Tuesday, October 20, 2015

The magic of Prague 2015

I don't know how ready we were for a mini vacation, but we got on the plane and popped up in a rainy Prague.
Bought a new journal I got to write a lot in while we were there. Prague is really a place to write about. Read the Riddle of the Sands by Erskine Childers whenever we stopped at café's to rest our feet. Cobblestones are ridiculously troublesome to walk on for hours.
Every evening I got my sketch of the day done. And even though it is ridiculously cheap to dine out in Prague, we decided to dine in one night aswell.
Went over the Charles bridge god knows how many times. Someone even tried to pick-pocket me by opening my purse and leaning on to me. We followed her in hope of catching her in the act! Then we visited the Old Jewish graveyard and the synagoges nearby. They stopped burying people here in 1787, leaving the graveyard full with 12 000 tombstones.
We had booked Opera tickets when we tried to plan our trip. Originally we wanted to just go to a classical concert with Bedrich Smetana's music, but the locations of those concerts were only churches and the like, so we decided to book Opera tickets, because the Opera house would we much cooler to visit. We ended up going to two classical concerts before we were due to see Rigoletto Verdi in Opera. And, not being opera lovers, we bailed the opera in the first intermission. Atleast we lasted an hour! I strongly recommend going to a classical concert though, especially if they have Smetana on the list!
You see that square building? Just to the right of it and along the Vlatava River the first Mission Impossible movie had some of their takes. We reconstruckted some screen caps of the movie scenes playing around there. We also noticed that the trees along the riverside was only 2 meters high, 20 years back. The charming window is from the basement in Shakespear and Son, the best bookshop in Prague. Got myself a few books there I'd been looking for.
Okay I admit I dont look too happy here, but this place was pretty cool! A restaurant called The White Horse, located in medieval cellars from the 12th century. After a flooding of Prague, the city was elevated with 4 meters to prevent damage if another flood occured. This 1st floor building then became the fundation for the new 1st building. In these halls Bedrich Smetana had his music school at some point in time! Ps, the salmon is lovely here! (And beer, anywhere really, is AWESOME in Prague. ps. go for the dark one) On the right you have the tower end of Charles Bridge(Karluv most).
As any legged being in Prague, we decided to climb the castle hill to take a look at the view! The Golden city of thousand spears!(not very good photos I'm afraid, and the first one is directed south, toward Petrin Hill, and you can see Petrin tower peaking over the top)
After seeing the castle, and the magnificent St. Vitus Cathedral we found a passage where no one else was walking, and decided to go there, only to find and explore the lower castle gardens! They looked abandoned thanks to the autumn, and it was truly a beauty overload!
We walked down the hill, and up the hill on the other side, this is were the castle gardens are located on a map. Did you know I always bring physical maps with me? We got a pretty sweet view of the impressive spires of the St. Vitus Cathedral!
Castle towers and to the right you have St. Nicholas cathedral in Mala Strana. West side of the river, that is.
Pictures of my feet are obligatory when the ground is as beautiful as this. The day we decided to walk to the very south of Prague, away from the old town and the new town, down to Vysehrad and the oldest building of Prague, plus the churchyard where Bedrich Smetana and Dvorak is buried! I just had to visit my beloved Smetana! And, I have on SEVERAL occations shared my favourite Smetana piece in the blog, if youre curious however, here it is: 

On that day however, we were walking down the Vlatava riverside. We used the short-cut ladders up to the road and we found an underground tunnel! So, we entered, and walked and walked, and walked and walked until we were in complete darkness. We met a rat, and at the end of the tunnel, there were two small passages, one a whole in the wall with clear signs of human touch, and another hole on the other side of the water in the tunnel, that looked like it lead to someones garden. A green spot anyway. Did I mention that I'm afraid of the dark?
Magic happening in the Petrin hill! And another beautiful view of St. Vitus Cathedral, and a cute fig garden in those ruins beneath me.
Another photo, of me for a change, decending Petrin hill. The other is obviously from the riverside of Vlatava.
Looking at the castle hill from Petrin hill. And to the right you have the St. Peter and Paul Cathedral in Vysehrad. A Beautiful cathedral, but I've realized it is hard for any church to compete with Saint Vitus Cathedral!
Finally! After hours of walking and climbing to the top of Vysherad we got to meet Smetana! On our journey this day I'd found a fragment of bone, maybe from the skull of an animal or something, though it was quite big. I left it at his grave, hope he doesn't mind. Also paid a visit to Dvorak!
Had to make this originally RED photo b/w. Taken at a pretty fun strip club in prague. Had absinth, so I have absolutely NO idea where it is. I do however recommend strip clubs in Prague vs. Paris. Hah, sounds like I visit a lot of them... The right photo is the St. Peter and Paul Cathedral again.

More views of the St. Vitus Cathedral! Seen from Petrin Hill. The right one is taken right behing the walls of the castle courtyard from my secret gardens!
Climbing out of that tunnel we found. Looks like im struggling. The one to the right is from the night we dined in the medieval halls, The White Horse. It was btw, previously, for many years called The Unicorn. Now, it's basically a mix between the former and the new name.
Lit a light for mom in St. Peter and Paul Cathedral. And the last photo is a early morning photo of the Tower of Charles Bridge.