Anyone who has read this blog longer than the revival knows that I am a girl who likes to go with a plan. I am all for being spontaneous but if you want to see as much as you can and in turn save money that could be put towards future travels my answer is always the same: go in with research and a plan.
As I have said, now that I am married and traveling in very different circumstances, I am much more aware of every new expense in our lives and weigh the money we spend very carefully.
On top of all that, we were traveling with new people and every time that happens you have to take into consideration what other people may want to see, their budget, group or individual game plans, and their style of travel – but that is another post….
I tried to do something a little different this time around when it came to visiting Prague. I still used Google Maps – there really is nothing better for tracking where the things you want to see are and how long it takes to get from one to the other! – but instead of doing a day by day breakdown, I broke the city into parts and started from there:
Basically, I found that I had three areas, plus Charles’ Bridge that I would really want to explore:
OLD TOWN PRAGUE
We were staying just outside of Old Town so we walked through here pretty consistently. In this section was Church of Our Lady Before Tyn (which is one of the locations that inspired Disneyland’s Sleeping Beauty Castle), Old Town Hall and the Astronomical Tower, and finally, The Estates Theater.
SOUTH OF OLD TOWN
This is all below Old Town but still walkable, at least if you have decent walking shoes which are kind of a must in Prague. South of Old Town is much more spread out but unless you have tons you want to do in this part of the city, it’s easiest to keep it all as one section.
The southern part of the city contains The Sex Machine Museum which is on the border of Old Town, The Mucha Museum, Wenceslas Square and the National Museum, and the Dancing House. There are also art pieces by David Cerny, a local street artist, throughout this section of the city, so just wandering is a great option here!
This one pretty much covers itself and it’s free unless you buy any of the knick-knacks from the vendors lining the bridge. The views of and from the bridge are spectacular, but beware of your timing! This is a huge thoroughfare so you can definitely get run over by human traffic if you stop in the middle and it’s so crowded getting a clutter-free picture really is impossible.
ACROSS THE RIVER
In terms of what to see and how you can save money, this side of the bridge is where you will probably spend the most time and money! You have The Prague Palace Complex which includes The Old Royal Place,’The Story of Prague Castle’ exhibition, The Cathedral of Saint Vitus, Saint Wenceslas Cathedral, The Church of Saint Adalbert, Saint George’s Basilica, Golden Lane (Daliborka and Powder Towers), and The Rosenberg Palace; Petrin Hill which houses a park and a couple of attractions (we’ll talk about these in a future post) as well as The Monastery and a couple other restaurant options; There are also a few beautiful gardens if you are there in spring or summer – namely The Grotta and Havlicek Gardens; and finally, Lennon’s Wall, however, I heard from friends that this one was pretty covered over by graffiti and underwhelming.
Now this isn’t to say we hit all of this, because it is a lot but had we made some different choices, our three days really could have handled this load. Still, that doesn’t answer how it saved us money.
Prague is a party town that is also full of history, so if you don’t plan on partying all weekend and you don’t mind wandering about 5 minutes outside of the tourist district, you really can find great places to eat and see for really cheap. It also seemed like everywhere that was touristy had pretty amazing deals for families, so as long as you avoid the traps, even a group with kids can save!
Let’s get the big one out of the way: The Palace Complex.
Talking about this will be a post all on its own, so we are going to stick to budgets here. The price for this attraction is broken down into different circuits that group the varied attractions within the complex so you can pick whatever works for your group. We picked Circuit A which has everything listed above after the Palace Complex – this had the best price for the most places within the complex.
Of course, it doesn’t cover everything; some things you can only purchase on their own, but it was an amazing day for Ryan and I. Plus, this ticket let’s you explore over the course of two days, so if you want to space things out, you absolutely can.
And again, about the affordability with children: Ryan and I spent the same amount of money on these tickets as our friends and their two kids! The only downside is that these family tickets requires the family stays together going into every exhibition and you can only enter them once – it is litterally one ticket for the entire family.
Going into the Towers at Old Town Hall and the Astronomical Clock have a similar family deal.
Petrin Hill can be a money hole if you don’t go in prepared (it is pretty minor, however, every penny matters, right?), especially because not all the attractionas are as good or strong as others but you can buy a ticket for about seven dollars to get into everything – I honestly recommend the Tower, but everything else is kind of a bust.
Finally, everything else of note was either around ten euros, for donation which gets used for upkeep, or completely free.
This is Leave on the Wind, helping you soar.