Prague has numerous sports grounds, gyms, swimming pools, and parks, plus a decent network of cycling paths, so sport enthusiasts don’t have to give up their training routine while staying in the Czech capital. We’ve linked out to the websites for all the places mentioned. If you find it’s not in English and doesn’t have a switch-to-English function, the automatic translation feature in Chrome does a decent job with Czech. And if you need someone to call or contact on your behalf – that’s what your Workation Local Hero is for!
There are many gyms all over town but the most comprehensive network is run by Form Factory, with a chain of well-equipped gyms in Prague. Should you seek a place for regular workouts, want to join a yoga class, swim a couple of laps, or relax in a sauna after several miles of running, they’ve got you covered. These fitness centers offer extensive cardio zones (elliptical machines, treadmills, bikes, etc.), cross and functional programs, weight rooms, swimming pools, saunas, whirlpools, a wide range of studio lessons that can be attended regardless of your fitness level (dance, yoga, Les Mills programs), and the services of personal English-speaking trainers. Membership plans start at one month, but single entry tickets are also available.
For keen swimmers who need lanes reserved for fast swimming there are a couple of places to go in Prague. First and foremost, Podolí Swimming Stadium offers two Olympic-size swimming pools, both indoor and outdoor (the latter is heated up during the winter) and an additional 30-meter long outdoor pool. Podoli is probably the best choice if you’re really serious about your training, because it is hardly ever crowded and its extensive opening hours (6 am – 10 pm) give you a lot of flexibility. There’s also a large lawn, perfect for sunbathing and mingling with locals in the warmer months of the year.
Slavia Swimming Center, located in Vrsovice, has a 50-meter long outdoor pool open during the summer, and 25-meter indoor pool that operates all year round. A bit further from the city center, Aquacentrum Sutka is one of the city’s most modern swimming facilities and features a 50-meter long indoor pool. It also has waterslides so you may find it busy with kids and families at certain times of the day or week.
There are also a few smaller 25-meter swimming pools that operate all year round, such as the YMCA in New Town, Olsanka Sport Center in Zizkov, Vystaviste Pool in Holesovice, or the Strahov swimming pool unsurprisingly located in Strahov.
There are also seasonal swimming pools that are only open during the summer. The biggest are the modern Petynka Sport Areal in Stresovice, past the Castle, with a 50-meter long pool, and the pool at Divoka Sarka, which offers a pool of the same length amid beautiful nature. These pools are popular with families and anyone else trying to avoid summer heat, and are thus often crowded.
Other water sports
Thanks to the Vltava River flowing through the city, Prague offers a whole range of water sports. The easiest way is to enjoy them is to rent equipment for an hour or two and enjoy the time on the river on your own or with some friends. Zlute Lazne, on the riverbank a mile or so south of the center, rents kayaks (single and tandem), paddle boards (including “mageboards” for up to six persons), paddle boats, motor boats, and e-Foil motor boards. A little closer to the heart of the city on the lively Naplavka riverbank is the Kayak Beach Bar which along with a floating beach volleyball court offers rentals of SUP, and of course kayaks.
If you’re looking for something more organized and professional, Prague White Water Center, run by Charles University’s Faculty of Sports and the Physical Education, offers rafting and kayaking courses. These activities take place at an artificial slalom course in Troja from early April to late October. An English-speaking instructor and equipment rental are included.
Praguers love to climb. The Czech Republic has plenty of rock climbing opportunities in the countryside, but what to do when you’re stuck in the city? You can bring your own gear or rent what you need at any of the places listed here. Several of them also organize trips out of the city too, a great way to meet people with similar interests.
SmichOff in Smichov, just a few subway stops from the city center, has 50 foot walls spread over a wide area. There is also a massive bouldering area, great crack systems to practice on, walls simulating rock, and even some areas for kids.
BigWall has one of the highest walls in Prague (over 65 feet tall) and a generous surface area of roped climbs (about 10,000 sq feet). It features a massive arch with long overhanging routes. If endurance training is your aim, this gym should be your top pick. A good campus board setup, some stall bars, rings, and a horizontal rope ladder only add to the experience. BigWall is a bit further from the city center (in Vysocany) but its quality is worth the journey.
