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Sunday, 30 September 2012

Love-locked

After a bumpy ten hour train ride, George and I awoke to the announcement that we had made it to Prague. Looking out the window, I questioned whether Prague was as beautiful as I had been told. Rain bucketed down and frankly, I was half inclined to stay on the train and continue to Budapest. 

After 'man-ing up', I left the comfort of my carriage and George and I quickly worked out how to get to our hostel. We caught a tram and in only minutes, we arrived at 'The Madhouse' - our home for the next three days. 

As soon as we arrived, the sun came out and I got to have my first real glimpse of Prague or 'Praha' to the locals.








One thing I really noticed about Prague, apart from its beauty, was the incredible food it had on offer for as little as a pound. Compared to Krakow, the food in Prague was, for want of a better word- 'delightful'. There were street vendors around every corner, and I think it is safe to say that George and I were in food heaven.
























































Prague literally took my breath away. I could have stayed there forever. The town was small, 'picture perfect' and extremely rich in culture. Every street had its own story to tell and being the tourist I am, I could not wait to hear it. 

The communist legacy of Prague and the Czech Republic was ever present and bits and bops of its scars remained.  George and I managed to find a 'free walking tour' of Prague which turned out to be a hidden gem as we were guided around Prague (at a mile a minute) and given a full lesson on its history. I would certainly recommend doing a walking tour, particularly one that takes you up to the Castle and over Charles Bridge. Look for the lady in green in the centre of Prague.... 
























































Getting ready...






Sorted!









Even looking back at these photos, I am astounded by the beauty of Prague. Trust me when I say, I am no photographer, and even I managed to capture I think, the true essence of this ethereal city.

One aspect of Prague that I truly appreciated during my travels, was the creativity and music that the city oozed. Graffiti art was imprinted all over Prague, only adding to its rich sense of culture. Music flowed through the streets.  It was inspiring. 







One part of Prague that will always stay with me was the 'love lock' bridge.  'Love lock' is a concept that originated in China, however has since popped up in all four corners of Europe. 

The symbolism behind the locks- everlasting love. Prague's love locks can be found along the canal near the Charles Bridge in Mala Strana. Lovers fix their locks on fences or gates, throw away the key in a romantic gesture of their love, locked together through all eternity. As you walk along the canal and see the thousands of locks, you cannot help but get swept away in the motion of young couples, bound together, standing on that canal professing their undying love and cementing their bond by fixing their lock to the steel bars and throwing their key into the water, the unknown. Yes yes yes, I know- I am a soppy romantic and perhaps a bit of an idealist. But as I walked along that canal, I could only imagine the thousands of stories behind the locks and found myself believing that each lock represented a couple, that even now, are hopelessly in love. 

Maybe one day, If I am lucky, I will get to go back there, with my own lock and love. 









After wandering around the streets of Prague, riding high on love, George and I stopped off for some local cuisine and a beer. We dared to eat the ghoulash, which I have to say, was delish. 











The beer also turned out to be quite pleasing, however once again, I will leave it to your imagination as to where the night went....





All in all, Prague was absolutely fantastic.  I cannot tell you enough how much all of you must go. It is for the foodie, the historian, the romantic, the artist and of course the musician.  The only thing I ask, is that if you do decide to go... take me too x 

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