Monday, September 6, 2010

Prague- A compact city with so many architectural gems

Today Prague or Praha is one of the most beautiful cities in europe. It was my first time there, & personally its one of the most romantic cities I've been to till now.
Its got this old town charm which one can feel in numerous old cities across europe, but Praha has this distinct ancient awe inspiring majestic feel to it, from the lavish buildings, castles & bridges to the little cobblestone alleyways.

Here you can see all the evolution of the architecture art: from the Romanic Style untill the Modern (Cubist) Style.

The town of Prague was born on the grouping of four towns: Mala Strana (The Little Town) located under the castle; Stare Mesto (The Old Town) with its famous Old Town Square with the Astronomical Clock; Josefov (The Jewish Town) with its interesting Synagogues and the old cemetery; Nové Mesto (The New Town) with its fantastic Art Nouveau buildings and the great Wenceslas Square.

I also loved the Russian mariyushka dolls everywhere & the amazing bohemian crystals.

The didnt attempt to try the local food after seeing thier star dish, so all my reccomended restaurants are not czech.

Also Czech takes pride that its the biggest producer of Absinthe, so you find Absinthe bottles everywhere & even absinthe slush:)

It was like a fairy-tale.

Here is My must see things in Prague:

1) Charles Bridge (Karluv Most): One of the landmarks of Prague, Charles Bridge. The bridge is lined with statues of saints one of which is St. John of Nepomuk. You will know it because there will be a line and two very shiny spots on the statue this is because it is said that if you touch the statue with you left hand (hand closest to heart) than you dreams will come true. St. John of Nepomuk, was executed by being thrown off this bridge so there is also a memorial spot for him, The bridge is animated by plenty of street painters and performers which offers a splendid touristic spectacle. Especially at night time, when the tourist invasion is lessened, it becomes more fascinating and romantic.

2) Old Town Square (Stare Mesto): The old town of Prague is absolutely fantastic. The bulidings are exceptionally beautiful, and the astronomical clock is a sight to see.There are also tons of shops and restaurants.

3) Mucha Museum: Smallish but excellent examination of Alfons Mucha's beautiful graphic work, a leader in the art nouveau movement, including many of his works for Sarah Bernhardt, his posters for the Czech cause, some applied arts, and paintings. Also not to miss the film, in English, is an excellent documentary of his life and work.

4) Petrin Hill & Petrin Tower: Petrin hill is the biggest park in prague & ofcoarse its a hill. On the top theres the Petrin Tower which looks alot like the eiffel tower. Take the funicular railway up the hill, then the elevator up the tower to get the most beautiful views of Praha. Then wind your way down the hill. There are a couple of restaurants dotted around it with pretty decent prices and incredible views.

5) Dancing House: By Frank Gehry

6) Como Restaurant @ Jalta Hotel

7) La Bodeguita del Medio: A Cuban restaurant with Cuban-style steaks & enormous mojitos. In the evening, there is live music for the diners in the downstairs area of the restaurant, playing and singing Cuban classics.

8) Kogo Restaurant: upscale trattoria has become the local Italian favorite. Try the lobster, yumm

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