When walking through the tourist hotspots of Prague, you will be surrounded by advertisements for museums, galleries and exhibitions. The sad reality is that many of these places exist purely to try and sell expensive merchandise to tourists. A lot of them are simply over-priced and disappointing and for the most part this won’t become clear until you’ve parted with the entrance fee. We’ve compiled this list of some genuinely interesting exhibitions to visit in the in the city. All places listed offer not only value for money but a unique and memorable experience.
The Invisible Exhibition (Neviditelna Vystava)
This truly fascinating exhibition allows visitors to discover how it feels to be in complete darkness. Your blind or partially sighted guide will lead you through a series of everyday situations, which you must navigate using only your senses of touch, hearing, smell and balance. Amongst other things, you will try to cross a busy street, buy a drink in a bar and try to find your way around a kitchen. When I visited this exhibition, our guide was absolutely fantastic. He was friendly, supportive and completely open to answering questions and talking about his experiences in a really honest way. A visit to The Invisible Exhibition will really change the way you view the world.
- The exhibtion can be found at Karlovo Namesti 1/23. It is inside the Novomestska Radnice (The New Town Hall).
- On weekdays, tours run from 12pm-7pm and at weekends from 10am-7pm.
- To avoid disappointment, we recommend that you book your tour in advance. Bookings can be made over the phone or in person at the exhibition. Tours are available in English, Spanish, French, Russian or Hungarian but be sure to specify your language preference when booking. Contact information is available here.
- A tour lasts for 90 minutes. You will be in complete darkness for around 60 minutes (oh, and wear comfortable shoes!)
This place really is one of Prague’s hidden gems. If you didn’t know it was there, you would more than likely walk straight past it. Even though it is part of Prague’s National Gallery, The Lapidarium is not widely publicised and this is a real shame considering the beauty and historical significance of some of the stonework which is kept here. Amongst countless other treasures, you can see the 6 original gothic statues which once adorned The Charles Bridge, engraved tombstones from the 11th century and the first statue ever carved of Saint Wenceslas (after whom Wenceslas Square is named). The Lapidarium was once voted one of Europe’s top 10 most beautiful exhibitions and is well worth a visit for art lovers.
- The Lapidarium can be found at Vystaviste 442 in Holesovice Prague 7 and is part of the Vystaviste Holesovice exhibition grounds. It is most easily accessed by tram, just take tram number 6 or 12 to the stop Vystaviste Holesovice.
- It is open every day from 12pm-6pm and the entry fee is just 50CZK.
The Church of Saint Cyril and Methodius (The Heydrich Terror Memorial)
Visiting the Heydrich Terror Memorial is a moving and emotional experience. In Prague on May 27th 1942, two Czech paratroopers assassinated Reinhard Heydrich, who was the head of the Nazi security police. The crypt of The Church of Saint Cyril and Methodius is where they hid, as Nazi forces lead a zealous manhunt to track them down. The church is now home to a museum, which offers visitors the opportunity to learn more about their story, the events which led to the assassination, the assassination itself and the horrific events of its aftermath. This story was the inspiration for the 2016 film Anthropoid (which was filmed in Prague) and also for the bestselling novel HhhH by Laurent Binet.
- The Museum can be found Resslova 9a Prague 1 (entry from Na Zderaze street). The closest Metro Station is Karlovo Namesti (B Line).
- The Museum is open Tuesday-Saturday 9am-5pm and the entrance fee is just 75CZK.
The Magic Cavern
Enter the Psychedelic kingdom of Argondia, a fantastical fairy-tale kingdom created by the Czech artist and sculptor who prefers to be known simply as “Reon”. Around half way up the beautiful Petrin hill you will find a former mill building, the interior of which has been completely transformed so you will really feel like you are inside a twisting, turning cave system. Unlike most, this cavern is far from being dull, gloomy and damp. Conversely, it is overflowing with imagination and surprises. Reon’s eccentric paintings and sculptures jump off the walls at you and there is barely an inch of this cavern which is not adorned with bright, twirling colours. This gallery may not be to everyone’s taste but for those who are interested in trying something which is more than a little unusual, we highly recommend The Magic Cavern.
- To find The Magic Cavern, you should first take the tram to the stop Ujezd. From here you can choose to take a walk up Petrin hill (which we highly recommend for the stunning views) or you can take the funicular from the base of the hill to the half way point (Nebozizek).
- The Cavern is open everyday from 10am-10pm and the entrance fee is only 70CZK.
The National Technical Museum
My brother recently came to visit me in Prague and he said that a visit to The National Technical Museum was the absolute highlight of his trip. This huge museum is dedicated to the development of technology in the Czech Republic and the worst thing about it is that it really is too big to be able to take in everything in one trip. There are exhibitions relating to photography, chemistry, measuring time, transport and mining amongst many, many others. We recommend putting on your head lamp and going down below ground level to take the mining tour, where you will be able to experience how it would really have felt to be a miner and learn more about the machines that were used. The history of transportation exhibit is also very popular with visitors. The huge exhibition hall is full of cars on the ground floor, with a second floor gallery full of motorbikes and planes and hot air balloons are suspended from the ceiling. You can walk through the hall chronologically, starting at the end of the 19th century and observe the developments over time to the present day.
- The National Technical Museum can be found at Kostelní 42, 170 78 Prague 7 (Just behind Letna Park) The closest tram stop it Letneske Namesti (Trams 1, 12, 25, 8, 26).
- The Museum is closed on Mondays but is open from 9am-5.30pm Tues-Fri and 10am-6pm at weekends. Admission is 190CZK.
- To visit the mines, you mut first reserve a place on a tour (this can be done at the cash desk). There is an extra charge of 50CZK to take the tour of the mines.
Nostalgic Prague at The Jindrisska Tower
On the very top floor of Prague’s famous Jindrisska Tower you can get a feel for how it would have felt to be walking Prague’s streets during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The Nostalgic Prague photography exhibition was organised by internationally renowned Czech artist David Cerny and opened at the end of February this year. What makes this exhibition really special is that it is full of real people, their personalities and the trivialities of their everyday lives. You can also get a real sense of how the city has changed over the years and how in some ways it has stayed just the same. There are some really stunning shots of Prague’s majestic old town alongside images showing how life would have looked in some of Prague’s outlying suburbs, including Karlin, Holesovice and Liben. The Jindrisska Tower is a great place to take in some views over the city’s famous spires, towers and domes and the Nostalgic Prague exhibition gives visitors a chance to compare the present day views with those which could have been seen over 100 years ago.
- The exhibition will run up until August 20th 2017
- The Jindrisska Tower can be found at tram stop Jindrisska, or is just a 2 minute walk from Wenceslas Square.
- The Jindrisska Tower is Prague’s oldest freestanding bell tower and you can still see one of the original bells, which was forged in 1518 and is known as “Maria”. The tower is also home to the stylish and unusual Zvonice Restaurant, which is well worth a visit.