After nearly missing our train from Berlin to Prague (no thanks to a rather grumpy and unhelpful train station attendant), we did indeed arrive safe and sound in the much warmer land of the Czech Republic.
How to best describe Prague…do you remember those “Once upon a time in a land far, far away” sequences in old-school Disney princess movies like Cinderella? Basically, Prague looks like one of those cute, charming little fairytale land towns. And appropriately, Prague was supplied with many a young couple happily flaunting their perfect happily ever afters.
Prague is a fairly walkable city…we trekked from the train station in central Prague to our hostel in the more residential area, the aptly named Czech-Inn hostel. Not too bad of a hostel…great wifi, great location, although I was slightly put off by the abundance of young spring breakers in our midst.
Something I wasn’t aware of prior to our arrival was the different form of currency which the Czechs use…rather than the euro, they go by the crown. 25 ck = approximately 1 euro.
I think three days spent in Prague was plenty sufficient time to make a number of “Czeching out Prague” jokes, and to get the essential touristy items squared away…there was the Old Town Square, Astronomical Clock, Charles Bridge, Jewish Quarter, the John Lennon Wall, Petrin Hill/Tower and Prague Castle (as well as some cathedral whose name I forget at the top of Petrin Hill).
We took a nice hike up to the top of Petrin Hill on Day 2, which gave us awesome panoramic views of the town down below. It was good to get away from the touristy parts for a bit, and just soak in the scenery.
I can’t speak much about the Czech culture, especially as the country just turned 21 this year. I don’t think I actually ate any Czech food, but I did hit up the local Tesco regularly to get my fill of salad and trail mix! But not to put you under the impression that I’m on a restrictive diet, we found a gelato stand, and a surprisingly cheap Italian restaurant in town.
Like I said, three days was enough – don’t expect to have too much to do if you stay longer than that. As a whole I enjoyed seeing Prague, as it was the closest I’d get to seeing more Eastern European culture on this trip.
Some words to the wise: Beware of the added fees of things that are commonplace in the States! Using public toilets, asking for a bottle of ketchup, taking your restaurant food in a doggy bag, and getting water all have extra costs! Although the Czech Republic is at a lower cost of living than say, the UK, Prague is hub to hundreds (may thousands?) of tourists, and they intend to profit from it, obviously.