I feel I should write this post in five years when I have some perspective on the city of Prague. When I’m a little more wrinkled around the eyes and I hate the world a little more. I say this because I am in love with Prague. A city for me that was never on the list and it took someone incredibly special to make me see the light and book the trip. I am and will be forever grateful she did. I feel I need to premise this blog with say I went in November 2016, Post US election which was both highly entertaining and highly divisive on both sides. Now whatever your political leaning you can agree the trenches have been dug and insults are being fired back and forth. But it was here in Prague, this place with so much history. Under the Nazi rule for much of the war and then 40 years of communism, that I remembered why I am liberal. Because I believe it is important to have people of many cultures mix and interact as one. Because we are one. It was this feeling that I had for much of the trip and it framed how I saw this small beautiful historic town. Oh yeah, it was my first trip with her.
Whenever I and my Tourist in crime arrive at a new place, we just like to walk. Get lost in the new and it all take in. I did the same the first time I was in New York, walking down a random street only to marvel at the awe -inspiring sight that was Times Square, appearing before me. I would never have the surprise and amazement if I had known where I was going. So same here, don’t take the tours unless you really can’t walk everywhere. The town and the castle are all within walking distance. And depending on the season you go, you won’t be walking very fast. Of course, We got lost :)) walking along the river finally finding the old town square by following the smell of hot pork in the air. (Get used to that).
Prague Old Town
We got into the square and were filled with different languages and smells from food carts. The Tyn Church towering out in front of us, all looming and ancient. Then we saw the Clock. The Astronomical Clock always has a mass gathering around it. When I looked at it, it was as if I was staring at magic. The clock shimmers through blues and greens as the sun hits it. It almost feels that the clock wasn’t made by man. Its design is almost supernatural, Apple constantly claims their products are magic, then you drop that thing on the floor and you realize your folly. This medieval six-hundred-year-old clock still shifts and twists its mechanisms in an astral dance of time. The four figures that flank the clock are depictions of some of humanity worse traits
Vanity – Holding his mirror
The Miser – Holding a bag of gold depicting greed
Lust – Of Earthly pleasure
Death – A skeleton that strikes on the hour an indication that these traits should leave
They always shake their heads as they have done for over 500 years.
Square is littered with restaurants and cafes to eat and drink till your heart’s content. However, a place nearby is especially excellent. The Black Angels bar is a truly incredible bar experience that I will not forget. One because of its unique journal style menu and excessive range of cocktails but also because this was the first place me and my girlfriend sat and drank together. Normally drinking in large groups this was a more intimate affair. Just me and her in this beautifully decorated bar without phones (You’re not allowed to take photos) starting to build a relationship over rum and gin. This is an atmospheric bar like very few. A place I will remember as of one of the best bars I have ever been to.The drinks are in the basement and the food is on the roof. A highly recommend rooftop restaurant with great views of the square and extremely well-done food.
The city in the middle of November had a welcome chill, hold hands to keep warm chill. It’s endearing and fills the air with a sort of romantic warmth that you get around Christmas time. We walked through the city taking in small shops and stalls, sharing crepes and chocolate whenever we could. The narrow cobbled streets are filled with interesting souvenir shops with great artworks of the Charles bridge. I am not a big souvenir I tend to try and remember the moments as the come and how I feel in then. But my girlfriend always gets something for her father and there was plenty to choose from. At the end of the first day, we crossed over the Charles Bridge (Which I will get back to) and found a little restaurant on the other side, the sign sticks out from the wall and you walk down some narrow steps until you’re alongside the river. If you can I highly recommend eating on the platform below. With one the best views of the Charles Bridge ever and every so often a flock of swans will congregate nearby. Major points scored!
The next day we decided to head to the castle. So we headed back through the town and along the Charles bridge, which is Prague’s most stunning bridge. The views from the bridge draw a large crowd and even in mid-November, the stroll across the bridge took its time. The view back into the city and castle above are equally inspiring. We walked up towards the castle and entered the expansive fortress on the hilltop. The shimmering piece of this castle is the church. Looming over every piece of history in the castle. We saw incredibly stained glass windows, we shot crossbows in the armory and we took endless pictures of the view looking down onto the city. Most evenings we searched for Czech cuisine and Czech beer. Food in Prague consists of duck, pork, and soups with sweets like Trdelnik and crepes.
Krcma, is a great little restaurant just off the square. With great authentic cuisine and great beer. It has great reviews on TripAdvisor and it feels like a hidden treasure. Another great breakfast spot is called Den Noc, we were gutted we found this place on the last day otherwise I would have been there every morning. They do pancakes with a variety or savory or sweet toppings also a selection of crepes and coffees.
Prague, to me, opened my eyes to what my life could be with this girl. Taking this tourist-heavy town at such a slow pace and made it our own. We never followed the crowds, we wandered narrow streets and along the river finding great places to eat and gems like the Lennon wall. I will always hold Prague as the most romantic city I have ever seen. It’s structure and atmosphere lends itself to romantic photographs and warm embraces. An excellent city getaway.
1) Walk everywhere
2) Go Authentic -Traditional restaurants only
3) Black Angels Bar
4) Use Airbnb
5) Walk up the Tower