“Prague certainly still deserves a place on the cannabis world map, but it doesn’t make it easy for tourists.”
The 2016 Million Marihuana March (MMM) is the Czech variant of the Global Cannabis March, which takes place all over the world each May. Over the course of the weekend, the march offered the most up-to-date information about the cannabis scene in the Czech Republic, along with useful tips to help discerning canna-tourists make the most of their experience.
The crowd at the Prague MMM was huge, and the atmosphere was electric throughout the day. As we walked through the historic city, we were greeted by a sea of smiling onlookers, who observed the costumed advocates with friendly expressions and not a hint of disapproval.
Later, we marched over the glittering Vltava River through Letenský Tunnel toward the vast green expanse of Letna Park. As we marched through the tunnel, tens of thousands of voices whooped and yelled, reverberating through the space and rendering the cavernous atmosphere tribal, fierce, and primal. A deep sense of unity and purpose seemed to pervade the crowd as they strode firmly forward.
“It seems that the cannabis paradise we had been led to expect has been severely compromised in recent years. Spots once known for being ‘friendly’ are now anything but, and in some, tourists are met with open hostility and distrust.”
After walking over a kilometer through the tunnel, we streamed out like a triumphant army and proceeded on to the final battlefield, known as Letna Park.
An irreverent mood was certainly the order of the day—in fact, one couple were having so much fun that the mood, ahem, overtook them, and they were photographed in a compromising position next to some bushes.
After a while, the heat (along with our aching calf muscles) persuaded us to retreat back to the relative safety of our Airbnb apartment for a couple of hours of well-earned rest. Later, we ventured back out onto the cool evening streets in search of food and cannabis, as we had consumed our stock of both while sequestered indoors.
We had arranged for a small quantity to greet us when we got to Prague, but as that ran out quickly, we had to take our chances on the mean streets when looking for our next consignment. We assumed naively that this would not present us with any difficulty.
Four hours, a dozen hostile glares, and 20 shaken heads later, we returned to the apartment—full of goulash and dumplings but sadly bereft of anything green and smokeable.
It seems that the cannabis paradise we had been led to expect has been severely compromised in recent years. Spots once known for being “friendly” are now anything but, and in some, tourists are met with open hostility and distrust.
We asked the bartender at a spot called Alternatiff why this was the case, and were told that police controls had been getting extremely frequent, and many bars (including Alternatiff itself) had been forced to stop their under-the-counter sales to avoid fines and closure.
We then checked out one of the after-parties of the March and could not find a single person who could (or would) direct us to a source of herb—on the day of the biggest annual cannabis event in the country! We were even asked (only half-jokingly) if we were police or FBI on more than one occasion.
So did this mean that Prague was to be struck off the list of cannabis destinations? It was looking increasingly likely, but we weren’t about to quit without a fight. We resolved to find something the next day, no matter what.
Eventually, through a neat little piece of intercontinental networking, we managed to get an up-to-date tip on a friendly bar. The weed was good, and five almost-grams (close enough, given the circumstances) cost us 1,100 Czech crowns (around $45). Not bad, especially on a Sunday!
Things were starting to look up, and the next day, they got even better. When all the grow shops reopened on Monday, we went straight there to ask the most educated people on the subject.
They directed us to two bars within two hundred meters’ distance that would both be happy to supply our needs. Somewhat taken aback, we asked again about the situation, mentioning what the bartender of the previous night had said about the police controls. They looked blankly back at us, and said they had heard nothing about it!
So, Prague certainly still deserves a place on the cannabis world map, but it doesn’t make it easy for tourists. If planning a trip out there, we recommend making arrangements before you go.
If you’re not able, the best thing is probably to ask in a grow shop. If you try random bars, you could be looking indefinitely. But if you do have to take your chance asking in bars, look for small, dark, graffiti-covered spaces. If they have plentiful sofas and fridges well stocked with juices, then you’re probably in the right place.