If you're planning a trip to Prague, the first decision you need to make is when to go. The answer depends on your budget, your tolerance for crowds or cold weather, and your desire to experience seasonal activities and events. Consider the pros and cons of traveling during each of the four seasons to decide which season best suits your priorities. The most expensive time to travel to Prague is June through August, with November, January, and February offering the best deals.
Traveling to Prague in the summer is a good choice for you if you prefer warm weather on a vacation. Between June and August, Prague experiences the warmest weather of the year, with afternoon average highs above 70 degrees Fahrenheit and lows down to 50. This means you can pack light and have longer days for sightseeing or just meandering around the city. You will likely spend most of your time outdoors, exploring Prague's neighborhoods or dining alfresco on terraces set up during summertime on historic squares.
But summer has its drawbacks. Summer is Prague's busiest travel season. That means you'll have to fight crowds, wait in lines, and make sure you make reservations for restaurants. 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. The summer months are also the wettest months of the year in Prague, with averages each month of more than 2.5 inches, but the rain will be warm.
Spring and Fall
Plan your trip to Prague in late spring or early fall if you want to realize some savings through airfare and hotel bookings or if you want relatively mild weather but don't like crowds. Average daily highs in May and September are above 60 degrees Fahrenheit, with lows in the 40s. It rains quite a bit in May, with the average for the month 2.72 inches. September is much drier, with only 1.54 inches of rain, on average. Average highs in April and October are in the 50s, so it's best to schedule a spring or fall trip in May or September if you want to avoid chilly weather.
If you are there at the right time you will be able to experience one of Prague's seasonal music festivals: Prague Spring or Prague Autumn. Even if the weather turns chilly, you can stay entertained indoors at museums and churches, go to concerts, or warm up in a cafe. Hot mulled wine is tasty accompanied by a trdelnik pastry.
If your schedule is flexible, play with booking dates to see when you can get the best deal on room rates and airfare. During this season, you will have good luck at getting a hotel situated close to the sights you are most interested in seeing. Pull up a map of the city when you book: Old Town Prague is sprawling, but it's walkable if you have plenty of time and energy. Furthermore, each part of the city has its own personality, meaning that where you stay will have an effect on your overall experience.
The farther from summer you plan to travel, the chillier the weather is likely to be and the higher the risk of a cold front that drops the temperature below the averages. This means you will have to pack versatile clothing for your trip, which will take up space in your suitcase. On the other hand, the closer you travel to summer, the thicker the crowds will be. The best scenario is to find a compromise in the shoulder season that means minimal crowds but warmer weather.
If visiting Prague's Christmas Market is on your bucket list, winter is the time to go, when you'll also find winter season musical performances. Prague also is lovely under a fresh blanket of snow, and it is ideally viewed from above, from one of the towers or from the Castle District lookout. Average daily highs are in the mid-30s in December. Because of Christmas attractions, December is a busy travel month.
January and February are the least crowded times in Prague, and the prices for hotels and airfare reflect this low season. January highs are about the same as December's, and February is a few degrees warmer.
If you have a low tolerance for freezing temperatures and snow, winter is not the time to travel to Prague. This season also requires thicker clothing, meaning more difficult packing. Boots, down coats, gloves, hats, and sweaters are a must for travel during winter. Sightseeing may be inconvenient with snow- and ice-covered sidewalks, and the days are very short in Prague during the winter, which also limits the time you have for sightseeing.