Where to Stay in Prague: Advice from Canadian expats in Prague about the best areas to stay in Prague, Czech Republic! Includes guides to Prague’s coolest neighborhoods and Prague neighborhood maps. Start your search for the best place to stay in Prague here!
Short on time? Skip ahead to the top hotel recommendations.
One late September evening, as we looked out over the red tiled roofs from Prague castle, a darkening purpleish dusk setting in, I said to my husband, “it looks like we live in a fairytale kingdom.”
We’ve used that term to describe Prague many times, and it has always felt accurate. While many European capitals were rebuilt after WWII, Prague was relatively unharmed. So many of the rooftops we look out over today are the same rooftops enjoyed by 8th century kings and Praguers throughout the centuries. It’s a view that never gets old.
Although Prague is relatively small for a capital city, and many of the sites are walkable, your visit to Prague will be shaped by the area you stay in.
Our main goal for this guide is to answer the question, where should I stay in Prague? But we also want to give you ideas for your trip, and help you get beyond Old Town to explore the Prague neighborhoods untouched by most visitors.
While most tourists choose to stay in or near Prague’s historical center, there are plenty of other areas to stay in Prague. Staying in some of these other neighborhoods will still allow you to enjoy the main attractions, while also experiencing local life and perhaps saving some money.
We learned a great deal about Prague while living in the Golden City. We’ve done our best to share that information here. Hopefully you can use this as a complete Prague guide, rather than merely a where to stay in Prague guide.
Before we moved to the Czech Republic, I remember being pretty confused trying to figure out where to stay in Prague.
When we visited back in 2012, we stayed near Wenceslas Square because we figured that would be the center of the action.
While it’s not far from Old Town Square, and Wenceslas Square is quite beautiful by day, it’s not the nicest at night. Although it’s well-lit, well-policed, and busy, there are also ‘gentlemen’ only clubs, casinos and prostitution. We never felt unsafe, but it wasn’t the charming Prague experience we were after.
When we decided to move to Prague in 2014, we still had a difficult time trying to find the best area to stay in Prague. We were befuddled by the city’s numbering system. We couldn’t find much information about Prague’s cool neighbourhoods.
We wondered whether Prague is safe in all neighborhoods, or if we needed to avoid some bad areas. And we weren’t sure which areas of Prague were convenient for public transportation. Indeed, it was generally quite difficult figuring out what the best area to stay in Prague is.
Understanding Prague’s Numbering System When Choosing Where to Stay
Central Prague is made up of different numbered districts. When you’re trying to figure out the best area to stay in Prague, consider staying in Prague 1 through Prague 10. These districts are more-or-less convenient for both visitors and residents.
Although Prague 1 is the heart of the tourist district – this is where Old Town Square and the Castle are – it doesn’t follow that Prague 10 is the furthest away. Prague 2 through 10 spiral around Prague 1 like a snail’s shell, but it’s far from a perfect spiral.
Prague’s districts are also quite large. For example, we lived in Prague 5, but our flat was right on the border of Prague 2. Because of this, our apartment was close to the city centre and the river. Had we lived on the opposite edge of Prague 5, we would have been in ‘the boonies.’
At the beginning of the main Prague neighborhood sections, we’ve included a map that shows the neighborhood’s borders. Take a look at each map to get an idea of where the neighborhood is, and which part of the area is most convenient in relation to the city center.
Prague Neighborhoods Maps and Descriptions
The Prague neighborhoods maps below outline the 8 best areas to stay in Prague (colorful outlines) and main Prague attractions (red map markers). These maps should give you an idea of where each neighborhood is in relation to the Prague highlights you’ll want to see.
📍 1. Prague Castle; 2. Old Town Square; 3. Wenceslas Square; 4. Charles Bridge; 5. Dancing House; 6. Powder Tower; 7. National Theatre
(Use the links below to skip ahead to each neighborhood section, which contains a full description of each Prague neighborhood)
Most Popular Prague Neighborhoods for Tourists
❶ Malá Strana: The historic castle district and ‘little quarter,’ Malá Strana is great for travelers who want to be in the center of historic Prague, and also enjoy a laid-back and tranquil atmosphere. This is a great place to stay for a romantic holiday or quiet city break. A word of warning: Nerudova St. sits on a hill, which is worth knowing if you have mobility issues. Find hotels in Mala Strana.
❸ New Town Prague: The word ‘New’ doesn’t really mean new in this case. This 14th century Prague neighborhood surrounds Old Town. It is easily walkable, mostly flat, and well served by trams and the metro. Prague New Town has plenty to see, along with a vast selection of cafes, bars, restaurants, and shopping. Find hotels in New Town.
Alternative and “Cool” Prague Neighborhoods
❹ Vinohrady: (pronounced: vee-no-raa-dee) Quiet and central, Vinohrady has beautiful buildings and tree-lined streets. Filled with restaurants, pubs, and cafés, Prague’s international community loves this neighborhood. So do young, middle-class families looking to put down roots. Find hotels in Vinohrady.
