We're at the beginning of our three city tour but just about out of time in the first city, Prague. I've heard so many good things about this city over the years, so it has been amazing to finally see it in person!
Overall, we have been really pleased and surprised with our accommodations. We stayed at the Lokal Inn, which is a great location in the heart of the city near the famous Karlov Most bridge. But it also happens to have one of the best restaurants in the city. What's more is the restaurant, also called Lokal, is in Michelin's guidebook for having high quality, affordable food. And that's not just by Michelin standards. In a city full of affordable food and drink, this was one of our cheapest (and most delicious) meals.
Highlights of Prague
This was absolutely at the top of my list in Prague (and maybe Europe). And it delivered. Past the Prague castle is a beautiful monastery where they make delicious beer (according to Reese - I'm not a beer drinker) and grow grapes and cherries, they also have a gorgeous library that was ahead of its time. On the ceiling of the room dedicated to spirituality, religion, philosophy, the founder had painted "Science leads, faith follows." He wanted to make knowledge accessible to the public but he wanted the library to be progressive and thoughtful; to have purpose. So when many private libraries were being auctioned, he bought the books to be housed in the second room, dedicated to science. He came back with books and very tall bookshelves and remodeled the building to fit the needs of the books.
There are many more details about this heavenly library, but it's so much better to hear it in person. If you're ever in Prague and want to see the Strahov Library, be sure to book in advance. They only do limited tours and book up quickly. If you don't book a tour, you just get to see each of the rooms from the threshold. Worth every penny!
Inspired by Hemingway's drinking habit, Hemingway Bar in Prague has crafted some delectable cocktails. They have twelve signature drinks but can make any classic cocktail (and I'm sure other ones you haven't heard of). Be sure to book ahead or show up when they open their inconspicuous doors.
While we've seen the castle from almost every angle, we did not actually go in the castle. It's the beginning of summer and there were many, many tourists and school/camp groups visiting. But we did walk around the gardens and building grounds (which is free) and admired the architecture. From the castle, you get a great view of the whole city, but be prepared to walk up some steps to get there. We were told there's also a tram, but we try to walk whenever possible.
One thing we weren't able to see while we were here was the Astronomical Clock. Unfortunately, it's under construction until August 2018. But hopefully we'll get a chance to see it in the future.
We've had an amazing few days exploring Prague and getting to know some of the Czech culture. Now off to Lisbon!