Like Pilsner Urqwell like Prague. Pilsner Urqwell is a Czeck lager brewed in Plzeň, Czech Republic.It has a rich, vibrant taste which stays with you even after you have finished your glass. Prague can be described likewise. Its historic sites, lively cafes, laid back atmosphere, lip-smacking food leaves you with the yearning to have another sip, to stay another day.
Prague is a historic city juxtaposed with modern sensibilities. This juxtaposition is what makes it so fascinating. There are surprises everywhere - a 10 minute walk through an old narrow, cobbled street can bring you to an eternity gone by or a bustling shopping area displaying all modern brands. Numerous sites in Prague leave you with an astounding feeling of the apparent stillness of time. They bear testimony to the rich cultural heritage of the city acquired through the Roman, Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque and Bohemian eras. Take for example the Charles bridge. We visited it during the day, sat through the evening and also strolled along late at night - just being there filled you with an odd sense of being at peace with yourself. The silent breeze from the river Vltava whispering to the imposing sculptures along both the sides, the engrossed musicians, the talented painters and the crazy crowd makes the experience heavenly. Another delightful area was the old town square. Though we could not figure out the working of the astronomical clock (oldest operating astronomical clock in the world), yet it was nice to see the statues of the Apostles peek out and bless when the clock struck the hour. Many colorful tiled spires of magnificent buildings built during the Bohemian era guarded the place. And the walk through the winding lanes to Charles bridge and old square was also an interesting journey interspersed with candy shops, souvenir stalls and also a sex museum thrown in to complete the bewilderment.
The food too gave us enough reason to rejoice. We started our culinary journey in Prague at one of the many local cafes near our AirBnb residence. The first choice was of course goulash (a soup or stew of meat and vegetables, seasoned with paprika and other spices,the staple of most eastern European countries having its origin in Hungary) which was a recommendation. But our taste buds had other delightful trips with the Asian noodles served with the crispy fish fry, roasted duck with pickled cabbage, fried chicken with mashed potatoes and many such quintessential local and imported dishes . An exotic dish that we tried was the roasted pork knuckle and it would be a grave injustice not to mention the chimney cake called Trdelník which was ubiquitous. And man the beer.......its just out of the world.....whether at the local bar called Zly Casy or the always at hand Pilsner Urqwell cafes!
In spite of its old world charm Prague is a modern city with all the required amenities. It has a planned transport network and well laid out maps are available at both the airport and train stations. Tube, tram and bus criss-cross the city covering all nook and corners.We used public transport throughout our stay in Prague ( 3days) which speaks loads about how easy it is to follow(given my deplorable skill in reading maps).
The longer we roamed the city the more it grew on us. In the train to Vienna, I realized that the city was far more than the red tiled houses and the Vlatva river whose pictures we always see, it actually fulfills your childish dream of living amongst the kings and the knights in an era where the hour glass is standing still.