❻ Holešovice / Letna: (pronounced: hoh-lesh-oh-vit-say) Further away from the center and with less metro access, Letna-Holesovice is home to Letna park and beer garden. It’s a neighborhood in transition, with hip areas, as well as industrial and working class spots. Find hotels in Holesovice.
Where to Stay in Prague: Prague 1 includes Malá Strana and Old Town
Most tourists stay in Prague 1, and with good reason. This is where most Prague highlights are located, and you can get to almost everything without taking the metro or a tram.
Both Malá Strana (Little Quarter) and Staré Město (Old Town) are beautiful areas in which to stay. That said, if you stay in Prague 1, your experience will be very much that of a tourist. It’s convenient, but over-priced. It’s busy, but not with everyday Czech life.
If someone I knew was coming to Prague for 2 to 5 days to see the main sites and experience Prague’s famous old city, I’d suggest they stay in Prague 1. Prague 1 is the perfect base for a short-term trip to Prague, when your main focus is sightseeing!
❶ Prague Castle; ❷ St. Nicholas Church; ❸ Charles Bridge; ❹ Kampa Island; ❺ Franz Kafka Museum; ❻ John Lennon Wall❶ Mandarin Oriental; ❷ EA Residence U Bílé kuželky; ❸ Vintage Design Hotel Sax; ❹ Hotel William, ❺ Design Hotel Neruda
What’s to Love About Mala Strana?
If you like peace, quiet, and tranquility, and you want a slightly less touristic experience than Old Town Prague, you will probably enjoy staying in Malá Strana.
Malá Strana began as an 8th century settlement, and gained prominence a century later with the founding of Prague castle.
Mala Strana means ‘Little Quarter,’ and is on the “castle side” of the Vltava River. Parts of the area have the feeling of a peaceful village, but it’s still walkable to Charles Bridge, Old Town, and many other Prague attractions.
If you stay in Malá Strana, you’ll be in one of Prague’s most historic parts, but still enjoy a calmer setting than Old Town. expect chilled out restaurants and pubs, rather than the rowdier bar scene of Old Town.
Because this peaceful Prague neighborhood leads directly up to Prague Castle and is home to some famous landmarks, Malá Strana’s main streets do tend to get crowded during the day.
The historic Nerudova Street, which leads from St. Nicholas Church up to Prague Castle, gets particularly busy. You’ll no doubt find yourself on this street at some point.
When you do, take a look above some of the doorways to spot decorative violins, golden cups, suns, and others. These decorations are holdovers from a time when Prague didn’t have proper addresses, and each decoration was a way of identifying the home or building!
Who Should Stay in Mala Strana?
Malá Strana Prague is great for a romantic vacation, families, sightseeing and culture, and for travelers who enjoy laid-back pubs.
Many of Mala Strana’s streets are on an incline leading up to castle hill. Keep this in mind if you have mobility issues, and consider staying closer to the river if the hill is a problem.
From the river to Malostranske Namesti and St. Nicholas Church is relatively flat. Malostranske Namesti and St. Nicholas Church to Prague Castle is uphill.
Top Mala Strana Prague Highlights:
- Prague Castle – Although it’s technically located in the Hradcany district, Mala Strana lies at the base of Prague’s castle hill and extends up from the river to the Castle’s doorstep. It just wouldn’t be right not to list it here, and staying in Mala Strana means you’re super close to the Castle.
- Charles Bridge – Spanning the Vltava River, this famous 14th-century bridge connects Mala Strana with Old Town. Don’t miss the views from the towers at each end.
- Franz Kafka Museum – Kafka fans should visit the museum itself. Everyone should visit the courtyard outside the museum to see ‘Piss,’ a sculpture by David Cerny. It consists of two men peeing (water) on a map of the Czech Republic. We’ll let you decipher the artist’s message! Be sure to read our DIY Walking Tour of Prague’s Bizarre Sculptures for more like this!
- St Nicholas Church – The 18th-century church was built by 3 generations of the same family. It has a stunning interior well worth a look, and Mozart once played the church’s pipe organ.
- Kampa Island – A man-made island built for the mill industry in the 12th century, Kampa Island feels a world away from the crowds of the historical center. Despite this, it runs directly underneath Charles Bridge and is very convenient to visit.
- John Lennon Wall – The wall mysteriously sprung into existence as a memorial after the singer’s murder. It then morphed into a symbol of peace and freedom. Throughout the communist years, secret police tried tirelessly to keep the wall freshly painted, but the messages of peace and freedom kept returning. Bring a marker and contribute your own message!
Pros & Cons of Staying in Malá Strana
- Central and convenient
- Close to Prague castle and many other attractions
- Quieter than Old Town
- Main streets are busy and touristy during the day
- Some hills to walk up
Where to Stay in Prague Malá Strana: Top Prague Hotels in Malá Strana
Mandarin Oriental 5-Star Hotel Prague
A luxury 5-star property, the Mandarin Oriental sits in a restored 14th Century monastery. The spa is in the former chapel! Luxurious touches you can expect include underfloor heating, a bedding/pillow menu, evening turn-down service, and essential oils. The hotel is just 5 minutes’ walk from Prague Castle.
