Free and fun things to do in Prague
March 23rd, 2017, Posted by travelwith2ofus
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Recently there has been a lot of buzz about Prague. The city boasts a large collection of the architectural gems of Europe. As you explore the Czech capital, you will come across the Astronomical Clock of Old Town, the busy Charles Bridge and the expansive Prague Castle among many others. The city is developing so fast that it totally obscures its tumultuous past. The Velvet Revolution of two decades ago did well to end the communist era of the Iron Curtain. Since then, Prague has reformed into a destination with a thousand years of architecture and constant growth. The old Gothic architecture forms a picturesque backdrop for a bustling city with chic restaurants offering savory tastes such as Asian cuisine, yet still dish up the classic steak.
Pleasure seekers as well as culture enthusiasts can find a lot of activities to do in one of the cities which best represent the transformation of Europe. It can be said to be the quintessential European travel destination. There is plenty to explore and many activities to help you take in the fullness of the city for free.
Old Town, New Town and Lesser Town
The Old Town (Staré Město), Lesser Town (Malá Strana) and New Town (Nové Město) are must see places when visiting Prague. The Old Town Square is the hub of activities in this medieval style town, which dates back to the 9th century. Perhaps one of the most beautiful historical sites in Europe, the Old Town boasts beautifully designed buildings like the Tyn Church, the Old Town Hall Tower and the St. Nicholas Church.
The New Town can be described as the main commercial district in Prague. Its most famous landmark is Wenceslas Square and you will find hotels, banks, boutiques, shopping malls as well as theatres, museums and an opera house there.
Lesser Town Square, Wallenstein Palace and Maltese Square are some of the popular attractions in Lesser Town. The picturesque district can be found at the foothills of the Prague Castle across from the Vltava River. The cobbled side streets, small shops and traditional Czech pubs add to the quaintness of the area. It is much more quieter than both the Old and New Towns.
No part of Prague has been left behind by the sprawling progress and even 28 Rijna Street has something to offer. The area, which was once in ruins, now has several high-end shops with all sorts of modern-day comforts. Here, you will find Harmon&Blaine, with classy Italian wardrobe choices. Touring the area to window shop is a once-in a-lifetime free opportunity.
the Child of Prague
It is part of the religious history of Prague, found in Mala Strana in the nucleus of the city. The Catholic stature depicts the baby Jesus and is also known as, the Infant Jesus of Prague. The flamboyant statue depicts Jesus as a baby, heavily festooned by precious stones and metals. Believers flock in every day to pray here in the hopes that their faith will bring good fortune to them. The statue is covered in a shrine made of shiny gold and silver. Even though the origin of the statue is not clearly known, it is said to have been there since the 16th century.
the Old Town Square
While Prague may have the gloomy history of a chaotic past, the Old Town Square has been preserved in its original structure since the 10th century. It is one of the most visited sites in the city of Prague. It throngs with tourists who come to enjoy the architecture of the olden days in its entirety. Aside from this, the street performers that flock the streets will keep you entertained with plenty of gifted artists showcasing their prowess.
The Astronomical Clock
As you admire all the architectural wonders of the Old Town Square, be sure to visit the Old Town Hall. The clock is found on the south side of the Town Hall and dates as far back as the 15th century. It is considered an important part of the heritage of the Old Town as it is a treasure from the Middle Ages. Even though it has had to go through a lot of repair work over the years, it is still regarded as one of the most preserved clocks of its kind. Every day, onlookers flock below the clock to watch the spectacle as it hits the hour mark. It is always a fascinating display.
The northern districts of the city have a lot of new improvements that might go unnoticed. There are a number of avant-garde galleries and exhibition spaces with quirky setups in Holesovice and Bubenec. Karvana Liberal is a great place to start. Here, one is welcomed by the high spirits of the people and the high ceilings of this old-fashioned coffeehouse. There is free WiFi and the locals are great to talk to; a convivial lot that you can learn something new about Prague from. Further down the street is the Galerie Zari, which is just four months old. It is a curious exhibition space with lots of art to be enjoyed.
