Prague: Unexpected Jewel of Europe


From the desk of Matt Vanni: runs slower than a bullet, can leap over …some small people, super-cool husband, and all-around awesome guy.  I hear he even writes blogs for his wife when she gets too busy!  Oh, and of course, amazingly handsome.  At least that’s what all his students yell (appropriate word) at him daily.

A few years ago I took an amazing trip to Europe with my best friend Joe.  We hopped from city to city, trying to get in as much of what Europe could offer in the short time we were there.  It is my favorite vacation (so far).  We went to many of the same cities Andrea has already written about here, but I’d like to share some photos and comments about one she missed out on: Prague!

Outside of Rome and Paris (maybe), Prague is the most beautiful city I’ve been.  Joe and I went in the spring of 2009 when the Czech Republic was part of Euro zone, but was still trying to meet criteria to become a full member (using the Euro, etc..).  Regardless of what the outlook is for the Euro now, back then it meant (at least for tourist) that the Czech Republic was making huge investments in public infrastructure and doing everything they could to boost their economy (I guess that’s what EVERY country is trying to do…but they seemed to be really putting in the effort at the time).  For us this meant great transportation and hotels, while still being really cheap!!!

The mix between the Gothic buildings and red clay shingles was amazing.

Saint Vitus’ Cathedral

The city was astoundingly beautiful.  I had never imagined that we would find castles and churches that dated back to the 9th Century; I thought everything would have been lost in the many wars that have torn apart that part of the world.  It seemed like no matter where we went, there was something amazing to see!  And after traveling through most of Western Europe, the architecture so strikingly different.   More than once we found ourselves just standing and staring.

The Prague Orloj is a medieval astronomical clock. Yeah, we sat infront of this at least once a day, every day we were in Prague.

When not walking around, we were eating.  Of course.  The food was so good at one restaurant we found that in the 4 days we were there, we ate there 3 times.  And the beer was delicious too!!!

Here’s the place to eat! I don’t think I’ve ever had more fresh tasting food. And yes, Joe did pose for every picture on our 1 month trip with his eyes closed.

Proud to say this was not posed or photoshopped at all! Just an incredibly cute old couple, and the amazing photo skills I have with my trusty point-and-shoot PS A540. Take that big camera junkies! (Yeah, I know Andrea’s one.)

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