Saturday, May 14, 2011

Renting Bikes In Prague


City Bike, in Prague's Old Town, near the famous Hotel Paříž.

(This post was originally published in April 2008. I have just updated the price list and various other references to reflect the latest info. -- Grant)

One of the most frequently asked questions I receive here at the Home Office in Černý Vůl is about renting bikes in Prague. Where to do it, how much it costs, that kind of thing.

You'd think I'd have written about this topic sooner, but I guess I was just too busy riding my own bike. I have actually rented bikes in Prague, when friends or family have come to visit, so I have had some experience.

In the past few weeks, I've visited Prague's two main bike-rental shops in the city center. Here's what I found. I'll add others if I find any.

As far as currency conversion goes, figure around 16.5 Czech koruny to the U.S. dollar, or about 24 koruny to one euro.

CITY BIKE

I've rented from these guys at least once, and from what I remember had a perfectly pleasant experience.

City Bike is conveniently located in the Old Town, on Králodvorská street 5, very close to Náměstí Republiky (Republic Square).

What are their prices like? Check it out:

First two hours: 300 CZK (TrekK bike: 400 CZK)
Every hour after: 50 CZK (Trek bike 150 CZK)
Maximum all-day price: 500 CZK (Trek bike 600 CZK)
24-hour rental: 650 CZK (Trek bike 750 CZK)


No cash deposit required; you just need to leave some ID. English is spoken.

I was told they also do longer-term rentals, by special arrangement with the boss, I guess.

They offer a two-hour guided tour of the Old Town for 550 CZK. From what I gather, that tour involves a bit of beer drinking and is taken on funny-looking, yellow "cruiser" bikes, which have no gears, pedal brakes and big, soft saddles. This tour only includes Old Town, as you'd need some gearing to make it up to the "castle" area and St. Vitus Cathedral.

There's a separate Prague Castle Ride, for the same price, that lasts 2.5 hours and is taken on the geared bikes.

With each rental you get a helmet, lock, city map, a free bottled soft drink and a 20 CZK discount coupon for the Communist Museum.

They offer Shark and Mongoose mountain bikes for men and women with front suspension and another under the seat and cruiser bikes. They also rent kids bikes and baby seats.

The Trek bikes, for more serious cyclists, require that you leave a credit-card imprint as a deposit. They also offer a tandem bike for rent for 600 CZK for two hours or 900 CZK for all day.


The Shark full-suspension mountain bikes available at City Bike.

They say they were the first bike-rental company in Prague, opening in 2001. It seems hard for me to believe you couldn't rent a bike in Prague before 2001, but what do I know?

They used to offer, for more serious cyclists, an all-day tour to Karlštejn Castle, and a 32-kilometer Grand Bicycle Tour of Prague, but I don't see either of those on their website anymore.

City Bike
Kralodvorska 5
Prague 1
Telephone: 776-180-284
Hours: Daily from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Website: www.citybike-prague.com
E-mail: info@citybike-prague.com



Praha Bike, very close to Old Town Square.

PRAHA BIKE

I've also rented from these guys before, and also had a great experience. They have an ideal location at 24 Dlouha Street, just a few steps from Old Town Square.

The bikes they rent are made for them -- 21-speed mountain hybrid bikes from component parts, so it's not like you're renting a GT or a Specialized or something.

The bikes are sturdy, ideal for Prague cobblestones and local trails, with front suspensions. They also rent out bike seats (70 CZK per day) and trailers (250 CZK per day) for kids, as well as tandem bikes and kids bikes. They also have long-term rentals, insurance, and even bike delivery, for a fee.

Here's a breakdown of some of their prices. Prices include a helmet, lock, and a basic cycling map and recommendations of where to ride. English is spoken.


Four-hour rental:
360 CZK
1-day rental: 590 CZK
2-day rental: 1,100 CZK
3-day rental: 1,530 CZK
4-day rental: 1,890 CZK
6-day rental: 2,400 CZK
7-10 day rental: 380 CZK per day

Deposit: 1,500 CZK for one-day rentals, 3,000 CZK for multiday rentals.

Payment: Cash only for rentals, credit card imprint for deposit.

Praha Bike also organizes guided tours of the city, as well as a guided trip to Karlštejn Castle (1,290 CZK per person), with a train journey on the return.

My gut feeling is that Praha Bike is a little more serious about their cycling.

Praha Bike
Dlouha 24
Prague 1
Telephone: 732-388-880
Hours: Open daily 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Website: www.prahabike.cz
E-mail: info@prahabike.cz


WHERE TO RIDE IN PRAGUE

As for nice rides that begin in the city center, from both of these cycle shops it's easy enough to make your way to Letensky sady, a lovely park with many cycling paths that overlooks the city. And from there, it's an easy ride over to Stromovka Park, an old royal park that also boasts lots of car-free cycling lanes.

