Prague is a wonderful city and the word seems to be spreading fast. Largely untouched by the devastation of World War II, it is now starting to get increasing numbers of tourists. It is interesting, reasonably priced and there is plenty to see.
We started off our time in Prague with a walking tour, as we did in Berlin. Our guide this time wasn’t up to the quality of the brilliant guy we had in Berlin, but the tour gave us our bearings and introduced us to the main areas of Prague. It also gave us an insight into Prague’s long and amazing history. We continue to be intrigued by the events of European history. The current structure of Europe could have easily been very different with the loss of a battle or war here and there! And you wonder too how different countries like the Czech Republic would look now if the Iron Curtain hadn’t been in place for so many years.
Our tour also included a one hour cruise on the Vitava River, from which we saw many of the city’s sights from a different perspective. The old Charles Bridge is a stunning river crossing, considering it was built way back in 1357. You have to marvel at the engineering skills of 7 centuries ago.
We did a lot of walking around Prague, as we tend to do everywhere. Like many European cities it is not flat, so walking up to the Prague Castle takes some effort, especially when you have already done Wenceslas Square, Old Town, New Town, the Jewish Quarter and the Charles Bridge area before you start up! We were amused to see one middle-aged foreigner, accompanied by two women, who was sitting exhausted by the edge of the road and refusing to budge. Prague is a fantastic place to just stroll around, but this guy wasn’t going anywhere else until his female companions, one of them clearly his wife, told him what the ‘plan’ was! He wasn’t strolling around without a plan! A public servant perhaps?
There are lots of great little lanes to explore around Prague as well. Cafes, shops and restaurants are everywhere. They have lots of great little items you could buy too, if you had the urge. But our cases are already full. And I am always surprised at how many Europeans/others you see relaxing with their first beer at 10 o’clock in the morning.
Another highlight was a trip to the Museum of Communism. It is run by Americans so a few of the captions may be a little biased politically, but there is no questioning the authenticity of the photos, artefacts and movie footage on show. Well worth a visit! We loved Prague and you will too! On a related note, the only English TV Channel we had in our hotel recently, was a Russian one. It was actually very good, but gave a totally different perspective to the one we usually see on CNN or the BBC. There were hints of propaganda, but all subtly (and sometimes not so subtly) delivered by experts from the west. Interesting, entertaining, punchy, informative and refreshing.