Prague Day 2
Wenceslas Square, Petrin Hill & the Old Town Square
Day 2 of our Czech adventure saw us head out in the opposite direction towards the National Museum, as it turns out this was literally 3 minutes walk from our hotel and whilst we weren’t too fussed at what was inside, we took a few photos of the impressive building and it’s view over the infamous Wenceslas Square, which is more of an oblong by the way.
View of Wenceslas Square
I’ll be honest, Wenceslas didn’t really live up to the hype, sure there was really interesting architecture if you looked up, but it was mostly shops/restaurants.. Nothing to do per se. We passed through in under 10 minutes and after a slight hitch with figuring out the tram system (we were told to validate tickets at the station, rather than once on the tram), we were off to Petrin Hill!
Petrin Hill is a fantastic place to have a picnic whilst enjoying the view over Prague, you can either walk up (if you’re mad) or take the funicular railway (I do like saying ‘funicular’ quite a lot) which has two stops; one half way up and one at the top. At the top of the hill are some very pretty gardens, an observatory, a grotto and a mini Eiffel Tower – Petrin Tower which you climb to the top of for even more amazing views over Prague – including a nunnery, which ties in nicely with the 12 Stations of the Cross that surround the tower.
View from Petrin towerThere is also a ‘Labyrinth’ on the hill which unfortunately sounds way more impressive than it is – a simple mirror maze that takes all of 30 seconds to get round, with a final hall of amusing mirrors.. A whole 60 seconds of fun, unless of course you’re a child in which case its money well spent.
We walked part way down the hill to the 2nd station for the funicular railway and then caught a tram on to the very popular Old Town Square – home to amongst other things, the Astronomical Clock, very expensive ‘Irish/English Theme Pubs’ (avoid like the plague unless you enjoy paying £4 for cheap, crap British lager) and the worst ‘Aquarium’ I’ve visited (it was more like some rich dude’s fish tanks – nothing exotic or exciting).
The Old Town Square itself was quite busy as it was the World Cup, so like our home town of Manchester, there was a Hyundai Fan Park which consisted of large screens to show the matches, along with food & drink stalls, the difference in Prague was that A. These were open all day and B. When the football wasn’t on – they had an orchestra playing classical music – all for free! The beer wasn’t overpriced either at 50ck for ½L of Budvar (around £1.80) – in fact the only problem was the lack of somewhere to sit in the shade as it was over 30c most days we were there!
Of course before we left the Old Town, we couldn’t miss the world famous Astronomical Clock (and tower) – every hour on the hour the clock face opens like on the Children’s TV Show Trumpton – and at the same time a man in traditional dress plays a trumpet out of the tower!
After we made our way back to the hotel tired and hungry, we found a very nice pub/restaurant called Jiny Stav which was a traditional Czech cuisine restaurant, although they do have English menus. Whilst there were some amusing translations on the menu (such as Pork Medallions from Italian Guy) the food was top notch, so much so, that we ate here another two times during our 5 night stay!
Prague Day 2