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Discover Prague, Czech Republic, With Karlo from Sir Toby’s Hostel

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Karlo from Sir Toby's Hostel
Prague in 3 words?

EXTRAULTRAHIPERMEGA (good nice and cheap = bueno bonito y barato)

Best local blogs to read before checking-in?

The Wandering Wanderluster is a cool one, run by an English girl living in Prague. Also, we started our own blog,  so feel free to “czech” it!

First place you take people when you have visitors?

I like to take my friends to Smetanovo Nábreží, a part of Vltava river bank between Legii and Charles bridge. It’s perfect to relax and enjoy the view of the river in twilight (Prague’s epic Castle complex would fit well in the movie of the same name!). Other great places are Strelecký Ostrov, an island on Vltava river, and Letná, a huge beer garden perched on a hill, featuring amazing views of the city and a pub to sit in and have a Czech beer. Plus, a little bird told me that one of my colleagues took his wife to Olšanské hrbitovy the first time she came to Prague. It is the largest cemetery in the city, dating back to the 17th century, and it is best known for the beautiful location it is set in and the many famous Czech individuals buried there.

Olsanske hrbitovy
Olsanske hrbitovy, the largest cemetery in Prague, attracts travelers because of its beautiful settings and the many famous people buried in it.
How many days should someone plan to visit Prague?

Many… stay and work for us!

Best place to get coffee near Sir Toby’s?

There is two that come to mind, just next to the hostel. One is Cafe in DOX Gallery, a classy place to sit and have a warm drink while experiencing the quirky exhibitions of DOX Centre for Contemporary Art.

The other one is Avion Street Cafe, a local cafe decorated in a cool retro style and featuring a cozy atmosphere, almost on par with Sir Toby’s one! They have a great selection of coffees and amazing cakes, so be ready to spend a couple of hours trying them all!

Where can we find you on a Friday night?

Oh, you will have to book an appointment in advance! But just to mention a couple, Geekarna, a sci-fi fantasy cafe-bar, great place to find your inner geek on any day during the week (it rhymes!), and Peron, a restaurant featuring great Radegast beer (czech beer). Or I might be in a forest in one of Prague’s parks. You never know!

Dirtiest bar you like to squat on weekdays?

Vzorkovna is definitely a winner here! I wouldn’t call it a pub, nor a bar, and especially not a cafe, but I guess it could be all of it in a way. It is furnished with tables made out of old doors, tree stumps are used instead of chairs, and benches from bus and train stations are used as sitting places, just to mention a few odd design choices that scream of creativity. But the highlights are the two friendly gigantic dogs, freely roaming around and not caring about the crowd of hipsters filling the place almost every night. Also,their stage randomly hosts some of the most interesting gigs I have seen in my life!

Another cool place is Wakata, a DJ turntable club located in Sir Toby’s neighborhood.

One of the best places to go on weekdays, Vzorkovna, features a real eclectic vibe!
Best local drink?

Kofola! What is Kofola, you ask? Well, Wikipedia tells you it’s a “principal rival of Coca-Cola” in Czech Republic and Slovakia, but this definition doesn’t even come close to what Kofola actually is. Introduced in 1960, it soon became part of people’s lifestyle in the two countries. It’s a unique blend of KOFO syrup and herbal and fruit extracts. Compared to Coke, it has about one-third less sugar and half as much caffeine, so you can enjoy more of it. Also, you should try cucumber lemonade!

Best hangover breakfast place?

At my mom’s, for sure, but I am keeping that one exclusive for me! For a similar experience, definitely try Sir Toby’s Hungover Breakfast Option, and go over last night’s memory holes with fellow backpackers, or try the Breakfast Menu at Twenty7, a cozy industrial-style food/gluten-free/vegetarian/wine/beer place.

The perfect day in Prague?

Walk through Stromovka park to Prague’s enormous Zoo, then have Czech goulash and visit the Castle, and finally rest in Naplavka on Vltava river bank and have a beer! Cerna Hora recommended!

Quirkiest place to visit?

Probably Vytopna, a restaurant where model trains deliver your food, like The Little Engine That Could! You can also visit the Sex Machines Museum. Their purpose? To “bring pleasure and allow extraordinary and unusual positions during intercourse.” Yes, do visit it!

Best park to read a book?

Go for Stromovka park, a huge area next to Vltava river. It used to be royal grounds for hunting back in the old days. Plus, it’s connected to the other side of the river by a hanging bridge… Indiana Jones style!

CH Bridge Prague
The beautiful skyline of the city from Charles Bridge.
Best district to get lost?

Žižkov! “The free republic of Žižkov” is thought to have the highest number of pubs per capita of any district in Europe, so you get the idea where the “get lost” part often happens!

Suggestions if someone only has 24 hours in Prague?

Book another night! Or grab our map, and follow our suggestions: visit famous Czech painter Alphonse Mucha’s museum, enjoy a classical music in Rudolfinum or Municipal house, row a paddle boat, and have a chat with locals over a local beer and local food in a beer garden!

