Enjoy Prague Like a Local

The Czech capital is famous for its beautiful bridges, the oldest castle in the world, Kafka and great beer, but there is more than just pivo and outstanding architecture to this romantic destination.

The ‘Golden City’
A beautiful capital packed with historical monuments, museums and old town allure; Prague lies on the Vltava River and has well preserved districts that make it a photographer’s dream. The stunning architecture and cobbled streets with horse drawn carriages make it a charming tourist attraction, with the main sites busy all year round. Take a break from the tourist trail and try something a little different; enjoy Prague like a local.

Yarga River

Yarga River with the famous Charles Bridge

Prague’s Medieval Old Town – Staré Mêsto

No visit to Prague would be complete without seeing the top sites, so don’t miss out on the hill-top Castle complex, the famous Astronomical Clock in the Old Town Square, the Jewish Quarter and Jewish Museum, Charles Bridge, the Powder Gate and Wenceslas Square. Once you’ve explored the main tourist attractions you can begin to enjoy Prague like a local and see what else this cosmopolitan city has to offer.

Kampa Island

From the Lesser Town (Malá Strana) end of Charles Bridge, you can find Kampa Island; a tranquil spot with charming waterside houses and local cafes. Known as the “the Venice of Prague” you can even rent rowboats or just admire the view of the Old Town across the river. There is also the modern European art museum – Kampa Museum and the Velkoprevorské námestí (Grand Priory Square), with the Beatles lyrics-covered ‘Lennon Wall’.

View from Prague Castle

View from Prague Castle

Great Views of Prague

Climb the hill to the Castle for a great sunset view, or for something different visit Vítkov Hill, next to the Žižkov district. If the weather is good then the locals love a picnic or a beer garden. Stroll across the Most Legií bridge to the island and visit Letná Park. There is open air cinema all Summer on weekdays (9pm, 100 CZK) and a small floating bar on the waterfront!

Enjoy a Czech Beer!

If you’re a fan of Czech beer (pivo) then don’t miss the Staropramen brewery in the Smíchov district, and the most famous ‘pubs’ in Prague – the 500 year old U Fleku and Pivovarský dum on the site of the former ‘Research Institute of Brewing and Malting’. There’s also a newcomer; the microbrewery Novomestský where you can order a 10 litre barrel (best shared with friends!) If you’re in town May 7th-23rd then catch the Czech Beer Festival - with 17 days of festivities and over 150 Czech beers!

Prague Old Town Square

Prague Old Town Square

Czech Cafe Culture

Prague is full of lovely cafes with cosy terraces and blankets in winter and sunshine spots in summer – and locals love to hang out and have a coffee or beer. Here are some of the less touristy places to try.

Le Court Galerie Café is a cute favourite, along with Lokál Dlouhá for lunch, or the delicious Restaurant Mincovna or recommended Bistro Maso a Kobliha. For traditional meatloaf or great burgers try quality butcher/bistro Naše maso. For a bit of style and great coffee try the Café Lounge in the Lesser Quarter or Muj Salek Kavy. If you have a sweet tooth try traditional confectionery shop Myšák. Bistro 8 on trendy Veverkova Street does some tasty dishes (a popular and cool spot for art students from the Academy of Fine Arts nearby.)

More touristy are the original Café B Braun on Sokolovská Street or more international Slavia café or grab something at Jan Paukert Deli if you’re on the move.

Karluv Most - Charles Bridge at sunset

Karluv Most – Charles Bridge at sunset

The Best Food Market
Naplavka Farmers Market With views of Prague Castle and on the Vlatva River, this Saturday local produce market is the best place to sample smoked meats, cheeses, pickled local specialties, baked treats and cakes – everything you could want to eat! With great events all summer, local beer tasting, and best of all ‘Wurst-kunst’ (sausage campfire cooking) what’s not to love about wandering around with the locals and buying some authentic Czech fair? Saturdays 8am-2pm

Explore Alternative Neighborhoods

Away from the romance of the old town and the well preserved architecture of the narrow streets and Renaissance bridges the city is a little different. Further from the city center there are more ‘authentic’ neighborhoods where you can see the affects of the Velvet Revolution culturally and politically. Check out the DOX Centre for Contemporary Art in Holešovice; a new gallery exhibiting thought provoking art, and the more underground scenes of street art and graffiti and contemporary art scene in Karlín. Unfortunately the alternative art commune at Trafacka has now closed for development.

Equity Point Prague

Equity Point Hostel Prague

Equity Point Hostel Prague

Our hostel is located in a new building in the heart of the old town, just moments from Charles Bridge and a short walk from the main square. Our cosy yet spacious hostel has 26 light rooms and plenty of communal space to chill out. Book your bed in our Prague hostel here.

What to see in Morocco’s Marrakech in Two Days

What not to miss with two days in this Moroccan gem, from busy souks to tranquil gardens.

La cité ocre, or Pink City, is an assortment of bustling market stalls, impressive historical sites, and a labyrinth of chaotic narrow streets. Here’s our guide of what not to miss!

Square at night

The famous square at night by Carlitos

The Medina of Marrakech

Begin your visit with a trip to this spectacular market place – a jumble of colours and sights that are the essence of Marrakech. By day and night it’s a hive of activity, with souks selling everything from lanterns to camel leather bags, traditional ceramics and tea sets to tempting jewelry. The market place is the largest Berber one in Morocco and you will definitely get lost in its charming narrow streets, amongst the carts, motorbikes and donkeys – but this is the fun part. Visit the stalls and enjoy the traditional mint tea while you browse and haggle. The friendly owners will persuade you to buy more than you can carry home!

Jamaa el Fna – Main Square

In the center of the Medina lies the beating heart of Marrakech – the city square. This is a major tourist attraction but also a local market place since the 11th C and UNESCO site, with snake charmers, musicians, henna artists and tea sellers all vying for trade. Teaming with food stalls and the smell of sweet cakes and barbecued lamb in the evening, it’s a great place to soak up the atmosphere and sit back on a café rooftop and watch the ‘halqa’ – street theatre.

Marrakech Medina

Marrakech Medina

El Badi Palace

Now this former seat of luxury and power is in ruins, but the 16th C palace still has charming courtyards, gardens and underground tunnels to explore, along with a small historical museum. The view of the Atlas Mountains from the peaceful terrace is beautiful. The Royal Palace complex can only be seen from the outside, but it’s high walls and artful doors are worth a quick detour from the southern Medina. The Bahia Palace complex is still grand and majestic and shows exemplary architecture – definitely worth seeing.

Kasbah Mosque

Beautifully decorated within, it’s worth seeing this National Historic Monument during prayer time, when the doors are open to the public. Constructed in 1230, the silhouetted minarets can be seen from around the city.

Souk

Souk selling traditional pottery

For Day Two:

Saadian Tombs

These 16th C tombs were restored to a garden containing graves of soldiers and mausoleum for the Dynastic royalty. There are gleaning marble columns and the mosaics are stunning – don’t miss the sultan’s grandson’s room.

Opposite are the ancient city’s ramparts, with 19 gateways to the city. The ornate stone Bab Agnaou gate is the highlight.

Koutoubia Mosque

Visible throughout Marrakech, The Koutoubia Mosque is great to visit by day or night as it is spectacularly lit. The largest mosque in Marrakech, it has a beautiful 250 ft tall Minaret and is considered an architectural wonder. There are tranquil gardens with fountains to stroll around by day.

A former theological college, the Ben Youssef Madrasa was constructed in 1570 and is a geometric wonder with marble patterns, tranquil pools and traditional design. It’s a peaceful place to detour to if you’re an architecture fan.

