20 August 2017

Visiting Prague, Czech Republic

I never knew about Prague until a few years ago, but I have to say that after our visit there last month, it is one of my favourite places to visit. With its castles, churches and cathedrals, it has the charm of the traditional Europe that made me want to visit it when I first learned about the continent back in grade school.

In the city also known as the City of a Hundred Spires, we stayed at the Hotel Adeba which was a short walk from the metro station. It wasn’t in the middle of the city, so the neighbourhood was quiet. The Receptionist on duty when we arrived was very accommodating and spoke English well so it was easy to communicate with her. The room our family stayed in was just average with a fridge and big bathroom, but like Hotel Gabriel during our trip to Vienna, there was no a/c. When we requested for a fan, we were given a small one which was more like a desk fan. As for my sister and nephew, they stayed in rooms that were near the railway, so they had to endure the noise of the passing trains as they tried to sleep at night. Oh well. The food selection during breakfast was typical, so we managed to enjoy a decent meal before going out to explore Prague.

On our first evening, we walked around the neighbourhood. Since we didn’t get the chance to enter any of the churches in Vienna, we were very happy to come upon the huge Roman Catholic Church of St. Cyril and Methodius. It was amazing! We were the only ones there when we entered, so we had the chance to pray solemnly and enjoy its splendor on our own. The details and all the statues were just magnificent and we couldn’t help looking up in wonder at the grandeur of it all.
Soon after, we realized we were hungry. Fortunately, there were quite a few restaurants nearby and we ended up at Restaurace Charleston. From the outside, it looks like an ordinary restaurant and we expected to be seated at one of their regular tables. But we were happily surprised when the server led us down to their underground dining section which initially seemed like an area where mobsters stayed for private meetings and occasions.
There was an antique grandfather clock and other classic décor, and there were even hidden passages behind the curtain and underneath the floors, too! Pretty scary, but cool at the same time ☺
The food was good, and we enjoyed our dinner while listening to live entertainment provided by the musician playing oldies but goodies on the piano.
 And to top it off, we ended our meal with slices of traditional apple strudl.
The next day, our group explored Prague…well, a part of it, anyway. We walked to the station and, after getting over our excitement from how high, steep and long the escalators were, took the metro to the city.
As soon as we set foot on the Old Town Square, we were surprised at all the things to see and take pictures of. There was the Gothic Church of Our Lady before Týn, the Jan Hus Memorial, Astronomical Clock, and countless street entertainers.
We initially thought of joining one of the free walking tours, but eventually decided against it because we figured Caila and Sophie might find it boring. So we just walked and discovered the city at our own pace.
Of course, since it was the most popular landmark in the city, we just had to see the Charles Bridge. However, it was so crowded with many people walking across it and taking pictures that it was difficult to take our own.  These are just a few of the decent shots we managed to take.
When in the Czech Republic, one of the things you should eat is the trdelnik, which is a pastry rolled like a cone and sprinkled with a sugar and spice mixture. We bought ours from one of the shops along the cobblestoned streets, and enjoyed them with swirls of ice cream on the top. Delish!
Since we had been walking practically the whole day (only sitting down on benches to rest for a few minutes, and to have lunch), our girls started complaining of being tired by mid-afternoon. Add this to the fact that there were so many people everywhere we went, making the narrow streets a bit too crowded and difficult to walk in at a leisurely pace.

So unfortunately, we didn’t get to see all the sights we would have wanted to visit like the Dancing House, Lennon Wall, and Prague Castle. Well, at least that gives us an excuse to visit the Heart of Europe again, right? ☺

No comments:

Post a Comment

Popular Posts