If you are looking to get off the beaten path in Prague, you have come to the right place. After visiting the Czech capital numerous times and having covered all of the main attractions, we went in search of some of Prague’s hidden gems. In this article, we share what we discovered and our top 20 non-touristy things to do in Prague.
Prague is a mesmerising city, packed to bursting with history, culture, charm, and awe-inspiring architecture. Naturally, if it’s your first time in the city, you’ll want to check out the major landmarks. Prague Castle, Old Town Square, Charles Bridge, these spots are popular for a good reason. However, it’s the hidden places in Prague, the secrets and mysteries, that in my opinion, make the city so unique.
Our recent visit to Prague was our third time in the city. We thought we knew Prague pretty well. We were wrong. Prague is the city that keeps on giving. You could return time and time again, and always discover something new. And to help you plan your own off the beaten path adventure, we’ve collated this list of the most weird and wonderful things to do in the Bohemian city.
So let’s get to it, it’s time to break the silence on our favourite hidden gems in Prague.
Hidden Gems & Non-Touristy Things to do in Prague
*Have you got your travel Visa sorted? Check if you need one here and retrieve a quote. It’s simple, fast and reliable.
*Don’t leave home without any backpacker essentials with our free printable packing list.
Where to Stay in Prague
Naturally, there is no shortage of accommodation options in Prague regardless of your budget. I’ve made some suggestions below, or you click the link for a list of all hostels, guesthouses, and hotels in the city.
For a full list of places to stay in Prague, you can check the latest prices here.
Best Hostel in Prague: Little Quarter Hostel
We stayed at Little Quarter Hostel during our time in Prague. Located within the Mala Strana district, the vibe was pretty chill. Ideal if you’re in the city for sightseeing, but not so much if you’re looking to party. Other than that, the dorms were clean, comfortable, and spacious. Each bunk has a curtain, so we were grateful for that extra bit of privacy. If you’re looking for a cheap & chilled place to stay, don’t hesitate to book Little Quarter Hostel.
Best Budget Hotel in Prague: Design Room in Old Town
If you’re travelling on a budget in Europe, it can be hard to find affordable private rooms – especially if you want to be located in the centre. Thankfully, Design Room has recently opened up shop in Mala Strana, offering visitors a cheaper alternative to the luxury hotels that dominate the area. As expected, the rooms are basic, but at the same time, surprisingly quirky and chic. The property even features a kitchenette where you can prepare your own meals. It’s the perfect choice for couples travelling on a budget.
Best Mid-Range Hotel in Prague: Design Hotel Neruda
Conveniently located nearby Prague Castle, Design Hotel Neruda provides a touch of elegance without the hefty price tag. As the name suggests, the interior design is stylish and modern throughout the property, while guests can enjoy excellent facilities such as a spa, sauna, and hot tub. With a fabulous breakfast provided in the price, this hotel claims the best value for money title in my eyes.
Best Luxury Hotel in Prague: Aria Hotel Prague
Featuring a panoramic rooftop garden, luxurious rooms & suites, and 5* facilities, Aria Hotel is the ideal place to treat yourself during your stay in Prague. Unlike other luxury hotels, the Aria Hotel is luxurious in a subtle way. The design is chic and modern, mirroring the bohemian vibe of the city; while guests can enjoy ample facilities such as a fitness centre, on-site restaurant, and state of the art rooms.
20 Unusual Hidden Gems in Prague
From ghost hunting and beer baths, to gothic castles in the Bohemia countryside, here are 20 non-touristy things to do in Prague.
1. Discover Alternative Prague by Walking Tour
It makes sense to kick off the list with a mention of the best-selling Alternative Prague Walking tour. This tour will take you off the beaten track on a 3-hour walking tour of the cities alternative neighbourhoods. On this tour, you’ll see beyond the usual tourist spots and through the eyes of a local. Here’s what you can expect from the tour:
- Discover Prague’s graffiti and street art scene
- Visit a community-funded art theatre located in a formal slaughterhouse
- See a hidden artsy cafe where Czech designers presented their work
- Learn about Prague’s minority cultures such as LGBT+
- Visit a Hackers crypto-anarchist institute
- Explore a steam-punk underground club
- Check out a quirky Vietnamese market
Book your Tour: Alternative Prague Walking Tour
2. Get Tipsy at the Dancing House
Prague’s “Dancing House” or the Nationale Nederlanden building as it’s officially known, isn’t a hidden gem as such, but it’s certainly unusual. It could also be easy to miss if you’re only spending a weekend in Prague, due to its outer city location. So all things considered, I believe it deserves a spot on this list.
