Photos of Prague, recommendations for thing to see and do and my experiences eating in the Czech Republic, now known as Czechia.
What's a foodie like me to do in the Czech Republic, a land of pork, potatoes, sausages and dumplings, when she's used to eating copious amounts of fruit and vegetables?
Sausages roasted over an open fire---a fire built in a trash container. It's not the kind of food I crave, but the Czech families celebrating May Day in a local park in Prague certainly seemed to be enjoying them. What struck me was how much they seemed to be enjoying preparing their food and how much fun they were having sharing this casual meal with their friends, two things that I really enjoy, too.
Prague is an absolutely beautiful city and it seems to be a particularly friendly city as well. My daughter decided to take our photo in front of the Astronomical Clock in the Old Town Square.
And then this happened.
We walked for miles on cobblestones exploring this incredible city, learning about its history before and after Communist rule. We gained an understanding of how that time in recent history helped to shape the Czech Republic into the proud independent country it is today.
I took about 300 photos, too many of the stunning architecture. Every time I turned a corner or looked up there was another photo-worthy Baroque, Gothic, or Romanasque feature to at which to marvel.
Prague, or Praha as it is called here, was not bombed during WW2 so the historic buildings have remained intact. Many are painted in soft pastel colours, a feature which just adds to the peaceful ambience of the city. The city is full of green spaces too. There are lots of parks, both large and small, for walking or just for relaxing for a moment in the middle of the city. We can certainly understand why Laura has fallen in love with Prague.
And it has a castle! Actually two, one of which is highly underrated. Be sure to visit Vyšehrad overlooking the Vltava River south of the new town. Adjacent to the castle is a fascinating cemetery where the famous composer Dvořák is buried. The grounds near the cathedral provide panoramic views of the town, lawns for picnics and a hidden beer garden.
On our final night we attended a string quartet classical music concert in the Klementinum, a spectacular Baroque cathedral. Imagine our surprise when we were ushered past a packed audience of hundreds of people to our front-row seats, close enough to read the sheet music as it was being performed! A benefit of booking online, weeks in advance.
Eating in the Czech Republic is nothing like the way we eat at home. But we ate. At some meals, we ate more meat than we usually eat in a week. I'm craving fresh veggies and meals like my Rainbow Detox Salad! Pork, sausages, dumplings, potatoes and more pork predominate on menus here, but I managed to find things that I can eat.
We had fun at a traditional Czech beer hall, U Fleku, downing honey wine, Becherovka, dark beer and massive meals of roast chicken with mashed potatoes or pork neck with dumplings! U Fleku is located in Nové Město and has eight separate dining halls. Founded in 1499, it is said to be the oldest brewery in Prague.
Beer is a way of life here. It is often cheaper than water, and is some of the best beer we have ever tasted. People drink beer all day long, but the only drunks we saw were foreigners watching the hockey games on huge screens in one of the downtown squares. We checked out the Prague Beer Museum in Staré Město.
If you ever have a chance to visit Prague, go!