The Best Time to Visit Prague

View of Prague Cityscape around the castle

TripSavvy / Alisha McDarris

Prague is a lovely city to visit year-round and each season has its pros and cons. During the summer, you'll find ideal weather, but high prices, while the colder winter months offer vistas of snow-covered castles and the perfect conditions for enjoying a hot cup of mulled wine at a cozy bar. It's a matter of preference, yet when the city's warm springtime weather coincides with the Prague Beer Festival, it's easy to make the argument that May is actually the best time to visit Prague.

Weather

The farther from summer you plan to travel, the chillier the weather is likely to be. Summers in Prague are rarely scorching, with the highest average temperatures hovering between 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit (21 to 27 degrees Celsius). The temperatures in spring and fall are more mild, but it can still get quite cold at night. Yet, the colors of springtime blossoms and autumn leaves also make these seasons particularly photogenic.

Winters, particularly in January and February, can be extremely cold, with low temperatures falling between 22 and 32 degrees Fahrenheit (-5 to 0 degrees Celsius) but they also offer the chance to appreciate the city under a fresh blanket of snow. Prague's summer weather offers the best conditions, although they are also wettest of the year, with an average rainfall of more than 2.5 inches each month.

Crowds

If it weren't for the crowds and the higher prices, there would be no drawbacks to visiting Prague in the summer. While the weather is perfect for enjoying a sunny picnic in Letná Park, you'll have to fight crowds, wait in lines for major attractions, and make reservations for restaurants ahead of time. You will also pay more for airfare and hotel rooms, and centrally located accommodations may be more difficult to come by unless you book very early.

If you'd rather not put up with the crowds, and potentially the rain, you can plan a trip for the shoulder season in spring and fall to enjoy a compromise between nicer weather and fewer crowds. To enjoy Prague at its most quiet, January and February's frigid temperatures tend to keep most other visitors away. While December is also a cold month, the city will be bustling with people out and about to see the lights and shop the markets during the Christmas season.

January

This tends to be Prague's coldest month with temperatures hovering around the freezing point with average highs of 33 degrees Fahrenheit (0 degrees Celsius) and average lows of 22 degrees Fahrenheit (-5 degrees Celsius). The low temperatures keep the crowds away, but there are also fewer hours of sunlight.

Events to check out:

  • On January 6, you might stumble across the Three Kings Procession, a religious parade led by costumed kings riding camels.
  • For some indoor entertainment on a cold night, you can watch dozens of short films from around the world during the Prague Short Film Festival.

February

This is still quite a cold month for Prague with average high temperatures of 38 degrees Fahrenheit (3 degrees Celsius) and average lows of 27 degrees Fahrenheit (-3 degrees Celsius). However, it also tends to be snowier and rainier so there are fewer sunny days.

Events to check out:

  • Like other European countries, Carnival in Prague, or Masopust as they say in Czech, takes place at the end of February (or at the beginning of March depending on which day Ash Wednesday falls). You'll see locals dressed up and out celebrating all over town with events held everywhere from public squares to museums.
  • Malá Inventura is an annual art event that organizes citywide theatre performances highlighting new playwrights. It takes place over a week towards the end of the month and there are also workshops and discussions scheduled.

March

Winter in Prague is just starting to wane in March with average temperatures falling between 46 degrees Fahrenheit (8 degrees Celsius) and 32 degrees Fahrenheit (0 degrees Celsius). With a lower chance of rain and crowds still shying away from the cold weather, this is a pretty good month to visit as long as you don't mind bringing your winter coat.

Events to check out:

  • FebioFest is Prague's international film festival, one of the largest in the Czech Republic and held every year in theaters around the city center.
  • You wouldn't think it, but the Czech Republic actually has historic ties to Ireland (because of the Celtic tribes that once settled there) and on St. Patrick's Day, the Irish Music Festival brings dance groups from Ireland and the Czech Republic together for a celebration of Irish culture.

April

Temperatures in April start low but get gradually warmer towards the end of the month with averages ranging between 57 degrees Fahrenheit (14 degrees Celsius) and 39 degrees Fahrenheit (4 degrees Celsius). It can get rainy in April with typically 16 expected days of precipitation, so you'll want to make sure you bring a raincoat and waterproof shoes.

Events to check out:

  • On April 30, you may notice some commotion in the park as folks gather to celebrate Čarodějnice, or Witches' Night. This is an old Czech tradition that welcomes spring with the setting of bonfires in public parks, drum circles, and plenty of food and beer. Petřín Hill is a famous spot to catch this event in action.
  • If you're visiting Prague during Easter, this is a great time to shop for authentic Czech Easter eggs which are elaborately decorated and easily found all over the city.

May

In May, spring really kicks into gear with average high temperatures of 56 degrees Fahrenheit (13 degrees Celsius). However, the average lows are still about 45 degrees Fahrenheit (7 degrees Celsius), so you'll still want to pack layers and a jacket if you go out at night. A late spring trip to Prague is apt if you want to realize some savings through airfare and hotel bookings and prefer mild weather to crowded attractions.

Events to check out:

  • The Prague Beer Festival occurs annually in May, a perfect event for anyone too impatient to wait for Oktoberfest in the fall.
  • If you prefer not to pay entry fees to tour Prague's many churches, wait until May's Night of Churches when more than 1,000 of the city's churches will open their doors to the public.

