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Gay Prague city guide

This architectural gem has by far the largest, most stylish, and most international nightlife for gay people in Eastern Europe

Sunset at Prague Castle.  Credit: Prague city tourism

One of Europe’s top tourist destinations, this beautiful city is a must for gay adventurers.

The capital of the Czech Republic, Prague is an architectural gem. With a millennium of history carved in stone, the “City of 100 Spires” is a fairytale-like wonderland on the Vltava River. Originally five separate towns, Prague’s historic center has eye-popping sights around every corner. The grimy faded-glory aspects of post-Communist Prague have now all but disappeared. Restored treasures recall the glorious First Republic pre-war years, when the city enjoyed the highest living standards of Europe. The generation that came of age since 1989, artists, designers and entrepreneurs, have created one of the most modern but liveable cities now found anywhere.

Prague also has by far the largest, most stylish, and most international nightlife for gay people in Eastern Europe, with dozens of gay bars, nightclubs, cafés, sex clubs and saunas, plus some of the world’s finest local brews. And make no mistake about it, Czechs of every disposition do like to party. Often as strikingly handsome as the guys in Bel Ami videos, they’re an outgoing, uninhibited and refreshingly forthright people.

Venturing just a bit off the beaten path can lead to some surprisingly exotic encounters. Outside the tourist areas, you’ll find fewer places where people speak anything other than Czech. But find a common tongue, or improvise a new one over a few beers, and you’ll have some truly engaging experiences.

Sexual conformity is far less common in Prague than elsewhere in the Czech Republic. Straight and gay worlds are more integrated here than in other European cities, so relationships and identity are less likely to be labeled one way or another. While there have been same-sex registered partnerships since 2006, the street celebrations are a more recent affair, with the city’s gay pride festivities, including a parade and festival that now take place in mid-August. Rainbow flags are more rarely displayed at other times, but public spaces remain places where people aren’t afraid to strike up a conversation with a stranger. With a modicum of courtesy you’re unlikely to offend anyone by taking an interest in another person, sexually or otherwise.