Czech this out...

Trip Start Sep 07, 2011
1
15
60
Trip End Jul 18, 2012


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Where I stayed

Flag of Czech Republic  , Bohemia,
Monday, October 24, 2011

Friday October 21, 2011

The International Student group had a trip to Prague, Czech Republic this past weekend. We left Raab Heim at 7am by bus and arrived in Prague at around noon. I slept in a 5-person room with my friends Megan, Elda, Claire, and Saana and there were common bathrooms and shower rooms on each floor. The toilets were weird and each one was different so it took a while to figure them out. One time I had to ask how to flush it haha. One toilet was the type with the string at the top to pull, which I had seen in France before so I got that. But the other one you had to pull some random button. Another one you had to push a button on top. It was so strange. But enough about the toilets. We were only given one key for our room though (a skeleton key) so we all had to make sure to stay together.

 After everyone got settled in their rooms we had lunch at 1:45pm at a restaurant nearby to our hostel. I was expecting to have typical Czech food, but we had schnitzel and mashed potato-like things. I can't seem to get away from the schnitzel. We also had a soup though before the entree that I believe was Czech, actually. I'm not sure what kind it was, and sometimes it's best to just not know. I think I tasted sour kraut in it and there was some kind of meat. I also tried the Czech beer there called Pilsner Urquell and it was good!

After lunch we had a 3-hour guided tour of Prague. We started in the city square and took a 15-minute tram ride up to the top of the mountain where the castle was. The trams here were not as nice as the ones in Linz and in Germany. They were old and very bouncy. Randomly, there was a guy playing an accordion on the tram. The trams are also very close to the sidewalks and one of the very first things our tour guide told us was to watch out for them because people get hit by the mirrors sticking out on the sides.

When we got to the top of the mountain we began our tour of the cathedral and castle. The cathedral was built in 1344 I believe the guide said. It was huge and one of the most interesting I've seen so far. I liked it because it was medieval looking and kind of scary, however, the inside was gorgeous. It was open on the inside with a lot of columns and is famous for the stain glass windows

The castle was also very large. It wasn't actually one building that was considered the "castle" but more like a premises that was the castle grounds. It had a gate entrance with guards standing outside with lot of different buildings inside. Around the castle was a great view of the city as well. It was a hazy day, as usual in Europe I'm finding, so the pictures don't really do it justice.

After seeing the castle we started our way back down into the city. Once at the bottom we stopped at St. Charles' Bridge which Prague is also famous for. It's a very big, old bridge that the guide said was built in the 1400's. First we walked under it by the river, and then we went over it. On the bridge were a lot of different vendors trying to sell different things like paintings, portraits, jewelry, etc., but I just wanted to take pictures.

After the bridge we went to another square in the city which has a famous astronomical clock. It was very big and intricate. We were lucky enough to be there at the top of the hour so we got to see what all the little gadgets did when the clock struck. There were little statues that did a bunch of things and one of them even rang the bell. There was also a trumpet player at the top of the tower that played. So much went on it's better to just watch the video I took then me trying to explain it. This was the end of our tour.

Afterward, some of us girls went to a coffee shop for coffee and cake. I had a chocolate cake and it was delicious. It was a nice place- good atmosphere and great cake and coffee. Then we headed back to the hostel because we had to meet at 7:30 to go to dinner.

We had dinner at another restaurant near to our hostel and after the cake I wasn't very hungry and felt kind of fat for eating so many sweets before dinner so I ordered a Cesar salad and a glass of white wine. Both were good, but the salad didn't really have much flavor. I think after the cake though it was good to have a light meal.

After dinner we left to go out for the night. We went dancing at a couple different clubs that played good music. There were actually a lot of English speaking people there which is always nice. I met a girl from New York who's studying fashion in Italy who was very nice, as well as a couple guys from England. My friend Claire was SO happy when she found another guy who was from Ireland and knew of her tiny village there. It was a cool place, but pretty crowded though so we didn't stay all night.

After that club we went to another that was less crowded and we had more room to dance. It was underground as well as the first club which was neat. We stayed there for a while and then went back to the hostel.

The next day we had free time until 7pm that night. The girls and I decided to get up around 10:30 and go shopping for the day. We had breakfast/brunch a little before noon. I had a ham and cheese omelet with a mocha and then Claire and I shared a plate a fresh fruit. It was very good! The waitress wasn't all that friendly though and when we got the bill it was all together and we couldn't have it separated. That's not a big deal, except it's all in Czech so it's a little hard to decipher who owes what. After we got all that figured out we went on our shopping trip. I got a few things because Czech Republic is a little cheaper since it doesn't use the Euro. One euro is equal to 25 Czech Korunas. It was really weird having their money and having 2000 korunas in my purse. It felt like I had way too much, but really it wasn't that much. When seeing prices for like 150 Korunas I had to remind myself that was only 6 euros. 

After we went shopping we went back to the hostel to get ready for the night. We met the group to go out to dinner to the Beer Factory. Each table had beer on tap at the table except none of us knew how to work the stupid thing. I had one glass of beer, and then after that only foam would come out of it.I ate chicken steak with vegetables and mashed potatoes. We were here for a couple hours.

Late I went into the common room of the hostel where everyone else was hanging out at before we went out. Around 11pm-ish we finally left to go to the club. We went to Karlovy Lazne which is the biggest music club in Central Europe. It was 5 stories and such a cool place! It was overly crowded though and obviously a ton of tourists.

The next day we had to check out of the hostel by 10:30am to head to Cesky Karlov. After I got ready I went to a cafe close by to grab some breakfast because we wouldn't be eating lunch for a while. I just had a small ham and cheese sandwich. After I got my breakfast I left to go back to the the hostel and then we left shortly after to go to the bus and head to the small town south of Prague.
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