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Student City Guide: Prague

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Using a Eurolines 30 day pass, I travelled to Prague this summer and spent three days wandering around the often underrated cobbled streets and old town, as well as indulging in the many treats the restaurants of the Czech capital had to offer.

Culture

The Old Town Square of Prague was the first stop for us on our visit, with the astronomical clock tower being a highlight due to the figures surrounding the clock face coming alive on the hour. Altough we arrived very early in the morning, by lunchtime the square had a real buzz to it as it was filled with street artists, food stalls and horse and carriages. We took the cheaper option to see Prague and went on a one hour tour on the miniature train, which allowed us to see the main attractions along the way. The English audio guide on board meant that we learnt more about the city than we would have done by simply walking around, and could sit back and relax in the lovely weather.

Except for the day when we had to carry our heavy rucksacks up the steep, cobbled street to get to our hostel, the street leading up to the castle and palace is something to really look forward to. Souvenir shops, cafes and restaurants line the route up to the top, and you will definitely not be disappointed when you get there. The castle gardens which are free to enter offer a great vantage point over the city and are a lovely place to sit and enjoy a picnic. The changing of the guard outside the palace is also a sight definitely not to be missed.

For me though, walking across Charles Bridge as the sun was going down was when I really felt to be at the heart of the city. The historic, gothic style bridge is lined by statues and is a must see on a visit to Prague. It seemed no matter what time of day we walked across the bridge there were always people milling around and taking in the views of the river, connecting the Old Town to the Castle side of the city.

A less well known attraction in Prague is the Petrin Lookout Tower, a miniature version of the Eiffel tower which offers spectacular views over the city. Walking up to the tower through the woods along steep footpaths is all a part of the experience as we could see it looming in the distance, getting ever nearer. As the tower is less central than other attractions in Prague, there were less tourists around, meaning that we were able to take our time much more and enjoy the views from the two different levels of the tower.

Eating and drinking

The two restaurants which I tried out whilst in the city were on the castle side of the river on the main street leading up to the castle from Charles Bridge. Both offered a wide range of food, from meat to pasta dishes, and were affordable considering their location. There are a large number of restaurants in the area below the castle so I would recommend walking around and taking time to deliberate over menus before making a final decision.

As we were in Prague on the evening of the World cup final, the bars on the Old Town side of the river were full to the brim. With numerous bars to choose from, we went into one on a tiny street leading to the Old Town Square, and enjoyed soaking up the atmosphere surrounded by football fans.

To buy your Eurolines pass online or to find out which cities a Eurolines pass allows you to travel to, go to http://www.eurolines.com/en/eurolines-pass/




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