Prague, passionately called Zlatá Praha or the Golden City of Prague by those who dwell there seems to be everybody's favorite Central European city these days, and we certainly can't argue with that!
During July and August (the high season), the city fills to a tipping point with tourists, its humid streets and restaurants crammed. Spring and autumn are particularly ideal, when the weather is mild and prices less wallet-busting than in the summer months. If you arrive during winter, you can practically have the city all for your self.
What follows is a photo series attempting to highlight some of Prague's best sights as well as the city's lovely atmosphere.
Dating back to the late 12th century, the Old Town Square started life as the central marketplace for Prague. Over the next few centuries, many buildings of Romanesque, Baroque and Gothic styles were erected around the market, each bringing with them stories of wealthy merchants and intrigue. These days it is on every traveler's must-see list not only for its wonderful historic atmosphere but also as the most central place in Prague "to see and be seen".
St Nicholas Church. Beautiful in daylight ..
.. but particularly spectacular at night.
Twin towers of the early Gothic style Church of the Virgin Mary Before Tyn.
Taking the family's pride, an old Skoda convertible out for a ride on a warm Sunday afternoon.
Art Nouveau monument of one Jan Hus (John Huss in English), a 15th
century Czech philosopher and reformer, among other things.
Grand facade of The Ministry for Regional Development.
The Old Town Square is a profitable venue for street musicians.
Easter market in Prague.
The Prague Astronomical Clock or Prague Orloj was built between 1410 and 1490. A legend suggests that the clockmaker Hanus was blinded on the order of the Prague Councillors so he could not build another one. Understandably upset, Hanus broke the clock so badly it was unrepairable for the next hundred years or so.
A dramatic story, but all fiction if you believe historians. Actually the real author of the clock was discovered in 1961 and is one Mikulas of Kadan. He cooperated with the astronomer and Charles University professor Jan Sindel.
The Astronomical Clock of Prague.
The Astronomical Clock strikes every hour and draws large crowds
see the Twelve Apostles move across above the clock face.
Some of the historical and religious statues decorating the Astronomical Clock.
Many claim Czech beer is best in the world and my totally subjective experiments in the field make me concur wholeheartedly. Best place to do your own studies would be of course in the countless pubs and other drinking holes in Prague or elsewhere in the country. Even if you're not a beer drinker these establishments are worth visiting just for the atmosphere.
The Golden Tiger, a 150+ year old pub located just a few corners from the Old Town Square is a prime example. Just make sure you arrive early to get a chair!
Inside the Golden Tiger. Tons of ambiance and local "color".
Btw, they also serve terrific Czech beer!
There is no reason to leave the pub if you work up an appetite.
Inside the St Vitus Cathedral.
One of the gargoyles at St Vitus Cathedral.
Gargoyle of sorts on the corner of an ordinary apartment building.
Marionette theatre sign.
Crawling Babies by David Cerny, a controversial Czech sculptor.
Yellow Penguins by David Cerny.
Dead Horse Ridden By St. Wenceslas. By Cerny, again.
Guard of honor at Prague Castle. Very smart!
Grand Hotel Evropa dates back to 1889. The way travel used to be...
The facade of Grand Hotel Evropa is a gorgeous example of Art Nouveau style.
Trams are an excellent and inexpensive way to do a bit of sightseeing.
Even a "medieval soldier" needs a cup of hot coffee once in a while.
This ultra courteous gentleman (a motorcycle courier) was happy to pose for the traveler's camera.
Vltava River view.
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