Today as part of our focus on taking city breaks, Gillian from One Giant Step is here to tell us about Prague. The capital of the Czech Republic is a wonderful city to explore. With its rich culture and fascinating history, a Prague city break is sure to be interesting, entertaining, and highly enjoyable. Here’s what Gillian recommends you do during your visit.
Prague is one of those cities that you could visit time and again and still not have discovered all of its secrets, which is why it is such a great city break destination. There are plenty of neighbourhoods to explore, Bohemian squares to stumble upon, and public parks to while away afternoons.
Don’t overlook the city’s Old Town though. Yes, it’s touristy but, like many a great tourist sites it is worth delving into.
Up first is the Prague Castle. Hop on the #22 tram and let it take you up and around the hill to the top. From here you can explore the castle grounds and all the outbuildings before slowly making your way down the hill. Don’t forget to take in the views of the city from the top.
Also at the top is the Strahov Monastic Brewery. If it’s warm, check out the small garden alcove at the stairs on the right; here is one of the many hidden spots in the city to enjoy a pint of local beer and a warm lunch.
The walk down from the castle ends at the historic Charles Bridge. Crossing over the Vitava River it is now as much a cultural experience as it was a transportation hub back in the day. Adorned with statues of saints and other historic figures it appears just as you would imagine a gothic style bridge should. With musicians, portrait artists, jewellery makers, and scenic photography stands all along, it’s fun to stroll along and just take in the atmosphere.
There are plenty of interesting squares and small, cobblestoned streets to explore in the old town. Part of the fun is just wandering around, getting lost, and finding yourself again. The Astronomical Clock in the Old Town Square is a worthy destination for your wandering. Catch it at the top of the hour to see it in action or anytime just to admire the work and imagine the thought processes that go into creating such a masterful timepiece.
Food and drink are always great drivers of exploration. EatingPrague does a wonderful food tour focusing on traditional Czech cuisine with some history, culture, and architecture thrown in for good measure. It’s a great way to get a feel for the city, try some dishes that you might not otherwise (the sauerkraut soup is an amazing surprise!), and have a local guide answer all your questions about the city and the country.
Czech beer is world renowned and is as cheap as water in this amazing city! A visit to Pivovar U Fluků is a great evening of entertainment. The old world atmosphere hits just the right note as a uniformed server sweeps over right away offering one of the dark beers from the heaving tray on his shoulder. Take one; you won’t be sorry. Before long another server will come by with honey wine, the accordion player will start his set and the Bohemian history of Prague will be on full display.
Expanding on the Bohemian theme, and delving into the creative and literary history of Prague, a stop at an Absintherie is for the less faint of heart. Chasing the Green Fairie doesn’t have to mean staying up till all hours and forgetting the best of the night; these days Absintheries serve a wide variety of the green, anise-flavoured liqueur in a number of different ways. Setting it on fire, dripping water through a sugar cube, as shots, or slowly sipped; it’s an experience that shouldn’t be missed.
Prague is an easy city to get around; whether walking or hopping on the tram you’ll easily find a new neighbourhood to discover. English is widely spoken and the people are super friendly.
Gillian is a Giant Stepper, a traveller, and a serial expat currently looking to make a home in Mexico for the winter. Check out her book ‘How to Find the Perfect Vacation Rental‘ to learn how you, too, can live like a local when you travel.
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