4 Kids: Toy Museum

Expats.cz visits the Toy Museum at Prague Castle to kick off a new monthly series

Eva Howlings

Written by Eva Howlings
Published on 17.02.2011 17:02 (updated on 17.02.2011)

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Toy Museum – Muzeum hraček

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The Toy Museum features an exhibit on two floors with 11 rooms of historic collection of toys. Collections are behind glass, with text in English as well as Czech and German. The poster claims it is “the biggest and best museum of historical toys in Europe and worldwide.” What you will see is room after room of glass display cases full of toys. As far as the area around Prague castle goes, it´s probably the least boring thing for a kid to do, but as far as museums go, it can leave a lot to be desired.

 

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The museum is located on Jiřská, within the castle walls, next to Lobkowicz Palace.


View 4 Kidson a larger map

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As of this writing, only the 22 tram stops by tram stop “Pražský hrad”. The other option is to get off at the Malostranská metro stop and walk the many steps to the castle.

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A trip to Prague Castle always involves a bit of walking. What is normally a ten minute walk from Jeleni street takes over half an hour for my 4 year-old. If you´re carrying or strollering your child it might be faster, but the museum itself is located at the top of a steep, 2-story stairwell, so it´s not ideal for strollers.

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There are two floors, so don´t forget to take in the fashion doll collection on the second; it´s Barbie´s 50th anniversary, and some of the designer dresses on these dolls made the trip worth it for us.

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This museum is not set up well for children – there´s just not much for them to do. Many museums incorporate some element of interactivity – at least buttons that activate lights and sounds, or make things move a little. But there´s none of that here. It´s an assortment of old and probably valuable toys that are not displayed in a very imaginative or educational way.

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The museum is indoor.

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40 CZK for a bottle of water.

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Prague Castle does not have many reasonably-priced options, so we recommend bringing a sandwich and a drink.

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The nearest paid parking is Malostranská or Letná, but I´ve always found ample free parking further up on Střešovice, which is just hop on a tram to the castle.

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Monday – Sunday 9:30 – 17:30 (the cash desk is open until 17:00.)

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AGENCY PROPERTIES

Apartment for rent, 1+KK - Studio, 30m<sup>2</sup>

Apartment for rent, 1+KK - Studio, 30m2

Rostislavova, Praha 4 - Nusle

Apartment for sale, 3+kk - 2 bedrooms, 155m<sup>2</sup>

Apartment for sale, 3+kk - 2 bedrooms, 155m2

Křížová, Jablonec nad Nisou

Apartment for rent, 3+kk - 2 bedrooms, 92m<sup>2</sup>

Apartment for rent, 3+kk - 2 bedrooms, 92m2

K sídlišti, Praha 4 - Nusle

Apartment for rent, 2+kk - 1 bedroom, 37m<sup>2</sup>

Apartment for rent, 2+kk - 1 bedroom, 37m2

Olštýnská, Praha 8 - Troja

There´s something there for most kids over 3, but the display cases are not built low enough for little kids to get a good view. Young children may get bored or frustrated at not being able to touch anything. However, this museum is a great choice for kids who like Barbie dolls. There is an impressive collection of these (and the Star Wars, action heroes and celebrity dolls that are displayed alongside them.)

 

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AGENCY PROPERTIES

Apartment for rent, 1+KK - Studio, 30m<sup>2</sup>

Apartment for rent, 1+KK - Studio, 30m2

Rostislavova, Praha 4 - Nusle

Apartment for sale, 3+kk - 2 bedrooms, 155m<sup>2</sup>

Apartment for sale, 3+kk - 2 bedrooms, 155m2

Křížová, Jablonec nad Nisou

Apartment for rent, 3+kk - 2 bedrooms, 92m<sup>2</sup>

Apartment for rent, 3+kk - 2 bedrooms, 92m2

K sídlišti, Praha 4 - Nusle

Apartment for rent, 2+kk - 1 bedroom, 37m<sup>2</sup>

Apartment for rent, 2+kk - 1 bedroom, 37m2

Olštýnská, Praha 8 - Troja

Apart from the stairs there´s little risk here.

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There are (paid) toilets in the building next door.

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AGENCY PROPERTIES

Apartment for rent, 1+KK - Studio, 30m<sup>2</sup>

Apartment for rent, 1+KK - Studio, 30m2

Rostislavova, Praha 4 - Nusle

Apartment for sale, 3+kk - 2 bedrooms, 155m<sup>2</sup>

Apartment for sale, 3+kk - 2 bedrooms, 155m2

Křížová, Jablonec nad Nisou

Apartment for rent, 3+kk - 2 bedrooms, 92m<sup>2</sup>

Apartment for rent, 3+kk - 2 bedrooms, 92m2

K sídlišti, Praha 4 - Nusle

Apartment for rent, 2+kk - 1 bedroom, 37m<sup>2</sup>

Apartment for rent, 2+kk - 1 bedroom, 37m2

Olštýnská, Praha 8 - Troja

A family ticket for four is 120 CZK. A single adult ticket is 70 CZK and a child is 30 CZK.

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The collection is worth the price of the ticket, but as an exciting excursion destination, I think you have to consider whether your child is easily underwhelmed.

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Dads and most other people will love the robot collection.

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Yes.

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No website. No brochures or business cards at the museum either. It really is a pity that an institution who is allowed to be on Prague castle grounds gets away with putting this little effort into their operation.

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“Surprise! We´re going to a Toy Museum.”
“Yay! Will we play with toys there?”
“No.”
“Are we going to buy toys there?”
“No.”
“Are we going to make toys?”
“No.”
“Oh.”

Luckily, my child is easily impressed. She said “wow!” to the collection of Victorian-era dolls with their odd faces. We studied the details on the train sets, mining towns, and battlefields. She was duly impressed with the miniatures in the dollhouses. But it´s also likely that this assortment of antique toys would be disappointing to some. They are inaccessible, faded and rickety-looking compared to today´s toys. Explaining to a child that these toys are 200 years-old does not make them any more appealing – almost the opposite. There were no exhibits of how toys were made, no pictures of our grandparents as children, happily playing with playing with their simple toys. The text (in Czech, German & English) was interesting to collectors and historians. I tried to make the collection come alive for my daughter – we made up stories for the characters, gave names to the dolls, and tried to imagine how these toys looked when they were new. I explained how happy children were for the few toys they had, and how kids had to make their own toys out of the things they found. So in all, I´d say we had an enlightening time which left my daughter appreciative of her own playthings and the fact that she gets to play so much (as opposed to working in a factory all day). But it wasn´t the museum that gave us any of that insight.

 
Fun activities in Prague for the kids.

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