This small town of Olomouc in the Moravian state of the Czech Republic is laden with a lot of historical monuments. You travel time absorbing the architectural wonders and history of The Plague Column, The Astronomical Clock, The Town Hall, The Six Fountains, The Church of St Michael, The Church of St Moritz and a few more which date back to the Baroque Period. Some of the other monuments date as far back as the 11th century.Olomouc, which is often regarded as one of the most beautiful towns in the Czech Republic, was off the touristic radar until recently and therefore the feel is still very authentic. Horní Náměstí or the Upper Square is the main square of the town where life appears to be, and is, hassle free, slow and relaxed. You travel back a few decades to experience what Prague would have been like in the early 20th century – very original, not too crowded, depicting a laid back way of life with a very rich architectural legacy.
Started with Berlin with great train ride from Bremen, Germany. Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp (Oranienburg, Germany) I took a slow walk reading all the brutal history. Prisoners were tortured, gassed, incinerated and hanged to death here was a difficult sight. Hanging out with a bunch of hostel friends and not napping throughout the night was a good time to live in. Thanks Sakshi for being there in the city. Back in Bremen, where I stayed for the most and studied for my Summer School at Hochschule Bremen. Schoonr, A place where I found some narrow streets that are still the same that were way back at the time of World War II. Walking around there with those thoughts and saying no word was a comfortable thing to do.
From elegant architecture to aromatic cafes, from magnificent palaces to dramatic operas, the city of Vienna portrays royal connection in it's every aspect. 'Wien' as they call in German is a hometown to famous Mozart and Beethoven.Though my short stint with the city was not enough to explore the musically and artistically pleasing capital of Austria, I really wanted to make best of it to see as much as I could.In Vienna, I ditched the expensive hotel rooms and choose to stay at Airbnb home-stays. It was homely, cozy and really cheap. Located in the heart of the city here's a glance of my room.
The first time I went to Bratislava, I didn’t have high expectations. After four days spent in this city - I had to admit - I was so pleasantly surprised that I couldn’t believe it! Bratislava is a gorgeous city, small and quiet but, at the same time, colorful and full of surprises. It has a very nice Old Town and a lot of historical places to visit, but also everything you need for your social activities. Well, you will see with your own eyes! :) Anyway, during your first visit to Bratislava there are 5 things to do that, in my opinion, will let your stay be more interesting.A visit to the Blue Church This teeny-tiny church is one of the most impressive things you will see in Bratislava. Officially named St. Elizabeth Church, like from a fairy tale it is completely blue: the facade, the mosaics, the majolicas, the interior, even the roof is tiled with blue-glazed ceramics. The church is an art nouveau building, built in the early 20th century, and it’s situated in a very nice area, in the eastern part of the Old Town of Bratislava. You absolutely have to visit the Blue Church, and don’t forget your camera: you will need it! :)
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The Prague Castle, an ancient symbol of the Czech lands, is the most significant Czech monument and one of the most important cultural institutions in the Czech Republic.A UNESCO World Heritage site, it consists of a large-scale composition of palaces and ecclesiastical buildings of various architectural styles, from Roman-style buildings from the 10th century through Gothic modifications in the 14th century.
St. Vitus Cathedral
For a great number of people, St Vitus Cathedral is the Prague Castle, except for the fact that it is not. It is but an extremely vital part of the Castle complex. This 14th Century Cathedral was built for over 600 years and is a cultural and religious symbol of the Czech Republic. Bestowed with all the beauty and luxuriance of the world, the foundation stone for St Vitus was laid by Emperor Charles IV and it now houses his tomb along with a multitude of rulers and saints including St Wenceslas. The many stained glass windows, wooden sculptures, crown jewels, wall paintings, mausoleums and chapels of St Vitus Cathedral are significant pages in art and history. The Gothic south entrance to the Cathedral, known as the Golden Gate is a sight to see considering its intricately beautiful design courtesy of a certain Peter Parler. The otherwise incomplete bell tower is yet another important sight and a 300 step ascent from the inside offers you some arresting views of Prague. The Sigismund bell it is home to, is the largest in the whole of Czech Republic. Essential Information: Two types of tickets for the Prague Castle, a ‘Long Tour’ and a ‘Short Tour’, are available at the information centres in the second and third courtyards inside the complex and both provide entry to different combinations of sights. Other ‘Exhibition’ tickets are also available and you are free to choose one out of the three. These tickets are valid for two days and can also be bought at the entrances of all major sights. However, the information centres are recommended because they are not all that crowded. The first ticket includes a tour of St. Vitus Cathedral, the Old Royal Palace, an exhibition on "The Story of Prague Castle", St. George's Basilica, Golden Lane (Franz Kafka lived here for a short period), the Daliborka Tower, the Powder Tower and Rosenberg Palace. It comes for 350 CZK. The second ticket comprises of St. Vitus Cathedral, Old Royal Palace, St. George's Basilica and Golden Lane with the Daliborka Tower and costs 250 CZK. Entry to the Bell Tower is separate and costs 150CZK and it is open from 10am to 6pm during the summer months and 5pm during the winters. If in case you are a student or a senior citizen, you pay half the price provided you produce a valid ID. Make sure you walk around the beautiful palace gardens towards the end of your tour. Getting There: Tram 22 gets you to Pražský Hrad (Prague Castle). Get off at 'Pohorelec' so that the walk to the fortress is shorter. The historical buildings usually shut by 5 in the evening while the rest of the complex is open till 10.
Prague- Immediately after checking in we set out to visit the Karlstejn castle situated in the outskirts of Prague (about 1 hour drive). We chose to take an uber that was a little pricey but convenient and safe for 2 lady travelers. Our wonderful Uber host also waited for us to complete our tour of the castle to take us back to the city. (Total cost- 1000Koruna (approx.37 euros)). Karlstejn is a beautiful castle with an amazing view and drive. (entry fee 330 koruna). We stopped at a cafe at the foot of the castle (dont remember the name though) (if it helps it looked like a cottage). Do try their food. Lovely staff with nice warm food. (Temp 8 degrees C)Note- Koruna is the currency used in Czech Republic, however, shop keepers also accept euros. I'd suggest convert bare minimum Korunas as well established/ known forex brokers charge 28% service charges. You may not want to go to the lesser known forex guys across the cityDay 4 - Prague (Temp 7 degrees C)
Rudolfinum is one establishment that is so grand and so unabashedly gorgeous, that you cannot help but stop and stare. This Neo-Renaissance marvel dominating the Jan Palach Square in Prague is deservedly the most popular art gallery and music auditorium in the city. The Czech Philharmonic Orchestra calls Rudolfinum home and it also served as an administrative office of the Nazis during the Second World War. It now houses the Galerie Rudolfinum and the massively popular Dvorak Hall. Architects Josef Schulz and Josef Zitelk deserve all our gratitude for adorning Praha with this spectacle. Getting There: Take Trams 17/18 up to Staromestska and walk 150 metres to stroll around and get pictures of this stunning architectural wonder. Entry to the Rudolfinum Galerie costs 140CZK and it is open from 10am to 6pm on Tuesdays and till 8pm on Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
St. George's Basilica
St. George's Basilica is the oldest church building within the Prague Castle complex. It is also the best-preserved Romanesque church in Prague. Within the church lie several tombs of major historic importance. In the Gothic Chapel of St. Ludmila lies the tomb of St. Ludmila, the saint and widow of the 9th century ruler Prince Borivoj. Also buried in the basilica are Prince Vratislav and Boleslav II.