My 10 Favourite Prague Dime Museums

Even with little on the amusement park front Prague is still one of my favourite European cities to visit. When I visited this past summer I thought I'd end up with a small report of the Lunapark funfair, with a link to the facebook album for anyone who wanted to see all the sightseeing. Trouble was, that despite visiting on a Saturday in July the funfair area of the park was completely dead, with no rides going. I don't like questioning how a park can even still be going, but I couldn't help it after that.
It was a few months later that I had the idea to do a compilation looking at all the Dime Museum style attractions I've done in Prague. For the record I don't consider this a comprehensive list. Thanks to it's popularity as a tourist destination Prague has a load of entertainment based museum attractions, I know of at least another 5 I could have done had I had more time. If your wondering where an attraction you've done is, it's probably one of them. Based on what I've done though, here are my 10 personal favourite.

10) Mirror Maze and Kaleidoscopic Cinema
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This being at the bottom of the list is more a reflection of it being a small 5 to 10 minute attraction, rather than a direct reflection of it's quality. That said it's very cheap to get in to, so is still worth a go unless your seriously pushed for time or money.
It's on the site of what used to be Prague Wax Museum, and combines one of it's old attractions in the form of the Kaleidoscopic Cinema, and a new one in a large hall of mirrors. The fun house mirrors and mirror labyrinth are decent examples, although the decoration is a little plain. It's a nice distraction for a few minutes.
The cinema is a large screen at the end of a tunnel of mirrors, that create a Kaleidoscopic effect, caused by the reflections around the screen. It's such a simple, but effective effect you wonder why more places haven't created something like this. Sadly the film is just a compilation of travelogue footage, which isn't bad, but isn't likely to hold your attention for that long, but it's still enough to justify paying the cheap entrance price for a quick visit.

9) Madame Tussauds Prague
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I was tempted to put this a spot lower, although this is slightly better than the above brief 10 minute attraction, it feels more deserving of being ranked at the bottom. I mentioned the old Prague wax museum above. I wasn't disappointed to see it gone. Apart from the Kaleidoscopic cinema it only had one other part, a room of waxworks of dictators and war leaders from history. The rest was a collection of low quality, shabby, dated waxworks.
When I found a pamphlet with the Madame Tussauds name on it I expected a big improvement. Instead I got the same shabby models relocated to a new location, with the Madame Tussauds name stuck above the door. They have added a small number of new models in one new area of the museum, but apart from that there's no improvement. In their defence it is described that way on the official website, but that's not something your likely to stop and check if you see the museum on The Old Town Square.
If I'd known in advance I would have skipped this instead of the chocolate experience located nearby. As it stands this is far from the quality I'd expect from something with the Madame Tussauds name linked to it. It needs pretty much a complete overhaul before it would be a place I would recommend over any other attraction.

8) Mirror Maze on Petrin Hill
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This and the observation tower have been on my to do list on several visits to Prague, but the limited opening hours outside the summer season have always stopped me. As you might have gathered it's another mirror maze, although this one is much better in  terms of decoration, making it feel like an attraction in it's own right.
Overall it's a pretty nice attraction, and a combination ticket doing this and the observation tower is a nice way to spend a couple of hours. There are 2 issues to mention though. The ticket prices are a little pricey (by Prague standards) for what you get, but not enough to put me off in a big way. The other issue is these attractions are a little out of the way. There's no metro station nearby, and it's a 20/30 minute walk from the next nearest tourist area, the Prague Castle area. If I had limited time this would be one of the first things I would skip, given the time and effort it takes, but if this wasn't an issue I'd pay it a visit.

7) Museum of Medieval Torture
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There were 2 different torture museums I saw in Prague. One just off the Old Town Square, and one amongst a small shopping arcade next to the Old Town side tower of the Charles Bridge, which is the one I visited. I'm not sure if both are owned by the same people, or if the Old Town Square is a rival copying this one.
This is one of the oldest museums here, operating here, or it's old location in the Little Quarter, alongside a sadly closed exotic animal exhibition, for over a decade.
The age shows a little in the fact there's little in the way of theming or decoration, mostly being set in white walled rooms. This doesn't detract from the exhibits though. There's a large collection of macabre, horrific looking devices, accompanied by some well written informative information panels. It shows some very interesting aspects of the darker side of history, it might be a little to macabre for some, but for everyone else it's a great attraction well worth doing.

6) Toy Museum
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Located down the far end of Prague Castle is one of several toy based museums in Prague. There's 2 more later on in this list, and another one not suitable for a family audience. This one is based around traditional vintage toys. The museum is set over a number of floors, and divided into a number of sections, with areas dedicated to dolls, teddy bears and even a whole section dedicated to different Barbie dolls.
It lacks some of the fun factor, presented in a more serious manor than other museums. There is plenty of interesting stuff to see though. It's also one of the most extensive collections of any museum on this list, meaning there's bound to be a few items that will catch your interest. I reckon I'm less likely to do repeat visits here than some other museums on this list, although that's partly because there's a lot of other stuff to do when you make your way up to the Prague Castle area. It's definitely I'd recommend going to see at least once though.

