Spending your holidays in Prague this year? This is how we do.
1. GETTING MERRY
Nobody should be alone at Christmas! Or sober. I believe meeting friends/ lovers/ family under one of those massive fairytale trees in town is a thing you should definitely not deprive yourself of during the Yuletide season. Gathering around a glass of steaming hot booze is both bliss-inducing and oh so low-maintenance, often with plenty screenplay potential as a bonus (such as when you happen to bump into two exes while trying to convince your drunk friend to please for the love of god leave the disposable toilet…)
Czechs are not particularly fussy about their mulled wine, which is why you can still sample some of world’s worst specimen right here in the city of a hundred spires (yes I’m looking at you, Wenceslas square market). If you like yourself too much to take the discovery journey, take my advice and head straight to Vinohrady. The market at Namesti Miru is a much less touristy (but equally photo-ready) alternative to its centrally located counterparts and traditionally offers the best mulled wine out of all markets in the city.
Here for the beer? Don’t miss the annual Christmas beer by the admired family brewery Matuška. Their limited edition of a 19% EXTRA IPA with a very distinct spicy smell made my dad almost too happy last week. (This is where. Great place.)
Christmas markets at Náměstí Míru (metro A: Náměstí Míru)
2. ICE-SKATINNG WITH A VIEW
Sadly, most of Prague’s popular rinks never even opened this year and still remain pretty hazy about whether we can do anything, at all, to make them kindly change their minds. One of the very few exceptions is the nice and big (40x20m) rink Na Františku, with cool views of Letná park and a conveniently central location. Not to be combined with points 1 or 3, the aforementioned discovery tour de mulled wine and the binge-brunching.
Open both on Christmas Day and Boxing Day.
Na Františku, Na Františku 8 (metro A: Staroměstská)
Another great option, if a bit lacking in the view department, is the rink outside the shopping centre in Pankrác, also open both on Christmas Day and Boxing Day. Should you wish to compensate for the missing eye-candy, consider a quick coctail at the dizzying Aureole, a place that happens to be both a stone-throw away from the rink and the highest located restaurant/ bar in Prague.
OC Arkády Pankrác, Na Pankráci 1727/86, Praha 4 (metro C: Pankrác)
3. BRUNCHES & LUNCHES
I’m also the biggest fan of the divine eco-chic Chateau Mcely, which might not be a metro ride away but since special occasions call for special action, I thought you should know that their award-winning restaurant Piano Nobile offers a special Christmas Day/ Boxing Day goose menu and a themed alchemy cocktail night for New Year’s Eve. Prepare to fall in love with this perfection of a place, madly and deeply.
4. CHRISTMAS CINEMA
This is for all of you carp-pacifists, Christmas agnostics, and the guy who tried to convince me to ditch Christmas this year and go sit around a sacred celtic fire with him instead. Or something. The artsy Aero cinema has been showing Monty Python’s The Life of Brian on the Christmas Eve for as long as I can remember, with a fine addition to the movie temptation of Casablanca on Christmas Day in Bio Oko. What better way to escape the trashy Christmas TV, avoid/ postpone the traditional big family fight and show off your newly acquired ugly knitwear all at the same time?
Aero, Biskupcova 87/31a, Praha 3 (tram: Biskupcova) Tel. 271771349
Bio Oko, Františka Křížka 15, Praha 7 (tram: Kamenická) Tel. 233 382 606
We all love a bit of quirky, but I dare you to think of a more hilair thing to do this Christmas than paying a visit to this adorable pop-up sauna in Dejvice. Intrigued? Check availability here and book your sauna session (for up to 4 people, at 70 Kč/ 90 min) at email@example.com. Open until 5/1/2015.
Klubovna, Generála Píky, Praha 6 (metro A: Dejvická) Tel. 776 345 069