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“Great Xmas Market”
Review of Prague

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Croydon, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
36 reviews
13 helpful votes
“Great Xmas Market”
Reviewed 13 December 2009

Prague is a great city to visit any time of year but is especially magical in December with the Xmas Markets & everyone getting in the Xmas spirit.
I travelled with 3 friends & we timed our trip to co-incide with St Nicholas day (Sat Dec 6th), the beginning of the Czech Xmas, when St Nic, the Devil & an Angel go round the city giving sweets to children who have been good (those who say they've been bad have to recite a poem or sing a song).
We started with a walking tour to give us an overview of the city & it's history. The knowledgable (& it has to be said completely loopy) guide advised us to also do the self guided tour of the Jewish Quarter, a somewhat sobering trip. We also took a tour of the castle & lesser town side of the city, the downside of it being winter was the guided tours ended after the light had gone & it then got very, very cold.
I would like to have seen some of the famed (or should that be notorious) nightlife, but after all the walking all we wanted was a drink in a cosy bar & bed.

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Thank lee8553London
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brisbane, Australia
Level 6 Contributor
110 reviews
64 helpful votes
“Prague, Czech Republic, Europe”
Reviewed 5 December 2009

Prague was our first stop on a 6 week european holiday commencing in August. We spent three nights in Prague and were blown away with the breathtaking beauty of this charming city. Prague is very clean and we found it safe to walk around any time of the day or night..The Czech people are very friendly and helpful most people we meet spoke english. We took two tours in Prague both with premium tours. The first was a 3 1/2 hour sightseeing tour with our guide Katarina who was excellent in her knowledge of the city and what it has to offer. We were very fortunate to be on time for the changing of the guards at the palace. We found this to be very interesting and were thrilled to see how close you could get to the action. This was one of the highlights of our trip to Prague. Due to time restraints we were unable to view inside of the cathedral near the castle, but we were able to walk around and take in the majestic beauty of it. A lot of walking was involved in this tour but, we were able to manage no problem ages 59 & 70.
The Jewish quarter was also of interest whereby we saw the old synagogue. Katarina our guide who spoke perfect english was most informitive we were amazed she didn't loose any of the group. We were very pleased with what was covered in the time alloted. I would definately recommend premium tours and hopefully you will get Katarina as your guide. 10/10
We also did a dinner cruise on the river, which was alright 8/10
A must see is the opera house cafe, where you can partake in a coffee or lunch and take in the beauty of this gorgeous cafe/restaurant. 10/10
It is hard to say anything negative about Prague, but, there were only two negative things we encountered,
First was the taxi drivers, both from the airport bus drop city drop off. ( we decided not to take one from the airport after witnessing a not too plesant sight there involving a family with a taxi driver) so we took a buts to the city terminus.
The taxi we got at the airport drop off terminal took us on a round about route to our hotel. We later recognised sites he passed right near our hotel, but we didn't get to the hotel till10 minutes later. Also, the taxi we booked from hotel to train station on the day of our departure didn't speak english and he thought he was to take us to the airport.
The other was the train station. It is in a poor state of repair and looks very scary and depressing from the outside. I'm sure this will eventually be rectified in the future.
On the positive, we found the train staff where we booked our ticked to Budapest extremely helpful.
The unspoilt beauty of Prague is what we remember most, and hope to return again and see what we didn't have time to see on our first trip.

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1 Thank zzdianne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New Jersey
1 review
“surpisingly cool place to tour with friends”
Reviewed 6 November 2009

