As soon as we started strolling around Wenceslas Square, home to the historical Velvet Revolution of 1989, it was easy to see why Prague has so often been described as the Paris of the East. Our first full day in Prague, included hours and hours of walking the cobble-stoned streets.
We had a wonderful day just being tourists in Prague.
We joined a small tour with an excellent Ukrainian guide and a small group of English speakers: an English couple from Essex, two Dutch sisters’ in law, one now living in Sydney Australia and the other in Antwerp, plus an Israeli couple. The tour lasted six hours and was in the main on foot but also included a very interesting boat trip to Prague’s Little Venice.
We covered the four major visitor attractions of Prague:
The Prague Castle was stunning in its, size, beauty and variety. We saw in addition to the castle: Vitus Cathedral, Strahov Monastery, Castle gardens, breathtaking views and a number of other attractions. The castle is the most important touristic attraction in Prague.
We were absolutely amazed by the Jewish Quarter, with its thousand years of Jewish history (the second most important touristic attraction in Prague), which we intended to visit again but in more detail. Key highlights of the Jewish Quarter are now part of the Jewish Museum, including the Old New Synagogue (the World’s oldest synagogue outside Israel) , the Old Jewish Cemetary (with twelve layers of bodies), the former Jewish Town Hall, Pinkas Synagogue (memorial to 80,000 Holocaust victims from Bohemia and Moravia), Maisel Synagogue, the Spanish Synagogue. Also this area includes Franz Kafka House, home of the celebrated Jewish author. It was interesting to learn more about Franz Kafka, one of the twentieth century’s most famous authors, for example, Kafka is now compulsory reading in German schools.
We were astonished at the size of the Old Town Area of Prague and how it had not been damaged in World War Two. Key attractions included the Old Town Square, Astronomical Clock and many other historical buildings.
For us the Lesser Town Area was also quite exceptional. It was interesting to see the famous Lennon wall with its graffiti which was so much of an irritant to the former Communist regime. However, one of the most important memories of the day will always be walking across the famous Charles Bridge (pedestrians only) which was completed in 1401 – at the time of its completion it was one of the wonders of the World.
- End of a great day in Prague – a Gershwin concert in the Spanish Synagogue followed by pizza – Marilyn and Alf (alfandmarilyn.wordpress.com)
- Prague update – recommended the goulash and dumplings to three French tourists from Lille (alfandmarilyn.wordpress.com)