Things to Do in Prague in November: A Cultural and Festive Guide

Ever wondered what Prague looks like draped in the crisp essence of autumn? November transforms this charming city into a picturesque canvas, splashed with the golden hues of fallen leaves and a lively cultural scene begging to be explored.

Table of contents

Why Visit Prague in November?

Why not dodge the summer crowds and experience Prague’s cobbled lanes and cozy cafes at a time when the city radiates a tranquil charm? Less crowded streets mean more space for you at the top sights! Isn't it tempting to have the majestic Prague Castle almost to yourself?

Weather Overview

November in Prague ushers in the chilly embrace of late autumn, characterized by a noticeable drop in temperature and shorter days, perfect for enjoying the city's illuminated evenings.

Temperature Range:

  • Average highs of 6°C (43°F) and lows near 0°C (32°F).

Precipitation:

  • Occasional light rain or early snowflakes might grace the city, with average rainfall around 20 mm.

Daylight:

  • Expect fewer daylight hours, with the sun setting early in the afternoon.

Given the variability and the crisp conditions, packing appropriately is crucial for comfort and enjoyment.

Prague in November

What to Pack for November Weather:

  • Warm Coat: A thick, insulated coat is essential for warding off the cold.
  • Layering Items: Include sweaters, long sleeve shirts, and thermal undergarments.
  • Waterproof Boots: Keep your feet dry and warm as you explore.
  • Scarves, Gloves, and Hats: Don’t forget these to protect against the wind and cold.
  • Umbrella: Handy for occasional showers.
  • Moisturizer and Lip Balm: Protect your skin and lips from the chilly, dry air.

With these essentials, you'll be well-prepared to enjoy all the activities and beauty Prague offers in November, regardless of the weather.

Key Events and Festivals

November in Prague is not just about the mesmerizing autumnal charm; it's also a month bustling with cultural activities and festivals that are worth experiencing. Here’s what you should look out for:

St. Martin's Day Celebrations

St. Martin's Day

  • Date: November 11
  • Locations: Throughout Prague, notably around St. Martin's churches
  • What to Expect: The highlight is the tasting of St. Martin's wine, traditionally consumed as the first wine of the season. Enjoy roast goose feasts available at many restaurants.
  • Cost: Free to attend; food and wine prices vary.

Velvet Revolution Anniversary Events

Velvet Revolution Anniversary

  • Date: November 17
  • Locations: Events are city-wide, with significant gatherings at Wenceslas Square and Národní Street, where historical protests took place.
  • What to Expect: Commemorations include speeches, exhibitions, and candlelight vigils that remember the peaceful protest that led to the fall of Communist rule in Czechoslovakia.
  • Cost: Free

Prague International Jazz Festival

Jazz Festival

  • Dates: Early to mid-November
  • Locations: Various venues across Prague, including jazz clubs and concert halls
  • What to Expect: A lineup of international and local jazz artists, making this one of Europe’s premier jazz events. Perfect for jazz lovers looking to enjoy world-class performances.
  • Cost: Tickets typically range from 200 CZK to 500 CZK per show.

Letní Letná Circus Festival

  • Dates: Late November
  • Location: Letná Park, a major public space in Prague
  • What to Expect: Contemporary circus performances featuring acrobats, clowns, and other circus acts from around the globe.
  • Cost: Ticket prices vary, usually starting around 300 CZK.

Mittel Cinemafest

  • Dates: Throughout November
  • Location: Various cinemas in Prague
  • What to Expect: This festival showcases a selection of the best contemporary Italian films.
  • Cost: Generally, tickets are priced around 150 CZK per screening.

Each of these festivals offers a unique glimpse into the cultural fabric of Prague, providing both locals and tourists with memorable experiences that highlight the city’s artistic and historical richness.

Cultural and Seasonal Activities

How about watching the city light up with Christmas cheer? Prague's Christmas markets begin to twinkle in late November. Indulge in mulled wine and trdelník as you stroll through Old Town Square, transformed into a winter wonderland.

Opening of Prague's Christmas Markets

Christmas Market

  • Start Date: Late November, usually around the 20th
  • Key Locations: Old Town Square and Wenceslas Square
  • What to Expect: Stalls brimming with handicrafts, festive decorations, seasonal treats like hot mulled wine and gingerbread, and the lighting of the Christmas tree.
  • Cost: Free entry; items for purchase vary in price.

Attending a Ballet or Blacklight Theatre Performance

National Theatre

  • Venues: National Theatre for ballet; Image Theatre or Laterna Magika for blacklight shows
  • Schedule: Performances typically run throughout November
  • What to Expect: Ballet at the National Theatre offers classic dances, while blacklight theatre provides a unique visual experience combining black light effects and animation.
  • Cost: Ballet tickets from 300 CZK; Blacklight theatre from 250 CZK.