EA Residence U Bílé kuželky (Formerly: Lokal Inn)
This boutique hotel strikes a lovely balance between modern and cozy/romantic. Located in the heart of Malá Strana, past guests mention location, quietness, and design as stand out features. Guests seem to love the bar/restaurant downstairs, as well, which offers classic Czech cuisine. Some past guests has mentioned the restaurant/bar adds to the noise in the hotel – worth considering if you’re a light sleeper!
Vintage Design Hotel Sax 4-Star Hotel Prague
Small, cute and quirky is how we’d describe this 4-star design hotel. Decor channels decades past – the 50s to 70s – and look like a lot of fun. It’s in a good location within walking distance to everything, and gets top marks for being quiet! If you’re looking for something kitschy and different, this might be your hotel.
Hotel William 3-Star Hotel Prague
This 3-star budget option is in a great location, includes breakfast, and gets glowing reviews. If you’re looking for a quiet base while exploring Prague, and you’re on a budget, this seems like a great option. The price comes in between $50 and $70 when we look on Booking.com.
Hotel Neruda Boutique Hotel Prague
Our readers seem to love this place, and with good reason, too! It looks beautiful, comfortable, and relaxing – always a winning combo. A 4-star hotel located in a 14th-century building on the famous Nerudova Street, it’s a short walk from the Castle and Charles Bridge.
Search for a Perfect Prague Hotel in Mala Strana
Old Town Prague (Staré Mesto)
❶ Old Town Square, Our Lady Before Tyn Church, Astronomical Clock; ❷ Jewish Quarter; ❸ Powder Tower
The heart of Prague’s tourist center, Old Town Prague is one of the prettiest areas of the city. It’s full of gorgeous architecture, ambience, and plenty to do. Staying in Old Town ensures you’ll have access to pretty much everything you’ll want to see.
Old Town Square is anchored by Old Town Hall, the Astronomical Clock, and Our Lady Before Týn church. The streets radiating out from Old Town Square lead into the old Jewish Quarter (Josefov) and to Charles Bridge.
If you follow the streets southeast of Old Town Square, you’ll reach Wenceslas Square in New Town.
While Malá Strana is a bit quieter and more tranquil, Prague’s Old Town is the heart of the action. To be fair, that doesn’t mean it will be loud and rowdy where you stay: there are plenty of quiet pockets. It’s just that Old Town has far more going on.
If you love an urban vibe, want access to cocktail bars and shops, and don’t mind running into partiers while you’re out and about, Old Town is for you.
From Old Town Square, it’s about a 10- to 12-minute stroll to Charles Bridge, and about a 25-minute walk to Prague Castle. There is an uphill climb as you get closer to the Castle, but you can also take tram #22.
Staying in Old Town Prague means you’ll also have access to all three metro lines, trams, and plenty of restaurants, cafés, pubs and bars.
Who Should Stay in Old Town Prague?
Old Town is the best place to stay in Prague if you love history, culture, nightlife, a beautiful setting, and a busy city vibe … and you want it all at your doorstep!
Old Town is good for any type of traveler. If your time in Prague is short, it’s hands-down the best place to stay in Prague.
Attractions, restaurants, cafés, bars, and museums, are all easily walkable if you stay in Old Town. It is a flat area of town, and there is plenty to see.
Top Old Town Prague Highlights:
- Old Town Hall and the Astronomical Clock – Prague’s Old Town Hall has amazing views from the top, and thankfully has an elevator. The Astronomical Clock has a little show at the top of each hour. It’s a bit underwhelming today, but pretty cool for being 600 years old.
- Our Lady Before Tyn Church – Impressive from the exterior, not many venture inside. The main part is free, but the temple area costs 25kc (in the form of a suggested donation).
- Old Jewish Quarter – While the entire Jewish Quarter is worth spending a couple of hours in, the two main attractions are the Pinkas Synagogue and the Old Cemetery. The Pinkas Synagogue has a couple of very moving memorials to the victims of the Holocaust. The Old Jewish Cemetery is another interesting site. For roughly 350 years, it was the only place Jews were allowed to be buried in Prague. As a result, there are an estimated 100,000 people buried beneath 1200 plots.
- Walk the Royal Route – Czech kings arrived at Prague Castle’s St. Vitus Cathedral via the “Royal Route.” It runs from the Municipal House in Namesti Republiky, through the gates of Powder Tower to Old Town Square, and on to Charles Bridge and Mala Strana.
- Powder Tower – It’s sometimes called Powder Gate because it was used to store gun powder in the 17th century. Built as a coronation gift to Vladislav II in the 15th century, it’s one of the original city gates. Kings passed through here en route to their coronation.