June

In June, the hot weather of summer is just around the corner with average highs of 71 degrees Fahrenheit (22 degrees Celsius) and average lows hovering around 51 degrees Fahrenheit (11 degrees Celsius). This is also probably your last chance to avoid the thick summer crowds if you visit towards the beginning of the month.

Events to check out:

  • Each year, the Prague Spring International Music Festival welcomes orchestras from around the world to perform during a week of classical music. Young flautists and oboists are also welcomed to compete in the festival's competition that has been on the hunt for new talent since 1947.
  • If you miss the beer fest in May, you can attend the Minibrewery Festival which takes place in mid-June at Prague Castle and focuses on smaller brewers around the Czech Republic.

July

As the first full month of Prague's high season, you can expect many other tourists to be out and about enjoying the weather with average highs of 76 degrees Fahrenheit (24 degrees Celsius) and lows of 56 degrees Fahrenheit (13 degrees Celsius). The weather is ideal for enjoying the city, but you should expect attractions to be crowded and lines and restaurant wait times in the popular touristic areas to be long.

Events to check out:

  • The annual musical series Prague Proms is held in concert halls and open air venues around the city throughout the month. In addition to classical music, you'll also be able to hear orchestras perform tributes to jazz classics and movie scores.
  • At the end of the month, you'll be able to enjoy folk dancing and Czech culture on many of the city's most famous squares during Prague Folklore Days.

August

With about the same weather as July—highs of 73 degrees Fahrenheit (23 degrees Celsius) and lows of 53 degrees Fahrenheit (12 degrees Celsius)—you should expect the same level of crowds, if not more with more people using their time off for the summer holidays. This will also drive up the cost of hotel rates and airfares.

Events to check out:

  • Although it's more typical for cities to celebrate Gay Pride in June, Prague's Pride Festival takes place each year in August. Events take place all week, but the main event is the Saturday parade which begins in Wenceslas Square and finishes in Letná Park where there is a street party with DJ stages and food stands.
  • During the last weekend of August, Prague's many castles say goodbye to summer by staying open late to offer lantern-led tours, concerts, and special performances during Castle-Château Night.

September

As the summer crowds start to thin out, September is a lovely month to visit Prague. Temperatures are still pretty warm with average highs of 65 degrees Fahrenheit (19 degrees Celsius) and average lows of 47 degrees Fahrenheit (8 degrees Celsius). It can rain a lot in September, but it's still a pleasant time to explore the city.

Events to check out:

  • In September, you can join locals in honoring the city's patron saint at the St. Wenceslas Fair, which is usually scheduled for the end of the month. Expect folk dancing, music, and plenty of sausage and beer for sale.
  • Prague's Burgerfest is the largest festival of burgers and barbecue in Europe. Taking place over a weekend at the beginning of the month, this is a great place to get your fix of American culture, as it's the festival's mission "to prove that the burger has its place in quality cuisine."

October

In October, Prague's autumn colors begin to show and the weather is cool, but not too brisk, with average high temperatures of 56 degrees Fahrenheit (13 degrees Celsius) and average lows that dip down to 39 degrees Fahrenheit (4 degrees Celsius). It can get pretty windy in October, but sometimes you'll luck out with a warm day too, so make sure you pack plenty of layers. This also happens to be a great month to visit if you hope to avoid big crowds.

Events to check out:

  • In October, Prague celebrates fashion and design with Designblok, an annual three-day festival where you can learn more about the talented emerging artists in the Czech republic.
  • In the middle of the month, the city lights up for three nights during the Signal Festival. Take this time to explore the city at night and enjoy the light design installations on display all over town.

November

In November, the average temperature drops to a high of 43 degrees Fahrenheit (6 degrees Celsius) and a low of 34 degrees Fahrenheit (1 degree Celsius), letting everyone know that winter is not so far away anymore. You'll need a big coat, but should be able to enjoy much smaller crowds at the main tourist attractions as well as lower rates at hotels.

Events to check out:

  • During the Feast of St. Martin, celebrated on November 11, you may notice that most restaurants will have goose on the menu. This is the traditional meal for this day and it's common for locals to start drinking wine precisely at 11:11.
  • On November 17, Czechs celebrate the Struggle for Freedom and Democracy Day, which marks the day of a 1989 protest that many believe to have kicked off the Velvet Revolution. On this day, there will be a candle-lighting ceremony in Wenceslas Square.

December

Although the winter officially arrives to Prague in December, this is the optimal time of year to see the city dressed up in festive decorations and to shop for some Christmas-themed souvenirs. With average high temperatures of 39 degrees Fahrenheit (4 degrees Celsius) and lows of 32 degrees Fahrenheit (0 degrees Celsius), Prague in December is cold but bearable—and made all the better with the cheery atmosphere of the holidays.

Events to check out:

  • Christmas markets will be open throughout the month—some even get started in November—and will be easy to find throughout the city's main squares.
  • On New Year's Eve, Prague likes to party. Whether you go out to a bar or a club, or find a nice spot to watch the fireworks over the Vltava River, it's a lively night to bee in the city. Although locals light their own fireworks on New Year's Eve, the official city fireworks don't take place until the night of January 1.
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