Raise a glass to Prague's anti-stag pub crawl

By Robert Butt, a Travel Enthusiast

Read more on Prague.

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Recommended for:
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Want to savour Prague's finest beers without bumping into stag parties and tourist traps? Simply follow this short and scenic route and you'll be shouting "Na zdraví!" with the locals in no time

With its quaint streets and imposing Gothic architecture, it's no mystery why visitors began to flock to Prague in their droves almost as soon as the Iron Curtain fell.

But with its buzzing nightclubs and bars serving 40p pints, the city soon became a magnate for British stag groups and was in danger of gaining a reputation for sleaze. Prices immediately went up, the old town was overrun and, as the locals will tell you, some of the city's unique charm was lost.

These days, though, there is a sense that Prague is coming back into its own. The stag parties that threatened to take over the city have largely moved on to the much-touted “new Pragues” of Tallinn, Riga and Bratislava. The stags that remain can easily be avoided by visiting some gems off the beaten track. The city’s fascinating sights, beautiful parks, cityscape views and delicious Czech beer make for a magic stay. So as they say in Prague... "Na zdraví!"

It is still a very affordable city. Half a litre of beer costs about £1, or even less in the suburbs. So here's my route for the perfect Prague pub crawl.

Start in the old town at U Fleku. This is the most touristy your pub crawl’s going to get. The oompah bands and its cavernous rooms attract the camera-toting crowds but it is still a traditional pub with a smattering of locals who tolerate the tourist charade for the excellent beer brewed on the premises. www.ufleku.cz

Then head to nearby U Zlateho Tygra. A favourite of former Czech President Václav Havel, who famously took Bill Clinton there for a swift half-litre of Pilsner Urquell. It manages to hide itself from the tourist hordes and attracts local regulars rounding off a hard days work. www.uzlatehotygra.cz

Walking through the town square, past the gothic Tynsky Cathedral and the elaborate Astronomical Clock, you get a feel for how beautiful the place is. Then head across the busy Charles Bridge towards U Glaubicu, easily the best watering hole on Malostranské Náměstí (Lesser Town Square). Despite its position on the tourist trail en route to the castle it still manages to keep its beer prices at the very sensible 27kc (90p) for a half litre of Pilsner Urquell. www.restaurant-uglaubicu.cz

Continue up the hill and you’ll arrive at Prague Castle. A complex of majestic buildings that housed Czech presidents, kings and Roman Emporers, it is an impressive sight which commands some fantastic views across the city.

A path then takes you downhill towards Letna Park. Here it's a pleasant amble uphill though the park towards numerous beer huts with gorgeous views across the Vltava and the old town beyond. Crowd the picnic benches under the chestnut trees - sharing benches is the custom and a great way to meet locals - or opt for the tidy café tables opposite at Letenský Zámecek that also serves excellent meals. www.letenskyzamecek.cz/en

If you tire of the view take a short taxi ride to the funky neighbourhood of Zizkov. This is where Prague's 24-hour party people go for their nightlife. There’s a huge concentration of pubs in this area but few are better than U Sadu, a sprawling place with a pleasant outdoor terrace that’s busy day and night. The pub also serves traditional Czech food at bargain prices. 

There are plenty of other good options nearby. But with the excellent Gambrinus on tap until 4am, you can relax in the knowledge that you’ve done Prague in a day and you’ve well and truly earned your beer. www.usadu.cz

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More information on Raise a glass to Prague's anti-stag pub crawl:

Author:
Robert Butt
Traveller type:
Travel Enthusiast
Guide rating:
4.285715
Average: 4.3 (7 votes)
Total views:
897
First uploaded:
25 September 2009
Last updated:
5 years 4 weeks 5 days 2 hours 51 min 36 sec ago
Destinations featured:
Trip types:
Food and Drink, Nightlife, Short Break
Budget level:
Budget
Free tags / Keywords:
pubs, cheap, beer, Prague, Czech Republic, local culture

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Community comments (7)

Rating:
3
0 of 0 people found the following comment helpful.

i was planning on sending my future wife on her hen party there, is prague really that bad for stag parties? i know it is very popular for nightlife.

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Rating:
4
0 of 0 people found the following comment helpful.

Good guide, very interesting to read and well written

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Rating:
4
0 of 0 people found the following comment helpful.

I enjoyed this, but have another couple to throw into the ring:

O Kocoura, Nerudova 2, Malastrana - despite being on the main line from Charles Bridge to the castle, this small, traditional pub, sparsely decorated with heavy wooden tables and pictures of cats (kocoura is Czech for cat) remains stag-free. It's very smokey and hard to find a seat, but worth a quick pint for the Budvar - too few pubs sell Budvar in Prague which is a shame.

Anna Bar (www.annabar.cz), Anenska 1 - really close to the Old Town Square and Charles Bridge, but this cellar bar has always struggled to pull in the crowds. Gambrinus and Pilsner Irquell on tap, with an extensive cocktail list and cheap pub-grub, too.

And if you really hate stags, avoid O'Ché's like the plague! The only themed Irish/Cuban bar I'm aware of, it serves as a meeting place for many stag parties (including a few I've been on!)

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Rating:
5
0 of 0 people found the following comment helpful.

Have wanted to go to Prague for ages. This guide has inspired me to book. Good review and good links. Informative and very well written. Top marks for creativity.

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Rating:
4
0 of 0 people found the following comment helpful.

A very useful guide to the Prague drinking scene with good recommendations of pubs. It is very descriptive and I can just picture myself sitting in one of these places with a nice pint.

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Rating:
5
0 of 0 people found the following comment helpful.

An informative guide and the links were really helpful!

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Rating:
5
0 of 0 people found the following comment helpful.

Having been put off Prague because of the tales of UK stag hordes, this gave me pause for thought. The writing is stylish, witty and informative, but made me wonder how many days of pilsner-soaked "research" the writer had to clock up in order to inform us so well...

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