Top 6 things to do in Copenhagen

Top 6 things to do in Copenhagen

Top 6 things to do in Copenhagen

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Do you have a trip to Copenhagen planned, but actually have no idea what to do? Don’t panic, I didn’t know either, haha. But thanks to a lot of nice people I met in the 3 weeks I was there, I now know all the hidden places. I will share the best places in Copenhagen with you, plus a few insider tips. Let’s go!

1. Tivoli

If you’ve read up a little bit at all, you’ve probably seen Tivoli come by. This is probably the most popular attraction in Copenhagen. Literally, actually. You see, it’s an amusement park, but also a regular park for walking. It is a special concept. It is a park where you take a walk around the world, as it were. You pass beautiful buildings from Asia and the Middle East, for example. But also parks, beautiful flowers from that region and a huge pond with fountain and restaurant boat, where you can enjoy a drink or meal with a view.

At each corner, you’ll also find an attraction and often something of a game, like shooting or a camel race. Not your thing? Then I have good news. You only pay for entry to the park. You can then decide to go on a ride as well and buy separate tickets for that in the park itself. It’s more pricey than the park entry though. But for those who don’t care for the rides, it’s nice to be able to enjoy the park without paying full price. It’s €19,50 for the park (145 DKK) and another €22,18 (165 DKK) for the rides. In the evening you are treated to beautiful illuminated buildings and they host regular outdoor concerts or performances.

2 Insider tips:

  • At the market halls in the park you can get a stamp when you go out. With that stamp you can get back in. So if you went in the morning but would like to see the lights or go to a performance, you can just come back later without having to pay twice.

 

  • Do you like to meet up with locals? Then check out who has a membership. I have met many people who have a membership and they can take 4(!) people for free! Super convenient, saves you money again. You still have to pay separately for the rides though, unless they have an all-in membership. I always post in local expat groups on Facebook to find people who want to meet up.

     

2. Nyhavn

Admit it, you saw a picture of the coloured houses in Copenhagen and expected the whole city to be like that, right? This is the first thing you’ll find when you search for Copenhagen, despite the fact that it’s only one little street. The rest of the city is actually quite modern and offers mostly a lot of futuristic buildings with lots of windows and sometimes unusual constructions. No less beautiful, but very different.

Yet that beautiful street with the coloured houses is a wonderful hotspot in the middle of the city. With cozy terraces and always very busy. Of course you pay the top price on these terraces, so you can also walk along. But it is definitely worth a visit!

Are you in a touristic mood? Then you can take a boat from here and make a trip through the city.  Copenhagen is full of canals, so it’s no surprise that you can admire them from a boat.

Insider tip:

Although probably not very surprising, but if you want beautiful photos like this one, come early! It gets really crowded really fast and during the day tourist boats go back and forth constantly. Then you can really forget about a nice reflection like this one. This photo was taken half an hour after sunrise. It takes a while before the sun rises above the buildings.

3. Frederiks church

I am not religious at all, but often bring a visit to a local church. So I’ve seen a lot of them, but this was definitely one of the most beautiful ones! It’s a big round dome, so a very different structure than most churches. I really like it just because it’s pretty simple. It’s mostly decorated with marble, which led to it’s nickname as the marble church. This was very expensive, so it took a while to finish and they ended up using chalk stone for the top. But nonetheless very beautiful and everything matches together. There are beautiful drawings running towards the ceiling of the dome, but otherwise it doesn’t have too many paintings. The colours complement each other beautifully though, and it’s just a nice whole.

Insider tip:

Want a great photo with the church but don’t feel like getting up early to avoid the crowds? Then you could go higher up. A little further up you will find the parking garage “Jeudan Parking” where the rooftop gives you a nice view of the church. When I was there, the roof was closed. But definitely try it. And otherwise, the view from the balconies is also not bad, as you can see here.

4. Botanische tuin

Again, in a beautiful dome, you will find a beautiful botanical garden. Like all botanical gardens, you will find unique plants and flowers that you will not find in the wild in Europe. It consists of 2 parts, a large garden surrounding the natural history museum. This is free to visit and is therefore just a nice park to stroll around.

