A sports fan’s guide to Prague
Like just about every other country in the world, Czech’s like their fair share of sports and follow them just as avidly as anywhere else. Sure, the games being played tend to differ, but the atmosphere doesn’t. Here’s a guide on how to get involved with sports during your time in Prague.
Popular sports in the Czech Republic
The two behemoths in Czech sport are football and ice hockey – no surprises there considering they are both popular and fast-paced sports. The main ice hockey team is HC Sparta Praha who play in the Czech Extraliga. HC Slavia Praha is another well-regarded team.
The two major football teams in Prague include AC Sparta Prague and SK Slavia Prague, and an intense rivalry is fostered through the regular Prague derby they compete against each other in at the Generali Arena. Of the 286 games played, Sparta have won 132 of those matches, Slavia have won 89 – while 65 ended in a draw.
The more unusual sports
Less mainstream but still well-known sports include basketball, volleyball, and handball as well as the unique but mostly similar local variant – Czech handball. The game is played on a 45 × 30 meters pitch which is divided into 3 areas: defense third, middle third, and offense third.
The player cannot hold the ball longer than three seconds and can throw the ball on the head or bounce the ball off the ground a maximum of two times with no limit in steps. The goal, of course, is to score a goal by throwing the ball in the net.
As a tourist, several tour companies offer the chance to get involved with the above-mentioned sports for fun during your visit – and golf fans will be pleased to know that there are several top courses in the country, including Albatross Golf Resort, Botanika Golf Club and Golf Hostivař which is located close to the city.
Where to watch sports
If you enjoy your sports from the comfort of a seat, perhaps while sipping a delicious Czech beer, then you’re in luck because Prague has no shortage of great sports bars.
Jama Restaurant has an American feel and a food menu to match, while J.J. Murphy’s is a traditional Irish bar with plenty of live sports to keep you entertained. Finally, the Drunken Money – popular with the college crowd – is another great place boasting an almost nightly lively atmosphere.