Want to visit the Czech Republic but not sure what else there is to do other than soak in the beauty of Prague? While the city is undoubtedly the number one attraction, the Czech Republic has so much to offer.That is why I, a local from Prague, have created this list of the best day trips from Prague. This way you can see more of this amazing country!
The 7 Best Day Trips From Prague
Prague is a city with many great things to see and do to fill your time. But if you’re here for a longer trip or want to explore areas beyond the city, there is also much to do. I have put together a list of the best day trips from Prague to round out your trip to the Czech Republic. You can explore historical areas, other cities, or castles near Prague.
I have written how far these locations are from the center of Prague. That way, you can plan how long it will take to get to these sites. To familiarize yourself with the public transportation and routes of Prague, I suggest you download the IDOS app.
7. Learn about WWII History at the Terezin Concentration Camp
45 minutes (67 km) | Former Concentration Camp | WWII Historical Area
Formerly known as Theresienstadt Concentration Camp, Terezin is a site of of tragedy and sadness, but for those who are interested in recent history, it’s an important place to learn about the past.
This military city was occupied by the German Nazis who established the prison of the Gestapo (Secret Police of Nazi Germany) in the small fortress of Terezin during the Second World War. This area and the nearby museum expose the terrible history of the treatment of Jewish prisoners.
According to the Terezin camp website, a Jewish ghetto was established here in 1941, and around 140,000 people passed through it. Some were taken to other execution camps; 35,000 died in Terezin. It is a somber place, but one we can’t forget in order to prevent such a thing happening again.
You can visit the small and great fortresses here, explore the underground corridors, see the Magdeburg Barracks, the crematorium, and the Jewish cemetery.
How To Get To Terezin:
Bus: Direct transfer from Nádraží Holešovice station in Prague to Terezin. It takes about 1 hour and 15 minutes.
Car: From Prague, it is approximately 65 km to the Retranchement 5 information center in Terezin and takes approximately 50 minutes.
Guided tour: A guided tour from Prague can take you there. The tour takes around 5 hours.
Location: Terezin concentration camp
6. Discover the Historic Architecture of Dresden
1.75 hours (147 km) | German City | Gothic Architecture | Rebuilt Post-WWII
One of the advantages of coming to the Czech Republic is that you can easily connect with neighboring countries, like Germany. From Prague you can get to the incredible German city of Dresden in less than two hours.
The first time I visited, the city surprised me with its history and architecture. Despite all the history it has endured, the city was reborn. According to the official website of Dresden, during the Second World War Dresden suffered massive destruction from air raids that wiped out a large part of the city in 1945. It was rebuilt over the years and has since become an economically prosperous German city.
Dresden is known as the “Florence of the Elbe” for its art collections and Baroque style, and for its location in the Elbe Valley.
You’ll enjoy the Old Town and New Town areas here. Make sure to seek out the Procession of Princes (a 101-meter mural), the Frauenkirche, and the Semper Opera House. Notable buildings include the Dresden Palace, the Sanctissimae Trinitatis Cathedral, and the Zwinger Palace.
For a fun stop, head over to the Dresdner Molkerei Gebrüder Pfund, which is the most stunning dairy store you’ll ever come across.
How To Get To Dresden From Prague:
Car: From Prague it is 147 km to Dresden, and it will take you approximately 1 hour and 40 minutes.
Bus: Leaving from the UAN Florenc bus terminal in Prague to Dresden takes approximately 2 hours. Some of the best bus lines are Regiojet and Flixbus.
Train: From the central train station in Prague to Dresden, it can take about 2 and a half hours.
Guided tours: There are several tour excursions with transportation included from your accommodation in Prague. You’ll see Dresden with a professionally guided tour for a 10-hour day trip.
Location: Dresden, Germany
Coming to Prague soon? Don’t miss our tips of the best things to do in Prague, plus where to stay in the city!
5. Get Lost in Nature at Bohemian Switzerland National Park
1.75 hours (113 km) | Nature | Sandstone Arches
This excursion is ideal for lovers of nature and hiking. Believe me that the end result is truly incredible. Touring this park is a unique experience because you will completely disconnect from the hectic city of Prague.
