A December Break in Prague
Introduction: A December Break in Prague
Don’t be put off by the cold, Prague truly is a beautiful city to visit in December – all lit up with lights and buzzing with people preparing for Christmas – shopping, drinking and eating with friends – and just generally being merry. If you’re coming for a December break in Prague, here are some ideas for what to do….
Visit the Christmas markets
It’s the Christmas markets that really make Prague feel alive during the winter. They’re a place to eat, drink and support local businesses and craft workers. This is simply by buying some of the wares as gifts for relatives and friends back home.
The main markets can be found on Old Town Square and Wenceslas Square. But be warned as it’s usually packed day and evening. If you’re looking for something more low key, you can also find markets at Republic Square, at Havel’s Market, on Kampa Island. And there’s another one on the square in front of St. George’s Basilica at Prague Castle.
On St. Nicholas Eve
If you happen to be here on December 5th, you’ll get to witness the curious tradition of Mikulas, where well-behaved kids will wake up to find gifts as their reward. Expect to find bearded actors (dressed as a bishop rather than Santa) roaming the streets accompanied by mischievous angels and devils – their helpful guides when it comes to finding children worthy of gifts.
See the Christmas exhibition at Bethlehem Chapel
Every year, the rather cute and cozy Bethlehem Chapel hosts an exhibition of nativity scenes. Expect to find bells and other Christmas decorations that are sure to get you feeling in the festive mood.
For Christmas and New Year
If you’re here for Christmas Eve and feeling hungry then carp is often the traditional dish of the evening. In fact, if you find yourself eating with a local, you may even discover that the poor fish was living in their bathtub for 2 days prior (they bathe with it as well – for added flavor…just kidding!). Luckily strong alcohol always at hand to wash down the taste of mud. Afterwards, you might find yourself decorating a Christmas tree with apples, sweets and traditional ornaments.
Flash forward to NYE and you’ll find the city awash with street parties, club nights, rowdy bars and all sorts of fun and festivities taking place. Find some higher ground and you’ll have a fantastic show of fireworks over the river!