Prague Vs Krakow – What’s The Better City

If you have ever thought about visiting the former Soviet Union countries of Eastern Europe, you will probably end up looking at Prague and Krakow and wondering which of these fantastic cities to visit and for who.

As a full time blogger, I have been lucky enough to travel around Europe extensively this year, even in the height of the pandemic and have travelled from Prague to Krakow and then back again.

While Krakow is a much more Eastern feeling city, you must realise that the Czech Republic and Prague are bang smack in the middle of Europe and you can visit any other country from Prague by rail which is why I decided to make this much more Western feeling city my base for my European travels of 2020.

Read on if you are interested in seeing who these two stack up in our head to head on a number of factors including our First Impressions, Accommodation, History, Attractions, Cost Of Living, Friendliness Of The People, Levels of English, Entertainment, Nightlife and Overall.

Prague, Czech Republic

Prague is located in central Europe making it a perfect centre of operations for my trip. You can literally get anywhere in Europe by train from Prague and after spending some time in this amazing city I can see why so many people consider it the Jewel in the crown of Europe.

Krakow, Poland

Krakow is a real Eastern city with an expansive history and home to a large amount of Expats and students. Krakow avoided destruction in the second world war and as such is home to some old and historic buildings such as Wawel Castle among others.



First Impressions
Cost Of Living
Friendliness & English
For Nomads
History & Attractions




First Impressions Of Prague

I arrived in Prague airport at night following a quick flight from London and I really didn’t know what to expect. I was actually having second thoughts about whether I should have just gone straight to Krakow and skipped Prague from my trip altogether but I’m glad I didn’t.

The first thing I noticed was the big security guard and I wondered if everybody was going to be super aggressive here like in other Eastern countries but it wasn’t to be the case.

I checked into the Airbnb with a super friendly host and immediately began to notice the positive vibes and energy in the air around Prague, there really is no Aggro or aggressive gesturing here like I’ve seen so many in other places.

It’s also very hard not to notice that the women here are above average and are among the prettiest girls in the world and there are attractive women literally everywhere you turn here.

My first impressions of Prague are overwhelmingly positive and that has remained the case after spending a number of months here.

First Impressions Of Krakow

I got off the train from Prague to Krakow and the first thing I noticed was the heat and it was that dead dry heat that I had felt in Malaga but not Prague. I walked from the bus station toward my Airbnb and the first thing I noticed was that there weren’t as many restaurants and places to eat as I had seen in Prague and that the city had a real Eastern feel to it.

With the eastern feeling comes more old school shops and restaraunts, a little less more feeling and a strong community vibe where people help each other out.

Again, the women in Krakow are above average and you quickly realize this as you make your way around the compact city.

I arrived on a Friday evening and within a couple of hours there were students and young people everywhere heading out in droves to enjoy the nightlife and some of the roads had maintenance going on where safety wasn’t much of a priority and there was a number of building works going on that sort of led to a smog or bad air around the place.

All in all I was impressed with the city initially after a walk around the square and centre, although it was a little smaller than Prague.

First impressions – Winner: Prague

Accommodation – Prague

On arrival I got a full apartment in one of the best areas of Prague for just over $25 per night with a discount for the week which was really a good price for the accommodation.

It is not uncommon for Airbnb’s to run $30 plus per night especially in the more sought after areas like downtown and Zizkov.

These are the kind of Airbnb prices that I have seen in pretty much every European city though so I wouldn’t be too alarmed.

If you wanted to rent a 1 bedroom apartment  in Prague, it will set you back around $400 – $700 and there is obviously scope to spend a lot more.

Prague has had a bit of a property boom in recent years and for that reason prices have increased steadily in line with the rising house prices.

Overall, much cheaper than cities like Dublin, London and Paris and probably on par with Malaga. A bit less than Lisbon and a bit more than Budapest.

Accommodation – Krakow

I found the Airbnb’s to be slightly cheaper in Krakow and I got a nice studio for just over $20 per night.

