Prague is suffering through it’s own fault. By keeping regulation and enforcement on various form of adult and intoxicant entertainments light, combined with cheap flights in and cheap accommodation, it has become stag do and party capital of Europe. This has resulted in large groups of younger (though not entirely) people (yes not just men) roaming around in crowds, and then from mid afternoon on, starting to fill the myriad of bars, from where they emerge late in to the evening or early in the morning.
There is a second curse, fueled by some of the same reasons as the first. Tour groups. Prague is a beautiful city (well the old town is anyhow), so it attracts a lot of tourists, but rather than small groups moving in and out of crowds, it is the increase in tour groups that have blocked the streets and created the real congestion. These are like mobile road blocks or worse, and in the popular areas, such as in front of the Astronomical Clock with 10 minutes to go, there are so many raised umbrellas and signs that it’s very hard to move through an area that can hold a few hundred people.
The above also means that you will struggle to find a local’s place without heading further out. Virtually every bar (and there are many) seems to be an Irish bar, or something not that far out. And don’t think the selling point of Prague being a cheap weekend away counts for anything. Prices are high. Same for most the restaurants. There are some gems, but often they are hidden and you need a trusted local to help you out.
It’s a real shame as Prague Old Town is a beautiful area and well worth a visit, as I shall go in to in more detail in another post.