Top 7 Food Markets in Prague
You’ve been wandering around for hours – taking in the sights, checking out the local shops, and meeting friendly locals. It’s lunchtime and you want to do something a little different. How about a food market?
Whether you’re wanting to brush up on your historical knowledge, experience new cultures, visit some beautiful sights, see all the tourist attractions, get to know the locals, or try out the local cuisine, Prague has something for every traveler.
You have probably heard of the famous Christmas and Easter markets that pop-up every holiday season around the city in the famous Old Town and Wenceslas Square, but up until a few years ago the rest of the year only enjoyed scarce food and produce markets. Fortunately for us, that has now changed. Prague has undergone a great transformation in the past few years, with markets becoming a staple in the community’s life, and present all year.
The people have shown the need and the want for organic and locally-made products, and that has encouraged the city to try and support the independent businesses and local entrepreneurs. The thousands of tourists that flock to the city in the warmer months also contribute to the growing popularity, since wandering through the brightly-colored stalls along the river is a fun activity for anyone.
First up, we have one of the most popular and well-known food markets in the city – Naplavka. This farmers’ market takes place in one of the best settings, along the river Vltava, with a perfect view of the bridges and the boats gliding through the water.
The cobblestoned-area brings a never-ending stream of patrons on a Saturday morning it pops up on the street, and provides a great excuse to drag yourself out of bed after a night of too many Pilsners.
On their one day open, the market has tons of vendors with ample variety for whatever you’re looking for, from jams, spreads, and fish, to handmade goods like pottery. This is a great spot to visit if you’re wandering around the busy city and want to catch a good breeze down by the riverfront. It will only take a few minutes to walk here, since it’s right by the picturesque Dancing House.
Second on our list of food markets, we have Sapa – also known as Little Hanoi. A little known fact about Prague is the prevalence of the Vietnamese population that has integrated into Czech society. During the Communist area in the Czech Republic, Vietnamese started immigrating into the country, and have continued doing so ever since.
Nowadays, the number of Vietnamese is more like 60,000 – making it one of the largest minorities in the country. Because of this, Vietnamese culture has started to mix in with the traditional Czech culture, swapping ideas in various areas of each other’s lifestyles. In terms of food, the Vietnamese flavors and recipes have been accepted by those living in the city, and especially tourists that come to visit and are taken aback by the prevalence of the Asian restaurants and grocery stores that frequent many neighborhoods.
For these reasons, Sapa continues to be popular among both locals and tourists alike. People come here to stock up on fresh groceries, imported goods, and try out the pho – it’s some of the best in town. Open every day 8 am – 8 pm, this Prague 4 location is the best spot to get fresh, Asian ingredients.
3. Na Kulaťáku
If you’re a student trying to make ends meet in the city, but don’t want to sacrifice buying some tasty food, then look no further. Located right next to the Czech Technical University, Na Kulaťáku is open every Saturday. Selling produce, cheeses, homemade spreads, imported items, and ready-to-go Czech dishes, this market has ample variety with half the crowds.
Gluten-free people rejoice, since there’s at least two gluten-free bakery stands scattered throughout the market. If you’re studying at the university and want an inexpensive lunch option or a ready-made meal to take home for dinner, head here for some fresh ingredients.
Open from 8 am – 2 pm on Saturdays, head here for some freshly prepared food to take home to your girlfriend – she’ll be surprised, trust me.
A not-so-traditional market, Manifesto takes place inside of converted cargo containers, giving off a unique, but trendy, vibe that consistently attracts thousands of people to this market. Featuring at least 25 vendors spread throughout the space, this former-wasteland is usable during all seasons, making it one of the most popular spots in the city.
Come here in the winter and sit inside or visit in the summer and sit outside for lunch – the ability to visit here all-year-round is a sparse concept when it comes to farmer’s markets – and we love it. The variety of food stalls also gives you something for every craving.
You have Pan-Asian fusion, gourmet Mexican grub, and a Czech microbrewery, serving up crisp pours all day long. If you need to bring back a gift for your friends, there’s a few clothing stalls in the area, such as the high-end Alex Monhart streetwear brand.