Here's a ride that Daisy and I recently did that's pretty perfect for those riders starting out in the city. Just head to Stromovka park, cross over the river to the Prague Zoo, and then connect with the bike path that I mention.

Just be careful -- Czech drivers are notoriously bad, and don't respect the rights of cyclists. If you're new to Prague and can cycle where there are no cars, do it. Letna and Stromovka are perfect for that.

Happy trails.

37 comments:

Michael Carøe Andersen said...

Thanks Grant! I just started reading your blog recently but as a Dane in Prague I really miss cycling around. Spring is definitely here and I'm itching to get out for a roll. So thanks for the laydown :)

Grant Podelco said...

Hi, Michael,

Thanks for reading. Are you living in Prague now? If so, I would buy a bike at a bazaar or a bike shop. Much cheaper than renting, if you're going to be here for a while!

But there's some great riding to be had out there. Just watch out for the Czech drivers!

Michael Carøe Andersen said...

Hi Grant. You got a point - I'm here at least until mid-September. Do you know anywhere to look for a used bikes?

So the streets doesnt really look tempting for bike riding but the trails around town would be nice.

Grant Podelco said...

Not sure about bazaars. There's one on Veletrzni, in Prague 7, that always seems to have bikes in the window. You might also try looking on www.expats.cz and www.praguetv.cz for used bikes for sale. Good luck!

Captain Oddsocks said...

Nice post Grant, but Kutná Hora a "village"? That's belittling the place a bit isn't it?

Grant Podelco said...

You may have a point there, Captain. I guess it may qualify as a town. ;-) Either way, I've got to cycle out there one of these days.

Sharon said...

hello! are you able to recommend any companies giving day trip bike tours from prague? (not so much a bike tour within the city, more in the surrounding country side...). if you know of any i'd really appreciate a few names! thanks :)

Keith Moore said...

My wife Kasia and I did the City Bike two-hour tour a couple of weeks ago. Our guide Mike was entertaining and knowledgeable, and gave us (me, Kasia, and Mark from Luxembourg) a great tour of Old Town. The vehicle traffic in Prague can be rather intimidating, but we had a blast. It was a great way to become familiar with the area.

Like Sharon, I'm also interested in an organized cycle tour of the countryside around Prague. I'd love to cycle through the valleys and villages.

Grant Podelco said...

Hi, Keith. Glad to hear you had a good experience. As for organized tours of the countryside, I know that both bike companies I list say they do tours to local castles and such, like Karlstein. I think that would work for you!

DieHradman said...

Ouch... That's spendy for a bike rental. We rented top-of-the-line new mountain bikes in the Jizerske Hory village of Bedrichov for only 200 Crowns per 24 hours this past July. Stop in to the village info office and they'll point the way to the rental place plus sell you maps of the excellent roads. Cars are restricted to only those staying at pensions in the area. You'll have to wait until next year because it will soon be snow covered there. Start early and you can drive to Bedrichov in an hour, bike, buy lunch in a local restaurant, bike some more, and return to Prague in one day. It's also possible to travel to Liberec and take a bus to Bedrichov.

H-Unit said...

Hi Grant!
What a wonderful blog you have!
I'm planning on biking from Wien to Prague and was wondering if you knew of any good bike rental places that do this?

Thank you!

jhuitz said...

Grant,

Are you aware of any bike rental places not in the center? I would like to ride about rural areas of Prague, if there are any. Rather than rent a bike in the center and try and navigate my way out, thought it would be nice to rent one in a park or something like that.

Thanks, Juan

Grant Podelco said...

Hello, H-Unit. Thanks for the compliment on the blog. Appreciate it. I'm afraid that I do not know of any bike rental places in Vienna. Perhaps if you get in touch with the bike rental shops in Prague, they may have some suggestions. Or Google, of course, may provide some generic answers. But I don't have any personal recommendations. Sorry. Have a great ride, though!

Grant Podelco said...

Hi, jhuitz,

As far as I know, there are no bike rental places outside of the city center. However, the places I write about are very close to Letna park (it's pretty safe riding from the shops to Letna), and from Letna, it's pretty close to roads that get you out of the city pretty quickly. Sorry I couldn't be of more help. Happy cycling.

Brad M. said...

Hey Grant, great blog you have here. I'm in Prague and am looking to find an older Czech Favorit road bike from the 70s or early 80s. Any ideas where to look? Thanks for the help!

Alex said...

