It was set… another weekend trip was to come, and I decided this time to “buy one get one free”. Prague, in the heart of the Czech Republic, was conveniently close to Berlin, Germany – so some fellow travelers and I decided to kill two birds with one stone and tackle both cities in one jam-packed weekend. I had heard great reviews of Prague and knew nothing about
it, and had always found interest in Berlin – a German city rich with history both old and new. So me, Xanthy, Tory, and Julia joined Brock and John on this ambitious, six-person extravaganza. Early on in the trip, an unavoidable tension was recognized between some of the guys and gals amongst group, (no names will be divulged). So it was silently understood that this would turn in to a
competition: girls versus boys _ who will have more fun on this trip??
Round 1: Boxing gloves on, boys and girls briefly separated after arriving at the Praha (Czech for “Prague”) airport to settle in to their accommodations. Girls check in to an amazing modern apartment in the city center giving bragging rights to a kitchen, living room, and 2 bedrooms. Boys check in to equally chic apartment and meet up with friends studying in another city. Tie.
Our six-some met up soon after and began exploring. We found the city to be quite empty for a Friday night. Bewildered by the ghost town, we carried on and saw some modern shops, the government center, and some hoppin’ clubs… maybe all the locals were in there? Anyways, we found an
elegant sushi restaurant along the river where we settled in and enjoyed some spectacular cuisine. We all had a great time enjoying some Czech beers at a local pub, until finishing the night with Round 2 of competition. The girls broke off and found a retro martini bar where we sipped delicious cocktails; the boys ended up wandering aimlessly until giving up and settling in an over-the-top casino. Girls – 1; Boys – 0.
The next morning, the three girls and I joined a free five hour walking tour of the entire city. We met in the famous Old Town Square, and quickly grew to love our very-European guide and her vast knowledge of the city’s history. We walked for miles and enjoyed the sunny day, exploring the city by foot and tram. We started out at the Prague Astronomical Clock Tower in the Old Town Square, which has become a trademark of the city itself, built in 1410. The third oldest astronomical clock in the world and the only one still working, it is easy to see why tourists flock to see its figurine/musical performance once an hour. We went on to explore the commanding Prague Castle atop Petrin Hill, one of the most beautiful and largest cathedrals I have laid eyes on_ St. Vitus Cathedral, and the Jewish Quarter. We crossed the Vltava River on the famous Charles Bridge, taking in the amazing views on either side. The river dotted with sailboats is lined by quaint homes and shops with red rooftops and smoking chimneys. The city spans up and down the natural hills, with expressive steeples and castles standing out in between.
After our long walking tour, our feet and bellies found respite at a local restaurant where we met the boys and feasted on some comfort food. They seemed to have accomplished everything we had in our day
sans-tour. We’ll call it another tie.
That night we showered up and had a little pregame party in our apartment, taking turns downing shots of Absinthe – the green liquor which is said to make one hallucinate. It is only legal in Prague, but we couldn’t see why after experiencing no hallucinations much to our dismay.
The girls decided to brave the nightlife first – and I had heard good things. Apparently, almost all of the drinking establishments stay open until 5am, kicking out the party-goers when the sun begins to rise. We found a hidden hotspot underground in the city center, called “Double Trouble”. The unique place was built into the stone walls underground,
with no windows of any kind, and several rooms offering different types of music and scenes. One room was wild – virtually a club with everyone on their feet, dancing on tables to the booming music with a light show on the stone walls. We made another bar stop which I have to admit I barely recall, before meeting up with our male travel companions at an American-style bar, “Harley’s”. The clichéd motorcycle theme did not stop us, and we partied as the Czechs do, until
the break of dawn.
With only a few hours to sleep, the next morning we would board our 3 hour train ride into Berlin, Germany… and continue the battle of the sexes.
(For Prague photos page click here)