City tour, Karlsteijn Castle, Klementium Theatre
Aside from the Astronomical clock and Charles Bridge, the Prague Castle was another popular tour destination to check out. We ended up doing a guided tour which included a bus tour around the city’s major landmark buildings (too many to remember), Prague castle, the Old Jewish quarters, and Old town square.
If I recall correctly, the Prague Castle is the largest castle in the world that is currently in use (it seats the current Czech president). The front of the castle grounds was pretty neat with the statues on the gates. On each side of the main gate you see man about to beat the crap out of the other. The guide said the statues are protecting the castle/Prague? Further to both sides are the statues of the eagle and lion. The eagle represents Moravia and Silesia and the lion Bohemia. There was also two guards standing by the gates and there would be the change of guards every hour. To the right you get to see a view of all 4 old towns of Prague as well.
We get our way through the gates to the St. Victus Cathedral. From the outside it looked like a fantastic piece of architecture. The inside was just as impressive, especially the stained glass artwork.
After the castle we took the bus back to the Old Jewish town for a brief history lesson. One surprising fact was the cemetery near one of the synagogues had 100,000 people buried there! That’s a huge number considering the size of the cemetery isn’t that big. Apparently the bodies were buried on top of on another.
We ended the tour at the Old town square for a detailed explanation about the astronomical clock.
For a three hour tour at 650kc (actually we paid 550 because our apt host gave us a coupon earlier – score!), it’s worth the money if you’re only in town for 2-3 days and looking for a compressed tour that’ll take you through the important parts of Prague.
We first saw this as another tour from the same agency as the city tour. It wasn’t too far away from Prague and easy to get to by train so decided to head there ourselves. Return train tickets were cheap at about 77kc/person.
After we get off the train, we had to walk 2km to get to the foot of the castle. It got pretty tiring as after the halfway mark, it’s all uphill from there because the castle sat on top of the hill. I made a poor choice of wearing runners with jeans that day and I was sweating bricks! Never again!
We finally get to the entrance after half hour of ‘climbing’. Some cool photo opps of the castle as well as the township below. unfortunately we didn’t have time to squeeze in for a tour (they didn’t offer self-guided tours that day) since we had to be back in Prague for a classical concert in which we pre-booked tickets for.
One awesome portion of the castle was the water tower there. It doubled as a souvenir shop but the well itself was the best part. You see the wooden bucket with the rope pulley device and the well was 78m deep! Got a bit of the jelly legs after looking down into it *gulp*
Ok gotta head back to Prague or else we’ll miss the concert!
Many of the cathedrals in Prague hold classical concerts almost everyday. We decided to attend an hour concert here at the Klementium Theatre near the Old town square. If there’s a place to hold a classical concert, it’s gotta be in a cathedral. The atmosphere of the venue makes the experience much more magical. It was a small 6 piece band that performed but they were very good nonetheless. The most famous place for concerts is Estates Theater, for the fact that Mozart played there! They still hold concerts with his works today. We haven’t checked out ticket prices but it’d probably be worthwhile to go.