Old Town Prague showcases the best of two distinct worlds. Travelers enjoy all the conveniences of modern life while enjoying a spectacular medieval backdrop.
The City embraces its medieval history, displayed in cobblestone streets, half-timbered buildings, and a spectacular castle that dominates the skyline.
Even a casual observer will note the lively aura of Renaissance magic floating through the streets. Here’s how Old Town Prague is like a live-action Renaissance Faire.
A Blacksmith Displaying His Work
A blacksmith set up shop in Old Town Square. Like a Renaissance Faire, he forges his wares in front of a captive audience.
He spends his days molding new trinkets out of hot metal, which he offers for sale at the shop adjacent to his workspace.
Town Square features a block of little wooden stands resembling a medieval market. Locals utilize these stands to sell a variety of trinkets, including homemade jewelry, hand-crafted woodwork, linens, and a variety of other items – including the blacksmith’s wares.
The most significant difference between this setup and the Renaissance Faire’s merchant quarter is that the wooden structures, although tent-like, are much more permanent.
Medieval-Style Music Playing on Speakers in the Town Square
As you stroll through Old Town Square, you’ll hear the delightful harmonies of harp and flute dancing in the background. It’s similar to the soft background noise you’d hear throughout a Renaissance Faire.
A Stage for Live Performances
A Renaissance Faire generally has numerous stages set up for the different shows and events that are going on, and Old Towne Square only had one, but the general idea was the same.
During my first night on the Town Square, a group of children used the stage to perform a traditional dance. The second night was Saint Patrick’s Day, and an Irish Band was rocking the stage with some superb Ireland-inspired melodies.
Street Food and Street Drinks
It’s easy to find a stand that sells beer at a Renaissance Faire, part of the fun is walking through the fake town sipping a frothy brew. Prague also has that, and they also sell hot wine to help warm you up on cool nights!
The little stands also sell a wide array of mouthwatering street food, from sausages to roast pork to rolled pastries. As the tantalizing aroma wafts through the streets, you realize a massive difference between Prague and the Renaissance Faire is food quality.
In Prague, you’ll savor a delicious home-cooked feast rather than fried fair food featured at most Ren Faires.
Hokey Tourist Attractions
Renaissance Faires don’t shy away from the sordid history of the period. Most embrace it by offering tours through ridiculously hokey “museums of torture” showcasing the worst of humanity. Though the material is intense, it’s hard to be frightened when displayed in a corny manner.
Prague competes with every Renaissance Faire I’ve ever been to in both hokiness and content. Prague has two torture museums, each as ridiculous as the one you’d see at a Rennaissance Faire. However, Prague also has many other amazing little tourist attractions, including a Ghosts and Legends Museum and a Museum of Sex Machines – you won’t find either of those at your typical faire!
While wandering through Prague’s streets and back alleys or a Renaissance Faire, you will find numerous people dressed up as statues, playing fiddles, or engaging in entertaining street performances.
The difference usually is that the street performers at a Renaissance Faire are part of the fair and are either volunteering for fun or making money just by being there, whereas, in Prague, the performers are trying to make a living off the performances and have tip jars set up in front of them.
Old Town Square features a little stall with some miniature goats and sheep. They even have a pellet machine allowing tourists to feed the farm animals.
The animals head to a farm at night when the booths close at around 10 pm each evening.
Why Prague is Far Better than Any Faire
Although Prague lacks the quintessential Renaissance Faire joust and medieval costumes, the gorgeous city is far superior to any Faire.
Visitors can tour authentic medieval structures, marveling at the historical churches, impressive stained glass windows, and the historic Astronomical Clock.
Those fascinated by medieval history can embark upon an underground tour, exploring 12th and 14th-century ruins preserved below the city streets.
The food is infinitely better than any fair food, and Prague’s modern conveniences offer a pleasant respite when you need a break.
Prague may be similar to a Rennaissance Faire, but it’s far superior in every way.
Melanie launched Partners in Fire in 2017 to document her quest for financial independence with a mix of finance, fun, and solving the world’s problems. She’s self educated in personal finance and passionate about fighting systematic problems that prevent others from achieving their own financial goals. She also loves travel, anthropology, gaming and her cats.