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Prague Christmas 2024

Prague Christmas Markets » 30th November 2024 - 6th January 2025


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
Prague Christmas Markets at Old Town Square
Old Town Christmas Markets

Christmas Markets 2024


The Prague Christmas Markets are open daily from 30th November 2024 to 6th January 2025, including on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year's Eve and New Year's Day.

The main Christmas markets are held at the Old Town Square (Staroměstské náměstí) and Wenceslas Square (Václavské náměstí), in the heart of the city.

At Wenceslas Square, there are markets at both the top and the bottom of the square.

The two squares are 5 minutes walk from each other.

Opening hours are 10:00-22:00. Entry is free.
In addition, small and local Christmas markets are held at several other locations:

*Small Christmas markets in Prague's city centre:

- Top of Wenceslas Square.
25th November 2024 to 6th January 2025. Opening hours are daily 10:00-20:00.

-Republic Square (Náměstí Republiky).
30th November 2024 to 30th December 2024. Opening hours are daily 10:00-20:00.

-Na Kampě Square (Na Kampě) by Charles Bridge in the Lesser Town.
30th November 2024 to 1st January 2025. Opening hours are daily 10:00-20:00.

-Havel's Market (Havelské tržiště) in the Old Town (between Old Town Square and Wenceslas Square). The only permanent city centre market adopts a festive feel from late November.
Opening hours are daily 06:00-18:30.

*Local Christmas markets just outside Prague's city centre (aimed at Czech people, although everyone is welcome):

-Peace Square (Náměstí Míru) - located 15 minutes walk from Wenceslas Square.
23rd November 2024 to 24th December 2024. Opening hours are daily 10:00-20:00.

-Tyl Square (Tylovo náměstí) - located 15 minutes walk from Wenceslas Square.
25th November 2024 to 24th December 2024. Opening hours are daily 10:00-20:00.


*The dates of the main Christmas Markets are fixed, but the small and local markets may start several days or even a week earlier. The final dates will be posted here in October.

What are the Prague Christmas Markets in 2024?


Christmas markets (Vánoční trhy) are a key ingredient of the festive magic in Czechia, and the Prague markets are the most impressive in the country. They light up the city, bringing locals and tourists together in a true 'winter wonderland' setting.
Christmas Market stall at the Old Town Square
Christmas Market stall
The Prague Christmas Markets consist of brightly decorated wooden huts, stocked with local handicrafts and traditional Christmas treats.

Among the wares on display are ceramics, jewellery, glassware, embroidered lace, wooden toys, candles, Christmas tree ornaments, winter hats and gloves, and puppets and dolls dressed in traditional costume.

While you can find lovely souvenirs on the stalls, to take home to decorate your house with or to use as Christmas gifts, the markets are about more than simply shopping. All manner of hearty local cuisine and refreshing drinks are available to sample. And much of the food is prepared in front of you.
Popular Czech foods on offer include: large hams roasted on spits (šunka); terribly unhealthy but wonderfully tasty barbecued sausages (klobása); flatbread topped with garlic, cheese and ketchup (langoš); chips (hranolky); smoked meat dumplings (knedlíky plněné uzeným masem); sweet dumplings (sladké knedlíky); and pancakes or crêpes (palačinky).
Food at the Christmas Markets
Food at the Christmas Markets
Traditional Christmas fish soup (rybí polévka) is also cooked in huge cauldrons. Made from carp, vegetables, cream and brandy, over 1,500 kilograms of ingredients are used to make the soup each year.

There are plenty of cakes and sweets too, such as spicy gingerbread (perníčky) and a hot sweet pastry called chimney cake (trdelník).

Trdelník is made from rolled dough that is wrapped around a stick, baked on an open fire, then topped with a sugar and walnut mix. It is delicious on its own, but it can have chocolate sauce spread inside it, and/or be filled with ice-cream.

A word of warning to parents: once a child has tasted trdelník, there is no going back - its comforting, sweet addictive nature means you will be pestered endlessly for another hit!
For drinks, visitors can sample famous Czech beers like Pilsner Urquell, Budvar and Staropramen (brewed in Prague).

Alternatively, opt for a hot drink: mulled wine (svařák); punch (punč); hot chocolate (horká čokoláda); honey wine (medovina); or grog - hot water, rum, lemon and sugar.

Outdoor Christmas shopping is so much nicer with a hot mulled wine or cold beer in hand!
making trdelnik at the Easter Markets
Trdelník baking

Eco Markets


Food and drink at the markets is served with 100% biodegradable plates, cutlery, cups and straws.