Then there is an indoor part, which you have to pay for. That is 60 DKK for adults, 40 DKK for children up to 17 and students. So about € 8/€6. Inside you’ll find beautiful plants from mostly warm areas and a good collection of beautiful butterflies. The building itself is worth a visit and is especially a popular Instagram hotspot.

 

5. Foodhalls

There are no less than 3 food halls in Copenhagen! They are obviously quite popular. The first one I had mentioned quickly, it belongs to Tivoli. To be honest, it’s not that special, it’s just a few stands and a boring seating area. So it’s more of a takeaway kind of thing.

The others are really nice though. Reffen is the largest and most popular. It’s therefore packed on hot days! Despite the fact that there are no less than 2500 seats! You can choose from 40 stalls with snacks and drinks and then take a seat at a picnic table or in a lazy beach chair, if they’re still free of course. They also host events here, so it’s definitely worth checking out the website before you go.

The second is Broens Gadekøkken, near Nyhavn. This one is a lot smaller, but very cozy. You can still find a lot of delicious things, like pokebowls, Italian and Greek.

Insider tips:

It is not technically forbidden to bring your own refreshments. It’s certainly not really appreciated, but if you come for a bite to eat and bring your own drink, nobody will turn you away either. By the way, there are also places where you can sit nicely by the water with your own picnic, such as Opheliaplatz.

 

6. Forgotten giants bicycle tour

Danish artist Thomas Dambo has placed a number of statues of giants all over the world. Of course most of them are to be found in Denmark and a lot of them around Copenhagen. The best known are the 6 “forgotten giants”. Although there are many more in the Copenhagen area, this is a separate project. All 6 giants are made of scrap wood and hidden in remote places. Little Tilde is hidden in a forest and Oscar is under a bridge. You can do a tour along all 6 forgotten giants. Of course you can cycle yourself or book an organized tour. The farthest is about an hour’s bike ride from the centre, if you do the whole tour it would take about 3 hours.

You can also find a few in the city itself. For example Green George in Christianahoeve.

More information about this project can be found on the website. There you can also find a map of the locations in Denmark and other locations in the world where these artworks can be found, for example in Mexico.

4 Daytrips from Hamburg, Germany

4 Daytrips from Hamburg, Germany

4 Daytrips from Hamburg, Germany

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Do you have a trip planned to Hamburg Germany, but would also like to explore the surroundings a little? Then you are in luck, because there are a lot of cute little villages in the Hamburg area. All of them are no more than an hour away by train. So if you’re looking for a change of scenery or want to grab a bite to eat in an idyllic village, these are 4 fun day trips to remember!

1. Bremen

Bremen is the biggest of the 4. I have to say, though, that I found it a bit disappointing for its size. There are basically 2 hotspots in the town, the Marktplatz surrounded by various beautiful buildings such as the impressive cathedral. Also here, next to the town hall, you will find the “Bremen Musicians”, a famous statue of 4 animals standing on each other’s backs. It comes from a well-known Grimm fairytale about these animals who go to Bremen for a better future as musicians. In Germany, the statue is very famous and people really come to Bremen just to see the statue. The legend goes that if you grab the donkey’s front legs, your wishes will come true. Be careful: you have to grab both legs at the same time! Otherwise, you will have bad luck instead.

Another hotspot in Bremen is the Schnoor district. It is a cute little district where you can just wander around. With cute little houses and restaurants. Nice to stroll through and get lost in the district.

Personally, I found Bremen the least interesting of the 4. But I found the atmosphere very cosy and there are more than enough restaurants and bars to entertain you for days. So if you are looking for a place outside Hamburg that is a bit quieter but still has a bit of a city feel to it, then Bremen is definitely a nice alternative! Do you have only one day for a day trip from Hamburg? Then I would definitely go for one of the other 3.

