Where to stay in Prague

Stay at the Golden Well Hotel - voted best in the world - or confine yourself to the friendly Unitas House, a former detention centre in historic Prague.

Golden Well Hotel

What's so special

This ancient building is rumoured to have once been the home of court astronomer Tycho Brahe, a man with a silver nose (he lost the real one in a duel). In its modern reincarnation it's a fantastic hotel, says Ruth Jackson so good it was voted the best in the world by TripAdvisor users earlier this year.

How they rate it

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This is an "intimate inn, with outsize wardobes, deep bathtubs and views over the city from the hillside that aprons Prague Castle", says Will Tizard in The Sunday Times Travel Magazine. "Modernity intrudes here and there the mud-and-straw walls have been replaced but there's still olde-worlde decor in guest rooms." It's easy to imagine "bizarre Mr Brahe... in this enchanting dark-panelled jumble".

The menu

There is a dining room at the top of the hotel that serves "great seafood", with dishes such as poached halibut in olive oil. And staff will happily help you seek out the best eateries in town based to suit all tastes.

The cost

A double room costs from £212, on a room-only basis. For more information, visit the website at www.goldenwell.cz, or call 00 420 2570 11 213.

Unitas House


What's so special

This hotel in central Prague is housed within a building that has played a pretty varied role in the city's history. Built in 1731, it was once a convent then later a place of detention favoured by the communist secret police. One former inmate was Vclav Havel, who went on to become the country's president his basement cell can still be visited.

How they rate it

This is an "intriguing place to stay", says Lonely Planet, as many of the "cramped rooms" were once prison cells. The hotel is split into hostel-style rooms in the basement and larger "pension rooms" upstairs. The former cells are "naturally enough tiny and basic" and still retain their iron doors. Yet "for atmosphere it's hard to beat". Overall, the place is "friendly and welcoming". The larger upstairs rooms "provide more comfort". This hotel offers "good-value, four-star comfort, a central location (walking distance to Charles Bridge) and a fascinating bit of Prague history", says The Daily Telegraph.

The menu

The hotel's "generous" breakfast is excellent and there are several good cafes and restaurants nearby which the staff will happily point out.

The cost

A double room costs from £72, including breakfast. Find out more at www.unitas.cz, or call 00 420 2242 30 533.

What the travel writers are saying


Like the great outdoors but don't fancy roughing it in a tent? Then go for luxury camping' instead at these Canadian sites, says Sophie Lam in The Independent.

The Red Snowshoe in British Columbia is "a B&B with a difference". White Tail is a spacious prospector's tent on a rural farm in the Kootenays. It sleeps two but offers "all manner of creature comforts", from Siberian goose-down pillows to a wood-burning stove and wifi. "Hearty" breakfasts are served in the farmhouse. Prices for the tent start from C$129 (£84); www.theredsnowshoe.com.

WildExodus in Ontario offers luxury camping in the Wawaitin Falls Park. The camp is made up of fully furnished tents let out to one group of four to 12 guests for a week at a time. "Arrive by canoe and spend the week swimming in the rivers and lakes, picking berries and discovering the local wildlife." Prices start from C$521 (£338) for two people full board for a week. For more, see www.borealforest.travel.

"The main concession to camping is the canvas that separates you from the outdoors" at Clayoquot Wilderness Resort in British Columbia (pictured). The prospector-inspired tents have under-floor heating in en suite bathrooms, antique furniture, "modern natural cuisine" in the camp restaurant and "spa tents where you can unwind with holistic therapies". But "the biggest draw is the setting, at the mouth of a nine-mile fjord surrounded by a forest and hot springs". Tents sleeping two start from C$3,167 (£2,057) all-inclusive for a minimum of three nights. See www.wildretreat.com.