Where possible, ingredients are sourced locally:

Christmas fish soup is made with carp from Czech rivers and lakes, and with vegetables from local farms; Czech meat is used in sausages and hamburgers; the hams are from Czech pigs; the beer is exclusively Czech (of course!); and the wine hails from Moravia, including the wine in the svařák.

Christmas Trees


The most impressive sight of all is the mighty 24m Christmas tree at the Old Town Square. It is felled in the Liberec region of Czechia before being transported to Prague by lorry.
Christmas Tree at the Old Town Square
Old Town Square Christmas tree
The tree is dressed with giant Christmas stars, and red and gold baubles, and is draped in a blaze of 100,000 LED lights. It is a spectacular sight set against the dark Gothic skyline.

A tree lighting ceremony accompanied by rousing music is performed daily at: 16:30, 17:30, 18:30, 19:30, 20:30, 21:30.

Wenceslas Square, meanwhile, has two Christmas trees: one at the top, the other at the bottom.

The tree at the bottom of Wenceslas Square measures 15m and comes from the Hradec Králové region of Czechia.

Theme of the Prague Christmas Markets in 2024


The design of the Prague Christmas Markets is inspired by snowy, traditional Czech village scenes combined with the traditional colours of Christmas: there are wooden huts adorned with red or white roofs; the decorations are coloured vibrant red, green, gold and white; there is plenty of green foliage; and bright warm white lights illuminate everything from the Christmas trees and Observation Bridge, to giant wired angels and forest animals.
Old Town Square Christmas market
Old Town Square Xmas market
There is also an annual theme for the Christmas markets:

It is traditional to watch the Czech film version of the fairytale Cinderella (Popelka) at Christmas in Czechia. In recognition of the 50th anniversary of its making, last year's theme was "Cinderella".

The theme for 2024 will be announced shortly before the markets open. And we will update this page with the latest information at that time.

FESTIVE MUSIC & CHRISTMAS CAROLS on THE old town square stage


From mid-afternoon into the evening each day, musicians, dance troupes and folk groups dressed in traditional costume perform short routines on a stage at the Old Town Square.
Christmas music on the stage at the Old Town Square
Music at the Old Town Square
Most performers are local Czech people, although some hail from elsewhere in Europe, and even further afield.

The programme features a variety of performances, with an emphasis on Christmas music and festive dance routines.

But what is Christmas without carols? School choirs make several appearances, with the children dressed in traditional costume travelling from all over the country to perform.

Music from the stage is relayed via speakers throughout the square, to enhance the festive feel for everyone.

Other Attractions


Both the Old Town Square and Wenceslas Square markets have large nativity scenes built from wood and straw, depicting Mary, Joseph, baby Jesus, and the Three Kings.
Ice rink at Wenceslas Square
Ice rink at Wenceslas Square
Another feature is Christmas themed activities for children.

Every Saturday and Sunday from 11am onwards, workshops are held inside a hut at the Old Town Square, and sometimes on the stage. Helpers teach young children how to prepare and paint traditional Czech Christmas decorations.

At Wenceslas Square, an open-air ice rink enhances the festive winter atmosphere. Skaters of all levels are welcome, and skates are available for hire at the rink.

Other ice rinks are also set up at various locations in the city - December events in Prague.

Photo Opportunities


The Observation Bridge (free to enter) at the Old Town Square is a terrific place from which to take photos of the Christmas Markets. Climb the steps to the platform and take in the view.
Observation Bridge
Observation Bridge, Old Town
For a higher vantage point, climb the Old Town Hall Tower (entrance fee applies). From the top, enjoy magnificent views over the Old Town Square and as far away as Prague Castle.

Street level photography is of course another option. Amongst the market stalls, you can take vivid, close up shots of the colourful wares on offer, and of food and drink being prepared.

Weather in December in Prague


The weather in Prague in December is highly changeable. The average temperature is -1°C (30°F), but it can deviate dramatically in either direction.

There are bright and sunny, relatively warm periods when temperatures rise to 10°C (50°F). Equally, there can be heavy bouts of snow that last several days or weeks, when temperatures drop to between -10°C (25°F) and -15°C (5°F).


Clothes to Wear


For sightseeing, entertainment and dining, most tourist establishments in Prague welcome visitors dressed in casual attire. However, you should dress reasonably smartly when attending the opera houses and grand concert halls, and at high-end restaurants.
Christmas Market
Wenceslas Square Xmas market
To protect yourself against the elements, bring a warm winter jacket, hat and gloves. Many visitors pack their thermals or base layers too!