Prague has earned my respect. Besides a coworker mentioning his trip there briefly, I had never really heard of it. Then some friends decide to take a trip and then there I was, in the Czech Republic. I quickly found out that this city is richer in history than most of the others in Europe, and right up there with Paris and Florence. To start off, the city is HUGE, so be prepared to do LOTS of walking. Also, exchange you money at the beginning to not waste time. The city is safe, at least during the day. Praha 1 and 2 are the districts that you should start off with, since they contain most of the tourist attractions. Keep in mind, I won’t mention all the buildings you walk by, but stop by as you walk around. From the West side of town, take the road up the hill to see an amazing view from the North side of town. To the West behind trees up on the hill you will be able to see the mini-Eiffel tower that was a gift from France. In the South you will see this “space needle” like tower that symbolizes the era of communism in Prague. Go into the cathedral on the hill if you get the chance. There is also a museum in a government building where they have a formal changing of the guards ceremony every so often. Continue walking around past some funny colored houses and down the east side of the hill until you get to the famous Karl’s Bridge. WATCH OUT FOR PICKPOCKETS HERE. It is crowded, and people tend to bump into you a lot. I had an old man “mistakenly” hook and drag me about a foot with his umbrella, while I am sure somebody else was trying to get my money. I had a money belt, so I had no problem. When you get to Praha 2, you will find lots of buildings to see. If you can have a tour guide, I suggest it. Take a boat ride at the river to see more of the city from the water. A few sites to see, just to mention a few, are the other cathedral, the opera house, and the Jewish ghetto. The food is okay, but honestly I wasn’t impressed with some of it. Know what you are ordering, and you should enjoy it. Try to see it first if possible by checking out what somebody else is ordering. They say the dumplings are good, but they are not like American dumplings. They are bread balls you but and soak in gravy as you eat them. No filling. Beer was alright, but German is better in my opinion. Also, people don’t speak much English, so be prepared.

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Thank cmtp83
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Virginia
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
6 helpful votes
“Beautiful Prague”
Reviewed 6 November 2009

We spent 10 days in Prague and can’t wait to return. Prague is beautiful, clean, and friendly. The Prague Marriot was nice with large rooms and decent sized bathrooms. The location of the Marriott was excellent. Old town is a short walk away and the airport shuttle stops across the street. Our stay was more 4 stars than 5. Service varied from excellent to poor. Coffee is available in the lobby every morning. Breakfast in the hotel was an astounding $40 apiece. We chose to eat in the local restaurants.

If you cross the street when you come out of the hotel and take a right, then a left at the end of the block, then walk most of the way down the block you will find a Hajek. This is a really good gelateria with open face sandwiches, cappuccino, and cakes. Very reasonably priced.

The State Opera House is incredible. We saw two operas there and both were beautiful. The National Theatre is a gorgeous building but do be aware that their performances can be a little odd and definitely not traditional. From the Marriott a car will drive you to and from both locations for less than $40.

We took a McGee’s Ghost Tour and a Sandman’s Free Tour. Both were excellent. The Jazz Boat advertised live jazz and a night cruise so we opted for a night cruise. The scenery at night is beautiful and worth taking a night cruise to see. There was no jazz instead there was Dixieland. The scenery was wonderful the music not so much. The Castle has a daily afternoon and evening concert. We went to the afternoon concert and it was enjoyable. The Castle grounds are immense and well worth the walk. Churches are abundant and opulent.

Several of our evenings were spent sitting on the square in Old Town having a beer and enjoying the night view of the square. Staromestska is right on the square, has a great location, friendly staff, great beer and good food. We also enjoyed a slice of cake from a 100 year old plus cake recipe at the Hotel Paris coffee shop. They are open late and have wifi. The Kavarne Obecne Dum located at the Municipal House has live music and good food.

Prague is full of statues and wonderful architecture. Concerts and operas are available every evening and there is a never ending list of things to see and do. Public transportation is easy to use and readily available. Do be aware that some of the escalators in the Metro stations travel at the speed of light. The speed is daunting at first but you do get used to it. Happy hour in the afternoon is coffee and cake and most of the restaurants have a happy hour special. Apple cake was the dominant special while we were there. For those of us that require a Starbucks fix there are numerous Starbucks though their prices are a little steep.

This was a marvelous trip!

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2 Thank PamPrefers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hampton, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
32 reviews
15 helpful votes
“My favourite place in Europe”
Reviewed 5 November 2009

Just returned from 3 day break in Prague & here are my comments! Public transport excellent - buses, subway trains & trams very clean - get yourself a 24 hour pass from a news stand or subway station, be sure to validate it by means of the many yellow boxes at station entrance or on the tram - it cost us 100 crowns per day for unlimited use. Instructions about validation are printed in English on the back of the ticket - if stopped by inspector without a valid ticket you'll be fined - but you won't because you've read this! Check English translation of the sights you want to see downtown because the street signs are in Czech! 'Multi cultural' restaurants abound but avoid city centre places unless you're mega rich! Holiday spoilt upon return to Gatwick - at time of writing ( Nov. 2009) immigration / passport control is total chaos : if using long stay car parks allow for an extra hour just to get out of the Terminal! We overstayed by a few minutes & got hit with a £9 extra charge.

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Thank harrytheman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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