Day 1 in Prague started a bit late as we needed to nurse our heads from the previous night’s exploits, but once we got going we were going.
We walked into the city center along the main drag and were immediately greeted by some the coolest buildings I’ve ever seen. Every single one is adorned with either some kind of fresco, relief carving, or statue(s), and most carry multiple of all three. Each building is uniquely painted in contrasting manner to it’s surroundings, but when thrown together on a street makes for a very lively and characteristic appearence. In short, Prague just looks cool.
We walked along the main strip until coming to the Powder Tower, which is a really old gate tower whose construction began in the 1600s. It’s been through many repurposings since then, including an gun powder repository in the 1800s (hence the current day name). We climbed the tower and got a good view of the city.
We kept along the main drag until coming to the main town square where the old palace used to be. This area is now set up as an open air market of sorts and it was here that we had lunch: Klobasà in a bagette. Also in the main square is an astronomical clock which I guess is cool to some people because a lot of people were looking at it.
Forking from the main road to the north we walked along with gaped mouths at all the buildings. You suddenly just stop taking pictures of things because every buildin is so cool that to take a picture of them all would make you look even more ridiculous than you already do. (I don’t know what that means, I look awesome actually…).
We crossed the river on a bridge just to the north of the famous Charles Bridge which was commisioned when the palace was to be moved (big surprise) to the top of the hill adjacent to the town. We got a good side profile of the bridge, and planned to cross it again later on our way back down from the palace.
The walk up the hill was to be expected, but the expansiveness if the interior of the palace was not. The literature we have on the church said that if you only visit one church in Europe, that is the one. Seeing as how I hadn’t visited any yet, or at least couldn’t remember doing so, we went in. First of all, from the outside this place was as intimidating of a structure as I had ever seen. I couldn’t get the height or breadth of it in frame of the camera. It’s actually quite a beutifully gothic church, complete with gargoyles, cleated spires, and seemingly unnecessary stone carving. The inside wasn’t anything to scoff at either. Filled with all sorts of church goodies, it was a veritable treasure trove of … well, church stuff. The most shocking thing however had to be the imensity of the structure itself though. Absolutely incredible.
We came down off the hill through a tourist-trap old town area and crossed the Charles Bridge. Unfortunately a good part of the expanse was under construction so the experience was probably a little less than what it should have been. The bridge is about .5km long, and every 20m or so on either side is another crazy statue that looks like it would have taken 10 years to make. This was about the time that we stopped taking photos. No picture would do it justice (and all the scaffolding would be annoying), atleast no picture I would take.
We concluded the walk with a stop at a cafe in a satellite square from the city center and then took the metro back to the hostel where we took some time to check into a day trip for Saturday (more on this in my next post), and figure out a place to go for dinner.
The hostel guy pointed us back to the city center and to a specifc restaurant that he frequents on the elbow of a back street. Food was good (chicken wrap with curry and yogurt sauce) and cheap as we had two entrees and beers for 270 csz ($11). We walked along the river and had another beer at a bar and then headed back to the hostel for the night around 12.
All in all good day seeing the city.
-the Prague tv tower. Those are little babies climbing the side…weird
-the interior of the huge church
-(part) of the exterior of thy giant church… That represents maybe the top 3rd
-Prague city view
– a typical Prague building…see all those statues on top?…this is the norm