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Silent but Alive – Dolls and Puppets in the Czech Republic, Prague

Dolls with moving body parts are not only a popular souvenir of the Czech Republic, they’re also a part of its history. This is why today we’ll travel first to the origin of Czech dolls and then give you advice about where to buy the best dolls and puppets in Prague.


These dolls have been part of the Czech tradition since the 18th century, when Czech puppeteers toured Central Europe to tell stories and entertain audiences. At that time, the manufacture of dolls and puppets developed into an art form in the Baroque era. Great attention to detail was given, for example, to the design of the puppets’ faces. Traditionally, they are hand-carved from linden wood, polished with beeswax and then painted. They represent different characters, from devils, witches and wizards to clowns, kings and princesses or even Czech celebrities such as Špejbl, Hurvínek or Švejk. Many of these beautiful puppets are true works of art. The stories of the puppet shows are based on classic stories like Faust, Don Giovanni or Czech historical dramas.

In Prague there are many places to buy dolls and puppets. Here are some recommendations:

  • In the Havel market you’ll find traditional wooden toys, costume jewelry, souvenirs, and handicrafts as well as vegetables, fresh fruit and flowers. Havel Market is one of the oldest markets in Prague and is a haven for collectors and bargain hunters. It is said that you’ll find the most beautiful and original puppets of the city here. The market is held every day from 8 am to 6 pm, and it’s located near Wenceslas Square.
  • The Puppet gallery has a large selection of quality puppets made by some of the best Czech craftsmen. There are some exclusive pieces, with corresponding prices, which are more suitable for collectors and art lovers. You’ll find this his shop at U Lužichého semináře 7.
  • The Obchod Loutkami doll shop is located at Nerudova 47, in the lower part of the city. Although they don’t carry ventriloquist dummies here, you can find many others types of puppets, including those for hands or on sticks. The store’s prices are not cheap, but they have all kinds of figures, from trolls to barmen.
  • The dolls at Rici puppets are manufactured locally. The doll’s expressions convey different emotions. Rici puppets are reminiscent of the old traditional Czech marionettes. The blend of styles, exaggerated effects and hand-sewn garments make these dolls unique and yet still affordable. The store is located here: Vratislavova 23.



Each puppet has its own character and personal charisma. It’s time to head over to Prague and find the right doll for you.