I knew I wanted to go out with a bang when I was planning my absolute last European adventure. I wanted to pick a special destination that was a bit obscure but still plenty of fun and cheap to get to. Upon finding dirt cheap plane tickets from Paris to Prague, I knew that was the destination pour moi.
Besides Ghent, I haven’t come across many other European cities where while I’m walking around I think to myself, “Yep, I could definitely live here eventually”. Prague is an exception. I fell in love with the architecture of Old Town, the hippy dippy coffee shops and food joints in New Town, the amazing museums. All of it. Prague was such an amazing experience and I couldn’t have wished for a better last trip.
Don’t tell Mom
It’s kind of an unspoken rule between my parents and I that while living abroad, away from home, there are just some things I omit from our conversations. Specifically things that have to do with my safety and well-being. Like they weren’t too crazy about finding out I got frostbite (again) in Hamburg or that I’ve spent multiple nights at a multitude of train stations and airports. Prague was the trip chock full of things that I’ll definitely tell my parents about, but only after the fact:
- Bla Bla Car – Bla Bla Car is an extremely credible ride-share service based out of France but utilized across the EU. Basically instead of paying 50-80 euros for a train ticket and arriving at my destination in 2 hours, I only pay 20 euros and arrive at my destination in five. Oh, and I’m in a car full of strangers with a stranger driving. And sometimes when I ride in Bla Bla cars I fall asleep because I’m in a car. This business model sounds a little unsafe and sketchy to us Americans but I can assure it’s 100% safe. The drivers have to be legal and background checked. It’s just a bit awkward sometimes.
- Walking around the streets of Prague late at night, alone, and with a dead phone – This one is kind of self explanatory. I landed in Prague with like 30% left on my phone and I assumed I’d be able to get to my hostel utilizing that amount of battery. I was wrong. I don’t think my parents would appreciate it if I walked around alone at night in literally any city.
- Illegal Uber driver – One of the scariest experiences of my time abroad. Michelle (my Prague travel buddy) and I tried to take an Uber from a pub to our hostel on our first night out in the city. Plenty of parents hear tons of horror stories about sketchy Uber drivers; well here is another. We ordered the car with minimal issues, our driver was polite to us initially and he arrived in like five minutes. We drove around the city for around fifteen minutes which I thought was strange because I knew we were too far away from our hostel. Then it happened. Our Uber driver was PULLED OVER BY THE POLICE! Turns out this bozo wasn’t exactly legal. I don’t know if he wasn’t a certified Uber driver, or if he wasn’t legally allowed to drive. He wasn’t arrested on the spot so that is a good sign. Long story short, our seemingly trustworthy chauffeur started screaming at Michelle and I to get out of his car before he drove off with us. A little shaken up, I hailed a cab and we were taken home safely. Here’s my advice in this situation, in a city where Uber is only recently introduced (after doing some research I found out that Uber has only been big in Prague since 2015), stick to either walking, public transit, or a taxi. Even a service that is oh so trusted in the states or even here in Nantes, that might not always be the case. Also, complain your butt off to HQ. I reviewed our driver with one star and basically tattled on him for not being legit. Uber corporate was very accommodating as they refunded me and gave me a 20 euro credit for my next few rides.
Other than these three things, our trip to Prague was safe and I behaved.
We spent four amazing days in Prague for Part 3 of my spring break so I won’t bore you with literally every single detail of our trip. It was definitely jam packed with fun (and food).
Here are some of my favorite Prague things:
This historic bridge crosses the Vltava River and looks literally like a medieval fairy tale at night. Around 20 different statues of saints line the walls of the bridge making for a very spooking night hike. My pictures really don’t do the view from the bridge justice, however, it was truly enchanting.
John Lennon Wall
Known as Prague’s largest English bookstore this place provided so many safe places for Michelle and I. The book selection was to die for, this place also served an unspeakably amazing brunch, and the mimosas were bomb. It’s been my goal to pick up a book in the majority of the countries I visit and this place definitely delivered. I’d definitely frequent this place not only to study but also to brunch if I lived in Prague.
Even with extremely long lines and fairly overpriced entrance fees, I’d say this is worth seeing during a visit to Prague, inside the castle gates there is a variety of exhibits to explore. And the cathedral had beautiful stained glass windows.
If you are looking for a great place to try some traditional Czech food for an extremely
decent CHEAP price. Check out Kulaťák. This restaurant had an extremely varied menu with everything Czech to offer. Michelle was adventurous and tried the typical Czech dumplings with sauerkraut, pork, red cabbage, and gravy. Me, the veggie girl, had amazing zucchini soup that didn’t disappoint either. We each ordered a huge pint of beer for so cheap as well! It was a little out of the way of the city centre and our hostel, but definitely worth it.
Prague was extremely hilly but the views at the top were unbelievable.
One of my Audencia friends, Abhishek, was also in Prague for a couple days while we were there! It was so nice to another familiar face and explore the city with him.
This is me looking super smug and acting like I’m not just chilling in one of the coolest cities on earth.
Other fun Stuff
Michelle and I also attended a classical music concert in one of the oldest churches in the city. It smelled like church hardcore. There was also a large outdoor market in the centre of old town where I broke out of my vegetarian ways and indulged in one of the best smoked sausages I’ve ever consumed. So worth the guilt. We primarily ate asian food because we’re us. We explored the Franz Kafka and Alfons Mucha museums. We randomly splurged on spa pedis Saturday because we were dead from the night before. And I tried that fettuccini pasta where they toss it around in a HUGE wheel of parmesan before serving it to you. I also vaguely remember eating cake for breakfast as well. Oh well, you’re only in Prague once.
Wanna hear something sad?
T-minus 9 days until I fly back home. Wow this time has gone by so fast. I literally cannot talk about this subject any longer without getting all moody. Also, two of these nine days will be spent locked at school
against my will taking exams. BOO!
That’s it, get ready for the sob story of how I’m leaving Europe for good in my next post.