If you get caught out by the weather, there are shops that can help. These include department stores like Marks & Spencer, shoe shops such as Bata, and specialist outdoor clothing and footwear stores like Rock Point.

Hats and gloves can also be purchased from market stalls and souvenir shops.

As Prague is a wonderful city to explore on foot, wear comfortable walking shoes or boots during the day.

Where to Stay in Prague


The district of Prague 1 is the best place to stay in Prague. This is the city centre and it is where most of the sightseeing, entertainment and nightlife is located.

Prague 1 is also where the Christmas Markets are held.
Prague Hotels
Hotels in Prague 1
Prague 1 is compact and highly pedestrianised, and is itself split into several areas.

The two most popular areas to stay within Prague 1 are the Old Town, which has the Old Town Square at its heart, and the New Town, which has Wenceslas Square at its heart.

The third most popular area is the Lesser Town. This lies across the river from the Old Town, and can be easily reached from it by strolling across Charles Bridge.

All areas of Prague 1 are within easy walking distance of each other.
By staying in Prague 1, whenever you fancy dropping in to the Christmas Markets, you can leave your hotel and be in the midst of the action in minutes.

Browse the stalls, soak up the atmosphere, grab a drink and a hot snack, then when you're ready to freshen up it's just a short walk back to base. And in Prague 1, the sights, tourist attractions, museums, theatres, concert halls, restaurants and shops will all be nearby.
Stalls at the Prague Christmas Markets
See the sights in Prague

Sightseeing in Prague


Sightseeing is a wondrous experience in Prague, with magnificent squares and majestic monuments to visit, and a dramatic history waiting to be uncovered.

The festive atmosphere lends the city an even greater charm than usual, so be sure to allow enough time in your itinerary simply to wander and explore the city by yourself.

Having said this, we do advise booking at least one Prague tour. There are fascinating historical tales wrapped up in the monuments, many of which require an expert to reveal them. A professional local guide truly can bring Prague to life for you.

The sights and attractions are open every day throughout the Christmas season, except on Christmas Eve.

River Cruises At Christmas


The Vltava River flows through the heart of the city, and many famous sights line its banks. This can make river cruises an ideal way to experience the unique ambience of Prague.
Prague Christmas River Cruise
Christmas River Cruises
A boat trip is also the easiest way to see the sights: just sit back and relax with a drink in hand, and take it all in!

River cruises range from sightseeing trips and lunch cruises to an evening dinner cruise with live music aboard a luxurious, ultra-modern boat.

Boats are heated and festively decorated in the build up to Christmas, ensuring a comfortable and enjoyable experience no matter the weather.

There is an additional sightseeing cruise too. The Advent River Cruise sets sail in the afternoon every weekend in the build up to Christmas. Onboard, Christmas carols are played and guests are served hot mulled wine and a freshly baked cake.
From walking tours to bus tours to river cruises, there are many ways to uncover the wonder of Prague this Christmas.

Entertainment in Prague


During the festive season, there is entertainment galore in Prague, including traditional Czech and Medieval nights, and a number of highly atmospheric Christmas concerts.


Classical Concerts

We particularly recommend attending a classical concert in Prague. Performances are staged in grand concert halls, Baroque palaces, ancient churches and other beautiful historic buildings, and are simply magical at this time of the year.

While it is difficult to recommend individual concerts, such is the choice, Christmas concerts at the Klementinum can be particularly special. The historic nature of the building combined with the exceptionally talented musicians who perform always ensures a highly atmospheric event.

In terms of large spectacular concerts, Municipal House and Rudolfinum are the grandest concert halls in the city and never fail to impress.

Meanwhile, Prague's ancient churches host the most wondrous Christmas concerts, for example St. Nicholas Church and Tyn Church at the Old Town Square; St. Clements and St. Salvator at Charles Bridge; the quaint St. Martin in the Wall Church; and the stunning Spanish Synagogue.

The best classical concerts always sell out, so we strongly advise booking tickets in advance:

November Concerts

December Concerts

January Concerts


Opera & Ballet
The Magic Flute at Estates Theatre in PragueMagic Flute at Estates Theatre The opera and ballet season is also in full swing, with some excellent productions at all three of the Prague opera houses: Prague State Opera, National Theatre and Estates Theatre.

Audiences can enjoy spectacular performances of operas such as Hansel and Gretel (Humperdinck), Cosi Fan Tutte (Mozart), La Traviata (Verdi), The Devil and Kate (Dvořák), The Bartered Bride (Smetana) and La Boheme (Rossini).

Mozart's fairy tale opera, The Magic Flute, is ideal family fare for Christmas, and is staged at the Estates Theatre.

