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Traveling by Train in Central Europe

Traveling by Train in Central Europe

We paid for a reservation for a sleeper car on the overnight train from Prague to Krakow. We weren’t sure if our print out was sufficient or if we needed something else, so I went to the info guy and showed him my thing and asked if it was OK and he said “yeah yeah yeah” in a way that indicated I was annoying him. So long story short it, reservations =/= tickets. APPARENTLY – I googled this later –…

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Kampa Island & Views of Charles Bridge

Kampa Island & Views of Charles Bridge

On our way to Kampa Island we climbed one of the towers on the bridge to enjoy the view. You can see the spires of the Tyn Church in the distance of one pic. I love the cute orange roofs of all the houses! Kampa Island is a man made island (from the debris of a fire in the Little Quarter) at the foot at the Charles Bridge. It’s a really cute artsy area with interesting sculptures – including a…

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Mucha

Mucha

As mentioned in a previous post, I didn’t realize that Art Nouveau took such hold in Prague and although I’ve seen Mucha’s work before I didn’t know who he was or that he was Czech. The Mucha museum is small (and very warm) but has a great collection. No pictures allowed so I am pulling from the interwebs. Mucha was drawing before he could walk – his mom used to tie a pencil around his neck so he could draw…

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Prague Castle Complex

Prague Castle Complex

We spent A LOT OF MINUTES standing in front of the ticket machine but eventually figured out how to buy tram tickets to ride up to the castle complex. St. Vitus cathedral has ruined us for all other cathedrals. Those Catholics really know how to put on a show.  A smaller church in this spot was founded by King Wenceslas who needed a place to house the arm of St. Vitus, which he had acquired from somebody else (a normal…

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Kutna Hora: The Bone Church and St. Barbara’s

Kutna Hora: The Bone Church and St. Barbara’s

In the afternoon of Day 3 we went on my highly anticipated Bone Church/Sedlec Ossuary tour. Actually, the tour was of Kutna Hora, a small town near Prague. Kutna Hora had a lot of silver mines and was of interest to many kings (and Hitler); it stopped producing silver in the early 90s blah blah let’s get to the bones. The Ossuary, aka Bone Church, aka Kostnice (in Czech) was the first stop. There were mass graves here as the…

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The Alchemy Museum

The Alchemy Museum

The Alchemy Museum in Prague is super cute! It wasn’t much of a museum in the sense that there were a lot of things to look at — it was more of a story telling situation with our excellent guide giving us all the info.  There was a flood (I forget when exactly, but in modern times) in the main square and in the process of remediating it, they noticed a tunnel. They followed the tunnel and discovered these alchemy…

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Prague Jewish Quarter

Prague Jewish Quarter

In the afternoon of Day 2, we went up to the Jewish Quarter. The Pinkas Synagogue is a memorial to Czech Holocaust victims; some 78,000 names are handwritten on the walls. This effort started in the 1950s but many of the names were destroyed under Communism so they started over in 1989. On the second floor there is a gallery of artwork done by children in the Terezin concentration camp – the plaques note whether the artist survived or not….

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Old Town Prague Walk

Old Town Prague Walk

We had our trusty Rick Steves book which suggested a walk through old town. We decided to do the route backwards – which would have us end closer to our hotel – so we started the day at the Charles Bridge. The other benefit to this was we got to the bridge really early in the day, which Rick Steves (and now we) recommend doing because it is not yet so packed by tourists. We returned to the bridge on…

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Prague Impressions & Day 1

Prague Impressions & Day 1

One of the reasons I wanted to go to Prague was because everybody who has been won’t shut up about how amazing it is. Often when people talk a big game the real thing isn’t as good and I am here to tell you that PRAGUE IS AS GOOD AS EVERYBODY SAYS. I forget who said it but somebody told me it’s like walking into a fairy tale and they were right. I had a stupid thought at one point…

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