City 6/12: Prague. After edgy Berlin I was very excited to go to Prague and dress in pretty clothes and still fit in. I’d seen pictures of friends in Prague but really, I didn’t know a thing about the Czech Republic other than the fact it used to be called Czechoslovakia. So these last few days have been a bit strange as there has been a lot to learn and the language is crazy!
On the second day, my faith was restored in Prague as we went for another free walking tour. This one was Sandemans New Europe (same company as Berlin) and once again, the guide was great! We started off in the old town square which is the very centre of Prage and absolutely beautiful. It’s filled with restaurants, street performers and people just generally meeting and having a good time!
Towards the right you can see the Church of the Lady Tyn. If you look carefully enough, you can tell that one spire is bigger than the other. They are named Adam and Eve and Adam Tower is wider than Eve Tower to represent the man looking after the woman.
We then moved into the new town (although still pretty old as it was founded in 1348) and into Wenceslas Square. It’s a pretty big square, well rectangle. It’s 750m long which makes it the Czech Republics biggest square. At the end of the square is the Prague National Museum. Sadly, it has been shut for 4 years for refurbishment and plans to reopen in 2017.
Okay, it was kinda cool to watch but I can understand why it’s been voted the 3rd most overrated tourist attraction in the world. Luckily for us, our tour happened to arrive at the clock at five minutes to the hour so we saw the… err… grand spectacle.
We then took the mood down a bit lower as we arrived at the cemetery. Along with all having to live in the same area, all the Jews had to be buried in the same cemetery. As you can guess, it filled up. So they put a layer of mud over the graves and started again. As you can guess, it filled up again so they put more mud over! Now there are up to 12 layers in this cemetery!
In the evening we tried to go to one of the restaurants we were recommended but we left it too late and the kitchen was shut. We eventually found somewhere and Ammun and I ate beef goulash which we were told is something you need to try in the Czech Republic. Although the food was good (and reminded me of my mums yummy cooking), the service was horrendous. Also known as “Czech service”. They made everything seem like a massive effort and then the cheeky buggars added a service charge! (Mine actually had chips with it even though I asked for rice)
Although it may not look it from a distance, Prague Castle is the biggest castle in the world with a massive 18 acres. The castle grounds includes all the houses and shops and churches around it and all the little windy streets are so nice to walk down when it’s sunny!
We wanted an early dinner on this day and we went back to the old town square again to go to the restaurant that our tour guide recommended. It’s called Restaurance Mincovna and the food there is AMAZING!! I feel like I should have tried the traditional Czech dish svikcova (roast beef in a creamy sauce) but I loved my goulash so much the night before that I had it again (this time with dumplings instead of chips). I think it is probably the best thing I’ve eaten on this whole trip!! Also, despite the infamous “Czech service” this restaurant was great service even byEnglish standards! To top it all off, for my main, a side of vegetables, a glass of wine, water and a small tip it was a massive £9!!!
On our last day we finally got to check out of our smelly hostel and we went for a little bit more sight seeing. We first went to the dancing house that was built in 1996. It was originally called Ginger and Fred as it looks like a man dancing with a woman although it was very controversial at first because it doesn’t fit with the surroundings, it is now accepted and the restaurant at the top is still called Ginger and Fred.
We then went to find some statues by David Cerny. They are all over the city centre so we couldn’t see many but this one is called Piss. It’s two men and their hips move side to side and their male parts move up and down to spell out words from Czech literature.