2. Lübeck

In the very north of Germany you will find Lübeck. This is also the place where you can take a ferry to Denmark or Sweden. The city is also called “the city of the 7 towers”, after the 7 gigantic towers that make up the city skyline. Here you will find Germany’s third largest church with the tallest towers in Europe, dating back to before 1400. Very old and very big. This is the St. Mary church. The other towers in the town are of smaller churches and the cathedral. It is a small town, so you can easily take a look at all the towers in one day. You can also climb the St. Peter’s Church. Well, climb… There is just a lift, nice and easy. It only costs €5 and you will have a panoramic view of the city.

The city itself is a UNESCO site. Yes, the whole city. This is because everything is still in its original state. Despite the fact that it was one of the first cities that fell under Hitler’s rule and was hit hard, they immediately rebuild everything. Even new repairs are in the original style. So sometimes you see a fairly new building, in the unique old style. You will also find 2 border towers, as the town was once surrounded by a wall. The Holstentor is the most impressive of the 2 and can’t be missed, as you’ll most likely enter the city trough it.

Another building not to be missed is the townhall or “Rathaus”. You will find it next to St. Mary’s Church, so you will probably get there anyway. This building has also suffered considerable damage and later destruction and fire. It has been rebuilt in different years and different styles and therefore looks like an amazing mix of styles. With beautiful drawings, pitch-black stones but also white details. The townhall is located in the market square, where you can also find a cozy Christmas market in the winter.

3. Lüneburg

Lüneburg is a fantastically cute village just east of Hamburg. Here too, you will find the typical old German houses in a maze of small streets. Filled with cosy restaurants and terraces. This is clearly a very touristic place. The whole train emptied out and the whole crowd walked towards the old city centre. There, most people go straight to the market square, where you find another church and a load of cute little houses. Around it, you will find many little streets with coloured houses, where you can just wander.

It is certainly not a town where you can spend a week. But there is enough to see and do to even plan an overnight stay. There are enough terraces and restaurants and a lovely relaxed atmosphere. I really got a holiday feeling here, because clearly everyone is having a nice day out and doing everything at their leisure. “Alter kran im Lüneburger hafen”(photo) is an absolute must to visit, who doesn’t like such a lovely little street near the water? Take a seat at a terrace or on a boat and enjoy. From there, you can go further into town and don’t forget to look into the courtyards! They are sometimes a bit hidden, but worth a visit.

4. Lauenburg/Elbe

By far the smallest village of the 4, but definitely my personal favourite! It is like walking around in a painting with the most beautiful houses. It is also very quiet, so sometimes you imagine yourself to be in a piece of no man’s land. Walk towards the church to find the beautiful houses, you will see them automatically. Around the church are some lovely little streets with beautiful buildings. You will eventually end up at a small square with an ice-cream stall in the middle in a beautiful little house with green details. This is the oldest house in the village and dates from 1573! There is a lot of history in this village and many houses have a plaque on the wall where you can read it at your leisure.

If you really want some peace and quiet and like me, can really enjoy these kind of cute houses, then this is a place you really shouldn’t miss! You can also take the boat to Lüneburg from here, if you want to visit both villages. They are a good combination for a day trip.

6 Best viewpoints of Prague

6 Best viewpoints of Prague

6 Best viewpoints of Prague

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Prague is built on a hilly terrain and as the biggest advantage of that, it means you get to enjoy many beautiful viewpoints. The big disadvantage is that you always have to go up. Unfortunately, not all viewpoint are easily accessible by public transport. But these stunning viewpoints of Prague are worth the climb!

1. Letná park & beergarden

Number one for me is the view from Letná. It’s a steep climb to the top, but you can also take tram 6 to the back. The park is not very special, but you can have a nice walk and it has several viewpoints. The beergarden is my favourite place to spend a hot summer night with a refreshing drink. Because of the trees, it’s a cool spot in town, but with the most amazing view. With a beautiful sunset, this is also the best place to be, because you’re looking exactly in the direction of the setting sun.

