Let's just start off by saying that our first weekend trip was quite an adventure. Long story short is we took an hour long bus ride to the wrong airport but made it to the correct airport with the help of a speed limit breaking taxi driver just in time. We finally got on the correct plane, AirOne, not RyanAir, and made our way to Prague. We left the dreary acqua alta of Venice and arrived to a chilly, but dry Prague. There was even some snow on the ground in some areas.
When we got off the shuttle bus to downtown, we were starving. We passed a Billa (the same supermarkets they have in Venice) and felt a familiar comfort. We stopped by this little cafe that looked decently priced. Unfortunately we were stuck in the smoking section and our waiter's first impression of us was, "Do you take euros?". I think he got a little annoyed with us, but the food was pretty good. Lauren got a chicken sandwich with egg on top. Madeline got a Caesar salad with bacon, peppers and giant slices of Parmesan. Emily and I both got a sandwich with arugala, pesto and sundried tomatoes and ham. I got mine without the ham.
Our hostel was really close by and the receptionist was from New York so she was very helpful with directions and advice for restaurants and bars. The room was cozy but perfect for the 4 of us.
One of our landmark's became the James Dean bar/restaurant. A thing I noticed was that a "Y" was added to many English words to make them "Czech." Right next door was this bakery with giant meringues. We never actually bought anything here but walked in several times.
Another place we frequented, but never actually bought anything was the Chocolate Story Museum. There were taffy making demonstrations and a bunch of truffles and marzipan.
For dinner the first night we took the advice of our Hostel receptionist and went to a place called Lokal. When we walked in we waited a little to be seated but then after a couple minutes of everyone staring at us, we were told to seat ourselves. We continued down a long corridor lined with wooden tables. The place was very busy.
We were assigned a waiter that spoke English and he was great. He could tell we were looking at the menu with bamboozled faces and quickly offered us the English menu. I ordered the potato dumplings with a side of spinach and homemade mustard. The other girls ordered a sausage sampler and chicken.
We wanted to order two desserts and split them, but they ran out of the caramel apple dessert so we got this traditional czech biscuit instead. It was a little disappointing because the cookie was actually a hollow wafer, and not suitable to share with 4 people. We also got a chocolate filled meringue and that was delicious.
On Saturday Morning we woke up and decided to go on the 10am free city tour. It started at the astronomical clock and ended at the Prague castle. We got a little chilly so decided to go back to our hostel and change and then finish seeing the sites on our own. One place we passed was the church of St. James and Greater. Legend says that a thief tried to steal the jewels on a statue of the Madonna and baby Jesus, but when we grabbed for the jewels, Mary's hand grabbed his arm and wouldn't let go. When we was found the next day by the priest, Mary still wouldn't let go. Finally, the priest went down to the butcher shop and sawed off the thief's arm. When you go into the church there is a petrified arm hanging from a chain.
We walked to St. Charles Bridge and it was a sunny, clear day so the water was beautiful. We touched the "Buddha Stomach" of Prague for a lifetime of good luck.
Right after the bridge we walked to the John Lennon wall. It was really cool and artsy, perfect for picture taking. There was even a guy with a guitar playing Beatles' songs.
We should have spent more time in and around the castle, and we didn't end up going into the Cathedral or actually inside the house. The Prague Castle is the largest castle in the world, and it was like a little mini town inside the walls.
We also passed this gingerbread shop that literally had EVERYTHING made of gingerbread. It was amazing to see all the decorated gingerbread houses, frames and animals.
I wish we had more time in Prague, because I wasn't expecting it to be so amazing. When we got to the airport I NEEDED my apple strudel, so I got one at a cafe there. I was SO disappointed to find that the inside was applesauce. Applesauce, seriously? And this is the reason why I never buy food at the airport. I guess I will just have to go back sometime to get my Hot Chocolate and Apple Strudel!