedral

Below: note the lack of tourists at the castle. This square would usually be jam-packed in the summer.

st. Vitus cathedral, Prague

courtyard, prague castle

northern gate to prague castle

Below: again the weather changed  as winter skies rolled over the city.

dark skies in Prague

views over lesser town, prague

views over lesser town Prague

 

Visiting in the summer is great but you don’t get the same variability in weather. I think early April actually makes for some of the best photography just because of the lighting. Bring a lot of layers and a raincoat because you never know what you are going to get. Some more photos taken over our 6 days:

view over Vltava river, Prague

statues in Prague

Below: The John Lennon wall which looks quite different then it did last summer (number 37 on this list).

john lennon wall

crazy skies in prague

tram in the lesser town square, Prague

 

As we left on Friday April 3rd we caught last glimpses of the preparation for Easter. Crowds packed the Old Town Square and even cold temperatures (it was 5C when we left) didn’t stop people from drinking beer while eating sausages. Just as last year, we left Prague slightly sad. It definitely won’t be the last time we visit the city.

easter crowds in prague

easter views in Prague

easter in prague (2)

Below: We don’t usually take selfies so here’s a rare one.

selfies in prague

 

A few tips and recommendations (and as I’ve stated before: we get no compensation of any kind for these recommendations)

- we stayed in a small studio that we rented with Airbnb. Perfect for a short stay, the location in the old town is fantastic.

- Right next to the above is the James Joyce Irish Pub which was recently named one of the Top Ten Irish Pubs outside Ireland (they serve both Irish and Czech beer. I highly recommend the Kozel Dark). Great atmosphere, very friendly staff. Note: They have the best Indian food in town on their premises.

- Note: one of the downsides of Prague are the corrupt legion of taxi drivers who screw over tourists. If you need a taxi driver to pick you up/drop you off at the airport, contact our friend Martin: martin.palata@gmail.com. He’s friendly, full of information and you won’t get screwed.

- Most importantly, don’t be afraid to visit Prague this time of year. The weather is bearable (mind what I said about wearing different layers) and you won’t be faced with the tourist hordes that you’ll see at other times of the year. We really enjoyed it.

 

Prague is a great city to visit in the off-season. Do you have any off-season favorites? Always appreciate tips from other travellers.

 

Related: 50 Things to Do in Prague.

 
——————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————-

If you haven’t subscribed yet and want to get our posts and newsletters sent to your email, just insert your email address below:

SHARE

Comments

  1. Beautiful!!! Gorgeous pictures too.. :-). I can’t wait to visit. It really does remind me of Budapest, so l am positive l am going to love it. I love the pregnant lady…
    Kemkem recently posted…Podcast #1 – Ghent vacationMy Profile

  2. Some of the photos make it look like the perfect setting for a fairytale romance
    Natalie recently posted…The Hagia Sophia of Istanbul : A Story of 3 CitiesMy Profile

  3. Beautiful! Before the major holidays all cities are magical :)

    • Frank (bbqboy) says:

      Very true. Sometimes the holidays themselves can be a let down because of all the people…and never mind all the mess they leave afterwards ;)

  4. You may remember we were in Prague in early March and while it was cold on some days, the weather held for us and we loved it. We took the exact same walk, cross the bridge and walk to Letna Park, take in the spectacular views and then walk to the castle. Loved it! Looking at your photos of the square decked out for Easter made me think Christmas decor must be really special, just like Prague, really special!
    Patti recently posted…Three Weeks in Iran ~My Profile

    • Frank (bbqboy) says:

      You are right, it must be wonderful at Christmas. We’ve never been in Europe during the winter and I imagine many of those old towns must look spectacular with a bit of snow. Maybe one day…
      Thanks for the comment Patti.

  5. Beautiful photos! I absolutely love all the Easter decorations– they’re so brightly colored! Great tip about visiting Prague in early spring to beat the crowds of tourists. I’m glad you guys had a good time!
    Jessica recently posted…St George Bermuda: The Oldest Town in the New WorldMy Profile

  6. hey! I was in Prague at the same period as you did too and it was amazingly nice weather, sunny and snow shower periods! :) Being my first ever trip in Europe it was such a nice beginning.

    Love your posts as always!

    Cheers!

Thanks for reading! Feedback is always appreciated!

*


CommentLuv badge
css.php