Exploring Historic Cafes

  • Notable Cafes: Café Louvre (Národní 22), Café Slavia (Smetanovo nábř. 2)
  • What to Expect: These cafes not only offer a warm cup of coffee but also a dive into the intellectual history of Prague, once frequented by the likes of Albert Einstein and Franz Kafka.
  • Special Tip: Try traditional Czech pastries or a hearty breakfast in these atmospheric settings.

Enjoying a Concert with Dinner in the Mozart Hall

Mozart Hall

  • Location: Boccaccio Ballroom, Grand Hotel Bohemia, Old Town
  • Dates: Select evenings in November
  • What to Expect: A luxurious evening of classical music performed in a historic venue, coupled with a fine dining experience.
  • Cost: Starting from 1,500 CZK per person, including dinner.

Participating in Sports Events like Ice Hockey and Football (Soccer)

  • Venues: O2 Arena for ice hockey; Generali Česká pojišťovna Arena for football
  • Schedule: Check schedules as they vary; typically several games in November
  • What to Expect: High-energy sporting events showcasing some of the top Czech teams.
  • Cost: Ticket prices start around 300 CZK for football and 500 CZK for ice hockey.

These activities not only offer a taste of Prague’s rich cultural tapestry but also provide entertaining and engaging experiences for all visitors, encapsulating the spirit of both tradition and festive cheer.

Unique Experiences

Fancy a bit of magic? The Harry Potter escape game is a thrilling way to spend an evening. Or, step into the historic cafes of Prague to sip coffee where legends like Kafka once pondered life’s deep questions. Isn’t it thrilling to walk in the footsteps of giants?

Food and Dining

Czech Cuisine

When the chill sets in, Czech cuisine comes to the rescue with hearty dishes like goulash and svíčková. Why not duck into a traditional tavern to escape the November nip and sample dishes that warm the heart and belly?

Prague in November offers some truly distinct experiences that set it apart from other destinations, especially with its blend of history, culture, and whimsical charm.

Tour with the Prague Lanternman

  • Route: Begins at Old Town Square, weaving through the dark alleys of Old Town
  • Timing: Nightly tours starting at 7 PM
  • What to Expect: Follow the lantern-bearing guide dressed in a historical costume, as he illuminates the shadowy corners of medieval Prague with tales of ghosts and legends.
  • Cost: Approximately 400 CZK per person

Harry Potter Escape Game

  • Location: MindMaze, Na Příkopě 10, Prague 1
  • Operation: Daily, from 10 AM to 10 PM
  • What to Expect: Dive into the world of wizards and spells in this themed escape room where teams solve puzzles to 'escape' a room filled with magical challenges.
  • Cost: 1200 CZK per group of up to 5 people

Ride the Prague Christmas Tram

Christmas Tram

  • Route: Circles through the city's main sights, starting from the Public Transport Museum
  • Dates: Operates from late November through December
  • What to Expect: A festive tram decked out in Christmas decorations and lights, playing holiday music as it meanders through the historic streets of Prague.
  • Cost: Adult tickets are 50 CZK; children under 15 ride for free

Sightseeing Bus Tours

Sightseeing Bus

  • Routes: Various routes covering major attractions like Prague Castle, Charles Bridge, and the Jewish Quarter
  • Operation: Daily, from 9 AM to 4 PM
  • What to Expect: Hop-on, hop-off service allowing you to explore at your own pace with audio commentary available in multiple languages.
  • Cost: Day passes start at 500 CZK

These experiences not only provide unique ways to explore Prague but also offer enchanting perspectives of the city’s rich historical and cultural landscape, perfect for those looking to step outside the conventional tourist path.

Indoor Activities

Prefer staying indoors? Museums like the National Museum or the Mucha Museum offer sanctuaries of art and history. Isn’t it a great chance to dive deep into the rich tapestry of Czech culture without the summer crowds?

Suggestions for Indoor Activities During Cold Weather:

Spa

  • Visit a Spa: Many of Prague's hotels offer luxurious spa services. For a unique experience, visit the Alchymist Grand Hotel and Spa in Lesser Town for a day of relaxation and rejuvenation.
  • Cooking Classes: Engage in a hands-on cooking class to learn how to prepare traditional Czech dishes. Try Chefparade Cooking School for both the experience and the meal you get to enjoy afterwards.
  • Wine Tastings: Participate in wine tastings at Vinograf or Monarch Wine Bar, where sommeliers introduce you to the best local and international wines.

Museums and Galleries to Visit:

National Museum

  • National Museum:
  • Location: Václavské nám. 68, Prague 1
  • Hours: Open daily 10 AM - 6 PM
  • Cost: 250 CZK for adults; concessions available
  • Highlight: The main building is newly renovated, offering exhibitions on natural history, history, arts, and music.
  • Mucha Museum:
  • Location: Panská 7, Prague 1
  • Hours: Open daily 10 AM - 6 PM
  • Cost: 240 CZK for adults; discounts for students and seniors
  • Highlight: Dedicated to the life and works of Alphonse Mucha, a key figure in the Art Nouveau movement, featuring over 100 exhibits including paintings, photographs, and personal memorabilia.
  • DOX Centre for Contemporary Art:
  • Location: Poupětova 1, Prague 7
  • Hours: Monday 10 AM - 6 PM, Wednesday to Friday 11 AM - 7 PM, Saturday and Sunday 10 AM - 6 PM, Closed Tuesdays
  • Cost: 180 CZK for adults; reduced prices for students and seniors
  • Highlight: A dynamic cultural platform focusing on presenting contemporary art projects, experiments, and interactive exhibitions.

