Prague Christmas Markets 2017
Prague Christmas Markets (Vanocni trhy) are the magical end of the festive year in the Czech Republic, and the Prague markets are the most impressive in the country. Christmas celebrations in Prague light up the city, attract local people and tourists together over a cup of good welded wine and eating local specialties ‘trdelnik (sweet pastry) in a real winter wonderland.
The Prague Christmas markets are open every day from 2nd December 2017 to 6th January 2018, including on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.
Christmas Markets at the Old Town Square
The main markets in Prague are at the Old Town Square. The unique atmosphere of the medieval central Prague makes the Market very popular. In contrast to some bigger markets across the Europe, the Prague Christmas Market is sort of familiar, which makes the whole experience more intensive.
The Christmas markets consist of brightly decorated wooden huts stocked with handicrafts such as ceramics, jewellery, glassware, embroidered lace, wooden toys, scented candles, Christmas tree ornaments, hats and gloves, and puppets and dolls dressed in traditional Czech costume. Visitors can buy many kind of gifts there. But the markets are not just about shopping. You can sample all manner of local food and drink, and observe traditional foods being hand made.
The Christmas Market has its own continuous program composed in the Christmas style. The main purpose is to make people feel the Christmas is coming. The Christmas carols will be sung every day by various performers.
The Christmas markets at the Old Town Square also have an animals stable, where children can stroke sheep, goats and a donkey. And there is a large Bethlehem scene depicting Mary, Joseph, baby Jesus and the Three Kings in a wooden stable.
Most impressive of all is the mighty Christmas tree transported from the forests of Central Bohemia. The tree is erected at the Old Town Square and draped in a blaze of lights. It is switched on nightly around 5:30 pm, and makes a spectacular sight set against Prague’s dark gothic skyline.
Traditional Christmas food
The variety of food and beverages sold at the market is very generous. Visitors may look forward to traditional Czech food as roasted hams on spits, barbecued sausages (klobása), Czech cakes and pastries are prepared in front of you, like ‘Trdelník’, a hot sugar coated pastry. Donť forget sample conkers, mead and other typical gastronomical specialties from Old Czech cuisine.
To accompany the food, try one of the famous Czech beers – Pilsner Urquell, Kozel, Staropramen or Budvar.
Alternatively, there is a variety of hot drinks on offer; outdoor Christmas shopping is so much nicer with a cup of mulled wine (svařené víno or svařák) in your hand.
Local Markets in the Prague
There are also smaller markets at Wenceslas Square (5 minutes walk from Old Town Square), Republic Square, at Havel’s Market, on Kampa Island, Peace Square, Tyl Square, Square of the George from Podebrady and on the square in front of St. George’s Basilica at Prague Castle.
Really Markets starts so late?
Some local markets opens from 20th November. The good news for visitors in late November is that for example the Christmas market at Prague Castle starts on 24th November, one week before the main markets.
Make the most of the Christmas Markets
Prague’s city centre is compact, which is ideal for pedestrians. You should book a hotel in the city centre, and the Christmas markets and the main sights and attractions will all be within easy walking distance.
The Prague Christmas markets are free to enter. Stay in the city centre, and whenever you fancy dropping in, you can leave your hotel and be in the midst of the markets in minutes. Grab a drink, browse the stalls and soak up the atmosphere.
Entertainment & Sightseeing
There is a range of entertainment on offer throughout the duration of the Christmas markets. In particular, we recommend buying a ticket for a classical concert. You can visit Prague clubs and meet with friendly citizens, local pubs and try best beer in the world or so just walk around the river and enjoy the medieval scenery of old Prague.