You know what people say about Prague – that is one of the most romantic cities in the world, that its architecture will invite you into a world of fantasy, that the cultural activities are endless and the shopping is unmatched , that the beer is delicious and the parties unforgettable and most of all cheap. Now if you are waiting for me to deny any of these statements you’re going to wait for a long time. Prague is all of the above and more.
I found this amazing offer on Hostelbookers.com for Plus Prague Hostel that was about £3 a night. At this price you expect no doors to your room, no bathroom and for it to be situated in the worst area of Prague. It was completely the opposite. It was so clean and nice you couldn’t believe it. I was in the girls’ area in a six bed room with an en-suite bathroom and had access to their sauna, pool and free laundry cleaning service. Bloody awesome I say.
Receptionists were so helpful and patient with me. As this trip was more about exploring the area once I am there, I didn’t really have a plan from the get-go and found that asking the locals for recommendations is the best way to find top places in each city.
Only problem is that I am the worst person in the world with directions and maps and I got lost every time for the first four days when I tried to discover where Charles Bridge is. Yes, I am THAT bad. On the plus side, I uncovered some cool things to see and I now know all the streets and shortcuts in the Prague centre area.
The only problem I found with Plus Prague Hostel was the Wi-Fi. There was Wi-Fi only in the lounge area and it was a bit slow at times. Not a major issue for most people but still a small glitch in the system.
It wasn’t situated in the heart of Prague but the tram was 5 min walking distance and the metro 7min away. Very good connections to the city centre and even a night tram that took you straight to the hostel. And for the price I paid, I say staying there was the best decision.
What I absolutely adored about the hostel was the directions they gave me to get to there. It was so detailed that not even I could get lost. Absolutely perfect and a high-five for that! Here’s how the guide looks like on their site so that you can see for yourself: http://www.plushostels.com/plusprague#gettingthere
I make a point of whatever city/country I am in, to try the local traditional dish. And Prague was no exception. I had Svíčková na smetaně – sweet version of Goulash, Utopence – pickled sausages and Vepřoknedlozelo – some kind of pork dumplings (I wrote these down from the menu, don’t worry I still don’t know how to pronounce it) and I got a recommendation from Leah from Leah Travels to try the Tartarski (beef tartar). When you think about it, it’s just raw meet with a raw egg and some toasted garlic bread and it doesn’t sound very appealing. But I swear I never expected it to be soooo delicious. And they also gave me a free Slivovice shot at the end.
Next to the hostel at about 10 min walking distance there was this amazing restaurant where I went with the Irish stag party (more about them in the fun part). We spent 400 Koruna for 10 people (about £14). And trust me the food was mind blowing.
The cultural part
When in Prague you are expected to do the touristy things as well. On my things to do in Prague bucket list there was:
- Charles Bridge
- The Prague Castle
- The old town centre (with the famous clock)
- Kafka’s Museum
And from the hostel recommendations:
- The Dali exhibiton
- Torture Museum and/or chocolate museum
- Alternative things to do in Prague – Wenceslas statue, cubic lamppost, baby TV tower, rollerblading in Ladronka Park.
As there are so many things to do and see as a tourist in Prague, I decided to write a more detailed post with the cultural side of my trip. A small Prague guide including where I’ve been, how to get there, fees and details for each of the above mentioned bucket list.
The fun part
My first four days in Prague were a bit quiet. Met two nice Italian girls that were in the same room as me and we kind off roamed around the streets together. After they left it was just me and a bunch of Russian old dudes. I swear no one spoke any English for 3 days (except me and the employees of the hostel). Main reason: it was during the week and March which means off season for the travel industry. Quiet was good for a while but by Thursday I started to go a bit coo-coo. So decided the best thing to do is go check out the pool and sauna.
And there I met the girls. Rachel, Sophie and Charis were there for four days, on a small trip from Bologna where they did their Erasmus Exchange Program. Rachel and Sophie are Australian and Charis is British, from the lovely land of Oxford. Best people I met while travelling and we are still friends five months later making plans to go to Edinburgh and Dublin this autumn. Plus, they invited me to go see them in Bologna. Which I did in June for 10 days.
With them I discovered Lucerna Music Bar. The main theme seemed to be 80s-90s video party for 100 Koruna (£3.50) entry fee. The best fun we had in years. Felt like I was 14 again. Danced till 4 am and could’ve done it till 7am. To make up for it, we went there twice. Lucerna Music Bar is in Lucerna Palace, on the right hand side of the passage that connects Vodičkova and Štěpánská streets near the historic Wenceslas Square. Cheesy music and a great night out all in all!
The Beer Museum is a must go/see/taste. The area of the pub is called Staré Město. To get there, you can take the metro to Staromestska Metro Station then walk for a bit across the Old Town Square till you reach Dlouha Street (another option might be to take the yellow line to Namesti Republiky. Or if it is easier take the 8, 14 or 26 tram to Dlouha Trida. This is the place where I fell in love with Chocolate beer. Don’t judge till you try it. I tasted about three types and then stuck to that. Super cheap as well (£3 aka 70 Koruna)!
After the two consecutive nights out (Friday and Saturday) I decided to have a quiet Sunday and just relax, catch up with some writing for the blog and get ready to leave to Bratislava in the morning. But guess what? It was Saint Patrick’s Day and there were 15 Irish guys at a stag do in the hostel. We started talking and amongst other things I told them I never properly celebrated St Patrick’s Day as something else always crumped up. After that, the pointing and shock from the group became endless. And they made it their life goal to show me how to celebrate that day. And that’s how I became (probably) the only girl that went on a stag do. I caved in under the peer pressure and went out for a third night to see how St Patrick’s Day should be celebrated. And to be fair, there was no better way to do it. They adopted me instantly and I never had so many big brothers at once. I couldn’t make a move without them keeping an eye out to see if I am alright. Great bunch of people and I know have an invitation to the wedding as well.
Needless to say I slept all the way to Bratislava on the train.
I talked a lot about Prague as it was one of the best cities I visited on this five month trip of mine. It had everything: good fun, sight-seeing, a bit of trouble (you’ll see in the guide to Prague post), loads of friends and amazing memories.