Above all else, the original structure is revolutionary, symbolising the arrival of democracy to Bohemia in the late 1980s. Worlds apart from the gothic style of Prague’s Old Town, the Dancing House is quirky and modern. It’s worth taking the trip over to this famous Instagram spot in Prague, and I recommend checking out the rooftop bar for sweeping views of the city. Go easy on the cocktails though, as you might end up as drunk as the building.
3. Meander the Hipster Holešovice Neighbourhood
If you fancy a switch up from romantic strolls and sightseeing, I suggest checking out the uber-cool Holešovice district. Once a run-down meatpacking district, now transformed into a vibrant hipster enclave, with quirky cafes, bars, bookshops and art galleries aplenty.
A highlight of the neighbourhood is Letna Park. A sprawling open space set upon a plateau known as Letna Hill. During the Summer is the perfect time to visit, when you can enjoy various outdoor activities. These include nature trails, an outdoor cinema, beer gardens, uber-cool bars, and breathtaking views.
Other than Letna Park, there aren’t any major attractions in Holešovice. But we loved meandering the streets, admiring the street art, and stopping off at the quirky cafes or chic boutiques. For a full low down on this area of Prague, check out this comprehensive guide to Holesovice.
*The Holesovice Neighbourhood is included on the Alternative Prague Walking Tour I mentioned earlier in the article.
4. Take a Half-day Trip to Magical Karlsteijn Castle
The city centre may be jam-packed with fun and exciting things to do, but the best of Prague’s hidden gems are on the outskirts. The majestic Karlsteijn Castle is an excellent example – a stunning Gothic castle set in the hills of the Bohemia countryside. Surrounded by protected forest, we both agreed it was one of the most fairytale-like castles we’d ever seen.
Unfortunately, we couldn’t get inside the castle during our visit thanks to reduced Winter hours (schoolgirl error for not checking first). However, we made the most of our day and went hiking instead (more on this in the next section). If you are fortunate enough to visit when the castle is actually open (check the opening times here) it’s free to wander the castle grounds. But to see inside requires paying for a guided tour.
*To get to Karlstejn, you can drive, or take a train (line S6) from the central station (Hlavní nádraží). Journey time is 40 minutes each way.
5. Go Hiking in the Protected Forests of Karlsteijn
When we arrived at Karlstejn Castle to find it closed, we were naturally a little disappointed. However, it turned out to be a blessing in disguise. We’d read this article about hiking at Karlsteijn Castle, but wasn’t sure we’d have time to venture off. But with the castle closed, it was the perfect opportunity to explore.
As it turns out, there are some fantastic hikes in the area which lead us through mysterious forests and lush countryside. Despite being wintertime, the nature was incredibly beautiful. So I imagine during the Spring or Summer, it would be even better still.
We got as far as Velka Amerika quarry before we turned around and headed back to Karlsteijn village. The quarry was a bit disappointing having seen photos of the 880-metre lake brimming with azure waters. However, I imagine that’s due to the time of year. Either way, we enjoyed the hike and would recommend this Prague hidden gem to all nature lovers.
6. Bathe in a Tub of Beer
It’s no secret that beer plays a massive role in Czech culture, and I can see why. The local beer is to die for, and sinking a few in the capital city is a quintessential Prague experience. You’ll find beer everywhere in Prague. Beer gardens, pubs, museums, and most of the time, it’s cheaper even than bottled water. No wonder Prague is the stag do capital of Europe.
Having said that, what I didn’t expect to find was a full-on beer spa. Beer so good they bathe in it too apparently? Beer baths are a tradition from the Middle Ages, believed to cleanse the pores, increase circulation, regenerate skin and hair, and revitalise the nervous system. Who would have thought?
The experience lasts between 1-2 hours, depending on the package chosen. It includes unlimited premium beer and rejuvenating treatments by a team of professionals. For sure one of the best non-touristy things to do in Prague and an experience you’re unlikely to forget.
Book Your Tour: Prague Beer Bath with Unlimited Beer
7. Take a Day Trip to Kutna Hora
Another day trip from Prague worth considering is Kutna Hora. A quaint Bohemian town located 80km east of the city. Not too dissimilar to the city centre, Kutna Hora boasts awe-inspiring architecture, charming cobbled streets and fascinating history. But on the contrary, it’s incredibly peaceful with very few tourists. It would be easy to spend the entire day here and almost impossible to get bored.
