Craig's Travel Log

I have wanted to go to backpack Europe ever since my dad began telling me stories of the trip he took when he was in college. I am taveling with my friends from high school and earlier: Ryan, Matt, Brett, Wes, and Scotty. I am so thankful and privileged to finally be on my way. What will I experience once I go? There's only one way to find out.

Location: Escondido, California, United States

Friday, August 18, 2006

PRAGUE- When you go into something that has been overhyped, it is often bound to let you down. Prague had been hyped up by so many people that when I got there I felt somewhat unimpressed. I had heard it was beautiful because it didn't really get touched by WWI & II, but every other city that did get bombed had been rebuilt to look like it was before. Instead of griping about it, I decided to remove all expectation and re-enter the city with a clean slate.

I took the bus from Vienna and arrived at night. I found the hostel, Brett, and Scotty, and headed to bed. The other guys were enjoying their last night in Prague and then headed for Berlin. Scotty and Brett were extremely tired from their excursion in Poland and decided that we should sleep in. With out a second thought, I complied. After waking up late, we ate at some local Czech fast food place where we pointed at what looked good. I had something like a schnitzel with potato salad. We then decided to take a stroll around town to no particular place at all. We covered most of the old town area on the east side of the river and then stopped for a beer at a lovely place with a commanding view of the famous Charles Bridge. We figured we'd sampled enough of the local cuisine at lunch and decided on Italian for dinner. We ended up having this great meal for only like 5 bucks. If you avoid the touristy places, Prague can be very cheap. There are MANY tourists however, and therefore many touristy places. Following dinner, we eventually made our way back to the hostel and then off to bed.

The hostel that we stayed in, Sir Toby's, has a German history professor who stays in the dorms there all summer and then gives tours of Prague during the day. He is very much the definition of an oddly humorous, eccentric professor. We decided to take his tour and ended up enjoying it very much. We learned a lot of history that we didn't know, and were able to sneak by most of the herds of touristsas we went. That night we tried to go out and experience Prague's nightlife, but ended up running into long lines, expensive covers, and disagreements about where we should go, and so ended up walking home earlier than we expected.

After checking out we left our bags at the hostel to go explore the castle as well as the cathedral inside its walls. The cathedral was huge and had a big tower that we climbed for great views of the city. The tower climb however was one of the worst experiences on the trip. It was a very narrow, circular staircase with hundreds of stairs to the top, with both the line going up and down at the same time. Needless to say it was a very hot and claustrophobic experience. After the descent, we decided we had seen enough of the city and went and saw Pirates of the Caribbean at the local theatre. It was in English of course, with Czech subtitles. It was a very nice theatre and a good way to get lost in something "American" for a little while. After the movie we grabbed our bags and headed for the station for a night train to Amsterdam.


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