Local handicrafts and artisanal items to pick up on your trip

Classic Crystal

Walking through Prague, you’d think it was one big glass shop, with so many stores offering ornately carved crystal bowls, vases, and stemware. The Czechs are justifiably famous for their glass, but watch out for cheap imitations, particularly along streets trafficked by tourists. Czech glassmaker Moser has been producing authentic, high-quality crystal since 1857. Na Prikope 12; tel. 420 224 211 293. www.moser-glass.com

Early Modern Ceramics, Jewelry, and Home Furnishings

Prague enjoyed a brief but fruitful vogue in the early decades of the 20th century as a hotbed of modern design, including a uniquely Czech Cubist style inspired by Cubist painting. Look for angular cut glass, ceramics, and jewelry. You can sometimes find originals at antique shops (starozitnosti) around town. Galerie Kubista, next to the Czech Cubism Museum, stocks finely crafted replicas. Ovocny trh 19; tel. 420 224 236 378. www.kubista.cz


These deep-red gemstones are native to northern Bohemia. In general, though, the contemporary settings tend to look bland. The pieces at Studio Sperk are an exception: authentic garnet rings, bracelets, necklaces, and brooches in simple, eye-catching designs. Dlouha 19; tel. 420 224 815 161. www.drahonovsky.cz

Puppets and Marionettes

The Czechs have a puppet and marionette tradition going back to the Middle Ages. Hand-carved kings, knights, wizards, jesters, alchemists—all the main characters of a classic medieval melodrama—are available at Pod Lampou Marionety in the Lesser Quarter. See them carved in the store's workshop. U Luzickeho seminare 5; tel. 420 602 689 918. www.marionety.com

Traditional Handicrafts

These include delightfully simple wooden toys, ceramics, embroidered textiles, and old-fashioned Christmas ornaments. Manufaktura, in the Old Town, is a one-stop shopping destination for the best traditional handicrafts. Melantrichova 17; tel. 420 221 632 480. http://www.manufaktura.cz/


About Prague and the Czech Republic

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    Get travel tips, see photos, take a quiz and more with National Geographic's Ultimate Guide to Prague.

  • <p>Photo: Prague's Old Town Square</p>

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