Prague was the wildcard of the trip. None of our friends or family members had traveled to the Czech Republic, so we weren’t quite sure what to expect. Christina and I booked two nights and hoped for the best.
We stepped off the tram onto cobblestone streets, lined with colorful, ornate buildings. Trying to decipher a map, we discovered that the hostel we were staying at, was up a huge hill near Prague Castle. Christina and I worked up quite a sweat with the weight of our backpacks but we were far too excited to care. As soon as we arrived at Arcapay Backpackers, the skies opened up and it started pouring rain.
The weather looked dismal for our short stay in Praha, but we were determined to make the best of our trip. Grabbing umbrellas and our rain coats, we ventured out to Prague Castle. To our surprise, the streets were empty. It felt as though we had the city to ourselves for the day! We traipsed through puddles, marveling at the gothic architecture of St. Vitus Cathedral. Unfortunately, we had missed the last mass of the day so we weren’t able to explore inside.
We wandered further into the city and stumbled upon a local bakery that smelled heavenly. Following our noses (and rumbling tummies), we discovered that the delicious smell emitted from a treat called Trdlo. It was a light, hollowed sweet bread that tasted of vanilla, caramel and almond. We savored each bite and meandered toward Charles Bridge which was lined with statues and street vendors.
Christina and I spent the rest of the day roaming the streets on both sides of the Vltava River. There was so much to see and the city was larger than we anticipated, I began to wish we had planned more time to explore Prague.
The next day we found ourselves in Old Town Square, gawking at the famous Astronomical Clock which dates back to 1410 and still operates to this day! The clock had multiple dials including a zodiac ring and hands that were adorned with a sun and another with the moon, to track solar and lunar phases. We had no idea how to read the time on the Astronomical Clock, but it sure was mesmerizing. The plaza itself was surrounded by colorful buildings that were architecturally exquisite. Every building had so much detail and character.
Following the Vltava River we made our way to the Dancing House, another architectural marvel. We took a lot of funny pictures here, but I’ll spare you the visuals.
Being a huge Beatles fan, I dragged Christina back over the Charles Bridge to the Lennon Wall. In the 1980s, there was some strife between government authorities and students who orchestrated a movement that came to be known as “Lennonism”. The wall has since become a symbol of peace, love and freedom. I actually squealed with excitement when we found the wall! Christina and I had fun finding lyrics to famous Beatles songs and taking pictures. While we were there, we even witnessed people adding their own graffiti art to the wall. Afterwards, Christina humored me by having a drink at the John Lennon Pub.
Our second day in Prague seemed to fly by and we both wished we had more time to explore, rather than simply passing through. I would love to go back someday. Rain or shine, Prague was enchanting.