Smaller places include the Mammut Climbing Gym, and Boulder Bar, which are located near each other in Holesovice. Mamut offers walls reaching up to 40 feet that mainly offer rope climbing, but with a small bouldering section too. It’s both beginner and expert friendly, with 102 different routes at various degrees of difficulty. Boulder Bar provides a good mix of classic routes you might encounter anywhere else, and new builder routes that will get you thinking. There are also campus boards, peg boards, moon boards, and much more to keep you busy. Because this is Prague, it also has a bar serving draught beer. Boulder Bar also operate an outdoor climbing wall close by.
Squash and Badminton
Squash is fun to play and provides an intense workout. Maybe that’s why this game has become so popular that you can find squash courts all over the city. Badminton has fallen a bit behind in terms of popularity, but Prague offers a decent selection of badminton courts as well.
Squash Hastal in the Old Town offers six squash courts, two badminton courts, and long opening hours on weekdays (until 10 pm). Due to its central location, we recommend making a reservation well in advance though their online booking system.
Squash Centrum Strahov boasts of being popular with some of the best players in the Czech Republic, and is the place to go for professional training. English-speaking trainers will explain and show you all you need to know about this fascinating game on one of their eight courts.
Squash Park Cibulka is another popular sports center, with five courts and professional trainers happy to give you advice on your technique and playing style. This place is a fifteen-minute walk from the Andel subway station.
Sport Center Infinity in Vysocany offers both three squash courts and 12 badminton courts. Open year-round, in summer it offers outdoor courts set up on an adjacent golf driving range.
Badminton courts are also available at the Olsanka Sport Center in Zizkov, Fitness Center R5 in New Town close to Wenceslas Square, and in the huge Badminton Arena Skalka, which offers 13 badminton courts.
Although tennis is not the most popular game among Czechs, they’ve managed to produce more than their fair share of world-class players and there are many indoor and outdoor courts offering quality facilities, single-entry admission, or membership plans and professional trainers. Reservation in advance is a must in all of the places mentioned below.
The tennis club on Štvanice Island, officially the “First Czech Lawn Tennis Club Prague,” lives up to its name. The country’s first tennis club, founded in 1893, it’s a member of the Association of Centenary Tennis Clubs, a group of prestigious tennis clubs worldwide that can boast over 100 years of tradition. There are 13 outdoor clay courts and one court with a hard Rebound Ace surface. In winter, players can brush up their skills on one of the ten indoor courts. The club is open daily from early morning until late evening. The courts are also available to the general public. Many top players and trainers collaborate with this club.
The Olšanská Tennis Center is also a great place to play soccer, volleyball, handball, basketball, volleyball, and floorball. Here, you can find three outdoor courts, which are covered during the winter. You can borrow rackets and balls, and book classes with professional trainers. This center is frequented by amateurs and beginners, thanks in part to its relaxed atmosphere, and is an ideal place for private tournaments and sports events.
Erpet Centrum operates three tennis courts, offers other sports including squash and badminton, and a relaxation zone (with a sauna, whirlpools, solarium, massages, and physiotherapy). The courts with artificial surfaces are open year-round; covered during winter and converted into outdoor courts in summer. It is located in Smichov within easy reach of the center by public transportation.
SK Start Praha Sports Club offers a unique opportunity to play tennis at a proper tennis court right in the city center, in the natural environment of Střelecký Island, close to the National Theater. You can choose from two outdoor, fully illuminated clay courts, where you can play even in the early morning and late evening. In addition to booking tennis courts, you can also arrange for a personal tennis trainer if you feel like improving your tennis skills and all necessary equipment such as rackets and balls can be borrowed.
Two more quite unique spots to play tennis are SK Hradčany Sports Club, just a few steps from the Strahov Monastery and close to Prague Castle with three courts, and Tennis Club Vysehrad which offers four courts located right under the Baroque defensive walls of the former Vysehrad Castle. Both feature clay courts and neither of them requires a membership so you can just make a reservation and play. Moreover, there are regular events during the summer, such as night and weekend tournaments for the public