A new day, a new experience! Sunday was definitely a unique experience for me because Pop Pop and I planned to drive from Berlin to Prague.
We started the day with another great breakfast, similar to yesterday’s. Then, we walked to a cute flea market down the street from our hotel. Luckily, this was only a walk away, and the car rental shop was an easy walk from the market. When we were done scanning the various antique, accessory and art tents, we retrieved our Ford from the rental office and drove back to our hotel to pick up our bags. Unfortunately, we experienced problems right away. First, we were not given a ticket that was required to exit the parking garage. The second issue was that the power outlet in the car was not working, and our GPS was dead. Correcting these problems ate up a chunk of time, but soon enough, we were on our way.
I helped navigate the way and look for street signs, as well as double checked our projected route on a map. Yes, a paper map! After several miles of basically a straight route, we found our next destination: Dresden. We were not staying here, but we wanted to visit the Aldstat, the old town. This historical center is on the left bank of the Elbe River, with architecture from the Renaissance, Baroque period, and 19th century. The hour we were able to spend there did not do the city justice, but it was still fascinating to see a new old town.
After two more hours of simple driving and navigating, we arrived in Prague. Our apartment there was definitely too big for two people, but it was quite a sweet, simple place. About a half hour after our arrival, we met with our tour guide who we would be with us most of our stay in Prague. Her name is Ida, and she is an absolutely pleasant woman. Her passion for this city is inspiring, and I can see why she loves it. Prague is layered in history, beautiful, clean and vibrant. After two minutes of walking through the city I was in love. If I did not have a top three favorite city list before Prague, I do now and I already plan to come back at some point in my life.
During her informational, but very relaxed tour, we saw a number of historical and gorgeous buildings. The first place she brought us to was an old 19th century building upon a hill with absolutely stunning views of the city. At that point, she pointed out the separate sections of the city and explained to us the history of the area.
From there, we walked down Paris Street, which is lined with beautiful architecture and expensive stores such as Prada, Rolex and Jimmy Choo. At the end of that street is Old Town Square, which houses churches, statues and colorful buildings. We were also fortunate enough to see the medieval astronomical clock there and watch the figures move as the clock struck 8 p.m.
Lida also showed us the “oldest” synagogue in Europe, medieval buildings that were turned into bars and many examples of Renaissance and Gothic architecture. We ended the night by passing over the Charles Bridge and walking into where we would eat a long awaited dinner. The restaurant was beautiful and had a small fish pond built into the floor. I had a Czech specialty roast pork dinner that was extremely tasty. The sauerkraut it was served with was especially notable with its sweet and savory taste.
The night ended later than I expected, but still no later than any other night. I was disappointed I only had one full day ahead of me in this picturesque city, but I knew we would make the most of it.