October is a great month to visit Prague – it’s still not as cold as in a winter, the main historic attractions are still fully open (some are switching to the weekend-only opening) and there are definitely less people visiting the town.
There are plenty of autumnal festivals focusing on food, culture and music. Although Czech people don’t traditionally celebrate Halloween, there are more and more events each year that include pumpkin carving, Halloween fun for all ages and comforting flavours of pumpkin pie spice in your morning coffee.
If you are thinking of visiting Prague in October, then I’ve put together practical travel tips, my favourite places to go and events to help you to plan your trip to Prague.
Is october a good month to visit Prague?
I would say, most definitely! The weather is much cooler than in September, but it’s still warm enough to walk around in few layers and a light jacket most of the time.
There are still plenty of outdoor festivals and free things to do in Prague in October to choose from. Most attractions outside of Prague such as museums and castles are switching to their winter opening times and are usually just open at weekends and for a slightly shorter time.
It’s also the last month when most castles outside Prague stay open during weekends before they close for the winter season, so it’s a great time to catch the last bit of sun, plan a hike in the coutryside, visit historic castles or perhaps any of the beautiful towns on the UNESCO heritage list in the Czech Republic, which has just recently had the hop growing and beer making town of Zatec added in.
Prague is much quieter during October and it’s much easier to escape the tourist crowds. It’s also a great month to venture out of Prague and visit other nearby towns, such as Pardubice, which is hosting the most famous horse racing event in October each year – the Pardubice Steeplechase.
Travelling to Prague for the first time
- Everything you need to know before you travel to Prague for the first time >>
- How to avoid tourist traps in Prague >>
Planning your stay in Prague in October
- One-day Prague travel itinerary >>
- Tram 22 route – The self-guided tour of Prague >>
- 24 non-touristy things to do in Prague >>
What’s the October weather like?
Most years, Prague and Czech Republic would have warm autumn, but by October the temperatures are dropping to 5-10C during the night and 12-15 C during the day. You might get lovely sunny days in October, but it will feel chilly at the same time and especially when the sun comes down in the evening.
October also brings more rain and if you are unlucky you might get days when the sky would be grey and permanently cloudy.
October is usually the first month when most homes (or hotels in your case) start to put their heating on in the evening. If you are renting a self-catering apartment for your Prague holiday, you might want to double check with the owner how to turn the heating on.
Day light in October
In the morning the sunrise is from 7.02 am at the beginning of the month and from 7.24 am by the middle of the October. By the end of October the sunrise moves to 6.50 am, but that’s only because the time changes few days before the end of October.
The sunset is at 6.41 pm at the beginning of the month, moving towards the 6.11 pm by the middle of the month and to 4.41 at the end of the October, which is again because of the time change.
You also have an extra 30 minutes after the sunset when you can easily see and you can carry on exploring the town.
Overall this gives you about 10-11,5 hours of day light each day to plan your activities in Prague, which is still pretty good amount of time to pack a lot in!
What to pack for your visit
Apart from the general packing advice make sure that you have warmer walking shoes, warm fleece or jumper and a mid light jacket or even a winter jacket (although it doesn’t have to be the warmest jacket you have in your wardrobe).
I tent to go for warm layers, so I pack a warmer body layer with long sleeves and a short T-shirt on the top. I also bring a hat or a cap as it gets colder in the evening and the wind could be quite freezing.
I usually don’t need gloves, but if you feel the cold, you might want to bring some, just in case.
Umbrella is also handy, unless you have a good waterproof rain jacket.
If you are planning to do a longer day trips, it’s a good idea to bring a good day backpack and add and extra layer, hat or extra pair of socks for when the temperature drops in the evening.
If you have an early start you’ll be probably wearing all your warm clothes in the morning too, so you’ll want to have a space in your bag to keep them during day.
Instead of water bottle, I often take a hot coffee flask with me on my day trips. I’d still stop for a coffee or a tea during the day, but you never know if there is going to be a suitable place opened where you are heading.
This is especially useful if you are thinking of travelling further from the centre in the afternoons or weekends.
How to get around Prague
I find that the best way to get around Prague is by using public transport and then walking in the historic centre of Prague.
Prague has an extensive and efficient network of trams, buses, and metro lines that can take you to all parts of the city. The metro system is particularly useful for getting around quickly and it operates from 5 am until midnight every day.
You can buy one ticket (from 40 CZK for 90 minutes) that covers all trams, buses and underground and the easiest way to do that is at any metro station, from ticket machines, or via mobile apps.
