Prague, the enchanting capital of the Czech Republic, is renowned for its iconic attractions such as the Prague Castle, Charles Bridge, and Old Town Square. While these destinations have their undeniable charm and allure, there’s so much more to the city than meets the average tourist’s eye. For those willing to venture off the beaten path, a world of unique, hidden wonders await.
In this guide, we’re taking you on a journey through 10 of Prague’s lesser-known treasures that deserve a spot on every discerning traveler’s itinerary. Let’s unveil the secrets!
The Magic Cavern (Kouzelná Alchymie)
Nestled in the Lesser Town, not far from the famous Lennon Wall, is a unique curiosity shop called The Magic Cavern. This mystical nook is a blend of an alchemy lab, a boutique, and a mini-museum. Here, you can discover ancient potions, handcrafted jewelry, and get a glimpse of the alchemical history of Prague. The dim lighting, enchanting music, and aroma of ancient herbs transport visitors to another era.
Vrtba Garden (Vrtbovská zahrada)
This Baroque terraced garden, concealed behind unassuming walls in the Lesser Town, is a serene oasis. The Vrtba Garden offers breathtaking views of the city, intricate statues, and beautifully manicured landscapes. Despite its beauty, it remains one of Prague’s best-kept secrets, making it a peaceful escape from the bustling city streets.
The Museum of Alchemists and Magicians of Old Prague
Stepping into this museum is like entering a spellbinding world of magic and mystery. Located in a 16th-century building, the museum brings to life the legends of alchemists and magicians who once called Prague home. Engaging displays, including a replica of an alchemist’s laboratory, offer visitors an immersive experience into the city’s esoteric past.
Strahov Monastic Brewery
While the Strahov Monastery is well-known, few realize that it houses one of Prague’s oldest breweries. Brewing since 1628, the Strahov Monastic Brewery offers a range of traditional Czech beers. The cozy brewery also boasts a restaurant serving mouthwatering local dishes. It’s a true taste of Czech culture.
The Ghostly and Legends Museum of Prague
Dive into the spooky side of Prague’s history at this intriguing museum. Set in a medieval building, the museum showcases the legends, myths, and ghost stories that have haunted the city for centuries. Wander through dimly lit rooms and narrow corridors as you uncover tales of restless spirits and eerie occurrences.
David Černý’s Sculptures
While not exactly a singular attraction, the quirky and often controversial sculptures by Czech artist David Černý are scattered throughout the city. From a pair of giant bronze legs to a car hanging upside-down from a ceiling, Černý’s installations are a delightful surprise for those with a keen eye.
Nový Svět (New World)
Just a stone’s throw from Prague Castle lies Nový Svět, a charming and quiet district that feels like a village from a bygone era. With its narrow lanes, tiny houses, and absence of crowds, it’s a picturesque retreat where time seems to stand still.
The Devil’s Stream (Čertovka)
This narrow canal, separating the Lesser Town from Kampa Island, is often overlooked by visitors. The Čertovka, flanked by charming old buildings and crossed by tiny bridges, is a serene spot for a leisurely stroll. Legends have it that the name originated from a particularly nasty woman who lived nearby, but today, it’s a place of peace and beauty.
The Prague Beer Museum
Contrary to its name, this isn’t a traditional museum. Instead, the Prague Beer Museum is a beloved pub offering an extensive selection of Czech beers. While most tourists flock to the city’s famous beer halls, this spot lets you sample brews from smaller, regional breweries.
Petřín Mirror Maze
On the slopes of Petřín Hill, hidden amongst the trees, lies a fun-filled attraction: the Mirror Maze. This playful labyrinth, constructed in the 1890s, is filled with distorted mirrors that create amusing reflections. It’s a delightful detour from the usual historical sights and offers a good laugh for visitors of all ages.
While Prague’s grand landmarks and monuments are undeniably spectacular, these hidden gems offer a unique, deeper understanding of the city’s rich tapestry. By seeking out these lesser-known attractions, travelers can experience a more authentic, intimate connection with the City of a Hundred Spires. So next time you find yourself wandering the cobbled streets of Prague, take a moment to venture off the well-trodden paths, and who knows what wonders you might uncover?