English Bookstores in Prague

July 12th, 2011 | Posted by Klaraz in Books, Magazines, Websites | Klara - (Comments Off)

Shakespeare & Sons Bookstore

If you are a serial reader like me, you don’t have to worry about not finding English language books in Prague. I absolutely love books. I know that the new phenomenon are e-books and the success of Amazon’s Kindle and Apple’s iPad is throwing the world of publishing into a new age of uncertainty. I see myself as pretty technologically savvy but when it comes to my books, I like the real thing. There is nothing quite like a bookmark or a page corner turned down to remind you that your book is still waiting to be finished. Not to mention the feel of a book in my hands and the great smell of the pages.

There are several great bookstores in Prague located in a variety of interesting buildings from different eras. Many of these bookstores also have very cozy cafes. In most of these bookstores you can find books by famous Czech writers translated into English.

The Globe restaurant/cafe

Globe Bookstore – This bookstore was opened in 1993 and was the first English bookstore in Prague. It is located in the New Town section of Prague and houses over 10,000 new and used books. It also features a great café/restaurant with many events from poetry readings, concerts, old movie showings, etc.

Big Ben Bookshop – Established in 1994, centrally located near Old Town Square and features a very good selection of both fiction and non-fiction books. Has a very friendly staff and intimate setting.

Neoluxor Palace of Books – This is a popular book chain in Prague, having seven locations. The biggest one is located on Wenceslas Square. It features mainly Czech books but has a very large selection of English books as well. You can also find books in French and German. There is a non-smoking café located by the art books. Also, if you are looking for a specific book not in stock, you can order one free of charge, which will take 2-3 weeks.

Oxford Bookshop – This bookstore features one of the biggest foreign language book collections. A wide range of books can be found in English, French, Spanish, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian and other languages from around the world. On their website you can also find a user friendly e-shop.

Shakespeare & Sons – They have a very good selection of English books from all genres. In the back of the store, a small section has many very inexpensive classics. It is located in Mala Strana and has a historical cellar with great views of the Charles Bridge where you can enjoy your favorite book and a cup of coffee. The basement is also used as an event venue for open mic nights, music, art exhibits and more.

If you still can’t find what you are looking for, you can resort to amazon.co.uk. I have ordered many books from Amazon, with speedy delivery and reasonable shipping charges.

Happy reading!

UNYP PCPR 2005-06

When I was weighing my options on moving back to Prague or not, my main driver was to continue my education and get a Master’s Degree.  I figured that after a few years of working, the sudden lack of friends and the element of the unknown in a new city, going back to school was an ideal solution for all of the above.   I started my online search into English programs in Prague that focused on communications.

After some research I decided that UNYP [University of New York in Prague] was my best bet.  UNYP offered a 15-month long weekend program, through very tight cooperation with La Salle University in Philadelphia, offering a Master’s Degree in Professional Communication and Public Relations.  The courses were divided into modules and every course except for two [UNYP Professors taught these courses] was taught by La Salle University Professors that flew to Prague to teach.  Out of the 15 people that made it to the end, a majority of the students in my class were Czech, while the rest came from different parts of the world – Australia, Germany, Portugal, USA, and Canada.  Everyone had a story and everyone was very different.  I think this is what made our class memorable, and in some instances very opinionated [in the positive sense of the word], compared to some of the other years – as our Professors later told us.

Graduation at Žofín 2006

Having a marketing background with previous work experience, I found the courses to be very interesting and many concepts became more clear to me.  I am sure that today the curriculum is slightly different, probably focusing more on the latest phenomenon of social media. Overall, I found the professors to be very knowledgeable in their field of expertise.  I think like with every Master’s degree, it’s really up to you what you end up getting out of it.  The level of interest and dedication definitely differed within the class, but I found the slight lack of dedication to be true especially of the younger people in the class, lacking previous work experience.  Overall, the experience fullfilled all of my expectations - I learned something [which is good], it helped my career opportunities [great investment in the end], I made good friends [maybe an even better investment] and it was a perfect start in my new journey [eventually everything else fit into place].

There are options in Prague to get a Master’s Degree or a targeted MBA in English. For further detail and tuition check out the following links:

University of New York Prague
Legerova 72 –  Praha 2

Anglo American University
Lázeňská 4/287 – Praha 1, Malá strana

Prague College
Polská 10 – Praha 2

Prague College Postgraduate Center programmes include:

University of Northern Virginia Prague
Na Poříčí 12, Praha 1

Many people are interested in what is going on in the world, therefore there are endless resources online and print in order to do that.  Unfortunately, this little country doesn’t always make it to the CNN’s and BBC’s of the world.  People really want to know what is happening on their own street and city.  Czechs love their local news.  When I was growing up, every evening my sister and I would get the “shhhh!” while the grown ups tuned into the latest headlines.  Although now you can get your news online whenever it is convenient for you, I still get the “shhhh!” when I visit my grandma.

Thanks to the decently sized expat community in Prague, a non-Czech speaker still has plenty of resources to read about the local happenings in English.  So if you want to learn more about new laws passed, road construction, new businesses opening, political party battles, crime, local sports, entertainment, etc., any of the resources below will help you do that.

  • The Prague Post – weekly newspaper online and print (65 Kc)  It is the most popular and widely circulated English-language weekly newspaper.
  • Prague Daily Monitor – online news that provides latest local news and business news, exchange rates, and financial markets.  As well as the latest on Czech art, local dining, cinema and wide range of local and world opinions.
  • Prague Tribune - online, daily, leading lifestyle and business magazine which provides you useful practical reports on new tools and practices in human resources, marketing, finance, real estate and technology.
  • Radio Praha – It is the international service of Czech Radio.  They broadcast news, commentaries, interviews and cultural programs from the Czech Republic around the world in six languages: English, Czech, French, German, Spanish and Russian.  The news can also be read online.
  • CNiE.cz – (Czech News in English) online news platform for English speakers.
  • České Noviny – Also known as Czech Happenings, news from the Czech Republic by the Czech News Agency.
  • Aktualne.cz – Also known as Czech News, has news, analysis and blogs from and about the country.

So next time you find yourself at a pub hanging out with your Czech friends and they are discussing local politics, you can be confident to join in the debate.  I believe that being aware of the local news really helps fill in the gap between locals and expats.