As a member of all the rent an apartment groups on Facebook, I can tell you with confidence that you can get a nice apartment in Krakow for $500 or less. You can also pay a bit more or less depending on your budget and requirements.

Overall, we have to say that the accommodation in Krakow is more plentiful and slightly more cheap.

Overall Winner – Accommodation – Krakow

The Food In Prague

I was very impressed with the food an options in Prague. As a solo traveller, I like places that I can sit down on my own and have a meal without worrying about sitting at a 4 person table in a packed establishment standing out like a sore thumb for being on your own and there was places in abundance just like this in Prague.

You could sit down and eat a pad thai in a restaurant for 100 Czk or $4 which is incredible value and I would also go to the food court in Flora for Burritos, Baguettes or traditional Czech food for $5 or less.

Another Chinese I frequented was only $4 and there are plenty of more expensive places to sit down for a full meal as well if that is what you are looking for.

Prague also has a lot more high end restaurants to go and sit down with the family for a more expensive, high end meal like the 2 story floating boat restaurant on the river.

Also keep in mind that the booze is cheap and plentiful in the Czech Republic. On food, Prague is going to be very hard to beat.

The Food In Krakow

One of the first things I noticed in Krakow was the lack of variety in restaurants I had seen in Prague. I was hungry off the train and didn’t see one place in the full walk to the apartment and that was in the city centre.

There was a lot of places around the square all geared for big numbers and not really for the solo traveller but I did find a few places and the people working there were friendly and chatty which was a bonus.

The food in Krakow was cheap but not that cheap. I got a breakfast in Krakow for around $10 which is more expensive than I had seen in Prague and a pizza and coke in Prague cost the exact same as Krakow of $8.

Of course, a trip to Poland wouldn’t be complete without checking out the infamous Peirogis.

Everybody had said Krakow was much cheaper than Prague but I really didn’t see it when it came to food and the drinks were the same price in both places.

Overall Winner For Food – Prague – By A Lot.

Friendliness of the people, atmosphere, levels of English – Prague

One of the things I like most about Prague is the relaxed atmosphere on the streets. There is none of the aggro and micro-aggressions that I have seen so much in Dublin and it really adds to the attraction of the city as a whole.

The people of Prague are friendly, welcoming if not oblivious to you as opposed to begin hostile in any way and I have found it to be a very friendly place.

Prague is also a tourist hub and practically everybody I have spoken to has a had a very decent level of English.

Friendliness of the people, atmosphere, levels of English – Krakow

In Krakow there is a different feeling on the streets and perhaps a little hostility towards foreigners from some quarters.

A lot of the people will treat you nicely but you suspect they are eyeing you up as a tourist and Krakow may be an insiders city. That being said most people were extremely nice and accommodating and very friendly once you get chatting to them.

There was guy in a restaurant who seemed to get a bit mad when I checked the price from Zloty to euro on my phone and these kinds of things leave an impression.

Also the drunk guy outside the window singing football songs at the top of his lungs at 4am was entertaining but a little inappropriate for the time of morning.

Again almost everybody had very good English here.

Winner – Prague Is the Winner for people, atmosphere and levels of English

For Digital Nomads – Prague

It wouldn’t be fair for me to not compare these two as Nomadic capitals of Europe.

Prague is a top notch city for Nomads. If you base yourself here you can avail of an effective 9% income tax which is one of the best in the world.

There are tons of coffee shops where you can sit all day and work, there are tons of restaurants where you can eat for cheap and the supermarkets are just as cheap as Krakow.

There are also a ton of Co-Working spaces where you can pay daily, weekly or monthly.

For Digital Nomads – Krakow

Krakow is seen somewhat as a start up capital with plenty of companies setting up here and importing their staff from all over the world leading to a strong expat community.

As a solo worker there are not as many coffee shops and places for lunch, it is a much more compact city and less welcoming of foreigners in my opinion.

The tax rates in Poland are progressive from 20 – 40% so more tax here than Prague.

There are good co-working spaces too but overall, this one has to go to Prague as well.

