Taking advantage of some cheap flights, we headed off for a weekend in Prague. Up until recently, Prague had always been warmer than Oslo. But, as (bad) luck would have it, we arrived to a top of 13 degrees and rain. At one point it was just 6 degrees. I did not pack for that kind of cold – it was supposed to be summer!
We’d booked a couple of nights at the Mosaic House. We’d read some good things about it, but I must admit, I was surprised to see it so closely integrated with the hostel. I’m all for hostels, but we weren’t paying hostel room rates. I won’t go in to much detail, as you can read about it in Lew’s Reviews: Mosaic House. I did like our view from our balcony though.
Although it was raining, it wasn’t going to stop us from getting out there and exploring the city. We started were most people do, in Old Town. We then wandered North West towards the Jewish Quarter. Amongst the tree lined streets there were luxury brands and cute cafes set amongst historic buildings.
In the evening, we dined at V Zátiší A little restaurant hidden in one of the many cobbled-stoned lane-ways. We splashed out on a 5-course meal. They had three to choose from, I took the Czech inspired “Bohemian degustation menu”, and my partner took the more modern option, simply called “Zátiší degustation menu”. There was also an Indian option, which I thought was odd, but apparently the chef was Indian and wanted to create something a bit different. The waiter said it was quite the hit with the locals. Each dish was fantastic. Well presented and a good combination of flavours.
After dinner we continued to wander around the little lane-ways. I was struck by how clean everything was and how safe we felt. We ended up at the Buddha Bar for some cocktails and relaxed tunes. I remember sitting in the couch with my Spiced Pisco Lychee Sling (a creation from their bar in Beirut), hearing a remix of an Australian artist, Goyte, and thinking I’m in Prague with my Norwegian partner, it’s Saturday night and I’m grateful for the worldly opportunities that I’m able to enjoy. Maybe it was all the Buddhas that made me reflective and peaceful.
The next day had more rain and what better way to escape it then trying out some locals beers at the Czech Beer Festival! Let’s just say that took up most of the day. At night we were happy that the hotel was connected to a hostel, because the bar was pumping and we continued to be merry and meet new people.
On Monday the rain had finally stopped. We felt like we hadn’t explored much of the city so decided to take a tour. Originally we joined up with one of the free walking tours. But we realised, we’d already seen many of the attractions in our own wanderings. So we looked around for a tour that would take us across the river to the Castle and surrounding sites. Sure, we could have taken a tram. Sure, we could have walked around and heard about the history. But, we decided to get our nerd on and take a segway tour. It was so much fun! We had booked into a group tour, but turned out to be just the two of us and the guide. His name was Stan and he was from the Czech Republic (unlike the other tour operators who seem to mainly use foreigners). He was a pretty cool guy who seemed to be just as interested in what we had to say, as we were about Prague. Riding around on a segway is pretty easy, although it was bit of a thrill going down a steep cobble stone hill.
We finished off our stay with some shopping and a great wood-fired pizza. While walking around, something that really stood out was how easy it was to purchase spirits. And not just the hallucinogenic absinth either. In Norway, the rules are so strict that you can only buy wine and spirits from the government run Vinmonopolet during fairly short trading hours. So seeing newsagents, convenience stores and supermarkets selling large ranges was quite surprising. Australia isn’t as strict as Norway, but you definitely can’t buy it from a newsagent!