If you’re studying abroad in Europe, a visit to Prague better be at the top of your list. With its love of cheap beer, beautiful sights filled with political history, and crazy party scene, it’s a must for any study abroad-er.
Here’s a rundown on the essentials of Prague.
First things first…
Because Prague is in the Czech Republic, locals speak Czech. Most people you will encounter during your visit will speak English, which is great, because Czech is a tough language and is not at all similar to English.
The currency is Koruna (the plural is Koruny), which translates to “crowns”. At this point (February 2013), the conversion rate is 1 USD to 18.8 Crowns. Use the rough estimate of 20 Crowns to 1 USD for quick math. You’ll find that Prague is a relatively cheap city compared to Western Europe.
Discount airline WizzAir flies to Prague from many cities around Europe. You can also find cheap flights with Czech Airlines and you won’t have to pay for carry-ons or your first checked bag, so be sure to use our tips on finding super cheap flights so you don’t pay a fortune.
The main airport in Prague is not too far from the historic city center, and there are a few reasonably priced options for getting to your accommodation. If flying WizzAir, book the airport transfer that they offer when you are booking your flight. It will bring you right to your hostel for only about 10 euro. You can also take advantage of other choices once you land, including an airport express, city buses, and even reasonably priced cabs if you split it between a few people (just be SURE to settle on the price first– it should be between 600 and 700 Crowns.)
Train and Bus
You can take the Eurail direct from Budapest, Vienna, Krakow, Vienna, Frankfurt, Munich, Salzburg, and Berlin into one of the two main stations in Prague. Eurolines offers bus transport to Prague from several cities around Europe.
Prague is home to a few luxurious hostels that won’t cost you more than a hostel in Western Europe. Our favorites are the Mosaic House, a high-tech, fully sustainable hostel, and the Czech Inn, which is modern, beautiful, and comfortable. Others have recommended Miss Sophie’s as well. Book ahead of time.
-Stare Mesto (Old Town)
-Prague Castle and nearby gardens
Most of Prague is walkable, and seeing the essentials can be done in a day, but we recommend taking at least two so you can take your time and discover the colorful nooks and crannies of Prague while you’re exploring.
Eating and Partying
Food is cheap in Prague, and expect lots of meat if you find a traditional Czech restaurant, which is great since you’ll need to fill up before an intense night of partying. The city’s nightlife has something for everyone, and you’ll find cheap drinks even at most nightclubs. Prepare to see the sunrise on your walk back from the club to your hostel.
What else do you like about Prague? Will you be visiting during your study abroad semester? Let us know in the comments!