Staying in Old Town Pros & Cons
- Central and convenient
- Close to most Prague attractions
- No hills to climb
- Many bars and restaurants
- Busy and touristy
- Can be loud at night in some parts
Where to Stay in Prague Old Town: Top Hotels in Prague Old Town
Iron Gate Luxury Hotel and Suites Prague
A 5-star hotel around the $150 to $200 range, in an awesome “heart of the Old Town” location only a few minutes walk from Old Town Square, Wenceslas Square, and Mustek Metro station, which serves the A and B Lines (green and yellow). You’ll be close to shopping, restaurants, boutique and international coffee chains (Costa Coffee and Starbucks), and transportation, and you can still walk everywhere from here!
MOODs Charles Bridge 4-Star in Prague
A lovely 4-star hotel in the most amazing location. Just steps to the Charles Bridge and just a few minutes walk through the fairytale streets to the iconic Old Town Square. Well appointed rooms featuring smart TVs, large King sized beds, coffee/tea making facilities, safe and complimentary toiletries and a hair dryer. On site you’ll find a bar, fitness center and spa. A daily breakfast is available to all guests.
U Tri Bubnu 3-Star Hotel Prague
A 3-star hotel around the $90 range in a great location right in Old Town, with great customer reviews and really nice-looking rooms! It’s only 2 blocks walking to Staroměstská Metro station (Line A), and about the same distance to a tram stop. If you’re mobile and somewhat active, you’re within walking distance to Charles Bridge (5 minutes), the Rudolfinum (5 minutes), the National Library (3 minutes), Old Town Square (10 minutes), St. Nicholas Church (10 minutes), and the Castle (20 minutes, with a somewhat steep hill). *Note – this hotel doesn’t have an elevator, a source of complaints from some guests on TripAdvisor!
Hotel Residence Bologna 3-Star Hotel Prague
A 3-star hotel around the $65 range in a great location right in Old Town, with okay customer reviews – this seems like a good, but not amazing, budget option. Walking distance to the metro and tram, and if you’re reasonably active, you’ll likely be able to walk to almost all the places you want to visit while in Prague. You’ll be super close to the river for great views of the castle, and will have lots of options for restaurants and cafes nearby!
Search for a Perfect Prague Hotel in Old Town
Where to Stay in Prague: New Town Prague (Nové Město)
❶ Dancing House; ❷ National Theatre; ❸ Wenceslas Square; ❹ Náplavka
The “New” in New Town is a bit misleading. In fact, Prague’s New Town is more than 700 years old!
Despite the misnomer, New Town is a great place to stay in Prague. It’s close to all the main attractions, and has a few of its own, including the National Theatre (Národní divadlo), Dancing House, Narodni trida, and Lucerna Passage.
New Town is also home to plenty of pubs and places to eat. If you’re sick of Czech food, Globe Cafe (Pštrossova 1925/6) has a North America-inspired menu. U Fleku is also a must visit: it’s a traditional Czech beer and food hall.
Who Should Stay in New Town Prague?
New Town Prague is a great area to stay in Prague for just about anyone.
Outside the buzz of Old Town, it feels like you’re still in the center of things. It’s well connected with both tram and metro options, and also very walkable. It has a great selection of bars, cafes and restaurants, and has a nice riverside scene in summer at Naplavka.
Top New Town Prague Highlights:
- Dancing House – Co-designed by Frank Gehry, its modern architecture somehow fits-in with is surroundings. Opened in 1996, it was inspired by dancing duo Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers.
- National Theatre – Completed in the 1860s, the National Theatre has been a pillar of Czech culture ever since! The theatre helped the country persevere through oppression, and the building symbolizes that triumph. Check out the intricate rooftop sculptures.
- Wenceslas Square – More of a rectangle than a square, it’s a hub of commercial activity, and is also home to a few notable and beautiful buildings. The top of the square is home to the National Museum, with a statue of Wenceslas riding a horse in the foreground. The bottom of the square is a great place to grab Czech street food.
- David Cerny Statues – There are a couple of well-known and bizarre Cerny scultures within walking distance of each other. Upside Down Dead Horse being Ridden by St. Wenceslas (Lucerna Passage – Štěpánská 61) and the giant rotating Kafka’s Head (Národní 63/26) behind the big Tesco MY are both in New Town.
- Náplavka – A seasonal treat during warmer months, Naplavka is across from Dancing House. Take the ramp that leads down to a paved path along the river. You’ll find open air bars, live music, grills, and small boats selling cheap drinks and food. In the evening, the sunset is gorgeous behind the castle.
Staying in New Town Pros & Cons
- Central and convenient
- Walkable to most Prague attractions
- Well connected with trams/metro
- Lots of bar and restaurant options
- Busy and touristy in some parts
Where to Stay in Prague New Town: Hotels in Prague New Town
La Ballerina Luxury Boutique Hotel Prague
A beautiful-looking 5-star hotel with a design hotel feel to it, La Ballerina is technically in Prague 2, but it’s away from the expat centres of IP Pavlova and Namesti Miru. Located right on the river, this would be a beautiful place to stay if you want to go for morning runs along the river, and evening beers (in the summer) along the Naplavka riverfront walk which fills up with street-food-style restaurants and bars between May and October, weather dependent. This hotel gets fantastic reviews and looks delightful!