Take a leisurely walk on Charles Bridge
A view of the bridge in the evening hours as the sun sets is amazing. A walk through the bridge is valued for the simple fact that it creates memorable moments. A trip to Prague is not complete until one goes to the bridge and gets engulfed in its dreamlike aura. After the old bridge got washed away by flooding, Charles IV commissioned the new bridge in 1357. It was finished in 1390 and had a few statues added on in the 17th century. Even though the bridge was built under the directive of Charles IV in the 14th century, it was not named after him until the 19th century.
Sample some of the tastes of the city
In a city, where you are billed for a packet of ketchup, free food does not come by so easily. However, Prague has a lot of food festivals all year round and if you are lucky you might just get to sample some of the food in these events:
Dim Sum Pop up
La Bottega di Finestra offers delicious Dim Sum whether pan-cooked, steamed or fried. The Chinese dumplings are also another delicious alternative to sample. The 5-day affair starts at 1700h and runs until 2200h. Here, you will sample duck with bok choy, dried shiitake and pork Jiaozi among many other mouth-watering foods.
The single-day festival give visitors a taste of Japanese, Chinese, Vietnamese, Thai and Korean cuisine. The pompous festival also features unique embellishments that inform you of the cultures on display. There are workshops and lots of Fun things to do as you chomp away.
It is a two-day festival starting from May 21st. The event, dedicated to meat lovers, will be all about barbecue and the famous beer that Prague is known for. Visitors can even be judges where you also have a say on what meat was grilled the best.
Prague food festival
The mother of all food festivals in Prague runs from May 27th to 29th. The Prague Castle grounds hosts over 42 stands in an expanse of three hectares. This year, the food and drink will pay tribute to the 14th century.
Wenceslas Square is the entertainment and nightlife centre of Prague. It is filled with restaurants, bars and nightclubs. You can also find hotels and apartments as well. It is here that the main shopping and commercial district begins, and it is considered one of two popular squares in Prague. The other of course being the Old Town Square located in the Old Town. If you walk to the top of Wenceslas Square you will find the National Museum and not to far away the Prague State Opera.
A budget breakfast will set you back by $7. Note that Barcelonans prefer light breakfast. You will need roughly $10 for a budget lunch while dinner may cost a little higher, $16. You may want to get your meals in the same hotel you are staying in. Most charge upwards of $100 per day.
If you want to see more of Prague and you got some cash in you pocket you can check out these tours:
Another square you can visit while in the New Town area is Charles Square. While the Old Town Square and Wenceslas Square are considered the two most popular squares with visitors, Charles Square is the largest one in the city of Prague. Established in 1348 by Charles VI it boasts a couple of historical gems including the New Town Hall building, which dates back to the time of Charles IV, and the Mladota Palace. Other buildings that might pique your interests include the Church of St Ignatius and the Czech Technical University.
Take a visit to the old Jewish Ghetto
This Jewish neighborhood dates back to the 13th century and is located between the Vltava River and the Old Town. It started out at a time when Jews were restricted from living anywhere else in the city except this one place. In this area the Jews of Prague would be united with other Jewish exiles from Europe. Life here was made even harder when the settlement was destroyed in the 19th century as the city was being remodeled. Despite this, the area still has some historical sites that remain standing, which tourists and history buffs would enjoy visiting.
See the John Lennon wall
It is one of the contemporary sites that most visitors go to when they are in the area. As you wait for the sunset, you could go to the wall, which is unofficially known as the John Lennon Wall. It was a tribute to the Beatles' singer after his death in 1980. Even though John Lennon never went to the Czech Republic in his lifetime, the tribute wall has always had different portraits of him spray-painted on it. Tourists can go to the wall and scribble messages and lyrics from Beatles tunes. It is an interesting place to visit as it shows the unconventional side of Prague.
The Dancing House
Even if you are not an architecture buff you will be interested in seeing this unique piece of architectural art known as The Dancing House A.K.A. the Fred and Ginger. It was designed by architects Vlado Milunić and Frank O. Gehry and completed in 1996. Today the two top floors is home to the Ginger&Fred restaurant where you get and amazing view of Prague Castle and Lesser Town.
Have you ever visited Prague? Let us know what you thought about the city.
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