Best viewpoint to see the whole city?

Prague has so many beautiful beer gardens that offer amazing views of the city! However, I would recommend visiting The Žižkov Television Tower, with its 216 meters. It also serves as a restaurant and a luxurious hotel. Other than the view, there are somewhat bizarre sculptures of children climbing up and down the tower.

Weirdest museum?

LOL, that would be the Toilet Museum, offering an intriguing selection of historically significant toilet thingies! Also, the Toy Museum in Prague Castle has an entire floor dedicated to Barbie dolls…

A cool bus route that’s like a city tour?

The bus #12 is nice, you can hop on it next to Sir Toby’s. You’ll pass the Letna beer garden and go through beautiful Lesser Town of Prague, just under the Castle. There, change to line #22, which will take you deep through the alleys around the Castle. Some people seem to enjoy #54 as well, but I believe it has something to do with the fact that it’s a night tram – cozy and warm after a wild night out!

Golden Lane Prague
The pretty Golden Lane in the Castle Complex, an alleyway featuring 11 historic houses.
Best advice about the public transportation?

You can see a lot of Prague by just walking, but if you use public transport, get a day pass! Also, leave a seat for older people.

Best district to look like a local?

Prague is full of foreigners, so – everywhere!

What not to do in Prague?

Don’t take a taxi on the street at night, they often charge too much to tourists!

Cheapest meal around Sir Toby’s?

For great Czech food, you can’t beat Ceská jídelna beside tram stop “U Pruhonu”, just two minutes walk from the hostel. Another option is the 5 euros all-you-can-eat Indian Restaurant in Dejvická 188/6, 10 minutes away by tram.

The one dessert a traveler should try?

Only one?! Get Medštrucarrnik! It’s a combination of Medovnik (honey cake), Štrudl (apple-filled pastry), Vetrnik (vanilla-filled and caramel-topped pastry), and carrot cake. Yep, it is as awesome as it sounds.

Best monthly or yearly events?
  • The Zažit Mesto Jinak features cultural and social events all around the city to help neighbors connect and develop relationships.
  • The music festival United Islands offers various live music events on Prague’s river islands.
  • Prague’s Christmas markets! Someone recently declared them the best in the world, but we already knew that!
Lennon Wall in Prague
The John Lennon Wall, filled with Lennon-inspired graffitis and Beatles’ lyrics.
Is there any myth about Prague?

There is no Golem walking around!

Best district to buy cool souvenirs?

In antique shops in Vinohrady, another cool district known for its elegant buildings as well as its beautiful parks and lively social life.

The one souvenir a traveler should buy?

Šljivovice, a distilled alcoholic drink made from plums, or Becherovka, a cinnamon-flavored herbal liquor. We call it “Christmas” in our bar!

Best day-trip from Prague?

Visit Sedlec Ossuary (Bone Church) in Kutná Hora. It’s actually a chapel, featuring bones from 40 000 people, used as furnitures and decorations. Bizarre, I know.

Or, visit Karlštejn village to experience a fairy tale story with its magnificent 14th century castle.

Where should a solo traveler hang out?

The free BBQ nights in Sir Toby’s Hostel (when it gets a bit warmer), Strelecký Ostrov, Prague’s summer festivals, Couchsurfing meetings…

Make sure to try Sir Toby's BBQ!

Prague’s best before and after destinations?

Before coming to Prague, visit Ceský Krumlov, a picturesque small city in south Bohemia whose whole old town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. When leaving Prague, head to Ceské Švýcarsko (translated as Czech Switzerland – don’t ask me why), an enormous national park on the German border. You’ll find one of the most amazing sights in Central Europe, Pravcická brána, the largest natural sandstone arch.

Weirdest question you’ve been asked about Prague?

“Do you guys throw coins at strippers?” – No, that hurts!

A useful sentence travelers should know in your language?

“Dobrý den, jedno pivo prosim” – Good day, one beer please.
Of course, be polite and finish with “Díky” – Thanks.

What are you most proud of about your city?

You can get anywhere super fast with Prague’s public transport system!

Who was the most inspirational traveler you’ve met?

MANY! A guy with a fear of heights that ended up parachuting, or an airforce pilot who traveled for a year through Central, alone on his bicycle, learning to look water in desert. There was also a lady who traveled only for a few hours so she would be able to give free classes in slums, and a 25-year old guy with his own hostel, music band and really happy spirit!

Coolest feature of Sir Toby’s hostel?

We have the best staff and atmosphere, as well as the best free BBQ!

Sir Toby's Lounge
The funky lounge at Sir Toby’s

All photos credits: Michal Barbuš?ák

For more info about Sir Toby’s Hostel and to book your stay with them, check out their website! Use promo code THEHOSTELWORKER to get 10% off your booking! Yep, that’s a nice discount for our readers! If you work in a hostel, contact them or us to get a promo code that’ll give you 15% off!

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The Hostel Worker

I once asked a fellow hostel worker if he was still sane after working in hostels for so many years. His response: "Well, sane is another word for boring." Here's to many more hostel years!

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