These activities provide enriching experiences that are perfect for those chilly November days, allowing you to immerse yourself in the cultural depth of Prague while staying cozy indoors.

Shopping and Markets

Beyond the festive markets, take this chance to explore Prague's boutiques and antique shops. Find beautifully crafted Bohemian glass that could make the perfect Christmas gift. Isn't shopping more pleasant when you’re not elbowing through crowds?

Overview of Christmas Markets and What to Expect:

  • Key Locations: The most famous markets are at Old Town Square and Wenceslas Square.
  • Dates: Typically open from late November through January.
  • Atmosphere: The markets are a bustling hive of activity, featuring beautifully decorated stalls that sell everything from Christmas ornaments to winter clothing.
  • Specialties: Look out for traditional Czech Christmas cookies, handcrafted glass ornaments, and wooden toys.
  • Culinary Delights: Savor local treats like trdelník (a hot sugar-coated pastry), klobása (Czech sausage), and medovina (warm honey wine).

Best Souvenirs to Buy in November:

Bohemian Glass

  • Bohemian Glass: Renowned worldwide, Czech glass—found at shops like Moser or backstreet boutiques in Mala Strana—is exquisite.
  • Garnet Jewelry: Czech garnet is a popular local gemstone known for its deep red color. Authentic garnet jewelry is available at certified stores such as Granat Turnov.
  • Marionettes: Handmade puppets are a traditional Czech craft. They are not just souvenirs but pieces of art, available at specialty shops around the Old Town.
  • Becherovka: A herbal bitters often enjoyed as a digestive aid, this is a unique Czech liquor that makes a great gift. It can be purchased at most liquor stores or markets.
  • Czech Porcelain: Look for the famous blue onion pattern or other traditional designs. The best places for Czech porcelain are the Manufaktura stores scattered throughout Prague.

These markets and souvenir ideas offer a taste of Czech culture and provide a festive shopping experience that you can only find in Prague during the winter months. Whether you're looking for a unique gift or a tasty treat, the Christmas markets and shops in Prague will have something

Practical Tips for Visitors

Navigating Prague is a breeze with its efficient public transport system. A day pass can whisk you from majestic castles to hidden pubs all over the city. Isn’t it convenient to explore so much for so little?

Navigating Prague in November can be a seamless experience with the right tips and tools at your disposal. Here’s how you can make the most of your visit with practical advice on transportation, saving money, and communicating effectively.

Old Town Square

Getting Around Prague in November:

  • Public Transport: Prague boasts an efficient and affordable public transportation system, including trams, buses, and a metro. A short-term pass for 24 hours costs about 110 CZK, while a three-day pass is 310 CZK.
  • Walking: Many of Prague’s central attractions are within walking distance from each other. Given the cool but manageable November weather, walking can be a pleasant way to explore.
  • Taxi and Ride-Sharing: Reliable taxi services like AAA Taxi and ride-sharing options such as Uber are available. Ensure the taxi is metered or agree on a fare before starting your journey to avoid surprises.

Tourist Passes and Savings Tips:

  • Prague Card: Consider purchasing a Prague Card for free entry to over 60 attractions, including Prague Castle and the Jewish Museum, plus unlimited public transport. Prices start at 1590 CZK for two days.
  • Combo Tickets: Many sites offer combo tickets that cover multiple attractions or tours at a reduced rate.
  • Eat Local: To save on meals, venture into eateries and pubs a bit away from the main tourist spots. You’ll enjoy authentic Czech cuisine at lower prices.

Language Tips and Useful Phrases:

  • Basic Phrases: Knowing a few key phrases can enhance your experience.
  • Hello: "Dobrý den" (DOH-bree dehn)
  • Please/Thank you: "Prosím/Děkuji" (PRO-seem/DYEH-koo-yee)
  • Yes/No: "Ano/Ne" (AH-noh/neh)
  • How much is it? "Kolik to stojí?" (KO-lik toh STO-yee)
  • Where is...? "Kde je...?" (gdeh yeh)
  • English Proficiency: English is widely spoken in tourist areas, making communication generally straightforward for visitors.

With these tips, you’re set to explore Prague with confidence and ease, making your November visit both enjoyable and efficient.

Conclusion

Prague in November offers a unique blend of tranquility, rich culture, and festive cheer, making it an ideal time to visit. With fewer tourists and a roster of intriguing activities, isn’t this the perfect month to discover the city’s authentic charm?

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