Also formerly known as Bohemia, this is probably one of the few cities that did not experience much, if any, damage from the second WW, so it still holds its beautiful scenic architecture from earlier centuries. It is simply stunning, with a taste of gothic. Bohemian is an ethnicity used to describe the practice of unconventional lifestyles, which includes musical, literary, artistic and spiritual pursuits. This term is used to describe the western most and largest historical region of the Czech lands. You would describe a person, as ‘oh, she’s Bohemian’, the same way you’d say ‘oh she’s ‘Cape tonian’’.
Exploring this city was an absolute adventure, I’m not sure if this was due to the fact that I finally had a travel buddy with me for the first time. Since I started exploring beyond our South African borders I have been traveling alone. It’s true what they say, ‘if you have to wait for people to travel with, you will never travel’. It was absolute fun having fellow South African @winaybinay with me.
I could write about the intriguing history of the Czech Republic, and as I’ve now learnt, it has its own distinct history; but I’m not going to do that here. Whilst I am an exchange student for a semester based at Linz, Austria, I mostly travel for short bursts at a time due to school (European semester), so I mostly travel on weekends. I thought it would be awesome if I put together an itinerary for what one can explore in a short space of time if ever traveling to Prague. This will be useful if you intend to travel to various cities in Eastern Europe with a budget, since they are all inclose proximity to one another. Eastern Europe is suitable for those with limited budget, the Rand does go quite far.
City Tours: Most capital cities are extremely rich with the country’s history and Prague was no different, it is impossible to explore and retain all about the city over a weekend’s stay. So guided city tours are always useful and better, especially if you are a historical and cultural traveler like myself.
These usually include both a bus and will require a bit of walking, cause I mean which other way is best when you trying to explore a city, its people and street culture?But I prefer them because you always have a guide who is deeply knowledge able about every corner, street, building, sculpture, you name it, of the city, they are trained to know this. Here were my highlights and stops including taking a selfie with Kafka, and the “Dancing Building”.
- The Charles Bridge
- The Prague Castle
- Old Town Square
- The Prague Astronomical Clock
- St. Vitus Cathedral
- The Jewish quarter
Beer Tasting: So you’d think after living in Europe for almost three months, I’d know more about beer, not until you’ve been toPrague. The Czech really pride themselves in their beer, to the extent that beer costs less than water and other drinks. I couldn’t believe it either. They produce plenty of beer, some of the world’s greatest beers even, like the pilsners. This is a cool way to immerse yourself into the culture. You’ll most definitely meet some interesting characters during this experience too.
Visiting a Concentration Camp (Terezin): If you have the stomach to witness some of the atrocities done to humans by other humans, then you have to visit Terezin. You literally get to walk in the streets of the Ghetto where Jews were sent to wait for their death. Most of them ended up in Auschwitz where they were gassed to death. This is an emotional tour, you will see the cemetery of thousands who were murdered, letters and drawing from the children who were victims, where they were cremated, the prison where many, including Russians, were imprisoned by theNazi, and the Jewish Museum. It’s the closest experience one will have to their reality. Maybe visit Terezin at the start of your weekend adventure in Prague, because it is quiet a sobering end to a trip.
by Nonhle Matsebula