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Manu | 7 November 2012 | 3 comments

Prague main square and the cathedral, by night

It was 2004 and with some of my best friends we decided to head to Dresden to visit a friend of ours who was in Erasmus there. We spent some days in Dresden and then from there we decided to go to Prague, as it was a stroll away and as it was going to enter in the European union in the next few days.

A friend of a friend joined us for that trip, someone who not only had never left hes house before but who was also so concentrated on herself and her life that she even brought the university books with her while we were on the road to study!

Night walk in Prague

The arrival in Prague was simply unforgettable. It was starting to get dark so time to go to our hostel and it was already dusk. We had the first walk in town while it was already evening time and Prague opened her arms and doors to us in its beautiful and majestic way. My 1st impressions of Prague was that the town was simply gorgeous. When we entered the main square for the first time it was like entering another dimension, another century, another piece of world. The main square was simply outstanding, with the bell towers of the cathedral guarding the life below.

Prague was a truly surprise, one of those places you knew was beautiful but you would never expect it could be like that. When we decided to have a walk on the river, and suddenly we saw the castle on the top of the hill, we were truly breathtaken. That was the most beautiful scenario ever. Like in a fairytale, at night Prague was shining like no other towns in the world, probably.

It was such an emotion to be there by night, that from that moment on, I always tried to get to a new place at night, as the atmosphere is so different and magic. In some places it works, in some others less, as arriving at night can be sometimes dodgy, but I never got such a speechless feeling of wonder and astonishment in any other place I visited after Prague.

The Dancing House, also called Fred and Ginger House

The next day with my friends we went around and about the town. We even got lost one night, as we were tired and we took the tram going in the wrong direction. We finished at the depot , far away from downtown, in a dark place where there were so many weird people coming on the tram on the way back. Nothing we could do about it, except take the tram all the way back, pretending not to see them at all. That time it was scary, as most of the people who came in the tram were drank, but at the same time it was also funny, as we then realized how a magic town like that can immediately change its scenery few miles far away.

At the time I went to Prague, I remember people were not very nice with us. In a bakery where we went every morning to have breakfast, the lady at the desk was almost trowing us the bread, so pissed at us, like it was a fault to be just a tourist, while in the souvenir shops they all spoke Italian, trying to sell us everything. That was one part of the town I didn’t like it at all, while the people in the street, the numerous street artists playing music and making up small shows they were simply amazing.

I don’t know now, but back in 2004 Prague was still pretty cheap, and you

The warmest and friendly pub of Prague

could eat in a small restaurant almost everyday, even being on a budget. On our last day we ended up for lunch in a restaurant where they also produced their local beer, whose name I don’t remember anymore.

We were not even sited and the waiters were already offering us a taste of the typical alcohol of the place, something yellowish that was sweet and addicting.

So we started that lunch. We ate like gods and drank so much beer and liqueur, at the end of the afternoon we were the only people left in the restaurant and we started to take photos with all the waiters.

When we went out of that place we were so completely drank that we went to our hostel to have a nap and we instead woke up at 9 in the evening, wasted and having wasted our last day I town in this way!

Even though, Prague left me this unusual sense of beauty and richness, with an unbelievable willing to go back there one day, and even if I didn’t come back yet, I know I will, for sure again.

This is the page I wrote the day I sadly left Prague to go back home:

Beautiful Prague, of the the best 1st impressions ever experienced in life!

PRAGUE, 8thMay, 2004

We leave Prague with our eyes full of architectural wonders .

It never happened before that a hand made town shocked and astonished me so much like Preague. The most characteristic feature of this town is that it’s a lived-in place, almost worn awayby centuries of history and events, and still pleasantly enjoyable.

This town has an incredible charm, and by night, at your first sight, it can be fairy.

The untouched MiddleAged atmosphere of Prague enchanted me, and same for its colors, folklore and its uprightness.

Unfortunately people is the only thing that I didn’t like so much, and that it makes me appreciate much more a place like Dresden and its quiet people, even if often too much tranquility can become boring as well.

The 1st thought you have when you have in front of you the majesty of this spectacular town, is that you will be back, you must, and with someone, to show it and introduce it to others, as you cannot avoid to miss it and try to find it somewhere else.

I will also come back, hopefully with a less worried company, as the one I had took out the wiling to call this place the top of my Central European tip of this year.


The beautiful photos of this posts are by Sebastien Canaves-Borner, who kindly accepted to share them with us here. Sebastian has two travel blogs: http://www.off-the-path.com/ and http://worth-a-journey.com/ where he shares his passion for traveling with all of us. Thanks a lot Sebastian!