Hotel UNIC 4-Star Hotel Prague
A 4-star hotel around the $130 range, this hotel is close to Prague’s beautiful Jewish Quarter and is within walking distance to the Old Town Square. It’s only a few blocks from Namesti Republiky (Republic Square), which has a metro stop and a large shopping mall with coffee (Paul, Starbucks, McDonalds, as well as non-chain shops), a grocery store, etc. It’s also close to one of our favorite “views” in Prague, from the T-Anker restaurant patio (Check out our top 10 views in Prague). Really hard to think of any negatives about this place, especially considering they get great reviews from past guests, too.
Boat Hotel Matylda Prague
Boat hotels (Botels) are a unique accommodation option in Prague and, as you may have guess from the name, are hotels on boats. This place is a 4-star, right on the river in Prague 2, and in a fantastic location near the Dancing House, and at the quiet end of “Naplavka” a river-front area that turns into a bar and restaurant area when the weather is nice from late Spring to early Fall. We’ve walked past this boat hotel hundreds of times, and it looks really cool plus it has great reviews. Prices in the $110 to $120 range.
Search for a Perfect Prague Hotel in New Town
Prague’s Cool Neighborhoods: Best Areas to Stay in Prague Outside the Historic Center
Old Town, New Town, and Mala Strana are the main tourist areas and the most popular places to stay in Prague. However, there are plenty of other choices as well.
Outside the main tourist centre, you’ll find some of the best areas to stay in Prague. These neighbourhoods let you experience local life in Prague, while still providing a convenient base to explore from.
If you enjoy a bit of walking or aren’t averse to taking public transit, you can save a bundle and add to your experience.
Where to Stay in Prague: Vinohrady
❶ Namesti Miru; ❷ Havlíčkovy sady; ❸ Vinohrady Theatre❶ Ankora Hotel; ❷ La Fenice; ❸ Deminka Palace; ❹ Clarion Hotel Prague
Once a 14th century vineyard, charming Vinohrady is one of Prague’s ‘it’ neighborhoods. Praguers want to live in Vinohrady, and it’s also one of the best areas to stay in Prague as a tourist.
Vinohrady is beautiful, elegant, and full of young professionals and young families. It’s convenient without being too loud or crazy. It’s no surprise this Prague neighborhood is a favorite given its proximity to Old Town and cool community vibe.
Vinohrady stretches between 2 metro stations: Náměstí Míru and Jiřího z Poděbrad (or JZP), on Metro Line A (Green). With excellent tram connections and metro access, Vinohrady is convenient for public transit. It’s also within walking distance to Wenceslas Square.
Who Should Stay in Vinohrady?
Choose to stay in Vinohrady if you want to be within easy reach of the city center, without being in the tourist center. If you love neighborhood cafés, restaurants, and pubs, you’ll likely enjoy Vinohrady. Nearby Riegrovy Sady park has an awesome beer garden and views of the city.
Top Vinohrady Prague Highlights:
- Náměstí Miru – (Peace Square) A well-maintained little square, Náměstí Miru is dominated by the 19th-century neogothic Cathedral of St Ludmila. At Christmas and Easter, there is a cute local market.
- Náměstí Miru Metro Station – It’s the deepest metro station within the EU, and has the longest escalator as well. Not exactly a tourist draw, but quirky nonetheless.
- Havlíčkovy sady – Prague’s second-largest park with a gorgeous Italian Renaissance-inspired villa. This park is a wonderful spot to spend a couple of hours in. The villa, vineyard, and English gardens surrounding the old estate were once used as a retreat by the Hapsburgs. During a darker period in history, they were used a Hitler Youth training center during the Nazi occupation.
- Vinohrady Theatre – A beautiful early 20th-century Art Nouveau building, you’ll find it next to Namesti Miru.
Staying in Vinohrady Pros & Cons
- Quiet and laid back
- Walkable to Wenceslas Square
- Easy tram/metro access
- Many cafes, bars and restaurants
- Local living
- Less expensive than Old Town
- Too quiet for some travelers
Where to Stay in Prague: Vinohrady Hotels
Ankora Hotel 3-Star Prague
A 3-star hotel around the $100 range right by the metro station IP Pavlova (and one of my favorite coffee shops in Prague: Anonymous Coffee). This places looks clean and modern with great customer reviews, and it’s in a good location on 10 minutes walk from Wenceslas Square and 10 minutes to Namesti Miru, which is a pretty square and expat hot-spot rimmed by non-touristy restaurants. You can walk into Old Town from here (20 minutes) or take a tram or metro, and can jump on the metro to get to the castle.
La Fenice 3-Star Hotel Prague
A 3-star option that seems to be a cross between a hotel and an apartment, this place seems to offer pretty good value in the $60 to $70 price range, and it’s in a great location if you want to see “real” Prague. Right near the JZP metro station, you’ll share the neighbourhood with young Czechs and expats, and will have lots of options to choose from when it comes to restaurants and bars. There is also a seasonal Farmers Market on the nearby square!
