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Located on the banks of the Vltava River, Prague offers endless possibilities to go for a stroll. Wander through its castles, bridges, churches and along the river as well as through its entire historic center which was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. It’s also a major attraction for international events and festivals (in 2015 more than 1,500 meetings were held here). So if you go to Prague on business you can enjoy this beautiful city as you wander through the narrow cobblestone streets.
Do you want to know how to get the most out of your free time when you finish your work day? Make a note of these tips:
Stroll through the Old Town (the Stare Mesto neighborhood). The Old Town is undoubtedly the primary attraction of the capital, so you’ll need to plan for at least two hours to see it all. You’ll enjoy its narrow streets, many of which are pedestrian. In the Plaza (the Old Town Square) you’ll see the Old Town Hall and the popular astronomical clock, where on the hour, the bells toll and the symbolic figures move. Nearby is Kynsky Palace, where you’ll find the National Gallery where Czech and Central European art have been on display since medieval times.
If you head toward the river visit the Clementinum, a historic building that houses an impressive scientific library. You can climb the astronomical tower for great views of the city.
-Charles Bridge (Karluv Most). This beautiful Gothic bridge over the Vltava River that connects the Old Town with the Mala Strana district is always crowded with tourists. Be sure to pause while crossing it to contemplate the most beautiful views of the city.
-If you have more free time and want to continue your outing, go into the Mala Strana. Wandering around you’ll arrive at the John Lennon Wall. Covered in graffiti, it’s a tribute to the musician and his message of peace. It is a must-see for fans of The Beatles. From here, go to Mount Petrín for another beautiful view of Prague, especially if you climb the tower at the top. You can also stroll through the gardens. Take the funicular from Ujezd to avoid climbing up on foot.
-Prague Castle (Pražský hrad). It’s one of the oldest and largest castles in the world. The complex includes several buildings: in addition to the fort itself, in includes St. Vitus Cathedral, the Royal Palace and the Basilica of St. George. You’ll need several hours to see this amazing tourist site. After, head to Letná Park to enjoy Prague from above.
-The Jewish Quarter (Josefov). Located in the north of the Old City, it‘s the historic cemetery where there are graves of thousands of Jews who were trapped in the ghetto of Prague during World War II. Additionally, there are several synagogues and kosher restaurants in the neighborhood.
-Museums: In Prague there are museums for every interest. Several illustrious figures such as Mozart, Dvorak, Kafka, the astronomer Kepler, etc., lived or were born here – and each of them has a museum. You'll also find other options such as the Chocolate Museum or the one for beer, another for Communism, the Jewish Museum and one dedicated to the Charles Bridge.
What to eat and where
Czech cuisine is rich in variety and taste, with influences from German and Hungarian food. One of the most typical dishes is goulash, a spicy dish prepared with braised beef, onions, pepper and paprika. Try it served inside a hollowed out loaf of bread. You should also try the Vepro knedlo zelo (Roast pork with pasta and cabbage) and Kulajda (soup with dill and mashed potatoes). As for the beers, the most famous local beers are Pilsner Urquell, Budweiser Budvar or Radegast.
But if you want to entertain your clients or taste the most exquisite cuisine, take note of these restaurants:
-La Degustation Boheme Bourgeoise. It has a Michelin star and only serves tasting menus based on traditional 19th century Czech cuisine. Book ahead if you want to enjoy a high level dining experience.
-Kalina. Offers contemporary cuisine specializing in meat.
-Cestr: Another place for meat lovers and, in this case, upscale.
-Kolkovna: Historical brewery that serves Czech cuisine accompanied by the most typical beer of the country: Pilsner Urquell.
To have a drink after work, Náplavka is the new area near the river, south of the Jiraskuv Bridge. During the day when the weather is good, it’s full of skaters and bikers, but at night you can find many great places to have a beer and dinner. The Bajkazyl area often has outdoor concerts.
-Jazz Dock. A popular pub situated on the other side of the river, with live music and great cocktails on an outdoor terrace.
-Vinograf. In the district of Mala Strana you’ll find this place for true wine lovers: here you can taste the best wines of the Czech vineyards.
-Hemingway Bar. If you prefer cocktails, here they feature more than 200 types of rum.
On the centrally located Parizska street you’ll find high-end shops. If you prefer more affordable brands, head to Na Příkopě Street. In addition to many stores, there are also malls such as Cerná Ruže, located in a beautiful historic building, such as the Koruna Palace. Other options are Myslbek and Palladium.
For typical souvenirs of the city, look for Bohemian glass (Cristal Moser) is a good place to acquire works of art, and not the imitations that many street vendors offer. They also organize trips to the factory) or wooden puppets.
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