24 Hours in Prague, Czech Republic: Itinerary & Where to Go in One Day

If you’re planning a trip to Central Europe, there’s no escaping spending at least 24 hours in Prague. With its perfectly preserved medieval city center, the graceful Czech capital is one of Europe’s most popular travel destinations and a must-see for any traveler passing through the region. From discovering stunning architecture in Old Town to sipping on a Czech pilsner in the shadow of the gothic St. Vitus Cathedral, plan the perfect time-crunched layover with this complete 1-day Prague itinerary!

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What to do in Prague in 24 hours: A complete 1-day itinerary

Old Town Square

Most plans for one day in Prague begin in Old Town Square, the beating heart of Prague’s Old Town for centuries.

The moment you first enter Old Town Square will be forever etched in your memory. Tiptoeing in, you’re instantly surrounded by magnificently-preserved architecture dating as far back as the 14th century.

(And tourists. Never forget the endless stream of tourists.)

Old Town Prague

The two most remarkable buildings on Old Town Square are the Church of Our Lady before Týn and Old Town Hall. Both are built in an architectural style that’s distinctively Czech—you won’t often find architecture like this elsewhere in Europe.

Before moving on from Old Town Square, peek into Týn Church and check out Old Town Hall’s remarkable 15th-century Prague Astronomical Clock. It’s the world’s third oldest clock of its kind and the only working one. Visit the Prague Astronomical Clock at the top of the hour to watch Death, a detailed skeleton figure, hammer the time.

Finish off your time in Old Town Square with a quick trip up the Old Town Tower for epic views of Old Town Prague.

Charles Bridge

From Old Town Square, it’s a 10-minute walk to Charles Bridge, Prague’s second most popular tourist hangout. Charles Bridge itself is interesting, but what will get your traveler’s heart pumping is the magnificent views in all directions.

Many Prague postcards feature Charles Bridge as their vantage point. With distinctive bridge towers and baroque religious statues, the bridge is the perfect spot for framing shots of popular Prague tourist attractions like Prague Castle, St. Vitus Cathedral, or Old Town.

View from Charles Bridge

After draining your camera battery from snapping shots of some of Prague’s finest views, continue walking over Charles Bridge into Malá Strana.

Beatles fans should “give peace a chance” and take a quick side trip to the John Lennon Wall on Velkopřevorské náměstí. After crossing under the bridge tower at the end of Charles Bridge, turn left and hold left until you see a wall covered in graffiti.

The John Lennon Wall has been around since the Communist era, so you’ll no doubt stumble into some interesting political messages here!

Prague Castle

Continue your 24 hours in Prague by winding through Malá Strana, following the signs to Prague Castle. Don’t mind the uphill walk. Once you get to the top and soak up the breathtaking views over Prague, it’ll all be worth it!

Panorama of Old Town

Prague Castle won’t conform to your ideal European castle. You won’t find towers and turrets or be able to imagine knights wooing fair maidens among the ramparts.

Instead, Prague Castle feels more like a small town in the middle of the city. Spend some time on your Prague itinerary wandering through the alleyways up here to take a trip back into the Middle Ages.

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Keep on the lookout for Golden Lane (Zlatá ulička), a narrow medieval street in the northeastern corner of the complex that was once home to Czech writer Franz Kafka.

In the Prague Castle complex, the big must-see is St. Vitus Cathedral. Step into this cavernous church, one of Prague’s most interesting Gothic sites, and you’ll see why.

Founded in the 14th century, St. Vitus Cathedral is not only the largest and most important church in the Czech Republic but has had a profound influence throughout Central Europe. The Late Gothic style you’ll see here predates Stephensdom in Vienna and the Church of St. Marko in Zagreb, two of Central Europe’s most impressive churches.

Letná Park & Beer Garden

After exploring Prague Castle, stroll up to Chotek Gardens (Chotkovy sady), to the north of the castle complex, via the beautiful Royal Garden of Prague Castle (Královská zahrada). Designed with Italian Renaissance touches, the Royal Garden of Prague Castle has existed since the 16th century when the Habsburgs dropped by from time to time to frolic.

Spring in Letna Park

Continue east through the delightfully tranquil Letná Park (Letenské sady) to Letná Beer Garden. Prague’s favorite beer garden, set along the banks of the Vltava, offers some of the loveliest views over the city. Order a well-deserved pint of Gambrinus or Pilsner Urquell, and relax among the greenery while soaking in the perfect city panorama before continuing to explore Prague in one day.

Prague Jewish Quarter (Josefov)

Cross back into Old Town via Čechův Bridge (Čechův most) towards the Prague Jewish Quarter (Josefov). Start your exploration of Josefov with a quick hats-off to Prague’s most famous international author at the Franz Kafka Monument. Although not as impressive as K., the mammoth kinetic sculpture of Kafka’s head at Národní třída, the monument is just weird and wacky enough to spread a smile on your face.

Confusingly, most of Prague’s Jewish historical sites combine to form the Jewish Museum of Prague. The best way to experience the Jewish Quarter is to hop on a Prague Jewish Walking Tour that includes admission to all the sites of the Jewish Museum of Prague.

Tombstones in the Old Jewish Cemetery

On the tour, you’ll peek inside a couple of Prague’s most famous synagogues, including the stunning Spanish Synagogue, built in a Moorish style more at home in Andalusia than Central Europe, and the Pinkas Synagogue, a 16th-century Gothic synagogue and Holocaust memorial.

