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Prague Christmas 2018

Mikulas (St. Nicholas) Day in Prague » 05 December 2018

Mikulas, St. Nicholas' Day, is on the 5th December and marks the start of Christmas for Czech people. Head for the Old Town Square in the late afternoon to observe the Mikulas tradition - Mikulas photos.

Mikulas in Prague
Mikulas (St. Nicholas) Day - from 4pm
Around 4pm on the 5th December, three figures slowly move around the Old Town Square, in and out of the Christmas markets. They are St. Nicholas, an Angel and a Devil.

Surrounding them are a throng of small children, gazing in awe, but with some apprehension. Their parents meanwhile look on with masked grins.

Glance around the square and there are many such groupings, for today is Mikulas.
 
Czech children raised on stories of Mikulas know precisely what to expect. St. Nicholas will ask each and everyone of them if they have been a good child during the past year.

Most children naturally say yes and will be asked to sing a song or recite a short poem, after which they are rewarded with sweets and other treats. But if St. Nicholas suspects they have been naughty, well!

Naughty children don't get sweets, they get lumps of coal or hard potatoes. And if they have been really naughty, they will find themselves in the Devil's sack and sent to hell!
Mikulas in Prague
 
Mikulas in Prague
With this in mind, small children are understandably worried by the presence of the Devil. So when St. Nicholas and his entourage approach, the children sing their song or recite their poem with great gusto.

Needless to say, Mikulas acts as a strong incentive to be good throughout the year!

The tradition of Mikulas is thought to derive from a 4th-century Christian saint, Nikolaos of Myra, who, it is said, secretly gave gifts to people.
 
On the day of Mikulas, the Christmas markets are in full swing. Buy a hot drink from one of the stalls, perhaps some food, and observe this wonderful tradition unfold.





Prague InformationChristmas 2018
HIGHLIGHTS
Christmas Markets at Old Town Sq. & Wenceslas Sq.
01 Dec-06 Jan
Daily 10:00-22:00
more info
Christmas Market at Prague Castle
24 Nov-07 Jan
Mon-Fri 9:00-21:00;
Sat-Sun 9:00-22:00
more info
Lighting of the Christmas Tree
at Old Town Sq.
01 Dec-06 Jan
Daily 16:30;
at Wenceslas Sq.
01 Dec-06 Jan
Daily 17:00
Mikulas Day
at Old Town Sq.
05 Dec
16:00-18:00
more info
Ice Rink
at Ovocny trh (a square behind Estates Theatre), Old Town
05 Dec-31 Jan
Daily 10:00-21:00
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 Sq.
24:00 Midnight Mass at Strahov Monastery and other churches
more info
Christmas Planner
24-26 Dec
What's open over Christmas
more info
New Year's Eve
31 Dec
Festivities & fireworks
more info

Mikulas (St. Nicholas' day) marks the start of Christmas

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