Cool. We are crazy travelers that enjoy going everywhere. We have been to Prague and is a beautiful city. We would like to go there again and renting a bicycle it would be a good idea.

Grant Podelco said...

It's a fantastic way to see Prague, and the Czech countryside, that's for damn sure.

Кирилл said...

Nice info, but this both places are *** expensive.
I would recomend Hamr Sport or Skala Sport,
where renting a bike for 24 hours is 150CZK

info said...

Hi guys,

just started to rent bikes next to the Staromestska metro station, we are a small place, maybe not as much choice as the big ones, but we are a bit cheaper - from 350 a day if bikes picked up before 8.30, otherwise:
Up to 2 hours 200,-
Up to 4 hours 300,-
Up to 6 hours 400,-
Up to 1 day 450,-
Up to 2 days 700,-
Up to 3 days 900,-

check out our website:

www.okolo-bikes.cz

Grant Podelco said...

All good luck to you. That's a great price indeed!

calamito said...

Hi! My friend has a little bike rent in the Prague centre. Might be useful: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Praha-Czech-Republic/Okolo-Bike-Rent-Prague/146455858712796?ref=ts

joseph said...

Hi there, awesome site. I thought the topics you posted on were very interesting. I tried to add your RSS to my feed reader and it a few. take a look at it, hopefully I can add you and follow.

Used Bikes

Michal said...

Hi,

at OKOLO Bike Rentals we now also rent bikes long term from 300CZK/month for a simple mountain bike. Also our standard prices have gone down, i.e. one day rental for a quality bicycle is 400CZK, for more details, location, etc., please visit our website:

www.okolo-bikes.cz

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Anonymous said...

Hi Guys,

I have a few days in Prague in June with two children age 7 and 10. Both ride well but I am looking for some suggestions. I'd like to steer clear from traffic as much as possible!
Thanks,
Ted

Pat said...

Hi Grant
Great site. Enjoyed reading! Quick one if you can help us out - Three of us are coming to Prague to do a few days of cycling. We mainly want country side safe roads. We are serious cyclists in Dubai and are looking at doing 60 - 100km a day (due to beer dedicated time). Any ideas or safe routes you have experienced? Thanks much. Pat

Grant Podelco said...

Hey, there. Thanks for reading. I think I might head up to Melnik. Lots of places to stop for beer, and a great wine city, to boot. Great roads and trails for cycling off the beaten path. Take a look at this post: http://praguebikeblog.blogspot.cz/2011/09/perfect-bike-ride-prague-to-melnik.html

Pat said...

Thanks for this Grant. Just had a look. Looks like an awesome trip. Well done. We might have to do it! Can we do the whole trip on Road bikes or would it be a mountain bike only trail?
Cheers and thanks a million for the info!
Pat

Grant Podelco said...

There are some portions on dirt trails, but nothing so strenuous that a road bike couldn't handle, I don't think. Let me know how it goes!

Dave R said...

Grant, nice blog! I see that a trail is open from Munich to Prague. Traveling vis Plzen, this is about as close to a beer drinker's heaven as possible! But how to do a one way tour? Rent and then hop a train back to the start point? Dave, Seattle

OKOLO Bike Rental Prague said...

Hi Dave, we at OKOLO Bike Rental provide also pick up and delivery service for our clients, ie. to or from Munich, it is an extra CZK1500 for this.

Michal, OKOLO Bike Rental Prague
www.okolo-bikes.cz

Beth said...

Hi Grant, Any suggestion on where my daughter could purchase a used bike while studying in Prague. She just arrived and will be there until mid-December. What would be a reasonable price to pay? Any places that do a buy back plan?
Many thanks for your help.

Grant Podelco said...

Hi, Beth. I've steered folks to a bazaar that sells used bikes on the corner of Veletrzni and Dukel. Hrdinu in Prague 7. I don't know the name of it, but they have bikes in the window. Others have bought bikes there and seemed to have good luck. Let me know how it works out!

Anonymous said...

Cycle rentals prices are extremely high in Prague. I wonder why because Czech isn't that expensive country otherwise. Very strange. I have cycled with rental bike in other big cities and prices there were about half of Prague prices.

Grant Podelco said...

That's strange. I must admit to not having rented bikes elsewhere much, so can't really comment on the prices. But I must say I thought the prices here seemed reasonable. I'd be interested in what others have to say on this topic.

Anonymous said...

In Cologne the cycle rental price was 40 euros/week. In Birmingham the price was about 55 euros/9 days ("On Your Bike" actually the best place to rent a bike this far).

www.okolo-bikes.cz seems to be fair enough, about 50 euros/5 days. I think I'll go there when visiting Prague next summer.

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