There are various attractions worth visiting in the small town which you can read about in this Kutna Hora Travel Guide. However, our personal favourite is Sedlec Ossuary, otherwise known as the bone church. The world-famous church features a bizarre collection of bones, artistically arranged to create various shapes and murals. It’s pretty weird actually, but that’s what makes it so unique. Kutna Hora is accessible via public transport from Prague; otherwise, this Kutna Hora UNESCO Site Tour comes highly recommended.
8. Get Educated at the Sex Machine Museum
Prague’s Sex Machine Museum is the only one of it’s kind, supposedly the only museum in the world to showcase sex toys only. The museum aims to educate visitors on the history of sex through its extensive collection of sexual devices. It’s a fun exhibition for 18+ only, and even if you don’t shock easily, you’re guaranteed a few laughs. I’d say this is one of Prague’s hidden gems worth checking out when the weather isn’t so great.
9. See a Real-life Mummified Arm at Basilica of St James
This church dedicated to St James the Greater may be one of the lesser-known churches in Prague, but it’s certainly no less interesting. Admittedly, what compelled us to visit was the mummified arm that dangles from the ceiling. Legend has it that the arm belonged to a thief who tried to steal jewels off the statue of the Virgin Mary. Mary was pretty p*ssed about this, grabbed the thief’s arm and held him there until eventually, somebody had to amputate. The severed arm remains as a reminder to all – do not steal kids! Oh, and the rest of the church is pretty impressive too!
10. Enjoy Nature at Divoka Sarka Reserve
If you find yourself craving some nature amidst the hustle and bustle of the city, you’ll be pleased to know you needn’t go too far. Our next hidden gem in Prague is Divoka Sarka – A beautiful nature reserve with rolling hills and valleys, tall trees, a gorgeous creek and various walking trails.
Upon arriving into Divoka Sarka, it’s easy to forget you’re in a city at all. Long gone are the intricate structures and intense crowds of Prague’s old town, replaced by the simplicity and calmness of nature. During the Summer, there’s a swimming pool open to the public, so you might want to pack your swimwear to cool off at the end of your hike.
*To reach the reserve takes only 20-25 minutes from the city on the number 20 tram.
11. Get Trippy at the Infinite Tower of Books
Prague is abundant in unusual & unconventional art, and the Idiom Installation is one that never fails to mystify. The fixture consists of hundreds and hundreds of books stacked into a cylindrical tower. An opening in the exhibit allows visitors to peer inside, where mirrors placed at the bottom and the top give it the illusion of being infinite.
Like all art, you can interpret the installation however you like. Although I like this definition by Atlas Obscura: “For bibliophiles, an infinite tower of books is a nightmare disguised as a dream—a huge collection of literature that you can’t get at because pulling a book or two out will cause the collapse of the tower. But it does make for a wonderful sight.”
*Find the Idiom Installation on display at the Prague Municipal Library.
12. The World’s Most Beautiful Library?
The National Baroque Library of the Czech Republic is often regarded the most beautiful library in the world. Although we are no experts, after capturing a view of the exquisite room on a guided tour of the Klementinum complex, we would have to agree.
The library is a stunning example of baroque architecture, with majestic ceiling frescoes painted by Jan Hiebl. It is one of the biggest and oldest libraries in Europe, said to protect documents of immense value from as early as the 1st century. For example, the Latin coronation Gospel Book estimated to have a value of 40 million EUR!
Visitors are not allowed inside the library itself. Considering the rare and precious documents that the library protects, it’s understandable. You can, however, take a good look at this historic treasure from the viewing deck. Also included in the Klementinum tour is the Meridian Hall and the Astronomical Tower.
13. Go on a Hunt for Prague’s Controversial Art
Prague is an unconventional city – unafraid to break the rules and blur the lines. This is especially apparent in Prague’s collection of controversial artwork. Hunting down the quirky and provocative sculptures is one of our favourite non-touristy things to do in Prague. Some of the most bizarre include ‘brown nosers’ where you can literally peer inside a giant butthole. And ‘In Utero’ where you can experience what it would be like to be in a womb.
14. Enjoy Cheap Beer & Food at Hany Bany
One of our favourite hidden places in Prague for food & drink is the uber-cool Hany Bany bar. We stumbled upon this place spontaneously, on the hunt for somewhere affordable for dinner. What we found was a bustling retro bar, with a great atmosphere and Pulp Fiction inspired decor.