2. The Prague castle

Besides it being one of Prague’s hotspots, Prague Castle is also the perfect place to enjoy a view of the city. As soon as you enter the city, the castle already towers high over everything. Not surprisingly, you get a great view from up there. The best way is to walk up from the Charles Bridge or to take the famous castle stairs. On both routes you will find many beautiful viewpoints. It’s a steep climb, but definitely worth it!

3. Riegrovy Sady

The view from Riegrovy Sady is not one of hotspots like Charles Bridge or the castle, but it is a lovely spot. On top of the hill, you overlook the northern part of the city and have a lovely spot for a picnic. An incredibly popular place among expats to hang out in the summer. On Friday nights there is a sunset jam session. What could be better than a beautiful sunset with good company and live music? This is really where you want to be if you just want to enjoy the little things in life.

4. Petrín

Petrín is a huge park and has lots of different points to go to. You have the Petrín tower which is supposed to be the viewpoint of the city, but in my opinion not worth the money. You can see the same view from the whole mountain, the only advantage of the tower is that you are just a little bit higher. But above the city and even higher above the city makes little difference to me…. Take a few hours for this park and walk around.

You have 2 good options.

  • Take the little train up, turn left and walk down the zig zag route there. You’ll encounter lots of open areas here with great views.
  • Or go from Újezd into the park itself, turn right (at the train, so walk around that building) and walk up there towards the castle. It’s a climb, but well worth it. Are you there in the spring? Then this is really a must! That part of the park is full of blossoms and perfect to relax with a book or a picnic in the spring.

5. Vyšehrad

Vyšehrad is actually an old church, but there is a large park around it that is worth a visit. Here, you get a view from every angle, but my favourite is the view of the river and the castle in the distance. For this you walk towards the church, to the left of the church is a cemetery and next to it is a road. On the left side you can go through an opening in the wall, and there you have the view. But be sure to walk around and enjoy all the views.

6. Bonus: Charles Bridge

The definition of a viewpoint is that it’s a high point. So this one doesn’t really belong on the list, but it shouldn’t be missed anyway. Because of the width of the Vltava River and the hill on which the castle stands, you have a beautiful view from the Charles Bridge. The Charles Bridge is of course not to miss hotspot in Prague anyway. But be sure to take some time to enjoy the view from both sides.

6 Ways to stay healthy on a long trip

6 Ways to stay healthy on a long trip

6 Ways to stay healthy on a long trip

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When you’re going on a short holiday you probably completely indulge in the local cuisine, without a care in the world that it might be unhealthy. You can go back to veggies and fruits when you’re back home. But if you’re a slow traveller, digital nomad, or going on a world trip, you might start to worry about your health a little more. Because how do you make sure you don’t gain 10 kg after a month of pizza and gelato in Italy? It’s easy to lose track of your healthy eating habits when you’re exposed to so much delicious temptation. So I will share 6 tips to stay healthy on a longer trip.

Skip public transport as much as possible

I always stick with the rule that if I can walk to where I’m going in a maximum of 30 minutes, I’ll walk. And on my days off I might walk for hours, just going from place to place and taking my time for it. I also check the time it would take me to get somewhere by public transport. Let’s say it’s a 40-minute walk and 25 minutes by tram or metro, but the tram only goes once every 15 minutes and you’ll either arrive 10 minutes before your meeting time or 5 minutes after. If you care for being on time, you’ll choose to wait those 10 minutes, right? Add those 10 minutes to your travel time, making it 35 minutes. Why not leave 5 minutes early and walk for 40? You will notice that the more you do this and just count on the walking time, the easier it gets to walk long distances. I sometimes spend my whole day walking from place to place and then realize I was on my feet for 5 hours without a problem.

Have at least 1 healthy meal a day

It’s so easy to just eat out all the time when you’re exploring a new place. You don’t want to miss out on all the good food places and people are always asking you to tag along. Try to stick with one healthy meal a day. Whether that’s one homemade meal or a salad for lunch, doesn’t really matter. Just make sure that you don’t get dragged into those days where breakfast leads to coffee and cake, which leads to lunch and then leads to dinner and drinks, and you saying “I’ll try again tomorrow”. Either make it a structured thing to start with a healthy breakfast, or force yourself to choose the healthy option over the unhealthy. Even if it means salad for dinner out, while that pizza just looks so good.

