Praha hl.n.

Praha / Prague / Prag, (Czechia)

Journeys from Praha / Prague / Prag

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About the station

This guide to using the main rail station in Praha / Prague / Prag, which has the Czezh name, Praha hlavní nádraží, focuses on the less obvious aspects of arriving and departing from it by train.

Quick links.:
Departing by train from Praha hl.n

Good to know about the main station in Prague

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For first time users, navigating Praha hl.n, train station can be a disconcerting experience - particularly if you arrive at the station by bus or metro.

What contributes to Prague's main railway station being a somewhat bewildering space to use is that the station is housed within a shopping mall.
Not totally unusual, as many large European stations have maximised the retail opportunities, but at the central station in Prague, the distinction between mall and station is particularly blurred.

Travellers wait for the departure details of the trains to be confirmed in a fairly small space between some shops.

Departing by train from Praha hl.n:

When ascending from the metro, or descending in the elevators from the bus stops, you emerge into the mall.
Initially there is little to indicate that you are in a station at all.
Slopes, steps and lifts link the different levels in the building - there is step free access from the ticket office to the passage way which leads to the platforms/tracks.

What can add to the confusion is that you can’t see the trains from most of the building until the last moment - when you ascend up to the platforms/tracks.
The platforms/nastupiste that the trains depart from are out of sight at an upper level.

Boarding a Train at the main railway station in Prague:

The main train departure board is above the entrance to the passage way which leads from the mall to the part of the building used by the trains.
So people wait in front of it for their platform/track to appear on the board, the time and other departure details are listed first, but the number of the platform / track that the train will be leaving from are usually added separately.
Announcements are also made in Czech and English.

Platforms (nastupiste) are generally not confirmed until around 10 minutes before the departure of a train.
This can lead to a rush down the passage, under the railway tracks, when the departure platform eventually appears on the board.
There are escalators and stairs, which lead from the passage way up the platforms (nastupiste).
There are also lifts/elevators, but these are only available to travellers who require mobility assistance.

On reaching the platform the train may not already be waiting - but the platforms are not zoned.
So there is no information to indicate on what part of the platform to wait for easy access to 1st or 2nd class, or reserved seats etc.
People tend to congregate in the middle of the platform and then make a dash towards the right part of the train when it arrives.
If you’re thinking ‘this sounds a tad chaotic’ then you’re right.


Five Other Things Worth Knowing About Praha hl.n:

(1) Praha / Prague /Prag  has multiple main line railway stations -  but this station, Praha hl.n., is the only station in the city which ALL long distance trains to/from the Czech capital call at.

(2) However, if you're heading TO the city centre and your train calls first at one of the other large stations in the city -  Praha-Holešovice or Praha-Smíchov, then the best option is usually to leave the train at these stations.
You'll have an easier and faster journey, rather than remaining on the train until it arrives at this station - Praha hl.n.

See the links below for more info on how to access and use these two other stations in Praha/Prague/Prag.

(3) The main ticket office at Praha hl.n. is at street level - but the passage that leads from the shopping centre to the platforms/nastupiste is at an upper level.
Slopes/and lifts link the ticket office with the access to the trains.

(4) You can pay with euros when booking tickets at any of the ticket desks in the station.

(5) The old station building, which is currently being restored, now offers limited access to the trains, but it does house the station’s best café.
If you’re not burdened by luggage, it’s worth ascending the escalator from the main concourse, to have a look – it’s marked ‘old building’ on the signs in the main passage way which leads to the trains.

1st Class Lounge
Bus Station
Car Hire
Information Desk
Left Luggage
Step Free
Taxi Rank
Terminus Station

Useful links

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To the City Centre and Tourist Sites from the main railway station in Prague

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Praha-Holešovice Station:

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Praha-Smíchov Station

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Convenient Hotels/Hostels

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City Guides

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