throwback thursday no. 2

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you might know that Mr. Q and I like to travel.  We can’t afford to travel as much as we’d like, but we keep a special travel fund and try to save enough for the occasional trip.  Travel is pretty much in my blood since my mom is a travel agent.  My sister got the bug too.  Lately we’ve been starting to plan our next trip which won’t be until 2017, but that doesn’t stop us from dreaming about what we want to do.  The original plan was to visit just Belgium, but now we’ve decided to kick it up a notch and take two weeks and visit Belgium and the Netherlands.

All of this dreaming about future travel motivated me to share a past trip for today’s throwback thursday post.

In 2011, Mr. Q and I went to Prague.

prague title

If you need to brush up on your geography, Prague is in the Czech Republic.  The Czech Republic is kind of smack in the middle of Europe, with Germany and Poland to the north and Austria to the south.

Prague is without a doubt one of the most picturesque places I have ever seen.

prague 1

Mr. Q and I spent an entire week there and that gave us plenty of time to just wander.  We like to look for the places that are off the beaten track and not full of tourists.  Trust me when I say, Prague was full of tourists.  Even in September.  The main tourist areas (by the astronomical clock, the Charles Bridge) were wall to wall people.

prague 2

But there were plenty of gorgeous spots to be found tucked away here and there.

prague 14

prague 21

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Prague sits on the Vltava River, and one rather touristy thing that we couldn’t resist was taking a boat ride on the river.

prague 22

They have these charming little boats that take you up and down the river …

prague boat 2

and through a narrow canal that runs alongside the river …

prague boat

By the way, you may have noticed that the sun is shining in every one of my photos.  We were there the last week of September and it was sunny and around 70 degrees every single day.  I don’t think that is the norm, we just got lucky!

No matter where we go when we travel, Mr. Q always has to try as many coffee beverages as possible and Prague was no exception.

prague 18

But we also enjoyed some really thick and rich hot chocolate beverages.  Yum!

prague 9

We visited the Jewish Quarter one afternoon and I thought the cemetery was fascinating.  Due to a lack of space, on occasion during the 300 years during which the cemetery was in use they would simply heap dirt on top of the existing graves and add another layer.  In some spots there are as many as 12 layers.  There are now retaining walls in place and the surface of the cemetery is several meters higher than the surrounding street level.

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Another tucked away spot in Prague is the Lennon wall.  That’s Lennon as in John Lennon, not to be confused with the communist Lenin.

prague 13

Young people started painting graffiti on this wall in the 1980’s as a way of rebelling against the communist government that was in place at the time.  This is what it looked like when were there in 2011, but I saw {this article} about it being painted over in white in 2014.  I wonder what it looks like today.

As usual, I kept my eye out for my lucky number and once again I found it on a tram.

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Prague has it’s fair share of lovely copper domes too.

prague 3

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We did travel a bit outside the historic center one day to visit Troja Palace.  I have to tell you that Mr. Q and I are rather hopeless when it comes to public transportation.  We have a tendency to not know what we are doing.  In this case, we debated which train to get on about 5 times before we actually got on one.

prague 5

But we ended up where we intended, so apparently we picked the right train.

prague 6

While I was hoping to find beautiful gardens at the palace, there was a modern art exhibit going on so what I really found was a giant yellow octopus in the middle of the lawn.

prague 7

Hmmmmm … not really my thing.

We had a little trouble with the return trip too.  There was an unmanned kiosk where we had to buy our tickets, and nothing was written in English.  We had absolutely no idea which buttons to push.  In addition, the machine only took coins, no paper money.  Fortunately we were able to scrounge together some coins, but we really had no idea if we were purchasing the right tickets!  We just bought the most expensive ones we could afford with the coins we had, and then kept our fingers crossed.

We would only have to show our tickets if a ticket agent happened to board our train.  I have to admit, I held my breath the entire trip back hoping we wouldn’t end up in big trouble for having the wrong tickets.

In hindsight, I think I would have preferred to visit Cesky Krumlov as a side trip from Prague.  It’s a 4 hour train ride away, but if you have a chance just google it and you’ll see why I wish we’d made the time for it.

When all is said and done, we really loved our visit to Prague.  If you’ve ever thought about going, I would highly recommend it.  Just make sure you get away from the touristy crowds and are able to see just how very charming it really is.

Prague us

We would go again in a heartbeat.

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18 thoughts on “throwback thursday no. 2

  1. What a beautiful place! I have a tremendous love of architecture these photos are a real treat. The canals and cobblestone streets are mesmirzing.

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  2. The most difficult part of travel is planning an itinerary. Suggestions and recommdations from someone who has been there are invaluable. I am taking my 2 daughters on a 3 week trip to Great Britain, France, and The Netherlands in May 2017, so we are gathering information before we make our Final Plan. Prague looks lovely…so much Europe, so little time!

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    1. I’m glad you enjoyed it Linda! The coffee really does look good, doesn’t it? Somehow coffee in Europe is always tastier that here, I think it’s the atmosphere.

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  3. Beautiful pictures….love the one of Mr.Q with the statue. Looking deep into her eyes! Lol…I really liked the colors and especially the little cobblestone roadways. Very picturesque!

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  4. Loved reading this, Linda. This summer we’re traveling to Amsterdam, the Rhine river valley in Germany and ending up in Prague! Your pictures got me very excited.
    You should definitely visit Belgium! When we lived in the UK, the Hubby and I left the kids at home and took a train to Bruges and Ghent … great beer, chocolate and architecture … still one of my favorite trips! Thanks for sharing!

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    1. How fun! You must be sure and tell me what you find in Amsterdam that you think I should check out. We aren’t going on our trip until 2017, so we have lots of time to plan. As for Prague, be sure to get away from the super congested main tourist areas (the Charles Bridge, Old Town Square, Hradcany) and check out the back streets. We walked up the hill to the Hradcany after dark one evening and it was gorgeous. We practically had the place to ourselves, and as we were wandering around the church choir began to sing. Apparently it was choir practice night. So we grabbed a bench and enjoyed a very lovely impromptu concert. That will always be one of my favorite memories from that trip!

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  5. When in the Netherlands try to visit Utrecht ,about half an hour train trip from Amsterdam ,an ancient city with canals and beautiful Cathedral, architecture, amongst other things we visited the Dick Bruna permanent exhibition ,he’s the creator of Miffy the childrens character. I thoroughly recommend at least a few days there,such a beautiful city, lots to see and do,I could go on and on !!
    We mostly walked around as we stayed close to the city. We also loved our visit to Cesky Krumlov wished we had more time there too.

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