The park is about 700 square kilometers and located on the banks of the Elbe river, specifically the border between the Czech Republic and Germany. (Not Switzerland, as the name implies!) Here you will find lots of sandstone rocks and biodiversity, creating an impressive landscape. The landscape of Bohemian Switzerland has three parts: the Elbe river canyon with its tributaries, the plateaus in the middle, and the sandstone rocks and mountains on the north side.
Fun fact: Some of the scenes from The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe were filmed in this park. Make sure to find the Pravčická Archway, which is a magnificent sandstone arch, and the Kamnitz Gorge, where the Kamenice river flows. You can even take a boat ride between the Edmund Rock formations or the Wild Gorge.
Stop at the charming town of Hřensko for a bite to eat and to learn more about this beautiful park.
How To Get To Bohemian Switzerland National Park:
Car: The easiest and fastest way to get there. The route is around 2 hours to get to the town of Hřensko, which is the entrance to the park.
Train: From the central train station in Prague, you take a train to Děčín city. Then from Děčín you have two ways to get to Hřensko:
- Take another train to Schöna (Germany) for about 30 minutes. Then from Schöna you cross the river by ferry for about two minutes to Hřensko.
- From Děčín, you can also take a bus in front of the train station to the village of Hřensko.
Guided tour: Normally the excursions include transportation and food. It can take about 12 hours for the entire excursion from Prague with a local guide.
Location: Bohemian Switzerland National Park
4. Visit One of the Top Spa Cities in Europe: Karlovy Vary
1.5 hours (127 km) | Natural Hot Springs | Wellness Minded | Film Festival
Karlovy Vary is another Prague town that will enchant you as it is surrounded by hills, forests, and rivers. It’s also one of our most famous spa and wellness towns, with Bohemian vibes. The UNESCO World Heritage recently added Karlovy Vary as one of the great spa towns in Europe.
For centuries, the city has been filled with wealthy aristocratic and bourgeois families. It also served as the setting for the Casino Royale film from the James Bond series, in addition to many other films.
Something interesting is also that every year one of the oldest film festivals in the world takes place here: the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival. According to its website, it’s the most important film festival for A-list films in Central and Eastern Europe. During the film festival, the city is very crowded with celebrities and their fans.
In Karlovy Vary you can focus on a day of relaxation in one of many spas and mineral hot springs—don’t forget to buy a traditional Karlovy Vary porcelain jug to drink the local spring water. Try the local herbal liquor Becherovka, then walk around the city’s colonnades or to the Moser Museum. If you’re up for a scramble in the forest outside the city, head to the Jelení skok deer sculpture.
How To Get To Karlovy Vary:
Bus: From the UANC Florenc bus terminal, the trip is approximately 2 hours.
Train: From Prague Central Railway Station to Karlovy Vary Station, it takes approximately 3.5 hours.
Car: This is the easiest, fastest, and most comfortable option. The journey takes approximately an hour and a half.
Guided tour: This option is highly recommended and safe. Because local guides lead these tours, you’ll acquire a deeper knowledge of its history and sights. The itinerary is a full day.
Location: Karlovy Vary
Coming to Prague soon? Don’t miss our tips of the best things to do in Prague, how to see the Prague Castle, and the best places to eat!
3. See the Impressive Karlštejn Castle and All Its Art
40 minutes (30 km) | Castle | Medieval Art | Less Busy Area | Fun for Families
Just like a fairy tale: That’s how I describe Karlštejn Castle. Besides being one of the most popular and beautiful castles in my country, it is very close to the city, which makes it one of the best day trips from Prague.
According to the castle’s website, the King of Bohemia and Holy Roman Emperor, Charles IV, built Karlštejn Castle as his own private residence in the mid-1300s. The imposing castle served as a fortress to protect the jewels of the Bohemian crown, sacred relics, and royal archives for many years. The king also lived here with his son Wenceslas IV until 1419.
The fortified structure of the castle is formed by a five-story palace next to the Mariana tower, a courtyard, the well tower, the Burgrave’s house and also another, taller tower of approximately 60 meters (200 feet) in height. The views are beautiful from this castle, and so are the many artworks and decorations found within its walls.
You’ll find the Chapel of the Holy Cross, known as the largest chapel in the world, inside the castle, along with 129 paintings. Be sure to stop at the Czech Nativity Museum after you visit the castle. Then enjoy some delicious Czech food with the beautiful views.
