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Prague Christmas 2016

Prague Christmas markets » 26th November 2016 - 06th January 2017

The Prague Christmas markets are open daily at the Old Town Square and Wenceslas Square. A 'winter wonderland' awaits, for visitors to soak up the festive atmosphere, browse the stalls, and enjoy Christmas carols, hearty food and local drinks - photos.

Old Town Square in Prague
Christmas Markets 2016
Christmas markets (Vanocni trh) are a key ingredient of the festive magic in the Czech Republic, and the Prague Christmas markets are the most impressive. The markets light up the city, bringing locals and tourists together in a true 'winter wonderland' setting.

The main markets are at the Old Town Square and Wenceslas Square (5 minutes walk from each other).

Plus there are smaller markets at Republic Square, at Havel's Market, on Kampa Island, and on the square in front of St. George's Basilica at Prague Castle.
 
The Prague Christmas markets open every day from 26th November 2016 to 06th January 2017, including on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year's Day.

The markets consist of brightly decorated wooden huts selling traditional handicrafts: glassware, jewellery, embroidered lace, wooden toys, metalware, ceramics, scented candles, Christmas tree ornaments, hats, gloves and scarves, and puppets and dolls beautifully dressed in traditional costumes.

Visitors should find some nice items to take home, to decorate their houses or to use as Christmas gifts.
Prague Christmas markets
 
Prague Christmas
But Christmas markets are not just about shopping. Visitors can observe traditional foods being made, and sample all manner of local produce. Large hams are roasted on spits, there are terribly unhealthy but wonderfully tasty barbequed sausages (klobása), and cakes and pastries prepared in front of you, such as 'Trdelník', a hot sugar coated pastry.

To accompany the food, try one of the famous Czech beers - Pilsner Urquell, Staropramen and Budvar - or choose from a variety of hot drinks. Outdoor Christmas shopping is so much nicer with a cup of hot mulled wine (svařené víno or svařák) in your hand!
 
The Christmas markets at the Old Town Square also have an animals stable, where children can stroke sheep, goats and a donkey. There is also 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 Pecka, a town northeast of Prague. The tree is erected at the Old Town Square and draped in a blaze of lights. It is switched on nightly around 5:30pm, and makes a spectacular sight set against Prague's dark gothic skyline.
 Old Town Square in Prague
 
Prague Christmas markets
Wenceslas Square has a brightly lit Christmas tree too, which can be admired from all around the square.

But what is Christmas without carols? School choirs often perform late afternoon on a stage at the Old Town Square. The children, dressed in traditional costume, travel from all over the Czech Republic to sing. The trip to Prague is one of the highlights of their school year.

The festive atmosphere in Prague throughout the period of the Christmas markets is simply wonderful!
 
The theme for the markets this year is the traditional spirit of Christmas and nature. The main squares, including the observation bridge at the Old Town Square, are decorated with natural materials, such as pine needles, wood, mistletoe and gingerbread. And there is an emphasis on the traditional Christmas colours of green, white, red and gold. The market huts are decorated with bells, lanterns, gingerbreads and traditional Christmas sweets.
 
How to make the most of the Christmas Markets
Prague's city centre is compact, which is ideal for pedestrians. Book a hotel in Prague 1 (city centre), and the Christmas markets and the 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. And when you're ready for a warm bath, it's just a short walk home - Prague hotels.
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. Concerts in the beautiful churches and historic buildings are magical at this time of year - Prague concerts.

The opera and ballet season is also in full swing, with the addition of special festive performances such as The Nutcracker - Prague opera and ballet.

For a typically Czech theatre experience, the black light and marionette theatres are highly entertaining - Prague theatre.
  The Nutcracker in Prague The Nutcracker
Finally, sightseeing is a major activity in Prague, and the Christmas lights and festive atmosphere lend the historic buildings an even greater charm. A sightseeing tour will help you discover the true beauty of the city - from walking tours to coach tours to river cruises, there is an enjoyable way for everyone to explore Prague - Prague sightseeing.

Further Information
A simple way to arrange your Prague city break is to book a Prague Package.

For weather, currency exchange and practical information: Prague tourist information.

For more information on the layout of the city: Prague tourism guide.

For a quick guide to what is open and when throughout December: opening times.

For information on specific dates in December:
- 5th December 2016 - Mikulas in Prague.
- 24th December 2016 (Christmas Eve): Christmas Eve in Prague.
- 24th-26th December 2016: Prague Christmas Planner.
- 31st December 2016 (New Year's Eve): Prague New Year's Eve Planner.
Prague InformationChristmas 2016
HIGHLIGHTS
Christmas Markets
26 Nov-06 Jan:
Daily 10:00-22:00.
Old Town Square & Wenceslas Square.
more info
Lighting of the Christmas Tree
26 Nov: 17:30 at Old Town Square.
Mikulas Day
05 Dec: 16:00-18:00 at Old Town Square.
more info
Ice Rink
05 Dec-31 Jan:
Daily 10:00-21:00.
Ovocny trh (behind Estates Theatre), Old Town.
more info
Christmas Eve
24 Dec:
16:00 Christmas Mass for children at some churches.
16:30 Christmas Mass at Tyn Church.
21:00 Open-air Christmas Mass at Old Town Square.
24:00 Midnight Mass at Strahov Monastery and other churches.
more info
Christmas Planner
24-26 Dec: What's open and when at Christmas.
more info
New Year's Eve
31 Dec: Celebrations & fireworks.
more info
Prague Package
Prague Package: Prague city breaks
City breaks with airport transfers, a hotel, city tour & entertainment:
Prague Package
Hotel Offers!
Prague special hotel offers
Superb hotel offers in December:
Prague hotels
christmas
PLANNER
Prague Christmas Markets
Restaurants, entertainment & sightseeing on
24-26 December:
Christmas Planner

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