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Destinations:

Prague, Czech Republic

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Prague Overview

Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic, is the largest city in this Central European country. For over 1,100 years, the city of Prague has served as the heart of the Czech state, pumping culture throughout the country and serving as both political and economic headquarters for the Czech people. Prague sits on the banks of the Vitava River and is home to over 1.2 million people.

Its nickname, “Golden Prague,” describes the city’s personality, which is filled with precious art, breathtaking architecture, and historic and European charm. Prague has served as a muse to many famous thinkers, artists, writers, and composers.

While structurally undamaged (for the most part) by the devastation of the Second World War, Prague spent 40 years behind the communist Iron Curtain, where it lay stifled and stagnant until it’s Velvet Revolution in the late 1980’s. This struggle towards a free market economy during the crumbling of the Red regime eventually led to the split of Czechoslovakia in 1993. The 1990’s brought about globalization on one hand and a whiplash effect on the other, but ultimately (and most importantly), the return of Prague as a central hot spot for arts and culture in the heart of Europe.

Art runs rampant in Prague, which itself serves as an architectural museum with an array of buildings and monuments ranging from Gothic spires to the classic parabolic arches of the Art Nouveau period. Prague is the 6th most visited city in Europe and offers tourists the perfect mix of European culture and modern shopping and nightlife. Balancing the shift towards globalization and Americanization (shopping malls, designer bars and eateries), Prague keeps its timeless feel through a rich emphasis on the fine arts.

It’s recommended to get lost in this city, to spend a day wandering its labyrinth of alleyways, courtyard and squares. If you’re visiting Prague with your family, prepare for a history themed treasure hunt and spend the day exploring the city through the lens of a time-traveler. Walk the cobblestone streets of Prague in the footsteps of Kafka while whistling the theme to Dvorak’s Humoresque and you will be transported instantly into the past.

In the evening, make your way back to the present day and enjoy some of the best that the city’s nightlife has to offer. Prague is known for some of the world’s finest beers and lagers and you’re sure to meet some other interesting fellow travelers in one of the many local pubs. Spend the night out listening to live music (from jazz to punk to reggae). If you can muster the energy (or if you decide to stay out all night), the Charles Bridge at the onset of the day is an eerie yet calming experience unique to Prague at dawn.

It’s recommended to check out what is going on in the city before you arrive in order to make the most of all the cultural events that are available. Prague is a pedestrian friendly city and when the weather permits, it’s best to enjoy it leisurely and with good company.
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