How To Get to Karlštejn:
Train: This is the cheapest option, and trains run frequently from the central train station in Prague. There is a direct train to Karlštejn and another with a connection in the city of Beroun. The journey can take about 45 minutes.
Car: It is approximately 19 miles (30 km) from Prague; the journey can take 45 minutes.
Guided Tour: A tour with a local guide who will show you the points of interest and history is a good idea. You can do a half-day tour or book a bike tour to Karlštejn.
Location: Karlštejn Castle
2. Discover the Old Silver Mines and Cathedrals of Kutná Hora
1 Hour (84 km) | Silver Mines | Medieval History | UNESCO
Kutná Hora is another one of the best day trips from Prague to explore. This ancient city has many interesting things to see and do during your day. There are monuments, chapels, and a monastery to explore, and tasty food to try. Kutná Hora has been added to the UNESCO World Heritage site.
In its medieval years, Kutná Hora was the most important royal city due to its silver mine; during that time it grew in prosperity and wealth. You can learn about the mine and its importance at the Czech Museum of Silver and Medieval Mine, one of the richest and oldest museums in our country.
One notable place to visit is the Sedlec Ossuary. It’s a deeply Gothic little chapel that was decorated with human bones in the chandeliers and elsewhere. It’s a little creepy but definitely interesting for adults. In Kutná Hora you will also find monuments, cathedrals and a picturesque town that will not disappoint you. Be sure to find the Italian Court, where you can see how coins were minted in an old palace.
I also recommend searching out St. Barbara’s Cathedral, thee UNESCO-designated Cathedral of the Assumption of Our Lady and Saint John the Baptist in the old Cistercian Monastery (European architecture-influencing frescos here), the Stone House, the Dačický House, and the Church of St. John of Nepomuk.
How To Get to Kutna Hora:
Car: It is the fastest way, and will only take you about an hour.
Train: You can take the train from the central train station in Prague to Kutná Hora, and the journey takes about an hour and a half.
Bus: You take the bus in Prague from Haje to Kutná Hora. It takes 1 hour and 40 minutes.
Guided tour: The tours are also interesting with local guides; you visit many places and learn the history. The tours take around 6 hours with transport from Prague.
Location: Kutná Hora
1. Explore One of the Oldest Cities in the Czech Republic: Český Krumlov
2 Hours (172 km) | Medieval Castle and Village Vibes | Graphite Mine | Ancient City
This magical medieval city, bordered by the meanders of the Vltava river, is one of my favorite places. Český Krumlov has been part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1992, and National Geographic magazine included Český Krumlov as one of the most beautiful historical sites in 2008.
Adding a bit of history, according to the Český Krumlov online encyclopedia, this territory belonged to the Slavníkovec family during the 9th century; then the city and the castle of Krumlov grew significantly during the reign of the Rosenberg family in the 14th century. Also notable is that this city dates back to the Old Stone Age of 70,000 to 50,000 B.C.
The 19th century brought about modern transformations such as factories and mines. In 1920 the Czech government renamed the city Český Krumlov. There’s a lot to experience here, so plan for a long day or an overnight trip.
Make sure to see the Český Krumlov castle, which has spectacular gardens and incredible views of the city. Also notable is the Cloak Bridge, nearby—it has many arches and spans the old castle moat. Be sure to see Latran, the picturesque medieval neighborhood, and the Old Town area. I also recommend stopping at the Budejovice Gate, the only one of the nine entrance gates to the city that has remained over the centuries.
In addition, you’ll find museums, theaters, taverns with terraces, and even a graphite mine to explore. A stop at the Church of St. Vitus must also be on your list. You’ll be rewarded if you spend plenty of time on this day trip from Prague.
How To Get To Český Krumlov:
Car: From Prague to Český Krumlov, it is about 2 hours, and a car is the fastest way.
Bus: From Prague at the UANC Florenc bus station to Český Krumlov, the direct journey takes approximately 3 hours.
Guided tour: Spend all day with a local guide who will transport you there and back to Prague. It can take up to 12 hours, and some tours combine with visits to Hluboka Castle or České Budějovice, both of which are worth a visit.
Location: Český Krumlov
Where to Stay in Prague
Prague has a rich cultural history that is seen in both the Old Town and New Town areas of the city. Plan where to stay in this magnificent old city in the best neighborhoods.
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