Friday, March 15, 2013

Praha: The city of a thousand spires

Prague is the largest city in the Czech Republic, as well as its capital. It escaped much of the devastation that plagued other European cities during WWII, so it's historic beauty is well preserved and worth the trip to enjoy! I may not recommend going in March as the days were gray and quite cold, but that's a charming and easy to explore city (and it was a bit cheaper and less crowded as a perk!) 
Before I go on, I must admit to having a hard time finding the motivation to post our pictures from our 4 days in Prague since sadly, our camera (along with my wallet and phone) was stolen on our first night in the city...we ended up with a low end camera we picked up at the mall just so we could capture a few highlights of the trip. I didn't realize how attached I was to my camera (and my wallet that we purchased at the leather market in Florence) until it was no longer mine. Okay, enough of my pity party - it's been dragging on for several weeks now and I should really just get over it. Without further ado...
The Orloj - Astronomical Clock - on the Old Town City Hall in the Main Square.  The clock was first installed in 1410.
Elise begged us to go to the top of the clock tower.  She and Josh took all 200+ stairs to the top and the boys and I took the elevator!  We were glad we made the trip - the views of the city were amazing and it was the only sunny day of our stay.
So glad Elise is such a willing adventurer!  She raced us back down the steps - again with us on the elevator - and she WON!!
Views along the Charles Bridge and Vitava River.
I think we must have crossed the Charles Bridge at least 20 times during our visit.  Elise was particularly fascinated with it because Mr. Atkinson had made a drawing of it for her on the day before we left for our trip.
Views looking down at the city from the Prague Castle and Strahov Monastery - since the city is situated in the river valley, there are lots of great places to enjoy a birds' eye view!
The kids were completely captivated with the changing of the guards at the castle gates.  They marched around all afternoon pretending to be palace guards.
St. Vitus Cathedral - within the walls of the Prague Castle (very Notre Dame-esque) favorite vocab word of the day:  "flying buttresses"...aren't we classy?!

Never thought we'd spend nearly an hour listening to a Dixieland inspired Czech band in the center of Prague...
Never, never, never thought we'd buy their CD!!!!!  Caleb was too cute and too amazed to say no...and the kids have honestly listened to it every day since we returned - thank you Staromestsky Dixieland!
Old Town Square.
Yes, we really must each Asian food on every single trip we take.  Elise was quite pleased to have her own plate of sushi!

On our last evening in Prague we took the tram and the cable car (especially for Lucas!) to Petrin Hill Tower - for more great views above the city.  This tower was completed 4 years after the Eiffel Tower and is 1/5 of it's size (i.e. not that impressive!) - but Josh and the kids climbed all 200+ steps to the top and enjoyed some beautiful skyline views at dusk.
Czech-style pancakes on the last morning of our trip.  They weren't quite sweet enough for the kids, so I got to eat them!

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