Before you leave the Jewish Quarter, stroll through the Old Jewish Cemetery. It’s easily one of the eeriest and most somber places in Prague, echoing stories of centuries past among the crooked tombstones.

Now that you’ve worked up a hearty appetite, pop into the Restaurant Mlejnice, just south of the Old Jewish Cemetery on Žatecká. Enjoy some traditional Czech grub (might I suggest their beer goulash—it’s one of the tastiest in Prague!), and wash it all down with a well-earned cold draught Czech beer.


From Josefov, slip down to the Staroměstská metro station to head towards Vyšehrad. This 10th-century fortress is oft-forgotten by tourists simply because of the distance from Old Town. Especially for the views along the Vltava River in both directions, the trip down to Vyšehrad is worth the short metro ride.

View from Vyšehrad

Unlike the small medieval town feel of Prague Castle, Vyšehrad is more of a leafy park with architectural masterpieces hidden in the midst. Nothing stands out more here than the Basilica of St. Peter and Paul at Vyšehrad, an 11th-century church that swaps out its architectural stylings every 3-4 centuries. The results of the latest remodeling built up a neo-Gothic façade that fits in perfectly with the Czech cathedral cadre.

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Wander throughout Vyšehrad, absorbing the views along the way, in search of its architectural gems. Scope out the over 900 years-young Rotunda of St. Martin and the Vyšehrad Cemetery, where some of the Czech Republic’s most famous names, including composer Antonín Dvořák, are buried.

Wenceslas Square

After exploring Vyšehrad, make your way back towards Old Town via Wenceslas Square (Václavské náměstí). The point of visiting Wenceslas Square isn’t simply to revel in beauty. Truthfully, besides the National Museum, it looks like any other Central Europe main boulevard.

The magic in visiting Wenceslas Square is in reliving the events and the stories that have made the square the most famous public space in modern Czech history.

Wenceslas Square

It seems as if every major event in Prague’s history traces back here. When Czechoslovakia declared independence from the Austro-Hungarian Empire in 1918, it was proclaimed here. The Prague Uprising that drove the Nazis from German-occupied Czechoslovakia, and even the famous self-immolation of Jan Palach, a Czech student protesting the Soviet invasion during the Prague Spring, boiled over right here in Wenceslas Square.

If you’re interested in modern European history, I’d recommend two museums on & around Wenceslas Square: the Museum of Communism and the Cold War Museum. A glance at one (or both) of the museums’ vintage war relics, propaganda art, and spy equipment should get your Soviet Union/Cold War era mojo goin’.

To end your day in Prague, there are plenty of restaurants & bars in this area to relax into the evening hours. For a unique experience, enjoy a meal at TRITON Restaurant (Václavské nám. 784/26), set in a unique cave-like interior. Or check out SOUL LOVE Bar & Restaurant (Václavské nám. 818 /45) to chow down on modern comfort food fusion and sip on classy signature cocktails and craft beer.

Where to stay with one day in Prague

These days, choosing where to stay in Prague can be challenging. In the last couple of decades, Prague has become one of Europe’s hottest destinations. Last-minute planning won’t get you very far in this city—you’ll need to plan ahead by several months if you want a good room at a good price.

As a tourist, you’ll want to be close to the Old Town, where most of the city’s most famous sites radiate. Here are a few good hotels to start your search:

  • Hotel Lippert: Literally half a block from Old Town Square, getting closer to the action doesn’t get easier than this. The hotel offers large, clean rooms in a city with ever-rising accommodation costs.
  • MyHouse Apartments: Excellent alternative to a traditional hotel. These apartments, located in Josefov next to the synagogues of the Jewish Museum of Prague, offer better value than most hotels in Old Town. The quiet neighborhood ensures a restful stay.
  • Salvator Boutique Hotel: A stylish 4-star boutique hotel located within steps of Wenceslas Square and the Prague National Museum. Rooms here are quiet, spacious, and spotless, with garden and city views.
  • Savic Hotel: Located in the heart of Old Town in an old Renaissance and Gothic building, this hotel oozes classic Old World charm. The on-site restaurant serves up tasty local fare.

More 1-day Prague itinerary ideas

  • Love culture? Get into the head of Prague’s most famous literary mastermind at the Franz Kafka Museum near Charles Bridge. Or, when it opens again in 2017, spend hours filtering through the enormous National Museum on Wenceslas Square.
  • Can’t get enough of Prague from above? Trek or ride the funicular railway up Petrin Hill to the Petrin Observation Tower before visiting Prague Castle. Almost 300 steps will get you atop the tower for some of the city’s best sweeping views.
  • Need more liquid calories? Pop into the Prague Beer Museum (not really a museum, but a gastropub) at Namesti Miru in Vinohrady to glug down one of the 30, mostly Czech, draught beers.
Ryan O'Rourke

Ryan O'Rourke is a Canadian traveller, food & drink aficionado, and the founder & editor of Treksplorer. With over 20 years of extensive travel experience, Ryan has journeyed through over 50 countries, uncovering hidden gems and sharing firsthand, unsponsored insights on what to see & do and where to eat, drink & stay. Backed by his travel experience and in-depth research, Ryan’s travel advice and writing has been featured in publications like the Huffington Post and Matador Network. You can connect with Ryan on Twitter/X at @rtorourke.

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