Prague is a city that should be on everyone’s bucket list, as this unique city is nestled within the heart of Europe where you can get to any other country within hours. In this post, I will give five reasons why you should add Prague as a stop along your Study Abroad experience in Europe.
- Prague, known as “the city of one hundred spires” is filled with many historical structures that were left untouched through both world wars. It is a city for anyone that loves architecture, as there are Romanesque Chapels and Gothic cathedrals sprinkled all around the city. The oldest building in Prague is the Basilica of St. Martin, which is within Prague Castle, which also offers a breathtaking view of the city. If you like more modern architecture, I suggest you check out Frank Gehry’s Dancing Building, which can be found just south of the old town right along the river.
- Prague is alive with the sound of music. The Estates Theatre within walking distance of Charles University hosted Wolfgang Mozart. Music clubs are scattered across the city, some stopping points to check out are Roxy and Cross Club. Even Charles Bridge will have musicians performing for anyone that will listen. If you are thinking of coming in the summer, the parks and islands come alive with music festivals of all genres.
- Prague Castle is a reason within itself. The castle is the largest castle complex in the world. Covering over 17 acres on top of a hill overlooking the whole city makes it a real gem. The complex is made up of St. Vitus Cathedral, museums, and the Golden Lane. The Golden Lane is a street, although there is no gold, it gives a cool insight into what homes looked like back in the 16th century. I compare it to Buckingham Palace in the way that Prague Castle is home not to the King, but rather, their President.
- The food. Being in the heart of Europe, the Czech Republic has been influenced by many cultures. You can tell by the range of food and desserts. The Czech Republic is relatively cheap by American standards, so it is easy to find a good meal for under ten dollars. Prague is known to have the best beer in Europe, and in some restaurants, you can get great beer cheaper than water. I highly recommend trying the traditional Goulash and roasted pork with dumplings and cabbage.
- Lastly, I have to end with the typical tourist spots that people flock to when they come here. The famous Charles Bridge is one that you must check out. As one of the oldest bridges in Europe still in use, it has seen its time. Built between 1357 and 1402 it has survived the Thirty Years’ War and survived the one hundred year flood in 2002. You can take your time walking along the bridge, but if you want to get a view of the whole bridge, take the staircase up to the tower. Just down the street in the old town is the oldest running clock in the world. The Astronomical clock is decorated in sculptures and wooden statues and some of them come to life at the top of every hour.
Not all Czech people speak English but if you attempt to speak even some Czech, they appreciate it and will be open to speaking English back to you. Prague is a wonderful city that you could check out on a weekend- but stay longer to truly see the beauty in each section of the city.
Margaret Sucher is a student at the University of Minnesota, Duluth and an ISA Featured Blogger. She studied with ISA in Prague, Czech Republic.
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