5) The Lego Museum
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If you didn't know about this place you could walk past this place and think it's just a toy shop, the main thing you see walking past is the museums Lego based gift shop, (yes, I've heard of the Lego shop) I got my nephew a Lego bat mobile.
Once you've paid the entrance, and for an annoying photography licence if you want to take photos, you can head downstairs to the museum. The first room is the largest area of the museum. In the centre is a large display with various Lego kit models from different eras combined to create a large Lego town, complete with police station, a basketball court and a model train going around the perimeter. Around that are lots of cabinets displaying different collections of Lego.
The themed cabinets continue throughout with areas dedicated to Pirate, Medieval and Space Lego. There's also more unusual displays like Lego advent calendars and ranges of old Lego, including the old Fabuland range, that resulted in me laughing at an in joke no-one else got while watching the Lego movie.
Sadly the rest of the museum is a little cramped compared to the first room. This means no more large displays, and makes viewing some of them a little awkward. The labelling isn't that good either, with limited information on the models, and it's not always clear which label applies to which model.
These issues stop it ranking a little higher on the list, but aren't enough to put me off the place. I had great pleasure in seeing the hundreds of Lego models (literally) assembled here, including both memories of my own childhood and cool models I'd never seen before. This is definitely a place I'll be revisiting on future visits to Prague.

4) Prague Aquarium
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When I first visited here it was a real surprise. I wasn't expecting much from a small independent aquarium, located outside the main city centre in the Stromovka leisure park. Inside it's a nicely themed aquarium with a good selection of displays. It lacks the large tanks and tunnels of larger aquariums, but you don't really miss them too much, as there is still a great range of stuff here.
If it was in the City centre this would be something I'd almost always do on a visit to Prague. Given it's more out of the way location, it's an attraction I'm a lot less likely to plan for, especially considering there are a lot of other great aquariums I can visit without travelling so far. However this could easily be combined with a visit to Prague Zoo, or if your visiting Stromovka park for some other reason (in the hope some of the Lunapark funfair rides will be operating) you should definitely pop in here.

3) The Alchemy Museum
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Rather like the Lego Museum, you could easily walk past this and not realise it's here. From the street it's a quirky gift shop selling replicas of the tonics and medicines alchemists used to sell, following the original recipes as closely as possible.
If you go in and buy a ticket though your taken on a guided tour out back. You start in an incredibly detailed replica of an alchemists study, with old desk, book cases and lots of the assorted perihelia. It's so good that if I walked into a location like this at a Disney park it wouldn't' feel below standard.
From there you head down some steps into part of Prague's huge number of old underground tunnels. Apparently the tunnels go from where you are, all the way to the castle, but you'll only explore a relatively small section here. The chance to see some of these tunnels on it's own would make this worth doing, but when you include several replicas of the places alchemists used to work it becomes a must see location.
My only minor niggle is that some of the talks given by the guide were a little flat, but to be fair a lot of this seemed linked to the fact English wasn't his first language. He kept things concise enough to stop this becoming a real issue, and the chances are you'll mostly be concentrating on the scenery anyway.
This place is a little off the main tourist areas. The best time to plan a visit would be combining a visit here with a trip to the Jewish Quarter, as it's only a short walk to some of the attractions there. Whatever my plan, this is a must do for me on a trip to Prague.

2) Kralovstvi Zeleznic
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When I booked my trip to Prague my original choice of hotel was fully booked, and the next best option in my price range was outside the main City centre in the Andel area. Turns out this wasn't a bad thing because despite receiving almost no mention in any of the guide books Andel is a nice area with a good range of shops, pubs and restaurants, (there's even one with it's own bowling alley) it doesn't hold the appeal of the main central areas of Prague but I'm still surprised it's hardly mentioned in the guide books. Even if I don't stay in the area again, I'd still probably pay a visit to the area at some point.
Another reason I'd definitely pop over is it's the location of this place. It's a giant miniature railway with working vehicles and representations of famous sites from around Prague and the rest of the Czech Republic. Another nice feature is the number of lights on the vehicles and buildings. Every 10 minutes or so the lights above the models dim, so you can see what the model world looks like at night.
The majority of the attraction is dedicated to a traditional model railway, but there are other areas including a large area where everything's made of Lego, displays of Victorian dolls, Brio style trains, K'nex and a large collection of play mobile like figures.
Overall this is a great place. An obvious place to take the kids, but it's so well done that adults will enjoy it too. Don't be put off by the fact it's a few metro stops outside the main city centre, it's well worth making the trip to see this.

1) Grevin Wax Museum
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This was a place I hadn't even heard of until I walked past it. Luckily it's not that hard to miss, being a large building on the main road between Powder Gate and the Old Town Square. It describes itself as a wax museum, but the main attractions isn't necessarily the wax figures. Instead you walk through a number of themed environments such as theatres, magic laboratories and old park cafes. These come with various appropriate figures which all add interest to the experience. All the environments are great, themed to a very high quality.
There's also an interactive area, where you learn a little about the creation of wax figures, while designing one of yourself. Sadly the end result looks like your face badly photo-shopped on a computer figure.
Towards the end it feels a little more traditional. The great environments continue, but there's more emphasis on the figures. All the figures were of a decent quality, although I didn't feel there were enough of them to make things as good as they could be. It didn't help that a lot of the celebrities weren't instantly recognisable. There was one moment when I thought I spotted a bad Meatloaf figure, turns out it was Gérard Depardieu. The most popular figure when I went was John Lennon, although I didn't get a photo with it as I already had a photo of myself with all the Beatles from Madrid Wax Museum. Only afterwards did it occur to me that's a sentence no-one else will ever say.
Overall this is a great attraction, providing some great fun and entertainment. Given it's location on one of the main tourist thoroughfares this is a must do on a visit to Prague.