Off To Prague: A Story In Photos (Episode 1)

Last fall, Dave and I took a holiday to Prague and fell madly in love with everything about it. So we’re going back! And we’re leaving in five short days.

I never got around to posting photos after our trip last year, so I thought I’d talk about what we’re planning to do this year by showing you some of our 2010 adventures.

Today, I’m sharing some sightseeing and outdoor highlights. Tomorrow, I’ll get down and dirty with food photos from our favorite restaurants.

The flight! To get to the fun, we had to endure a pretty hellacious plane ride. I concocted an elaborate plan to help us manage jet lag that involved a schedule of snacks and nutritional supplements, re-setting our watches, and napping. Note my incredibly sexy sleep mask.

Our home away from home. We’re staying in the same apartment again this year, at the Arcadia Residence. If you ever travel to Prague, I totally recommend you stay there. It’s an apartment bed-and-breakfast with comfy IKEA furnishings, hardwood floors, and lots of airy light. The host Pasqual is super friendly and fun, and the complementary breakfast in the cafe across the tiny cobblestone alley kicks ass (so much ass, in fact, that in addition to a ham omelet, I ate cake every morning last year. Oops.). This was the view from our living room window.

And this was the dragon on the railing of the stairs. I rubbed his head for good luck every time I passed.

The Charles Bridge. One of the highlights of our trip was an early morning run across the Charles Bridge. As you approach the bridge, you’re greeted by this benevolently smiling statue of Charles IV. We called him Chuck.

And here’s Dave enjoying the fresh morning air. I’m pretty sure we were both saying something, like, “We’re in PRAGUE!” when this photo was taken.

The bridge is lined with 30 statues. This one is St. John of Nepomuk. (Read the story of St. John; it’s pretty amazing and will explain why we referred to him as Johnny Five Star.)

The Castle. In addition to running up to the castle a few times, we visited for a tour, too. I couldn’t resist mocking the guard. He didn’t flinch or twitch or wiggle or anything.

While we were in the castle complex, we toured the Cathedral…

And enjoyed the awesomely-produced audio tour of the beautiful and intimate Lebkowicz Museum. Then we posed for a Photo of the View.

CrossFit Praha. One night, we went to a pub with Keri and Zdenek, the owners of CrossFit Praha

And the next day, we visited Zdenek at the box…

And then we went running around the perimeter of Vysehrad, the first castle built in Prague, probably in the 10th century.

And that’s the end of Part 1. Tune in tomorrow for tales of food, Becherovka, and beer.

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  • You look STUNNING in that shot with Dave “Photo of the View”. A dose of Eastern Europe suits you guys. 😀 So cool that you stopped by a Crossfit box IN Prague. I had no idea that Crossfit was that far-flung. Wishing right now that I could be smuggled into your suitcase for this year’s trip. 😀

  • Mom says:

    I think you and Dave need a chaperone so I’m coming too!!!!

  • Amy in Austin says:

    So great to see photos of your adventures. I’m excited for you! Did I see you write in an earlier post that you’re headed to Paris for the second part of your trip? If so I’d love any tips you have, my guy and I are headed there over Thanksgiving.

    • Mel says:

      Yes! We’ll be in Paris for 5 days, and I will TOTALLY share favorites with you when I get back.

      • Amanda Arthur says:

        Ever since I read that you’re also making a long stop in Paris, I’ve wanted to blurt out suggestions. I studied abroad in Paris when I was in college and have been back several times since then and thought I would pass on a few places that I love and aren’t always in the guide books, just in case you find yourself wandering around without a destination (and may I add that wandering around Paris without a destination is the absolute BEST).

        My favorite place is probably Place des Vosges, in the Marais district, near the Bastille. It’s the oldest planned square in Paris and is said to be the model of all the residential squares to come in Europe. It has a cool history and Victor Hugo lived in the square for 16 years. Anyway, I think it’s the best place to go in Paris on a nice afternoon… it’s filled with people young and old lounging in the grass around the fountains… great place for a picnic and pretending like you’re a Parisienne. My husband even did his homework to find out that this was my favorite place in Paris and that’s where he proposed three years ago, so of course it’s even more special to me now. If I had one recommendation, it would be that!

        I don’t know where you guys are staying, but I also really loved people watching at Cafe Mabillon at 164 Boulevard Saint- Germain. I usually stay around that area, so it was convenient, but it’s a great place to get a cocktail, glass of wine and/or delicious cold beer (1664!!) and they even serve olives (and peanuts – not paleo) as their “bar snack,” which I loved. But if you get an outdoor seat at one of the little tables, squished between neighbors, it’s a great place to watch Paris walk by 🙂

        There’s a cool restaurant called Fish La Boissonerie nearby that has a great menu and relaxed atmosphere, if you tire of the sometimes-hectic restaurants!

        Ok, I am cutting myself off because I could go on and on and on – wish I was headed to Europe myself! (Oh, and the time I went to Prague for a weekend in college, it was December and absolutely frigid – we hopped from one tea/coffee place to another, but still beautiful). Have a wonderful vacation!

        • Mel says:

          Amanda, thanks so much for the recommendations — and feel free to share more if you’re inspired 😉 Dave and I each get to plan a day on which we can do whatever we want and don’t have to worry about the likes/dislikes of the other person. My day is in the Marais! so we will definitely do some people watching in Place de Vosges! And I’ll raise a glass to you and your husband while we’re there.

          • Amanda Arthur says:

            Yay! The Marais is awesome and I am totally stealing your idea of each person getting to plan a day of their choosing without worrying about the other’s complaints 🙂

            Have an awesome trip, relax and recharge(you deserve it, lady)- can’t wait to see pictures!

  • Ehsa says:

    So great to see your beautiful pics at last! Looking forward to Part 2. (Love your Crossfit Praha gear!)

  • Kathleen says:

    You two are so cute. Have a blast in Prague. It is well deserved. Maybe that should be the title of your next book.