Well what a surprise, I’ve been on another city break. I’m not even sorry, this time it was to the beautiful Czech city of Prague. Originally it was planned that a group of us would go last summer but due to schedule clashes and honestly poor planning it never came to be. So when a second holiday plan in the winter went tits up me and one of my mates, Matt decided to take the opportunity to go and explore Prague and its christmas markets.
We stayed in a lovely little hotel on the same side of the river as the castle, only a 15 minute walk to the old town of Prague. Upon arrival we were dropped off at the train station by the bus, which is quite literally the other side of the city, but at least it gave us a chance to have a little snoop around while passing through. It didn’t take long for us to stumble across the first market in Wenceslas square. As it turns out the guy i was traveling with who is a structural engineer was working on plans for a building on the square at the time so it was pretty cool that he actually got to kinda visit the site himself. But anyways obviously after so many hours traveling it only seemed right that we stopped off at the market for a bite to eat. The food is amazing we opted for a huge grilled frank which came with the standard european slice of bread and a selection of condiments. After filling our stomachs we headed for the hotel to drop off our stuff as it was getting on a bit. The first night we went back to the market for a bit more food and just mooched around the bars sampling the local ales. There was a lush little micro brewery by the theatre ( I shall insert the name when I remember sorry guys) which we had no choice but to try on our walk home, of course.
The second day started early, with breakfast delivered to the door. A lovely spread of breads, meats and cheeses, which was a bonus as we didn’t actually know breakfast was included until we arrived at the hotel. We spent the day exploring the castle and pretty much everything on our side of the river. Word of warning if you decide to have a “wander” around be prepared for a lot of hills and pebbled streets, especially around the castle. We arrived at the square outside the castle at around eleven in the morning, at this point the queue to get in was already 20 minutes long, so make sure you get there early, it only got longer. The castle it self was free just happens to have very strict security walk through metal detectors and such like. Inside there is another market and chapel. Some areas you do have to pay to get into, however we didn’t go into these areas because there was more than plenty to see without paying. The inside of the chapel is a sight to behold, beautiful stain glass windows and ornate paintings on every wall we spent a fair amount of time in here just kind of gazing at everything. Once we had explored the castle for a couple of hours, and had our fill once again on market food and christmas punch we soldiered on. When doing our research on Prague we had seen there was an observation tower at the top of the cliffs, which would obviously provide the best views over this glorious city. One thing I found while having a wander around, it is very easy to get distracted on your way to your destination by the stunning buildings and statues that pop up pretty much every 100 meters. So if you take a camera which I’m sure you will, make sure you have spare battery and memory card, you will use them.
We finally made it and for the equivilant of £6 we climbed the tower and well, what a surprise it was incredible. Prague lay below with Vltava flowing along side stretching far off into the horizon.
After the full day walking almost 10 million miles up and down a number of hills we headed back to the hotel to freshen up and have a little rest before heading on out for food and one or two Czech beers. Two days down, two to go. Bring it on.