Wednesday, 24 July 2013

The verdict on Prague

My advice on Prague is WAKE UP EARLY BEFORE THE CROWDS (7-9am) and visit St Charles Bridge, the castle and the old town square before you are jostled along the street like a discarded coke bottle bobbing down the Vlatva river with no control but to go with the current.  The crowds are oppressive here in Prague.  There are overflowing bins with McDonalds, KFC, name it they have it.....and by mid afternoon a glance at one of the overflowing bins indicates the amount of 'rubbish' these crowds are consuming. It's a little disheartening and certainly takes from the charm this city oozes.  The big name chains have set up in some of the most beautiful buildings in town and I was saddened to see a Hardrock Cafe is one of my favourites.

That said......take the right approach and Prague is still incredibly charming.

We hired a private tour guide for 2 hours (our maximum with little legs) to take the 3 of us off the beaten track as much as possible.  My advise to anyone going to Prague would be to spend the extra money on a private tour. Alena, our guide, was fantastic and the tour felt like a Sunday morning stroll with a family friend.  Born and bread in Prague with a 6 year old boy of her own she took us on a tour which was to satisfy the Z man as well as us. We toured the Historical Town, feeding the swans stale bread along the banks of the Vlatva, visited the Vojanovy Garden, Valdstejnska Garden and Kampa Island taking in some of the controversial work of famous Czech sculpture David Cerny.  Take a peek here, his work is bound to make you giggle.  We ended the tour on Slovansky Ostrov where we hired a  paddle boat shaped like a fast car and spent an hour sunning ourselves on the Vlatva eating our ham and cheese rolls, communist Czech our guide informed us (apparently picnics were all the rage).
The LF was keen to try the worlds strongest beer X33 so we headed off to the Two Little Bears or U Medvidku micro brewery for a taste. On the way home we stopped off at the Museum Kampa, the contemporary gallery which we loved not only for the impressive work but for the additions to the building and images of the Prague 2013 floods.  On Saturday night we took in a concert at the Black Light Theatre Image which Z absolutely loved.  He insisted on sitting in the front row and laughed the whole way through, especially entertained by the mime.  A definite highlight for everyone.

It is a stunning city, well worth a visit.  If you ever do visit please be sure to head out early before breakfast, lie low in the middle of the day and avoid the main square, castle and St Charles bridge for the most part.  Once we got this figured out we really enjoyed ourselves in the quieter parts of town.

Next Switzerland. xx

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