Snacks should be treats

Do you eat cake or dessert or ice cream on a daily basis when you’re not travelling? No? Then don’t do it while travelling. Again, if you’d be on a short holiday for a week, there’s no harm in eating whatever you want. But if you’re staying for a longer period, there’s no need to get a snack on a daily basis. We easily adjust to eating habits and before you know it, it became a routine to always have a sugary dessert after eating out. And you might even be buying desserts for after your home meals. Try to keep snacks as treats, when you really crave some. Snacks are way better when you really want them anyway.

Don’t overeat

Compare restaurant meals with what you would eat, if you’d make it for yourself. Even though something like avocado toast or a smoothie bowl is super healthy, it’s often a lot. If you would only make yourself one slice of toast for breakfast, 2 slices in a restaurant are basically a double meal. Do this 3 times a day, and you’re practically eating for 2. You can go crazy every once in a while. But doing this 4 days a week will get you in trouble. Finding places where the portion sizes are better suited for you or where you can choose sides separately, will help you reduce your portion sizes while eating out. Or only get a quick smoothie or street food snack for lunch, instead of a whole new meal after you had a big breakfast.

Bring sport bands

Of course, you can always look into a gym membership. Plenty of gyms offer one-month options, so if you stay in one place for longer than a month, this might be the best solution. However, they are often expensive or there isn’t one close by or it’s just hard to fit in a good workout a few days a week. Then those sports bands are an absolute lifesaver! They are small, so they easily fit into any suitcase or backpack. They come in different strengths so you can pick the one that fits your personal strength. It’s so easy to just squeeze in a 30-minute workout during the day or in the evening, just to tighten the muscles a bit. Either set up your own workout plan or find your favourite YouTube workout videos.

Rest, rest, rest

I understand you want to see everything and do as much as possible. But sleep is very important. If we don’t get enough sleep, our bodies tend to crave unhealthy food. So not getting enough sleep, will risk you grabbing a bag of chips instead of some fruit or yogurt as a snack. And I don’t think many people will be able to push themselves to a work-out or a long walk instead of taking public transport, after a lack of sleep. So make sure you get enough rest, to be able to follow up on the above-mentioned tips.

Living in Barcelona, yes or no?

Living in Barcelona, yes or no?

Living in Barcelona, yes or no?

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When I was planning to live in Barcelona for 6 weeks, with a potential extension, everybody got so excited. “I loved Barcelona!” “Barcelona is my favourite city in Europe!” “I’m so jealous, I love Barcelona!” Are just a few of the super excited replies I received on the news I was moving there. Obviously, my expectations went through the roof, which might be part of the problem now. But in the end, I definitely didn’t love it as much as, apparently, everybody else does. And I will tell you why.

Not terrible either

Let me get this straight, I didn’t HATE it. I mean, what’s not to love about all those amazing Gaudi buildings, mosaic structures, gothic building and the fact that it has both a beach and mountains?! (Or hills, I’m Dutch, for me every piece of land that elevates is a mountain.) So yes, I definitely see the charm of the city and definitely had some nice days, nice walks and got to take plenty of beautiful pictures. But as somebody else said beautifully “I like it, I just don’t love it”. And that’s pretty much what it was. It simply wasn’t as amazing as everybody made me believe. Is it because of the high expectations? Maybe. But in the end I just wanted to share my story.

It didn’t make sense to me

This actually has different layers. But my biggest frustration was the public transport. They have a huge metro network, but it doesn’t make sense. If you want to go from North to South, you might need to go West first. We had a birthday party one night in the centre. It was a 40 minute walk from my place (I prefer walking, so I usually check that first. 40 min is doable, but it was already past 1AM) so I checked the metro. It was 35 minutes. Why? Because I either had to take one in a completely different direction and then transfer, or I had to walk 25 minutes to get to the correct line, take the metro for 5 minutes and walk another 5 minutes. It’s such a huge city that public transport is needed to get around. Still, very often, it would make so much more sense to go for the one hour walk. I guess I now understand why cycling is so popular in Barcelona.

