Today I traveled to Prague from Karlovy Vary by bus, the Student Agency yellow bus to be precise. Wendy and Stuart dropped me off with my luggage at the bus station. It was really cold in KV today, felt like the 40s though it was probably a bit warmer. The bus was comfortable enough, though the little boy across the aisle had a tremendous set of lungs…he wasn’t crying, he was happy enough but kept screaming when he wanted to communicate. It was a 2hr 15 minute bus ride.
I got a taxi to my hotel, then got ready to explore Prague. It was cloudy but dry and not very cold. I had to take the Metro to the old town and castle area. You enter the Metro here by going through a mall which is across the street from my hotel. When I exited the Metro, I asked where the castle was, found it, and walked around the church and castle, then down to the wall which surrounds it. There was a fantastic view of Prague and all the bridges from the castle both at the top and all the way down to the riverfront. I took lots of photos, then walked across the Charles Bridge, which was loaded with people and stalls selling pictures of Prague and other souvenirs. I also saw boats navigating the locks on the river.
I wandered around Old Town Prague, which was thick with tourists and full of “genuine” Czech restaurants and souvenir shops. The souvenir shops mostly seem to be run by Russians. The streets are narrow and the buildings old. Many are lovely, with fine detailing around the windows and doors. There were lots of Americans, it was odd to hear so many American accents and to be able to overhead conversations…and understand them!
My hotel was across from a shopping mall which seemed to specialize in children’s toy stores and outdoors/sports type of stores with quite a few home furnishing/knick knack stores to round it out. The food stores in Prague were interesting but not as “pretty” as those in other parts of Europe and the produce was pretty much local, so there were tons of tomatoes but not 20 kinds of apples. There were probably 40 kinds of pork and sausage though and a huge bread department. The bread rolls are just put out in baskets on a table, no individual wrapping, though the big loaves are on shelves. Rye bread seems to be a specialty. Foods are all labeled in Czech unless they are imported so it’s a guessing game as to ingredients, for me anyway. The bread is very good and so are the tomatoes!
Here are a few photos…and a link to more