Ball im Savoy is another popular opera, full of dance, love and comedic twists, and often staged at the Prague State Opera.
(Note: Tickets for the opera houses go on sale in July 2024. If you wish to attend a performance, let us know and we will email you when they are listed - contact us)
The Nutcracker at National Theatre in PragueNutcracker at National Theatre Festive productions are a prominent feature of the repertoire at many theatres in Prague. Tchaikovsky's ever-popular ballet The Nutcracker, for example, is staged at two theatres in December: National Theatre and Broadway Theatre.

Tickets for The Nutcracker at the National Theatre are the most sought-after of all theatrical productions during the Christmas season. If visitors wish to attend a performance, we advise booking as soon as they come out.
(Note: The Nutcracker tickets go on sale in September 2024. Prague Experience always holds exclusive tickets for all performances, so if you wish to attend one, let us know and we will email you when they are listed - contact us)
November Opera & Ballet

December Opera & Ballet

January Opera & Ballet
Black Light Theatre

If you are seeking a typically Czech experience, black light theatres in Prague put on shows that are highly visual, so can be enjoyed by all ages and nationalities:

November Theatre

December Theatre

January Theatre
TRADITIONAL Czech nights & Medieval shows

For the best in local hospitality, consider the Traditional Czech Night and the Medieval Tavern. Both are 'all-inclusive' events, and are well suited to a cold winter's night.

other events at Christmas


December 2024 Christmas events + January 2025 Christmas events

PUBLIC TRANSPORT


Old Town Square Christmas markets:

Metro station: Staroměstská (line A), Můstek (lines A & B), Namesti Republiky (line B)
Tram stop: Staroměstská (trams 2,17,18)


Wenceslas Square Christmas markets:

Metro station: Muzeum (lines A & C), Můstek (lines A & B)
Tram stop: Václavské namesti (trams 3,5,6,9,14,24)

WHAT'S On at Christmas (24-26 December) and New Year's Eve in Prague


For information on spending Christmas in Prague:

-24th December: Christmas Eve in Prague
-24th-26th December: Christmas Planner

For information on the New Year's Eve celebrations:

-31st December: New Year's Eve
-31st December: New Year's Eve Planner

Find out what's open throughout December: Christmas opening hours and Christmas events.

More Information


For an introduction to the city: Prague tourism information.

For practical information, including advice on currency exchange: Prague tourist information.

For travel advice: Travel to Prague and Travel around Prague by public transport.

For an easy way to visit Prague, the Prague Package includes a hotel, Prague airport transfers, sightseeing and entertainment.
informationCHRISTMAS 2024
KEY DATES
XMAS MARKETS

Old Town Square & Wenceslas Square
30 Nov-06 Jan
Daily 10:00-22:00
SMALL & LOCAL MARKETS

Top of Wenceslas Square
25 Nov-06 Jan
Daily 10:00-20:00

Republic Square
30 Nov-30 Dec
Daily 10:00-20:00

Na Kampe Square
30 Nov-01 Jan
Daily 10:00-20:00

Peace Square
23 Nov-24 Dec
Daily 10:00-20:00

Tyl Square
25 Nov-24 Dec
Daily 10:00-20:00
TREE LIGHTING CEREMONY

30 Nov-06 Jan
Old Town Square
Daily 16:30, 17:30, 18:30, 19:30, 20:30, 21:30
LAMP LIGHTING CEREMONY

Charles Bridge
01-23 Dec
Daily 16:10-16:30
ICE SKATING

Wenceslas Square
05 Dec-31 Jan
Daily 09:00/21:00

Ovocny trh, Old Town
05 Dec-31 Jan
Daily 10:00-21:00

Na Frantisku, Old Town
05 Dec-31 Jan
Daily 08:00-19:00/21:00/22:00

Tower Park: Žižkov, Prague 3
05 Dec-31 Jan
Mon-Fri: 15:00-20:00; Sat-Sun: 09:00-20:00
MIKULAS DAY

Old Town Square & Wenceslas Square
05 Dec 2024
16:00-19:00
XMAS EVE

24 Dec 2024
-16:00 Christmas Mass for children at various churches
-16:30 Christmas Mass at Tyn Church
-21:00 Open-air Christmas Mass at Old Town Square
-24:00 Midnight Mass at Strahov & other churches
XMAS PLANNER

24-26 Dec 2024
What's open at Christmas: restaurants, entertainment & sightseeing
NEW YEAR'S EVE

31 Dec 2024
Festivities & Fireworks
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Your guide to the Prague Christmas Markets 2024

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