Art all around, where beer is god and the city that is full of nature hikes and urban explorations!
The maze of cobbled lanes, hidden courtyards and breweries are a paradise for the aimless wanderers, increasing the appetite to explore a little further and get something more out of Prague. Prague offers more than just alluring architecture, an abundant amount of brews, a rich history that dates back to almost a millennium and an inherently romantic atmosphere which makes it a direct competitor of Paris!
The city of architectural beauty, artisanal beer and much more…
The city was one of the luckiest cities in Europe untouched by the gruesomeness and the atrocities of World War 2. Prague has kept up well with European trends in the realms of art, gastronomy, fashion and the city has comfortably merged its historical and architectural prowess with contemporary times. One can navigate through a plethora of impressive architecture gems which include impressive Gothic, Baroque and Renaissance buildings. On one hand, we have the old architecture and on the other hand, one can get bewitched by the modern, most trendy boutiques, Swiss hotels, jazz bars, chic cocktail bars, and breweries. Some of the most fascinating explorations from the city’s various epochs- ‘Slavic’, ‘Habsburgian’ and ‘Communist’ are still visible and so are the personalities from Rudolf II to Franz Kafka.
Day One– Morning
Commence the day with one of the most elegant and peaceful areas of the city, ‘The former Jewish Quarters/ Josefov’. One can grab an entry ticket from the ‘Jewish Museum’ which gives the combined access to the neo-Gothic Maisel Synagogue and the Old Jewish Cemetery. The recommendation is to saunter between both these two landmarks to take in the rich exhibition which focuses on Jewish history in Bohemia and Moravia between the time periods of the 10th to 12th centuries. Get a separate ticket to visit the ‘Old new Synagogue’ which is the main synagogue for the local Jewish community. A visit to Holešovice is a must, formerly a ‘meatpacking district’; its industrial-style building now hosts a number of house restaurants and art galleries. If the hunger pangs commence to disrupt then a brunch at cosy ‘Bistro 8’ is recommended or visit the ‘DOX Center for Contemporary Art’.
Afternoon and Evening
In the Parizska, saunter along the line of luxury shops of the likes Louis Vuitton, Burberry and Salvatore Ferragamo and then move ahead to one of the most touristy destinations ‘Old Town square’. To visit the ‘Old town square’ might sound too touristy to some of the travellers, the medley of eye-catching architecture can impress the regular visitors as well. The landmark of Old town square is the ‘Astronomical Clock’. A personal opinion and recommendation is not to join the throng for the hourly procession of 12 Apostles. Do something out of the box and climb to the top of the adjacent tower. By climbing the Old Town Hall Tower one is doing something different and can take in the fabulous views of the square and beyond without any worries of the crowd. Lovely façades are found along Celetná which is one of the oldest streets one can stroll on. The street leads to the ‘House of the Black Madonna’ is a cubist building and the ‘Powder Tower’. The tower separates the old and the new town. For the people who want to soothe up their souls through the medium of Orchestra, visit the ‘Municipal House’ which hosts work by various Czech artists.
Preparation to be done before day 2: Procure tickets for Prague castle online. The validity of the ticket is for 48 hours which means if you find the crowd to be too hectic then you could always return and visit the next day.
Day Two– Morning
Commence your day early in the morning as it is going to be a bit hectic day if not planned properly. The plan is to discover the city from a new perspective. Hop on one of the historic trams of line number 42 which have been up and running on the streets of Prague since it was a part of Austria-Hungary! With a 24 hour ticket, enjoy the circular route and hop on and off whenever and wherever you like! The whole route around the most important landmarks will take more than an hour.
The second day is all about the other side of the city, Malá Strana. Reach the other side by crossing over the historic Charles Bridge and enjoy a slow walk up to Prague Castle. Prague Castle is the oldest, most ancient and the biggest castle in the whole World. Prague Castle is the official presidential residence and the flag’s position is indicative of his presence or absence in the castle. The sprawling grounds will need a couple of hours to explore and don’t miss the Gothic Cathedral of St. Vitus, 16th century Vladislav Hall and the Golden lane famous because Kafka lived there for a while.
The afternoon time is for the ‘Petrin Hill’ which is famous for its Observation Tower. It is regarded as a smaller version of the Eiffel Tower. On the way, there are a slew of interesting stops such as ‘Petrin Rose Garden’, where one transports back to the Victorian era. At the top of the hill, Strahov Monastery can be visited which has a modern beer hall, serving one of the best home-brewed beers.
Down the hill have a brief stop at the St Nicholas Church and if lucky one can find and experience a live classical concert. Head to the Lennon Wall where Graffiti inspired by John Lenon, the famous leader of the Beatles are drawn. For the late evening head to the cosy Blue Light. The rustic interiors with tattered posters graffiti liven up with live jazz performances. There are various ways you can spend late evenings in Prague, indulge in a party of booze imbibing culture via pub crawls and visit the most exciting and dynamic pubs and bars. At some of the bars, the evening begins with a shot of absinthe and one can party till dawn at multi-floored music clubs.