Thankfully, the friendly waitress was able to seat us but suggested that generally, you need to make a reservation. After filling our boots with cheap beer and generously sized meals, we could see why it’s a hidden treasure among locals. Boasting the subtle sounds of Indie rock, it’s the perfect spot for cheap pre-drinks or a social sit down meal.
*Vegetarian and vegan options are also available.
15. Get Lost in the Dripstone Wall
One of the more obscure hidden gems in Prague is the eerie Dripstone Wall. Located within ‘the grotto’ area at the Wallenstein palace, it is a man-made wall constructed to look like stalactites in a cave. However, if you study the wall long enough, you start to see all kinds of creepy shapes protruding from the wall. Set in the heart of lush geometric gardens, the wall is a well-worthy addition to your Prague Itinerary. But be aware that it’s only open to visitors between April and October.
16. Experience a Fire Show at James Dean
50’s diner and burger joint by day, dark and dingy basement bar by night. James Dean is an experience you don’t want to miss. While I can’t vouch for the food, we have visited the bar on numerous occasions, and always had a wild time. The music is a mixture of golden oldies, rock anthems, and 90s dance hits, which never fails to get the crowd going. But the highlight of the night is the insane fire performances. The performers set fire to anything in sight – chainsaws, bottles, and even the bar. There’s no gold star for health and safety, but it’s great fun nonetheless.
17. Go Back in Time for a Medieval Dinner
Curious to know what the city was like during Medieval times? Well, this hidden gem in Prague is your opportunity to find out. Enjoy a fun-filled evening in an authentic medieval tavern, a delicious 5-course dinner with unlimited drinks, and fantastic entertainment. With a unique performance including swordsmen, jugglers, belly dancers, and music, this is an experience in Prague you’re unlikely to forget.
Secure your booking here: Prague Medieval Dinner with Unlimited Drinks
18. Check out the Alternative Cross Club
If you’re seeking a unique nightlife experience in Prague, you absolutely cannot miss the eccentric Cross Club. It is by far one of the coolest clubs I’ve ever been to, up there with Szlimpla Kert in Budapest. Similar to the infamous ruin bar, Cross Club is a creative multicultural centre, where the whacky decor resembles some kind of twisted wonderland.
The club aims to incorporate a mixture of genres and cultures, embracing the unconventional to create an inclusive environment for all. On party nights, music genres range from dubstep to hardcore and local bands. On other nights the club welcomes aspiring creatives to showcase their work. A one of a kind experience that deserves a spot on your Prague Itinerary.
19. Sample Flavoured Absinthe
Absinthe is the legendary spirit of the Bohemian era. Historically, it was known as the ‘green fairy’ – thought to induce psychedelic and hallucinogenic effects. Absinthe was banned in many countries for a while; however, recent studies have proved it to be no more potent than a standard spirit beverage. So we feel entirely comfortable encouraging you to try a shot or two when visiting Prague. For a more unusual experience, visit one of the Absinthe alchemy stores, where you can sample the spirit in a variety of flavours.
20. Dare to Brave the Ghosts & Legends of Prague’s Old Town
When wandering the streets of Prague, especially at night, you can’t help but sense something eerie and mysterious lingering in the air. It’s therefore unsurprising to learn that various ghosts and legends are believed to haunt the city.
On the Ghost & Legends Tour, you’ll go off the beaten path in Prague and learn about the myths and legends of the city through the ages. Your guide will tell unsettling stories of old legends, mysteries, and ghosts, leaving you never wanting to roam the streets of Prague at night again.
Book your Tour: Prague Ghosts and Legends Walking Tour
More on Prague
Planning a trip to Prague? Check out our other articles to help plan your trip.
- 2 Days in Prague – The Best 2 Day Prague Itinerary
- Instagrammable Prague – 15 Best Prague Photography Spots
Did you Enjoy our List of Hidden Gems in Prague?
Well, that concludes 20 Unusual Hidden Gems in Prague – The Best Non Touristy Things to do in Prague. We hope you enjoy your time in this magical city. If you have any questions or feel we have missed anything, please reach out to us in the comment section below, or through our contact us page. Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram where we share further travel advice & inspiration.
Stay adventurous and happy travels.
Charlotte & Natalie x
Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. That means that if you purchase through these links, we will earn a small commission, at no extra cost to you. And we can continue bringing you free travel tips and advice. If you found the content helpful and are kind enough to use our affiliates – you are awesome, and we thank you!