After a fantastic holiday in beautiful Austria where we were lost in a fairyland, we reached the enchanted city of Prague via a train from Vienna. This beautiful medieval town will surely ignite your wanderlust. There is a magical charm here which makes you feel as if you have stepped back in time.We were here for 4 lovely days during September 2014 when we were holidaying across Europe.
Day 1 –
We arrived at our hotel which was a 5 min walk from beautiful and popular Wenceslas Square. The hotel was an old baroque property with all the basic accommodations situated at an excellent location. We were lucky to get a room on a higher floor, I think it was the 7th from where the view of “Praha”was just mesmerizing.
We soon left the room to see the famous Old Town Square. The square was a 20 minutes walk from our hotel which was quite enjoyable. We reached the square and undoubtedly the first thing that we noticed was the famous astronomical clock of Prague which stood tall and majestic. We were totally enchanted by its flair. On our arrival, the entire area surrounding the clock was crowded by people, we had reached just in time to witness the much awaited hourly chime. Beautifully designed and crafted, the detailing of the clock made it absolutely wonderful to watch.I found the clock so artistic to look at that from the local shopping area we later picked up 2 lovely paintings of the astronomical clock as souvenirs. The paintings today are nicely displayed in our home and they always remind us of the precious moment of standing in front of the majestic clock.
The view of the medieval city from the tower in the clock will leave you wanting more. You will get submerged in the beauty of this red baroque city which has so much architecture and history. The best thing that you can do at this time is to simply let your mind wander and admire –
Right in front of the clock many FREE walking tours are available for tourists. We found this an amazing facility and decided to go for a 2 hour walking trip as this is the best way to delve into any place. There were various options available…we took the one which covered the old town square, Charles bridge, Jewish quarter and few more stops. We started with the cobbled streets around the Old Town Square then took a stroll into the Jewish Quarter (Josefov), once the largest Jewish ghetto in Europe. Our visit to the Charles Bridge was very entertaining. The bridge is the most iconic structure of Prague situated on top of the Vlatva river. The 360 degree view of prague from the bridge will completely immerse you in its serenity. I felt as if i was lost in a real life daydream. The palace, the river and all the 30 statues of the saints surronding the bridge look totally stunning and picturesque. We reached here sometime in the afternoon, it was thronging with tourists, everybody clicking pictures or getting their sketches made. The bridge is located in the center of the city connecting the old town square with the magnificent Prague castle.
Prague is known for its bohemian king as well its bohemian crystals. We decided to take a look at the local shops around the old town square and let me tell you that the city lives up to its expectation as the crystal quality here is just excellent. This led to the purchase of our first decanter from Prague which is made of true bohemia crystals as you can see below –
Day 2 –
We decided to do something adventurous and booked ourselves for a 3 hour super exciting Segway tour to explore “Praha” (Prague). This was one of our best experiences and i highly recommend it. It is a guided tour covering important attraactions of Prague like the John Lennon Wall, the Frank Kafka museum outside of which you can also see one of David Cerny’s controversial sculptures, the Vlatva River and Charles bridge. We started the tour from the old town square. Our guide was very interesting, he took us to various by lanes, which made Segway even more fun and we saw quite some bit of Prague in Segway Style.
While segwaying we discovered the tiniest signal that anybody would have ever seen in their lives in the most narrowest lane meant for only one person to walk at a time..it was hilarious to find it at this location –
Segwayed to the John Lehnon Wall. The wall represents love and peace…very colourful
We also visited very briefly the Frank Kafka Museum. We did not go inside the museum but definitely clicked the image of the controversial sculpture in front of the museum –
In the evening we went drinking beer at the Wenceslas square…Czechs are known for producing the worlds best beer. We sat in a very pretty looking open restaurant and tried the Pilsner style lager.
Day 3 –
We decided to walk towards the historic Prague Castle which is a lovely walk along the river. Prague Castle is the largest medieval castle in Europe and was once the seat of the Kings of Bohemia.The whole area has cobblestone streets and loads of antique stores and shops. We stopped for lunch on the way in one of the restaurants where we found good upriver view of the city.
While the Prague Castle complex houses many buildings, St. Vitus is the one that dominates the skyline wherever you are in city.St. Vitus Cathedral (Katedrála svatého Víta) is a Gothic masterpiece, and the spiritual symbol of the Czech state. Its very intricate and beautifully crafted, a marvel to look at.
Rest of the time we spent walking along the river Vltava which flows below Charles Bridge.
We visited one of the best music bar in the evening called Alibi, it was 2 minutes walking distance from our hotel.The place has a great vibe and serves very good cocktail drinks.
Day 4 –
Spent time at Wenceslas Square which is a vibrant area of hotels, restaurants, nightclubs and branded shopping. This place is a great nightlife center of Prague.
Well thats Prague – splendid, traditional, bohemia and artistic for you!!
Some facts –
- Distance from Vienna – Via the train is 4 hours, very convenient
- Good Time to Visit – September is a good time to visit as its very pleasant with temperature around 15 degrees….unlike summer months of July and August when its mostly hot.
- Currency of Prague – The official currency of the Czech Republic is the Czech crown (koruna). 1 koruna to INR is 2.76 Rs. Its one of the most affordable European destination to visit.
- Few attractions to must visit – Charles Bridge, Old Town Square, Wenceslas Square, Vltava River, John Lenon Wall & Frank Kafka Museum amongst others.
- What to buy – Bohemia crystals as souveniors