Prague welcomes you

Old Aug 22nd, 2002, 05:38 AM
Ben Haines
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Prague welcomes you

The Lonely Planet forum for central and east Europe has a message dated today that reads thus.

Just wanted to tell those of you out there who are hesitant about coming to Prague that I would say come, the waters have receded. Charles Bridge and the castle are temporarily closed, but you can see better castles in Scotland, and the bridge, well it is a bridge, not the reason I live here. If you come now plenty of accommodation, still cheap beer, free trams and metro, great weather, and far fewer crowds. For those of you into volunteer work, plenty of it here, the locals would appreciate it, and it is great way to get accepted by them. They will probably buy you a beer. In closing, I was proud of the American Government. They donated 16 million crown for flood relief. It could have been more, but hey. Cheers now.

I have replied to thank the writer and to ask him or her to tell us which international rail lines from Germany, Austria, amd so on are open or closed.

Let me try out a new salutation. Welcome to Europe. Cheers now.

Ben Haines, London
Old Aug 22nd, 2002, 09:57 AM
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Yes, Prague is a wonderful place to visit and I was fortunte to be there just before the flooding. However, hang on to your money. Out of 110 people on our River Cruise, 4 (including my friend) were robbed in Prague. DO NOT CARRY MONEY OR OTHER VALUABLE IN AN OUTSIDE COMPARTMENT OF A FANNY PACK. Carry all money and valuables in a waist safe or neck safe inside your clothes or in an inside compartment of a fanny pack. It's a shame that such a beautiful city has so many pickpockets.
Old Aug 22nd, 2002, 12:10 PM
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A nice follow-up to the thread called "Postpone..."

Old Aug 27th, 2002, 01:14 PM
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Any firsthand accounts on how the cleanup in Prague is going? I know there were several folks that had trips planned to visit the city this week.
Old Aug 27th, 2002, 02:07 PM
Ben Haines
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The site, under Cleaning up, paints a pretty dismal picture. It is too long to copy here, but speaks of sludge and diorrhea. I write this in sorrow, as Prague gravely needs our tourist money. The moment that the castle re-opens I think I shall be ready to go. Now, perhaps not.

The Prague Post site will be giving us recent news each day.

Ben Haines
Old Aug 27th, 2002, 05:59 PM
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It's strange - an article at the czechcenter says "...drinking water supply has NOT been endangered in any of the cities concerned, and scrupulous precautions are taken during the cleanup to ensure that public health is not at risk..." And yet the praguepost article sounds very serious. It would be nice to hear from anyone who has just visited. I won't be going until the end of October. I'm guessing I won't be having dinner at Kampa PArk (unfortunately) short of a miracle.
Old Aug 28th, 2002, 09:55 AM
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Always glad to get the news here. Good, ambiguous and otherwise.

See also

Best wishes,

Old Aug 28th, 2002, 01:16 PM
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Old Aug 29th, 2002, 12:36 AM
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Old Aug 29th, 2002, 01:10 AM
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Charles´Bridge reopened yesterday.
Old Aug 29th, 2002, 01:19 PM
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Arrived in Prague 14th August at the height of the flooding.
On the 15th all public transport was disrupted but still running on an as and when basis. Many underground stations were closed because of the flooding.
I was staying with friends in Cernosice, 7 miles SW of Prague - on the Berounka river - and we eventually got a train from Cernosice into the main station on Wilsonova.
We were able to walk down through Wenceslas Square into the Old Town and, even though the floods had put the Horological clock out of action, there were still a few hardy tourists observing it.
We were able to walk around many areas above the flood line in the Old Town relatively easily as the number of tourists was considerably fewer than normal in August.
Many streets by the river were cordoned off but the police were most helpful and polite.
We took a tram over the river to Mala Strana and it was the same story, many riverside areas were cordoned off.
The next day, 16th August, the barriers alongside the river in Old Town were being removed by prisoners, supervised by warders.
We walked up Nerudova to the castle which was open to visitors at that time.
We then checked out the hotel U Krale Jiriho in Liliova in the Old Town where I had booked to stay for the nights of 26/27 August.
The cellar containing the restaurant had been flooded but we were informed that it would be OK by 19th August.
After spending time with friends in Slovakia I returned to Prague on 26 August.
Still problems in the areas alongside the river and still only 4 out of 17 bridges open across the river - the Charles Bridge was not one of them!
Many underground stations still flooded and skips in the street full of water-damaged goods and possessions.
The cellar restaurant at my hotel was still out of action but that did not give me any problems - there were plenty of other places to eat.
I drank water from the tap in the hotel and 72 hours later - no problems.
The authorities and everyone are working really hard to get the city back on it's feet, but it will not happen overnight.
I shall return to Prague at sometime in the future just to realise my dream of walking over the Charles Bridge.
So yes - Prague does welcome you - but do keep an eye on the taxi drivers who are trying to make even more money out of the situation.
AAA taxis are still charging proper prices so give them your support too!
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