Search for a Perfect Prague Hotel in Vinohrady
Where to Stay in Prague: Žižkov
Žižkov (pronounced zhizh–koff) sits north of Vinohrady and starts where Vinohrady ends.
The Flora and JZP metro stations make it convenient for getting around the city. As with Vinohrady, there are plenty of trams to choose from.
Žižkov is traditionally a working class Prague neighborhood. It’s been slowly changing over the years, and is now considered one of Prague’s coolest areas to stay and live.
The restaurants, pubs and cafés here will charge local prices – and there are plenty to choose from.
The closer you get to Jiřího z Poděbrad metro station, the more “grown up” things feel, with sophisticated dining and drinking options to match.
Further out, you’re more likely to find younger Praguers and students.
Whereas Vinohrady “arrived” long ago, Žižkov is still arriving, and is a bit on the grittier side in parts.
Who Should Stay in Žižkov?
Besides being one of the best areas to stay in Prague for budget friendly travel, it’s also a great spot to stay and enjoy a real Prague neighborhood.
It has convenient transit access to the historic city center, local cafes, restaurants and pubs serving good Czech food.
There are plenty of expats that live the area as well, so comfort food can be found fairly easily.
Top Žižkov Prague Highlights:
- Riegrovy Sady – One of our favorite parks in Prague and one of the best spots to catch the sunset over Prague castle. It also has one of the best summer beer gardens in the city.
- Žižkov TV Tower – This weird rocket-ship-like tower was used by the communists to block out radio signals from the west. Today, it’s a restaurant/cafe and one-room hotel. There is a pleasant garden restaurant at the base, and decent views of the city from the top.
- Church of the Most Sacred Heart of Our Lord (Kostel Nejsvětějšího Srdce Páně in Czech) – A rather odd-looking church boasting the country’s largest clock, the Jiřího z Poděbrad square around the church is also nice. On sunny days, you’ll usually find lots of locals hanging out here. There is also a farmers market and seasonal festivals on the square.
Staying in Žižkov Pros & Cons
- Quiet and residential
- Easy tram/metro access
- Many cafes, bars and restaurants
- Local living
- Less expensive
- Too quiet for some travelers
- Difficult to park if you have a rental car
- Most restaurants serve Czech food – this could also be a ‘pro’ if you’re adventurous!
Where to Stay in Prague: Žižkov Hotels
One Room Hotel Prague
If you REALLY want to splurge for something unique, there’s actually a hotel room in the top of the Zizkov Television Tower, at a rate of $400 to $550 per night. The Zizkov TV tower was used during communism to spy on residents, or so the story goes. Now, it’s been converted into a tourist attraction. You can visit the tower for views of Prague, there’s an awesome garden restaurant at the base when the weather is warm, and you can now stay in the top of the tower when you visit Prague!
Search for a Perfect Prague Hotel in Žižkov
Where to Stay in Prague: Karlín (Prague 8)
Karlín (pronounced kar-leen) suffered a big flood back in the early 2000s, and had to be almost completely rebuilt.
Most of the old buildings have been refurbished, with some newer modern office buildings thrown in. This mix of buildings and newness creates an energy and vibe unique in the city.
Karlin is a bit quieter and calmer than Vinohrady and Zizkov, but there are still a lots of cafés and food spots.
You can grab a great cup of coffee at Můj šálek kávy and enjoy plenty of interesting food options (although some of them are more upscale).
Karlin is a narrow Prague neighborhood located behind Florenc metro station (Line B & C). Florenc is also the international bus terminal, making Karlin convenient if you arrive by bus.
The district is also served by Křižíkova metro station (Line B). Old Town Prague is 3 or 4 stops away, depending on where you want to go.
Travelers generally like staying in Karlín, although many note it’s really quiet at night.
- Quiet and residential
- Decent tram/metro access
- Many cafes, bars and restaurants some rather upscale (which might be a con)
- Local living
- More Modern
- Too quiet for some travelers
- Can be a bit sketchy around the bus station
Where to Stay in Prague: Karlín
Hotel Alwyn 4-Star Prague
On the higher end, Hotel Alwyn seems like a great option, that will give you a good feel for life in Karlin. Located in between Florenc Metro, which has a shopping centre, and Křižíkova metro, which has a really cute neighbourhood feel to it, this 4-star place has fantastic reviews from past guests, and is between the $150 and $200 price range.
PentaHotel 4-Star Hotel Prague
An affordable 4-star option in a chain hotel with a boutique feel. The rooms look really nice, and the guest reviews are fantastic. There’s a wide-range of prices – when I looked anywhere from $80 to $150 for different room styles. It’s also in a nice quiet area, about a block from the Křižíkova metro stop.
Search for a Perfect Prague Hotel in Karlin
Where to Stay in Prague: Holešovice/Letna (Prague 7)
Holešovice (pronounced hol-esh-oh-vit-say) is the least gentrified of the cool Prague neighbourhoods listed in this guide.