Nightlife – Prague

Admittedly, nightlife wouldn’t be my biggest draw but Prague has it all, cheap booze, endless bars and clubs, all night partying and strip clubs If that’s what you are into.

There is a reason so many stag parties come here and it is much bigger than Krakow too. Nightlife is so big in Prague, they have even elected a ‘night’ mayor.

Nightlife – Krakow

Krakow has all the same as Prague with a vibrant nightlife scene, fuelled by cheap booze.

It is also a student town so expect to find plenty of students out every weekend.

Krakow is just more compact the Prague but it has all of the same bells and whistles.

Overall I would have to say Prague is the winner here too.

Attractions Prague

One of the main attractions in Prague is the nightlife which drags in thousands of stag parties each year for its amazing pub and club culture and cheap beer.

Other attractions include the Charles bridge which dates back to the 14th century, The old town square with it’s beautiful gothic architecture and the Prague castle which are all located in the city centre.

Prague also boasts an Astronomical clock, ‘dancing’ house and St Vitus cathedral which are all formidable attractions.

Attractions Krakow

The infamous Wawel castle, Wieliczka salt mine, the cloth hall and Wawel cathedral are just a few of the impressive attractions on display in Krakow and Auschwitz is just a short trip away along with the excellent hillside resort of Zakopane.

Once again Krakow is coming out on top in this one for the richness of the history.

Prague – History

As part of the Czech Republic, Prague suffered under communist rule for almost 40 years and as such, Czech people detest authority in all forms. Probably one of the reasons why there is no mask mandate in Prague and very limited social distancing.

As you would expect from a city in the centre of Europe, it has a storied history, housing the first university in Europe in the 14th century.

  • 16th Century – A science renaissance swept the city which flourished and some of the architecture build in this period still stands today.
  • 17th Century symbolized the dark ages where Saxons and Swedes took control of Prague amid heavy battles and fighting in the century.
  • 18th A Czech nationalist movement brought the Czech culture, language and traditions back to the fore of society.
  • 19th Century – The industrial revolution saw railroads connecting Prague to the rest of Europe and the museum was built.
  • 20th Century – Nazis occupied Prague during world war 2 and were cast out when it ended in 1945 but the communist party came to power can caused a harsh decline in living standards despite remaining in power until 1989 when their leaders were executed.

Czech Republic and Slovakia split in 1990 and Pragues first democratic elections were held in 1990.

Krakow History

Krakow is one of the oldest cities in Poland with know settlements back the 7th century. It was founded when mythical leader Krakus, slayed a dragon on Wawel hill, creating the city.

  • 14th Century – The city flourished under the Lithuanian-Polish dynasty with leader Kazimierz and universities were built, new towns were formed and the golden age of Krakow occurred.
  • 16th Century – Krakow declined and the Polish capital was moved to Warsaw
  • 17th Century – Swedish invasions and the Plague saw a difficult time for Krakow
  • 18th Century – Poland was invaded and partitioned a number of times by Austrian, Russian and Prussion troops with Krakow being a stronghold for rebellion.
  • 20 Century – Saw Soviet troops occupy Krakow in the first world war and the Nazis occupying it the second world war, sending Jews to Ghettos, work camps and concentration camps where many faced death. Following world war 2 the soviets imposed communists and even martial law before the Unions collapse and the establishment of what we know see as Krakow.

Krakows architecture was never damaged in the wars and mainly still stands today.

Both Cities have a huge history but the winner again is Krakow


If you are a history buff and into all the cool architecture and world war 2 attractions, Krakow iss going to be for you but if you are into more options, a better atmosphere and a larger city, I would go with Prague.

The prices are practically the same in these two cities with accommodation being slightly cheaper in Krakow if that would be a key factor for you.

Personally, Prague suits my needs much better but I am glad I visited Krakow but again there is no reason not to take on the two cities in one trip. As you can get a train in 6 hours from one to the other.



Dont forget to check out our 10 best European cities for Digital Nomads Here: