Stuck in Prague’s Airport During the Holidays? Enjoy it!

Travel Tips, What's New — By Jacy Meyer on November 3, 2010 at 4:44 am

Ohhh…winter weather. While it can be a wonderland, if you are tucked up cozy-like in front of the fire, if you are travelling it can get real ugly, real fast. If you are stuck in Prague’s airport, you are mostly likely trying to leave our fair city. We hope you had a wonderful time, and will remember something else from your trip, besides the airport.

But heck, when life hands you snow, make snowballs! You can entertain yourself in a semi-interesting way without blowing all your leftover cash at the Duty Free shops or stuffing your face with overpriced food. First, if you know there’s going to be a delay, don’t go through security/passport control just yet. Have a wander around the open areas of the airport, especially Terminal 2. Opened in 2004, it is a light and airy space that will allow you to breathe normally and perhaps relax. In the departures lounge there is usually an art exhibit on display. The tall windows flood the space with light, making this de facto gallery a pleasure to visit. There’s also a permanent Prague Airport Museum that traces the history of the very building in which you find yourself stranded. It’s also located in the Terminal 2 Departure Hall.

If you’d like to get up close and personal with the evil blizzard, next to the Airport Museum is the Lookout Terrace, a space that lets you view the runway, the airplanes and all the buzzing activity that is an airport. Coffee and cake is served here as well. If you are traveling with kids; head over to one of the two Children’s Corners. One is located to the left of Passport Control in Terminal 1 and the second is to the left of security in Terminal 2. Inside the Bambule Toy Shop, between Terminals 1 and 2, there’s a third play spot.

Shopping leaves a lot to be desired here. Stores of note include Botanicus for a wide range of all-natural Czech made soaps, bath salts, lotions and the like; Blue Praha for gorgeous glass or Manufaktura for natural Czech crafts and wooden toys. In need of shopping therapy to overcome your stranded depression? Top designer threads can be had at Hugo Boss, Emporio Armani, Tommy Hilfiger and Styl, which carries Versace, Hermes and others. If your delay even more horrendously occurs in the dead of night, there are three duty free shops open 24 hours.

Just gotta get out of the airport? Directly across the street (there’s an elevated covered walkway) is a Courtyard by Marriot. You can attempt to book a short-term stay, or just take advantage of their beautiful, non-airport space. Head up to the second floor for a peaceful “garden” wander and take advantage of their yummy Mediterranean restaurant. In this complex, there’s also a Billa grocery store (don’t pay airport food prices!) as well as a Budvar Restaurant (last chance for Czech food and beer!) and a café.

If you’ve got a long delay, and feel like throwing all caution to the blizzard,grab a taxi and head to the center. You’ll probably have time to watch the Astronomical Clock do its song and dance at the top of the hour. Other quick hits would be an amble across Charles Bridge or a speedy stroll through St. Vitus Cathedral. But we take no responsibility if you miss your flight!

Photos courtesy of Prague Airport, Courtyard by Marriott & Jacy Meyer

Tags: airport, holidays


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