Jardin Majorelle

Jardin Majorelle

Jardin Majorelle

A short walk from the chaotic Medina there is an oasis of calm in this frenetic city at these enchanting gardens. Created by 19thC French painter Jacques Majorelle over forty years and restored by Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé in 1980, the gardens brim with shady palms, rare and exotic plants, all on a background of bright blue and yellow colorful mosaics. The gardens also house the Musée Berbere - an interesting insight into the region’s Berber culture.

Hammam Experience

Make time for a unique and relaxing hammam visit – a traditional Morrocan spa. Treatments include massages, steams and scrubs. The most famous is the Hamman of the Rose.

Finally, head back to your hostel relaxed! Enjoy a dip in the pool or a rooftop drink at sunset – Equity Point Marrakech

Equity Point Marrakech

Equity Point Marrakech

 The famous square image is by Carlitos0802 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Lisbons Mercado da Ribeira

Mercado_Ribeira_Lisbon

Mercado da Ribeira is one of the oldest markets in Lisbon as it was built in 1885. And it’s also the biggest and most important fresh market in Lisbon. At Mercado da Ribeira you can find flowers, fruit, fish, meat, bread and almost any kind of food. Most locals buy the food here, so should you.

But probably the best part of Mercado da Ribeira is all those trendy bars and eateries that surround it. The market is frenzy all the mornings and later the life in bars sparks. Usually there’s also live music, dance, exhibition, performances…

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Borough Market, the most incredible food market in London

Borough_Market_cake_stall,_London,_England_-_Oct_2008

If you visit our hostel in London, and you fancy a good meal, you should pay a visit to the Borough Market which is one of the biggest food markets in London and sells food from all over the world. The wholesale market opens at 2am until 8am but there’s also a retail market that opens Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

Historically, the Borough Market was a fruits and vegetables market, but nowadays you can find all kinds of food from all over the world that is known for its gourmet foods and the quality of its products.

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Winter Wonderland at Hyde Park in London

Did you know that Equity Point Hostel in London is really close to Hyde Park? In less than five minutes walking you’ll be at one of the most gorgeous parks in London, and until January 4th there’s extra fun with the Winter Wonderland attractions.

At the Winter Wonderland you can find the most amazing German Christmas Market in England with free entry; the largest skate rink in London with 1.400 square meters and capacity for 400 skaters; an iconic 50 meters observation wheel; a winter circus; and loads of attractions including the possibility to visit Santa.

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Camden Market

Camden_markets_entrance

For many years Camden Market has become an indispensable walk for all London visitors and now it’s one London’s top attractions. Originally the Camden Market was only opened on Sundays, but nowadays most stalls are also available on Saturday and many of them also open on week days. Getting to Camden Market form Equity Point Hostel in London it’s pretty easy and it’s only twenty minutes away with the tube.

At the Camden Market you can find virtually everything: clothing, music, antiques, ethnic art, food, drinks… And also, on Sundays there’s live music and plays in the evenings. The opening hours are from 10 in the morning until 18 in the afternoon.

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Imperial War Museum in London

Imperialwarmuseumatriumpanorama

If you’re interested in the recent history or want to learn more about the international conflicts such as the World Wars, the Imperial War Museum in London is an interesting visit while you’re staying with us at our Hostel in London.

The Imperial War Museum was created in 1917 during the First World War and pretends to show the visitor the impact that war has in individuals and society. They host numerous documents photographs and videos that show the horror of war, but they also have aircrafts, military vehicles, weapons and other equipment.

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Portobello Market

portobello

Portobello Market fame is known all over the world, being popular equally among Londoners and tourists. It’s located at Portobello Road where you can also find numerous independent shops, but the main attraction is the market which opens six days a week. The most popular market takes place on Saturdays when the antique’s market arises.

In the Portobello Market the merchandises are ordered in areas, so you’ll find an antiques market, a fruit and vegetables market and a flea market. To visit them all you just have to go down the street. But if you’re hungry don’t bother to get to the food area because through the street you’ll find restaurants, cafes and street food stalls that serve delicious food. Continue reading