Manifesto has ample outdoor seating, string lights all throughout the venue, and unique decor that screams more of an outdoor bar than a food market.
5. Jiriho z Podebrad
Heading to the trendy Vinohrady neighborhood, Jiriho z Podebrad market is one of the best markets in the city. Part of the appeal of this market is the location – Vinohrady is outside of the city center, but has a great buzz all on its own. The hipster cafes, numerous restaurants, younger crowd strolling about – the energy is high, and the vibes are good.
The market here is on every day from Wednesday – Saturday beginning at 8 am, so if you want to avoid the crowds we’d recommend hitting this on a weekday while the normal crowd is at work. Get off at Jiriho z Podebrad subway stop and it’s literally right in front of you.
A less-crowded version of Naplavka, this spot is more relaxed, but still provides the same local, tasty, and traditional Czech food. If you go towards the end of the day, you’ll notice the influx of locals that stop by here on their way home from work, picking up some food to take home to the family.
If you’re here mid-day or during lunchtime, you’ll see the baked goods stand getting busy, or the stalls serving hot meals developing lines of hungry humans, serving up plates like goulash and smoked meat and cabbage. Grab a seat on one of the benches here and gaze at the church overlooking the Jirak square.
6. Dejvice Farmers’ Market
For another Saturday-only market, we bring to you Dejvice Farmers’ Market. Every Saturday from March – November, this spot just north of the Prague Castle serves up locally-sourced fruit, vegetables, baked goods, and meats to the patrons.
We love how many of these vendors travel in from the surrounding areas around the city to sell their home-grown products, and how the city makes the effort to support the locals and independent business owners.
In addition to the local offerings, there’s also a fair amount of imported goods, like freshwater fish and various specialty wines. Adjacent to the Dejvická metro station, this market is convenient to get to, and usually is very crowded by mid-day. Try and get here in the morning to buy fresh produce and baked goods before the market becomes more like a carnival than a food-venue.
We have saved the largest-year-round market for last – Holešovice. This market is similar to Manifesto, in that it uses an indoor location to stay open all year, and has the ability to expand and include numerous stalls with extreme variety.
Set within a former cattle market that was in use during the ancient rule, the complex is also home to a flea market, Czech and Vietnamese restaurants, mini-markets selling imported goods, and – the most famous – the biggest fresh-food-market in Prague.
Called Hala 22, this market has dozens of local farmers selling their locally-grown produce, cheeses, spreads, and herbs to the buyers. The market in total has over 75 vendors, giving you ample choice to decide what you’re in the mood for.
Even though the flea market has mostly the same products from week to week, that’s not the real reason to come here – it just adds a bit of a different and interesting vibe to the indoor space.
The reason to come here is the local products sold at the 75 vendors – the cheap prices keep people coming back for more, wandering around the huge venue and comparing all of the different produce.
Located right off the Vltava in Prague 7, it’s a little farther out than some other markets, but definitely head here if you’re in need of bulk-purchasing, finding the best deals, or already in the neighborhood.
Prague is the city of options – and that holds true in its’ food scene. The abundance of food markets that are now scattered throughout various neighborhoods make it possible, and easy, to eat local and support the local farmers – and feel good doing it.
As you can see, Prague has something for everyone – in its culture, and in the market scene. There are weekly outdoor markets, selling pre-made meals for the hungry budget traveler. There are indoor markets that are open all-year-round, giving you the chance and the opportunity to buy locally-made ingredients during the winter as the snow is falling outside.
The ability to purchase from Czech farmers and support local businesses consistently is great for the economy, for morale, and for the environment. The thousands of tourists that visit this beautiful city every year can explore the numerous food markets scattered throughout the city no matter what month they decide to come to Prague.
Wandering around the food markets during a sunny Saturday isn’t just a means to buy some quick food to take away – it’s become an even that people genuinely look forward to. They are able to be outside in the beautiful weather, get some great food at inexpensive prices, support their local farmers, and have fun doing something that helps everyone.