Sunday, January 10, 2010

praha play by play part 1

old town square christmas market
astronomical clock in old town square

enjoying the snow on the charles bridge

well i'm back! finally have a bit of time to catch up with my beloved blog. we had a great time in prague dec. 28-jan 6. i'm going to try to give a full report for the first half of the trip below. enjoy!

dec. 28th: we arrived around 2pm in prague after a long day of traveling. i was very proud of us - we figured out the cheapest way to get into the city. we bought a one day pass and took a bus, a train and a tram to get to our first hotel, the crowne plaza located near the castle. i'm so glad we selected this hotel because it was in the neighborhood that i stayed in so i was pretty familiar with it. it was so great to get back on the metro and tram and hear the interesting language and be around the locals. we got to the hotel and it was VERY nice! fuzzy robes, big tv, wifi!!, complimentary little water bottles and a nice shower. i was very happy we'd be spending most of our trip at this great hotel. we showered and then went to get food at a brewery i had found online that was right around the corner. rob got pork tenderloin and potato dumplings and i got wiener schnitzel and potatoes. we both tried their special beer, st. norberts. it was all really delicious! afterwards we went to my favorite pub, the black ox. everyone was incredibly UNFRIENDLY. it was ALL locals and they didn't like us. it was unfortunate because i love how authentic it is and i love how cheap the beer is! we got out of there quickly and hit the hay.

dec. 29th: we slept forever to ditch the jetlag and went to old town square for the christmas market and to meet my tour guide from study abroad, z. first we got sandwiches at paneria which is a chain sandwich shop that i ate at practically everyday. it's cheap and delicious! then we went into the square. it was so wonderful to be back there and to see how different it is during christmastime. it was BEAUTIFUL! lots of lights, trees, little booths with souvenirs and great food. we went into st. nicholas which was crowded but just as beautiful as i remember. then we stopped in at the tyn church which was closed unfortunately. then we got to meet z! he is absolutely wonderful. he gave us a tour of the jewish area. he was sick though and left us early. we set time to see each other again. then rob and i went to charles bridge and then returned to the square to get some sausages. the sausages were SO yummie. i love their mustard and their rolls especially. afterwards we went to a cafe to warm up and then we went to see a classical concert in a church. i had always wanted to do that and now was the perfect time to see one with my music buff boyfriend. the concert was nice but the church was FREEZING! then we went home and returned to the brewery for beers and goulash in bread bowls. perfect way to end the night!

dec. 30th: we woke up a bit earlier and went site seeing around our hotel. first we walked up a big hill to get to the petrin tower which is a mini model of the eifel tower. we climbed up to the top for the great panoramic of the city. it was also a good way to warm up because it was quite the hike! afterwards we went to the goofy mirror maze next door. it was super crowded with kids and we were crazy annoyed so we escaped quickly! then we went into the church in that area to scope out their nativity - the nativities were one of my favorite parts of going during xmas time. then we went down by the strahov monastery grounds and into the special library. unfortunately one of the libraries was closed for construction but the other was open which was very cool to see again. but rob's favorite part was the display they had of old stuffed animals. they had a ton and i didnt even notice the last time i was there. they had a bunch of bugs, fish, turtles and even a shark! rob LOVED it. after that we went to the miniature museum which was one of the most random things i saw the entire time i studied abroad which i loved. it is a display of art in miniature form. they have a portrait of jesus on a poppy seed, little cars on a strand of hair and my personal favorite - a grasshopper playing the violin. the guy working was a huge grouch but it didnt ruin the fun for me. after checking out all the mini displays we went to lunch at a place close by that was too crowded to eat at the other day. i got fried cheese and potatoes and rob got more goulash. it was really good! then i showed him where i stayed when i studied abroad, visited the little grocery store i used to shop at for some treats and went to the loreta which is a famous church. i had never paid to walk through everything and it was really cool to see. later on we went back to the old town square christmas market for sausages and some cinnamon doughy treats. YUM! it was rainy this time though and that was really unpleasant. we walked around for awhile trying to find a jazz show and couldnt find anything we liked so we went to a bar i went to when i studied abroad. it was fun!

dec. 31st: so this wasn't a very good day so i won't say much. we woke up and went to see the changing of the guards at noon at the castle. i had never seen it before so i was excited to go. we got there and it was a MADHOUSE! so many tourists. we had a good view of the action though and it was very cool to see. the guards march in, there's music and colorguard type stuff so i loved it! all those tourists went into the castle and we just had to get out of there so we walked around to try to find somewhere to eat lunch and had absolutely no luck. we ended up at tourist trap that was overpriced and no good. i was really bummed out. then rob's knee started to act up which bummed me out more! we returned to the castle but were told we didn't have enough time to tour around before it closed. so we just went shopping, bought a few things and then we went to wenselas square to check out their xmas market. it was rainy and unimpressive so we just got sausages and returned home. we went to our brewery for drinks to get us started for the new year. after a few drinks we went back to the hotel for a bit then went out to a look out point at midnight to see fireworks. there were a ton of people there and the fireworks were amazing!!!!!!!!!!! ive never seen anything like it! it was so fun to be surrounded by fireworks and to see them above all the beautiful sites. i loved it!

jan.1st: we woke up and went for lunch at a nearby cafe. big success! rob got a caprese sandwich and a chocolate pastry and i got an apple pastry. delic! totally made up for the crap lunch we had the day before. then we went to the castle and bought our tickets to tour through the old palace, st. george's basillica and the golden lane. first we went through the old palace and it was really cool! i dont remember if i got to see that when i studied there. it was crazy how much was original and authentic. then we went to st. vitus which is just incredible. i love showing it to people to see their reactions. it has amazing high ceilings and beautiful stained glass. after that we went to st. george's which was small but cool to check out. lastly we went to the golden lane which is basically just shops but we found a place rob got to shoot a crossbow!!!! it was like $2 to have 3 shots. he did really well too! totally fun. later on we went to the brewery for one last dinner. rob got goulash of course and potato pancakes and i got goulash with dumplings. after that we went to a jazz club close by called u maleho glena. there was a quartet playing called points. they were so cool! i really loved it and so did rob. totally a great way to start 2010!

i'll write about jan 2-6 soon!

1 comment:

  1. jen!! your trip sounds awesome.. even though you shared w/ me your days before.. i love reading your blog about them. can't wait for the second half :)