This lovely Prague neighborhood is slowly sprucing itself up. It’s letting go of its working class, meatpacking past with galleries, restorations, and new cafés and restaurants.
This district doesn’t really jump off the map to most people when deciding where to stay in Prague, but the thing that Holešovice really has going for it is its proximity to Stromovka and Letna parks.
Stromovka is Prague’s largest, and Letná has awesome views of the city and a great beer garden with a view. It’s probably also a bit cheaper to stay in Holešovice than some of the other Prague areas.
The downside to Holešovice is transit: there are trams (tram #17 goes into town along the river, and is Prague’s most beautiful tram ride), but the metro is a bit of a hike, depending on where you’re staying in relation to Nádraží Holešovice (Metro Line C – Red).
Who Should Stay in Holešovice?
People who have a bit more time, and are looking to have a calm, local experience, and a quiet place to stay in Prague after a day of sightseeing.
Top Holešovice Prague Highlights:
- Stromovka Park – A massive city park with lots of families picnicking and children playing. Great running paths and playgrounds, restaurants, food stands and even a planetarium.
- Lapidarium – The museum’s most popular displays the original stone statues that lined Charles Bridge and other original pieces from the Castle and Old Town. Some date back to the 11th century.
Staying in Holešovice Pros & Cons
- Quiet and residential
- Nice local cafes and restaurants
- Local living
- Less expensive
- Too quiet for some travelers
- Public transportation is a bit limited in some parts
- Some parts are quite far out, depending on where in the neighborhood you are
Where to Stay in Prague: Holešovice Hotels
Mama Shelter Prague
This fresh and cool hotel chain has just opened their Prague location. It has a young and energetic theme, and for the neighborhood, it’s well located just steps from a tram stop that can whisk into old town in under 10 minutes. The hotel has a restaurant, bar and terrace on site, and the themed rooms are compact but well appointed with A/C, a small refrigerator, toiletries, laptop safe and hairdryers. Guests can also watch a selection of on-demand movies in the rooms for free.
Art Hotel 4-Star Boutique Prague
This place looks awesome! Tucked behind Letna Park (with it’s amazing and popular beer garden..probably a 10 minutes’ walk from here), this is 4-star boutique-style hotel that seems to offer great value, with rooms in the $70 to $80 range when I check through Hotels Combined. Plus, it gets great reviews. If I had to suggest a place for a couple that wanted to be slightly out of the hustle and bustle of Prague, this would be a top contender.
Search for a Perfect Prague Hotel in Holešovice/Letna
Where to Stay in Prague – Anděl/Smíchov (Prague 5)
Anděl/Smíchov (pronounced and-yell and smee-hoff) was the second neighborhood we lived in while in Prague.
While I doubt anyone would claim it’s the coolest or best neighbourhood in Prague, we found it to be mighty convenient.
That’s because there are restaurants, pubs, a few cafés (nothing spectacular) and a couple of large grocery stores right near the metro stop. There’s also a mall and 2 cinemas in the area.
As it’s one of the city’s transit hubs, there are lots of trams going in every direction. If you choose to stay in this Prague neighborhood, pick a hotel near the river, which is awesome for jogging or hanging out for a beer.
Like Vinohrady, it’s possible to walk into the centre from Anděl – we could get to Malá Strana in about 20 minutes, and the National Theatre in about 15 minutes. If you’re not up for the walk, it’s a quick ride on the tram or metro.
If you walk across Jiráskův most (bridge) from Anděl, you’ll walk straight toward the famous Dancing House building. You’ll also get a lovely view of the castle and St. Vitus cathedral.
Staying in Anděl/Smíchov Pros & Cons
- Quiet and residential
- Great tram/metro access around Andel/Novy Smichov shopping center
- Many local cafes and restaurants
- Local living
- Less expensive
- Too quiet for some travelers
- Away from the river is getting a bit far from Prague attractions
Where to Stay in Prague: Anděl/Smíchov Hotels
The Ibis Praha Mala Strana
Honestly, the prices for this Ibis seem like a fantastic deal, in the $40 range. The reviews are also very good from past guests. The location of this hotel is right next to the big “Novy Smichov” shopping centre, which has lots of restaurants, etc. and is close to public transport.
La Boutique Hotel Prague
This hotel is apparently a 4-star, but it looks a bit on the basic end of the spectrum. That said, it seems to be good value, and the reviews are good, but not spectacular. Prices seem to fall in the $55 to $60 range, which is reasonable. And again, it’s a convenient location right near Andel metro, within walking distance to the river (which will have nice views of Vysehrad fort), and about a 20 minute walk to old town.
Vienna House Andel’s Prague
This place looks awesome! I remember frequently walking by this hotel and thinking it looked nice, and it seems like great value for a 4-start hotel in the $100 to $120 range. It’s super modern looking, and gets fantastic reviews, but beyond that, the location is super convenient, being right near the Andel metro station. There’s a huge mall across the street with a TESCO, Starbucks, and food courts with different local and international chains. And as I recall, there was a nice wine bar in the basement.
