And so the European adventure continues...The day we returned from Croatia, Hyunjae and I spent the night at a little bnb close to the Venice airport, and the next morning we were off to Prague! After having been Italy for two months it was a weird feeling to be leaving for good. I felt like I was finally getting a hang of speaking the language and becoming familiar with the people and and the culture. It almost felt a little like leaving home. Italy was such an amazing experience for me. Being in a country where you are completely surrounded in another language really puts things into perspective. It is incredibly humbling and eye opening, I will always love Italy for the things it has taught me about the world, about others, and about myself. I would love to return sometime soon and reapply the things I have learned and to learn even more. Anyways, relatively stress free, we successfully arrived in Prague in the late afternoon. To be able to travel in a foreign country with out any major hitches is quite the accomplishment I've discovered.
When we arrived in Prague, dropped our bags at our accommodations. After settling in a little, we went out to grab some dinner at a vegetarian restaurant called Maitrea which had really good reviews. Let me tell you, it did not disappoint. Everything was delicious and very reasonably priced! It even offered vegetarian versions of a few of the traditional Czech dishes. I however did not order a Czech dish but I had a wonderful coconut curry that was absolutely amazing, we also ordered an appetizer of pumpkin hummus and tortilla chips- yum. Granted, everything tastes ten times more delicious after a day of traveling and not having eaten a meal since breakfast, but it was an excellent way to kick off our four night stay in Prague!
The first morning we woke up early and headed over to a nearby park on the river to do some morning yoga. We had tons of fun, Hyunjae hadn't really done a lot of yoga before so I was able to teach her some poses. We may have looked slightly ridiculous but I could've cared less. I was outside being active in a beautiful park in a beautiful city. After cooking up a post-yoga breakfast at the apartment we headed off to explore Prague Castle and St. Vitus Cathedral. It's hard to believe sometimes that these places were all built by men, without modern-day technology. Craziness right? That evening we had tickets to go see the opera, Don Giovanni, at the Estates Theatre which is where the opera originally premiered with Mozart himself conducting the orchestra. It turned out the one of the main characters actually graduated from the University of Michigan, what a small world.
The next morning there was a weather alert for extreme heat (lovely) so we decided to wake up early and go for a hike in a park just a couple of blocks away from the apartment. We climbed to the top of the highest hill in the park where there was an amazing view of the entire city, well worth the early morning wake up time. For lunch we decided to go to a 100 year old restaurant called Cafe Louvre whose guests included people like Franz Kafka as well as Albert Einstein during his professorship in Prague. Hyunjae and I were totally geeked. For the rest of the afternoon we decided to go to the Prague National Museum to escape the heat. Unfortunately, the original museum building was under renovations so the exhibits were sub-par, but we had fun taking crazy pictures and it was better than walking around outside in the 90+ degree weather.
Our last day in Prague we just explored the city a little more while trying to cope with the heat. In the morning we took a bike ride along the river away from the city center and then got breakfast at a cute cafe called Café Savoy around the corner from our apartment. That evening we went back to Maitrea because we loved it that much and this time we tried a couple of their desserts, which were of course delicious. After dinner we rented a paddle boat and paddled around the river for an hour (bonus leg workout!) enjoying the view of Prague at night while listening to some folk music (naturally making us homesick) on our iPhones. That was probably my favorite evening that we spent in Prague.
Prague is such an amazing city filled with beautiful old buildings and a vibrant culture mixed with old and and a little new too. It may have been one of my favorite, if not my favorite, city that I visited while being in Europe. I highly encourage everyone to visit! Even though it was incredibly hot while we were there, I had wonderful time in the city exploring and experiencing cultural and historical things, not to mention the really good food. And that concludes my stay in Prague- we left early the next morning to catch our flight to the next stop, London! To be continued...