The only exception is the Petrin HIll Funicular that costs 60 CZK one way unless you have a day travel card, which costs 120 CZK. It’s no brainer to buy the day travel card on the day you are travelling up the Petrin Lookout Tower and then visit other sites that are perhaps not in the centre of Prague to make the best use of your travel card.
My preferred way of getting around is to walk as many of the historic Prague attractions are within walking distance of each other in the centre of Prague. The centre doesn’t have much of a public transport anyway, but trams tend to get fairly close to the centre and then you only need to walk few streets to get to the middle.
You can also rent a bike or a scooter, although I wouldn’t recommend using it unless you have a bit of experience and are happy to ride over cobble stones (which are everywhere in the middle of Prague).
Local taxis and app taxis such as Bolt or Liftago are also available, but they are more expensive than public transport.
READ MORE ON HOW TO TRAVEL AROUND PRAGUE
- Getting from Prague airport >>
- Using public transport >>
- The full guide to tram network in Prague >>
- Comprehensive guide to Prague underground >>
- Florenc Main Bus Station >>
- How to buy a train ticket >>
- The main Prague Train Stations >>
- Guide to Hlavni Nadrazi – The Main Train Station >>
Important dates in October
28 October – Czech Independence Day
The Czech Independence Day is celebrated on the 28th of October to commemorate the 1918 break up from the Austrian-Hungarian Coalition. No matter what day of the week the 28th is it will be designated as the day off for. In the same way as all the other official holidays, if the day falls on Saturday or Sunday, tough love, you don’t get another day off that year!
If you are visiting Prague around the 28th of October, keep an eye on various tourist attractions, museums and places that are not normally open, because most of the times they offer free or very reduced entry fees.
Things to do in Prague in october 2023
The International Film Festival about Architecture and Urbanism (29.9-4.10 2023)
The theme of this year’s 12th festival edition is Construction. The chosen films will offer various perspectives on how to approach the original purpose and build of each site when transforming post-war buildings.
There will be national and international films from Sri Lanka, Scandinavia, and Brazil amongst others. The role of curator for this year is architectural and design theorist and journalist Adam Štěch.
Location: The films will be shown across the whole of Prague in independent art film cinemas including Svetozor, Mat and Edison.
Designblok Festival (4-8 October 2023)
The 25th year of the international design festival will focus on the theme ‘Journey’.
Modern design, style, fashion, photography, interactive exhibitions and talks are all part of the Designblok Festival. It’s hosted in many different locations across Prague and you can attend individual exhibitions or buy a ticket for the whole festival.
Location: This year, the exhibitions are going to be displayed at the Ballrooms Gallery at Prague Castle, Veletrzni Palace Gallery (Prague 7), Art Museum (close to the Jewish Quarter) in Prague.
Brevnov Monastery Celebrations – Brevnovske Posviceni (6 – 8 October 2023)
“Břevnovské posvícení” is always one of the best highlights of the Prague 6 cultural events and the event is always very popular event with locals and people from nearby areas.
‘Posviceni’ used to be one of the most popular celebrations in Czech villages. ‘Posviceni’ is celebrated on the first Sunday after the holiday named after the local church’s patron saint. This means that every village, town or monastery has ‘posviceni’ on a different day. Posviceni means in Czech ‘dedication’ and it’s the celebration commemorating the consecration of the church. The “posvícení” is celebrated usually in more traditional villages, so it’s great to see that we get to experience one in Prague. The more religious nature of the celebrations are always followed with feasting on traditional food, entertainment and processions.
You will be able to taste traditional Czech food such as roasted goose with dumplings and cabbage, roasted beef, roasted ham, potato pancakes, potato spirals, the not so traditional trdelnik and also the Brevnov own-produced beer and other Czech brewed beer, mead, wine, and “burčák” (young wine).
You will be also able to see the demonstrations of medieval beer brewing and there will be fun workshops for children and various performances including juggling.
If this is not good enough reason to visit, then you might also like to know that the Brevnov Monastery will be running guided tours and you can also visit the beautiful gardens behind the monastery. And the best bit is that at the end of the last day, there will bea also festive fireworks display to finish the celebrations.
Location: Brevnov Monastery, Marketska 1, Prague 6 – Brevnov is slightly out of the way, but if you stay on the tram number 22 beyond Prague Castle and get off at the stop ‘Brevnovsky Klaster’ you’ll get there in less than 30 minutes from the centre of Prague. This event is free.
Stroll through Prague parks
Autumn is particularly beautiful in Prague, especially as the leaves start turning yellow, orange and red. If you fancy a gentle stroll on a mainly flat surface, then head over to Stromovka Park, where you can see landscaped woodland areas, lakes and plenty of autumn leaves.