During the week you also have to keep in mind that the metro stops running before bars and restaurants close. If you’re going along with the 10PM dinner times, you might have to get yourself a taxi home.

It smells, and not like flowers

Okay maybe it smells like flowers in spring, I don’t know. But during the night, when you do decide to walk home, the whole city smells like pee. Bars have quite the early closing time so the city has enough time to wash it down again, so it’s gone In the morning. Unfortunately it’s replaced with the smell of dog shit.

It’s so expensive

Although I didn’t expect it to be cheap, I also didn’t expect it to be built around tourism in the way it is. I didn’t even stay in Barcelona the entire time, I actually spend some time in a small town about 30 minutes by train. But here the prices were exactly the same. And everything touristic was closed off with incredibly high entry prices. For most buildings, you pay an impressive €25 to €35 entry. So if you want to visit 4 different places, that’s another €100 on your trip price, just for getting into a few buildings. Personally, I think that’s a lot. So, unfortunately, I didn’t even have the budget to go into a lot of places. It’s worth looking into a tourism card. It starts at €48 but mostly offer discounts to the big attractions.

The food

I know that many people disagree, but I’m not a fan of tapas. I am a fan of the tapas concept, sharing food with friends and try a littlebit of everything. But for me, most Spanish food is quite flavourless. This might be just me, but I grew up with Asian food like Thai and Indonesian food. Spicy, full of flavours and spices. For me, Spanish food is just a lot of oil and salt, not much more. Oh and finding a good coffee seems to be impossible as wel..

 

Isolation sucks

This is only relevant if you are moving to Barcelona, but Spanish housing isolation sucks. This is not Barcelona specific. Somehow, they still didn’t manage to find a way to keep the cold out in winter and the sun out in the summer. So, you can guess where this leaves you. Modern buildings might have an air-conditioning system build in which also heats in the winter. But most don’t have heating, so you’re freezing in the winter (because yes, it gets cold) and sweating your ass off in the summer.

What I did like

Like I said, there were things that I did like. For starters, there’s a great Italian restaurant chain, haha. But aside from other types of food, there were a few Barcelona specific things I liked. Here’s a list of the things I do highly recommend.

  • Park Guëll! This was definitely my favourite. It’s also the cheapest tourist attraction (€10). While it’s actually the biggest place you can go, so price quality wise, this one was a win for me. I only spend about 1,5 hour in the park but you could walk around for hours. Most famous is of course the mosaic part build by Gaudi, but it’s a huge park. Bring a picknick basket and make a day out of it. Of course with a great sunset view over the city! Get your tickets here.
  • La Sagrada Familia. What’s not to love? I can’t get over the beauty of this building! I didn’t go inside but I joined an online viewing and I might need to go back to view it live. Especially around sunset the light is absolutely amazing! The building itself already lights up in the golden hour and watching the sunset in the small park behind it, is already great if you don’t want to go in. There’s a €26 entry fee.
  • Catedral Santa Eulalia. Honestly the whole area “Barri Gòtic” is pretty amazing if you ask me. So many details on so many buildings, with the Cathedral being the highlight. It’s quite a typical building structure, definitely not only to be seen in Barcelona. But I was amazed by it’s details and beauty. The area is great for vintage lovers, as it’s filled with vintage shops. Entry for the Cathedral is €9.

There are more nice places, like these 5 hidden gems. Generally my verdict is, that it’s a great place to visit with lots to see. Especially if you are aware of the high costs of the touristic places. But to live there for a longer period, I wouldn’t really recommend it.

