Year after year Prague’s Old Town Christmas market is named among the world’s most magical. For those of us who live here, Old Town Square, with its majestic buildings and monuments, remains an enchanted place year round. And yet fairy lights and vendors selling imported souvenirs seem to make it all the more so for the 700,000 people who visit the markets annually.
If you know where to look for it, the holiday spirit can be found in unlikely places. In fact, there are numerous havens for holiday shoppers in the Czech capital that promise handsome gifts in a down-tempo atmosphere, making it possible to spend an entire holiday season away from the no-go zone of central Prague.
Not a fan of the Prague Christmas market hype, Prague-based stylist and writer Adela Lipar Kudrnova, has conjured up an even more magical holiday experience. Highlights by LEMARKET is Prague’s first shoppable apartment housed in an Art Nouveau space on Malostranské nábřeží that’s frequently rented out to film crews.
“I love the concept of shoppable apartments. Every time I am in some European or US city I visit them (for example The Line in NY or The Apartment in Copenhagen). I have always wanted to create something similar in Prague,” she tells us.
For Kudrnova, who conceived of the project with her friend Elena Janota, organizer of the annual LEMARKET at Galerie Mánes (December 14–15), the Christmas season felt like the right time to give the concept a try. Combined tickets will be sold to to both events; visitors can check out the Mánes event then cross the bridge to Malostranské nábřeží 1.
“I tried to choose an interesting mix of products which I would buy myself,” says Kudrnova of the array gifts on offer, including Rückl glassworks, jewelery from Adore, illustrated porcelain by Maestrokatastrof, Onest cosmetics, and books from Book Therapy.
Taking place from December 13–15 the Highlights market will also include food options, pre-Christmas workshops, and an art exhibit by Olga Stráníková.
It’s just one of a number of markets this year giving Praguers and visitors to Prague an opportunity to shop for Czech-made products away from the unyielding crowds, in venues that may not be magical but are at least pretty cool:
Art and design-focused markets
Dyzajn market Zima
November 30–December 1, December 14–5
Václav Havel square
More than 350 designers of jewelry, accessories, handbags and backpacks, art objects, porcelain, decoration, fashion toys, and stationery plus food and drink stalls and kids’ corner.
November 30–December 1, December 21–22
Prague Holešovice Market
More than 80 vendors, a creative accompanying program, and endless tips for honest gifts from “golden Czech hands”.
Just Because Christmas
Flowers, wreaths, and original perfumes from this Prague florist with Prosecco by Vin Aqua Vin in a lovely studio setting.
Luxury Christmas Shopping
A number of Czech designer labels will pop up in the swank surrounds of this Old Town accommodation including Buffet Clothing, Dechem Studio, and FineLabels.
Smaltum Gift Shop
Enamel mugs starting at 30 CZK in a myriad of colors as well as pots and bowls earrings, necklaces, and more at this Malá Strana shop.
Museum of the City of Prague
Annual pre-Christmas event at the City of Prague museum lets you shop for small gifts, art, attend workshops for kids; plus concerts and refreshments.
Pop-Up-Shop Minimarket DESIGN
Porcelain, ceramics, and jewelry as well as gorgeous paper gifts from modern stationer’s Papírníci.
Original artwork, creative workshops for all, best potato salad competition, and afterparty.
Operated by the Prague applied arts school, this market focuses on upcycled gifts.
Charity Advent Market
November 29–December 1
The Senate of the Czech Republic is the historic setting for this annual market which always promises a lovely atmosphere, music, crafts, good food, and fun.
International Christmas Bazaar
Put on every year by the Diplomatic Spouses Association Prague Christmas this festival offers products from 51 countries in one place with proceeds going toward charity.
Vánoční Bazááár 2019
Christmas Bazaar with a rich cultural program for the whole family, connected with the sale of items for charity. Live entertainment and activities for all ages.
Pet Heroes Christmas Bazaar
Pet Heroes Shop
Shop for jewelry, plush, toys, and kitchen accessories with proceeds going toward the handicapped animals of the Handipet Rescue organization.
Traditional Christmas markets off the beaten path
Blesk Christmas Market
Nov 29–Dec 22
Twenty-eight stalls introducing more than 100 sellers from all over the Czech Republic, from creative manufacturers and craftsmen to small entrepreneurs on Prague’s iconic department store.
Christmas on the Roof
Every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday through December 22
Enjoy the spectacular view, regular performances of carollers and Christmas goodies up on the rooftop plus a nativity scene with live animals and bar with food menu. Admission includes a free hot cider or mulled wine.
Prague Exhibition Grounds
November 29–December 1
Advent atmosphere, lots of goodies, products of Czech craftsmen, lantern parade, workshops, theater, fairy tales, and pottery markets. Christmas tree lights up on November 29.
Christmas at Prague Market
November 30–December 1 (and every advent weekend after)
Every Friday and Saturday on Advent weekends, the Prague market in Holešovice will come alive with themed Christmas markets: European market, Latin American market, Ethical Market, and traditional Czech Christmas.
Advent market at New Town Hall
November 30–December 1
Toys, hand-made and local products, accessories, English books for children, artworks, cosmetics, French specialties, nuts, honey, pralines, macarons, coffee, wines, and live music.
Food-focused Christmas markets
Ambiente Christmas Pop-Up Store
November 27–December 23
Restaurant gift vouchers for all of the outlets of the restaurant group as well as shelves filled with an assortment of gourmet gifts such as jams from Eska and kitchen accessories by In August Company, Kitchenette, and more.
Lya Beer Café
Artful beer growlers and other odds and end will be on sale at the first annual Maker’s Market hosted at this craft beer café & bottle shop.
Únětice Christmas market
Try mead and honey products from sheltered workshops as well as the famous beer from the brewery barn. Shop for beautiful gifts from handmade textile and knitted products or original jewelry, to Christmas decorations, candles, and natural cosmetics.
now through January 1
Prague’s Manifesto Markets transformed into a holiday wonderland earlier this month with both Florenc and Smíchov locations decked out in lights and Christmas trees and serving festive food and drink plus holiday shopping from local retailers (and heated igloos available to rent).
For the sixth year in a row the largest holiday event dedicated to a bountiful choice of vegan holiday gifts as a wide selection of plant-based gastronomy.
Search our events listings for more exciting holiday events in Prague and beyond!