Sunday, April 24, 2016

Part 4: Praha, Czech Republic

On the way to the Airbnb
After a great weekend in Vienna, Brandon and I went back to the bus station to catch our bus to Prague.  Luckily, this was a straight shot with only one stop in Brno.  The bus was once again nice with a friendly staff.  The stewardess did not speak much English, but we knew the drill (free newspaper, hot drink, and buckle your seat belts!).  I fell asleep, but then used the wifi to look up some information on Prague.  When we were one hour way from the city, we got stuck in traffic.  I was fine since the internet was working, and we had air conditioning in the bus.  I messaged our airbnb host to let him know we were running a little late.  We arrived in Prague exactly one hour behind schedule.  We walked up the huge hill towards his flat.  He let us in, and got settled.  There was another airbnb couple staying in the same flat as us.  They were a little older (in their 30s), and were on holiday from Germany.

Pork Ribs at Lavicka

The Dancing House
Our host sat down with us and gave us a detailed map that he drew on and a list of recommended restaurants to try.  He was super friendly and made our stay very nice.  We were hungry since it was late in the afternoon, so we walked 4 minutes to this Czech restaurant called Lavicka.  The restaurant had an English menu and a beautiful outdoor seating patio.  Unfortunately, all the outdoor tables were taken, so we sat near the windows.  I got a beer with homemade lemon syrup and the pork rib dish.  Brandon got a beer and this quesadilla dish.  My pork ribs were to die for!  They were packed with flavor and were so tender.  Brandon's meal was very tasty as well.
Yum, Ice Cream
We walked back to the flat and relaxed for about an hour.  Then, we made our way to the Dancing House.  This has been on my bucket list since I was researching Prague in 2014.  We finally made it, and we took some pictures.  Next, we walked down the canal where our host told us that a lot of locals hang out.  There were beer vendors all down the river.  It was neat to see all the locals enjoying the warm weather and sunset.  We stopped at the ice cream place that our host told us about.  The line was out the door.  It was named Puro Gelato, and boy was it good!  I got 1 scoop of coconut and 1 scoop of chocolate.  Brandon got 1 scoop of chocloate and one scoop of this purple berry flavor.  He was kind enough to let me have a taste, and it was really good.  We ate our ice cream on the canal and watched the sunset.  Once we were done, we walked back to the flat to sleep for the night.

Charles Bridge
After a great Day 1 in Prague, we knew Day 2 was going to be every eventful.  We walked to the downtown center were we did a 10am free walking tour.  The tour lasted for 2 hours and 30 minutes, and it was very informative.  Our host was Pistis, who is originally from Israel, but lived in London, and now is a tour guide in Prague.  He was great and knew his history.  We walked all around the old district, new district, saw the astronomical clock, and walked the Jewish Quarter.  Once the tour was done, Brandon and I walked back to the astronomical clock to watch the hourly show.  It was a cute little show for the strike of the hour, and then we walked to Charles Bridge.  We did the virtual geocache that is on the bridge, and then walked over to the Jewish District for some lunch. Our host recommended this fresh meat deli for lunch.  I got a Kielbasa while Brandon got a Hamburger and then a Steak.  It was very reasonably priced.  If you're ever in Prague and want fresh meat, go to Nasa Meso.

Charles Bridge
After lunch, we walked back up to the flat to get ready for our geocaching meeting.  We held a geocaching event at Riegrovy Sady, which had a great turn out.  The people here loved travel bugs and were discovering them all.  We chatted with some people-- there was a girl my age visiting from Finland and an older couple visiting from Denmark.  After a good hour, we went back to the flat to relax for a little bit.

We decided to go back out and view the castle up close.  We walked back to Charles' Bridge and found the most found geocache in the world!  We walked up to the castle which was beautiful.  I think it is even more beautiful at night with all of the lights on.  We walked around and took photos of the cathedral.  We had a nice walk back to the flat-- we took our time and enjoyed the warm weather.  We were on a mission to find some late night food, but came up empty handed!  We eventually made it back to the flat, and I went across the street and bought some frozen ice cream cones.

Overall, Prague was very magical.  There is a lot of history there with so much to see.  The downtown center was really crowded, but the castle was not crowded at night.  Besides the overabundance of tourists during the day, I had a wonderful time.  I would love to go back to Prague!

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