4 Ways to avoid the crowds in Prague

4 Ways to avoid the crowds in Prague

4 Ways to avoid the crowds in Prague

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Prague is such an intense popular tourist destination that even the government tried to make changes in the way the tourists experience the city. I think it’s common knowledge that in the Czech Republic beer is cheaper than water (yes, this really is true), so there’s a lot of alcotourism (yes, they really call it that). Meaning, many stag parties and loud, annoying, drunk people. Sounds great, doesn’t it? Well, actually, there isn’t a city I found this far that I loved as much as Prague. But you do have to avoid the crowds, and I will tell you how.

Follow the locals

This might make sense if you’re a frequent traveller who doesn’t like to only do the touristic things.  But in Prague, locals really avoid the old town like the plague. That’s really sad actually, but unfortunately true. Aside from the drunk tourists, this is also because the prices in the city centre are sky-high. The Czech Republic is super cheap, obviously, Prague is a bit more expensive but the prices in the old town are prices you’ll see in Berlin, Vienna, Amsterdam, or Barcelona. You easily pay €5 for a coffee, while outside the centre you pay less than €3. Even after lockdown when bars opened up again but the borders were still closed, most Czech people didn’t go to the old town because they didn’t want to support the tourist places. So, basically, you either serve locals or you serve tourists. Follow the below tips to find the local places.

1. Cross the river

Wherever you are in the city, the other side of the river is cheaper. With as the only exception, the one street across Charles bridge. As this is the most popular tourist attraction in the city, it will be expensive on either side. If you cross that street until you reach Malostranské náměstí (a square), go left, and you’ll notice prices drop. On the right is Prague castle and you’ll definitely break the bank going there.

2. Cross the highway

Okay, not literally, you actually go under. But there’s a highway separating the city centre from the rest of the city. It’s above the red metro line. You will see it on Google Maps or get a metro map and cross the red line. The neighbourhoods on the Eastern side are mostly expat areas. Lots and lots to do, but without the crowds and touristic prices. Definitely worth a visit! The cool neighbourhoods are Vinohrady, Vršovice and Karlín.

3. Go in the opposite direction of others

This one pretty much goes anywhere. People tend to walk in the same direction, from one tourist spot to another. With the above example as proof. Malostranské náměstí is the square at the foot of the Prague Castle. So most people will go from Old town square to Charles bridge and then to the Castle. That’s why you’re coming to Prague, right? Restaurant owners know this, so every single place on that exact route will be expensive. Go the opposite way. Take a different bridge or walk away from the river altogether. I’m not saying you shouldn’t go to those tourist places altogether because they are definitely worth a visit. Just walk away from it once you’ve seen them and are hunting down a nice place for lunch or a drink.

Go to the parks

Prague is one of the greenest cities I’ve ever been, and it’s one of the reasons I love it so much. Also because most parks are on hills and therefore give amazing viewpoints. Some of my favorites:

  • Letna park (pictured on top)

Letna is next to the river. Take a tram or prepare for a bit of a climb. There are stairs, but they are high! While the tram takes you to the other side, where you’re already on the same level. But it’s so worth it. It will give you a wonderful view over the water with all the bridges and the castle in the back. Definitely, a must-go for a nice sunset drink at the beer garden.

  • Riegrovy sady

Riegrovy sady again offers an amazing view, but from a different side. It’s such a popular spot among locals and expats and if the weather allows it, there’s a live jam session on Friday evening. Watch another sunset with some nice music. There’s also a beergarden here. Because, well, Czechs and beer..

  • Petrín (pictured above)

Petrín, especially in spring because the park will be covered in beautiful cherry blossoms. It’s one of the biggest parks, and you can get quite the hike here. People tend to go here for picnics, reading a book and just lazy afternoons. Even though it’s right next to Prague castle and the top can get touristic, the rest of the park is never busy and only occupied by locals and expats.

Should I not go to the old town at all?

Touristic places are usually touristic for a reason. Pretty buildings and old structures draw in people. Definitely do go to those places! Charles bridge is one of my favourite places ever. Just leave the crowds once you want to go for a drink or food. And maybe try to get up early to explore an empty city around sunrise. It might be early, but you’re going to be happy you made the effort!