Prague turned out to be quite the delight! We flew to Prague from Dubai and we are back in Europe after six months in Asia / Indian Subcontient / Oceania. It was great to be back in the world of meat and potatoes, have amazingly delicious beer, and enjoy some very beautiful sights. The weather was fantastic, the tourism season is just starting so it wasn’t overly crowded. We had a great time and would love to go back.
The food was delicious, meals consisted of brats, sausage, meat and more meat. After a the first day in Prague we realized that our diet had changed to lean more towards vegetables, fruits and other vegetarian cuisines whiles traveling. Looking back, we didn’t purposefully cut meat out of our diet but we unconsciously gravitated towards vegetarianism after being in a lot of countries where the cold storage, handling of meat, and cooking of meat is questionable. So, naturally, we made up lost time and had brats, steaks, sausages, and goulash for nearly every meal :).
Interestingly enough, per capita, Czech people drink the most beer in the world. This leads to deliciously cheap beer with many different brands and varieties. Beer is cheaper than soda so it only makes sense for beer to be the refreshment of choice! I bought as many different beer types and brands as I could find. I couldn’t find a favorite which means more ‘testing’ is needed and I’ll have to go back to Prague!
The Old City of Prague is beautiful and compact. Bohemian kings ruled from Prague and later it was a very important city in the Austrio-Hungarian Empire so the old town is littered with historical sites, beautiful buildings, amazing churches and a lot of history. I don’t remember learning much about Eastern Europe in school so it was really cool to learn a lot about the history, the empires and why Prague is a lot like Munich, Vienna, and Budapest. Prague is a very musical city with lots of buskers and many musical performances in the many churches. We ended up catching a musical show one night and it was a wonderful experience! For Europe, the attractions were very reasonably priced and well worth the time.
The crowds really weren’t bad at all. Before 9AM and after 8PM it felt like we had the old city to ourselves. We were lucky to find lodging in the heart of the old city so it was fun to wander around before the crowds came out. We did have a pretty big surprise: groups of Chinese tourists. There weren’t a lot of Chinese that travel in Japan which gave us a nice respite and we didn’t think there would be many Chinese tour groups in Eastern Europe. In general, the Chinese tourists are hardest to be around as they rove around in packs and practices which are normal for a lot of people, like queuing, using trash cans, covering our mouths when sneezing or coughing, being quiet, using inside voices, eating food in an appropriate way, taking turns enjoying a tourist site, and letting people pass, are very foreign to a lot of Chinese tourists, especially when they are in big groups. It can be comically hilarious while being very frustrating.
We ended up meeting friend of family member and her daughter. They live in Prague, showed us around a bit and then we had a wonderful dinner with them. It was a great experience because they lived in Minnesota for a short period of time and were able to tell us all about the Czech Republic, Prague, and their history (communism to democracy and joining the EU). It was definitely the highlight of our time in Prague!
All-in-all, it was an awesome visit and we absolutely loved it. Prague wasn’t on our original list of places to visit but we are oh-so-very happy we visited!
Enjoy the photos!