For a day trip in a magical park with a castle and colourful autumn leaves head over to the beautiful Pruhonice Park, which is open all year round and in October open from 7 am – 7pm. Entry is 100 CZK and the longest walk is over 10 km long.
- Pruhonice Park – The complete visitor’s guide >>
- Guide to the most beautiful parks, gardens and green spaces in Prague >>
Polivkovani – Soup Festival (14 October 2023)
The popular “Polívkování” soup festival will take place again on the Smíchov embankment – Naplavka on 14 October 2023 from 10 am – 6 pm. You can look forward to different types of soups from all over the world, but also food stalls selling homemade soup noodles, freshly baked bread and pastries, hot cider, mulled wine, locally produced draft beer.
The Soup Festival is an annual theme for what’s normally a regular farmers market at Naplavka, so if you miss the festival, you can come any Saturday (8am-2pm) and try some delicious local produce. I always enjoy visiting the regular farmers market there and the soup festival is a great way to taste soups from all over the world and keep warm at the same time.
Location: Smichov River Embankment – nearest underground stop is ‘Karlovo Namesti’ on line B, or trams 10, 16, 3 ,18,17 etc. The festival stalls are right next to the Vltava River and entrance is free.
Festival of Lights (12-15 October 2023)
This amazing outdoor festival has been going on for 11 years and it’s organised by a group of creative people called Signal.
The theme for this year is nature, technology, society, culture – all of which together form ecosystems in which we live and search for traces of joy, beauty, and excitement from new discoveries. There will be no shortage of art installations, video mappings, and projections.
Each year there are different routes chosen and the buildings, churches and trees are light up. Large buildings have often light installations or projected moving lights representing the themes of the festival.
The eleventh year of the festival will offer two routes and twenty festival locations. Popular video mappings will light up the building of the City Library on Mariánské náměstí and the Church of St. Cyril and Methodius on Karlínské náměstí.
The artistic work of the group called Echo brings a fresh wind to the genre of video mapping. Nature, the environment, the connection of humans with invisible yet vital natural processes. The projection was created by the audiovisual studio Flightgraf, which was founded in Tokyo in 2013. Its notable projects include the monumental video mapping Sand of Light for Qatar 2022 and it also presented to the audience at the Milan Design Week 2022.
Most of the festival is free, as it’s outdoors, but there are some areas (indoors) where there is a small entry fee (around 300 CZK for the whole festival pass or individual entrances to various indoor exhibitions for 100 CZK).
The best way to explore the festival and find where the installations are is to download the festival app to your smart phone, which comes up with all locations and detailed information.
The festival is usually open from 7pm – 12 midnight – from Thursday to Sunday second week in October.
Dyzajn Market (28 – 29 October 2023)
Dyzajn Market is one of my favourite places to go to buy an unusual and unique gift, a little treat and to get inspired by the beautiful designs and art on display. There are usually 3-4 markets during the year held at different places.
The autumn Dyzajn Market will include over 180 local artists, designers and makers who will present their products including fashion clothes, jewellery, pottery, toys, stationery, gift cards, accessories, and handbags. There will be also fashion show and entertainment programme for both children and adults.
Location: Exhibition Centre Holesovice, Prague 7, trams 12, 18 stop right in front of the exhibition area – tram stop ‘ Vystaviste’ and the entry to the event is free
Visit museums & official government buildings (28 October 2023)
On the 28th of October, you’ll have the rare opportunity to visit many places for free or low entrance fee. A lot of government buildings are open for the public and you can view behind the scene government buildings, which are based in the old palaces and historic buildings in the central Prague.
What’s even better is that the tours are led by the staff, so one year, we had the head of the international business department to show us around the ministry buildings and we even met the minister for that department.
All tours are in Czech language, but I think it’s worth going just to check out the buildings. You can always read about the history later and find a lot of information in local English guide books or online.
Also all the main museums in Prague (government-owned) are open for free on the 28 October, so it’s a great opportunity to visit them or just pop in to see a particular exhibition if you don’t have the time to visit the whole museum.
For example this year is open Straka’s Academy for guided tours on the 28 October and the gardens are also open on 7 and 14 October ( Nabrezi Edvarda Benese 4, Prague 1 – Lesser Town – it’s a 7-10 minute walk from Malostranska Underground or tram stop towards the river).
The Lichtenstein Palace is not open on the 28 October, but this year it’s on the 7 October. You can find the palace on the Kampa Island in Prague 1 – Lesser Town right next to the famous Charles Bridge.
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This blog post was originally written on 1 October 2021 and last updated on 24 September 2023