Red and Blue Design Hotel Prague
This place looks cute, and has the best reviews of the bunch….people seem to love it! It’s about 3 blocks from the shopping centre, and 4 blocks from the metro station, which I’d consider a plus if you’re a light sleeper: I expect this would be the quietest option of the recommendations for this area. Prices are between $80 and $100, and it’s listed as a 4-star.
Search for a Perfect Prague Hotel in Anděl/Smíchov
The Best Area to Stay in Prague and Prague FAQs
So What is the Best Area to Stay in Prague?
If we had friends coming to stay in Prague for only a few days, we’d tell them to stay in Prague 1 (so convenient), Vinohrady (so cool), or near Anděl (convenient, but not touristy).
If you’re coming for a longer stay in Prague, check out Vinohrady, Karlín, or Holešovice/Letná instead.
Prague doesn’t really have any city-centre neighbourhoods that are super sketchy or need to be avoided. For the most part, it’s a really safe city!
Are the Best Areas to Stay in Prague Always Near a Metro Station?
Unless you’re staying in Prague for a while, consider staying near a metro station. Public transport in Prague is excellent and convenient.
If you stay near a metro stop or on a tram line, you won’t have to stay in the historial center, as you’ll be able to access the city center via transit.
If you’re looking at a place online and wondering if it’s in a good place to stay Prague, the following stops are pretty convenient for getting into town:
- Line A (Green): Dejvická, Hradčanská, Malostranská, Staroměstská, Můstek, Muzeum, Náměstí Míru, Jiřího z Poděbrad, or Flora. Beyond that, you’re starting to get a bit far out, which will be less fun and less convenient.
- Line B (Yellow): Křižíkova, Florenc, Náměstí Republiky, Můstek, Národní Třída, Karlovo Náměstí, Anděl. You could go one or two more stops on either end, to Invalidovna or Pamlovka, or to Smíchovské Nádraží going the other way – they’re still relatively convenient, just not very exciting.
- Line C (Red): Vyšehrad, I. P. Pavlova, Muzeum, Hlavní Nádraží, Florenc,Vltavská, and Nádraží Holešovice
Is Taking Public Transit in Prague Difficult?
In and around the city center, public transit in Prague is very easy to use. Important stops and announcements will also be made in English.
Regular Priced Prague Public Transit Tickets (under 6-free, other discounts for children/seniors)
- Basic: 90min 32CKZ (~$1.40USD)
- Short Term: 30min 24CKZ (~$1.00USD)
- 1 day: 24h 110CKZ (~$4.80USD)
- 3 day: 72h 310CKZ (~$13.50USD)
If you plan on taking public transportation and do not have a Prague Card, get yourself a one-day, or three-day transit pass. The metro is very good, but the trams are also quite convenient, especially for getting up to the castle.
How Do I Get From Prague Airport to the City Center?
Prague’s Vaclav Havel Airport is roughly 10 miles (16km) west of the city center. In reasonable traffic, the trip will take about 35 minutes or so.
A taxi ride should cost the equivalent of $20-$25 USD. Tipping is starting to become the norm, especially if they help with luggage, no more than 10%.
Alternatively, public transit is a two-stage process consisting of a bus, to a metro station. Either bus #119 to metro line A (green), or bus #100 to metro line B (yellow) are the fastest.
If you have a Prague Card, public transit will be included for the duration of your card, or tickets are available at the vending machines, Relay stores, or the Visitors Center inside the terminal,
Why Should You Visit Prague?
There’s no denying that Prague is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. It’s a dream destination for many, and a city that should be included on every central European itinerary. The iconic Old Town, and one-of-a-kind views of Prague from Prague Castle make Prague seem like a fairytale creation that’s lost in time.
While Prague’s beauty is the key draw, the city’s vast history doesn’t hurt. Once the capital of the Holy Roman Emperor, the city has been home to kings, battles, and legendary stories. Mozart, Einstein, Mucha, and Kafka have all called Prague home at one point or another, each leaving a mark on the city.
When is the Best Time to Visit Prague?
Visiting Prague in Spring, Summer and Fall
Prague is pretty any time of year. However, the warmer months are certainly our favorite time in the city.
Although tourist attractions become much busier from late Spring to early Fall, city life is also largely enjoyed outdoors. Locals spend their time by the river, in the parks, and of course, at the beer gardens. The Naplavka riverside is a favorite. You can hang your feet over the edge of the riverwalk, beer in hand, and watch the sun set over Prague castle.
Visiting Prague in the Fall and Winter
When the leaves change color in autumn, Prague’s best views transform, saturated with lovely colors. And when winter comes, lucky visitors catch Charles Bridge covered in a blanket of snow – one of the most beautiful scenes in the world! There are also plenty of warm and cozy pubs and hearty Czech food to keep you warm in the cold.
At Christmas, the Prague Christmas Markets in Old Town and Namesti Miru will transport you to another time!