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amyb Oct 23rd, 2004 01:30 PM

Trip Report - Prague and Vienna - LONG
This trip was a first for me for a couple reasons. First solo trip, first trip to a country where I don't speak the language, first trip I let a travel agent plan. Happily, I can say it was a success. I'll pass on my details as a thank you to those who answered questions, sent me info and gave me suggestions. Cheryl and Elaine come to mind immediately, but there were others?

I booked everything through Laifer tours. Paul Laifer was great on the phone and the package with all the travel docs was very thorough, even for a seasoned European traveler like me (this was trip # 20, I think!) The package I purchased included air to and from Prague and between Prague and Vienna (which was key for only 6 full days, I didn?t want to spend 5 hours on a train), hotel, private car to/from hotel/airport, breakfast every day and city tour in each city. I paid $1750 or so with my first time traveler discount (paid up for the single supplement) and I could not beat the price on my own for such nice, centrally located hotels. Believe me, I tried.

Saturday/Sunday: Left Boston for JFK to catch Czech Air to Prague. Everything was seamless, smooth transfer (although a 3 hour layover). I was a bit disconcerted when I was in the departure lounge and not many people around me were speaking English...what have I gotten into? Anyway, the flight over was uneventful. The CSA crew were wonderful, very friendly and attentive, the food was really good for plane food and we arrived a bit early in Prague. My private driver met me at 8:20 and I was at the hotel by 8:45. The Hotel Maximillian right off Old Town Square was delightful. Very nicely furnished, the room felt homey, warm and was immaculate. The location couldn't be better, a very quiet side street within 3 minutes of Old Town Square. The only ATM I found in the area was right around the corner at a bank (finding an ATM became a challenge...they are not as prolific as I'd read). Since my room was not yet ready, I headed right out with my camera and guidebooks. My first impression of Old Town Square reminded me a lot of Brugge, with the square and the architecture of the buildings, maybe just on a grander scale. I was at the Astrological Clock for 9:00 and saw it ring in the hour with about 5 other people (which is different than later in the day where the crowds are in the hundreds). I then walked on to the Charles Bridge, feeling the need to see what I'd seen so often on the webcam I was checking daily at work, waiting in anticipation for the trip. It was on the bridge that I realized that it was a LOT colder here than I expected. With the windchill, I'd say we were in the mid 40s, as a high, at best. I was dressed and prepared for 50s-60s...and I don't like cold!

I then went on to the Jewish Quarter and toured the synagogues and cemetery there. This was a real eye-opening experience for me. I haven't yet been to a country that was affected by the Hitler regime, and to be in the Pinkas Synagogue and see the rooms with walls lined with the printed names of citizens who'd been knowingly killed or just disappeared during that time was disturbing for me. The artwork by the children of Terezin is so poignant. You really can tour this on your own if you have a reasonably good tour book and just follow the assigned times on your ticket. I spent a few hours meandering between and within the sites in Josefov and learned quite a bit that I didn?t know about the Judaism and its customs and traditions and the history of Czech jews.

I had an early dinner at Restaurant Clementinum. I started with Czech fried cheese with cranberry sauce, followed by beef goulash with dumplings and ended with molten lava chocolate cake. All of it was really very tasty, and warming me up on a cold Prague night. The goulash was pretty much what I'd expected...the dumplings were kind of like underbaked bread, but mopping up the gravy with them was a savory treat. So far, day one in Prague has been a success. I fended off jetlag and returned to the hotel for bed, hitting the free internet in the hotel lounge before sleep.

amyb Oct 23rd, 2004 01:35 PM

Monday: Up early today and first order of business is to find a winter coat. Seriously, I threw my gloves and scarf in my suitcase on a whim, and wasn't without them from the minute I got was time to upgrade my New England fall-weight coat for a winter coat. But not until I had breakfast. Maximillian's breakfast was a sight for hungry eyes. It has just about everything you can imagine...cereals, fruit, pastry, yogurt, eggs, French toast and a variety of juices, coffees and teas. Then I headed out straight away to Wenceslas Square to find a department store or somewhere to find a coat. This killed me, as being born and raised in Boston, I have a closet full of winter-wear, just did not expect to need it on vacation, especially since the week before I'd read it was nearly 75 in Prague! I found a coat at Debenhams which served me well all week, particularly in Vienna later on!

I then sought out the Museum of Communism, which was sandwiched between McDonald's and a casino on Na Prikope. The museum was really interesting. Each display covered an area of life and how it was interpreted by the communists. I really got an idea of the struggle and oppression from that, but the video shown at the end of the exhibition was very impressive, of both the 69 and 89 Revolutions. Now 69 pre-dates me just a bit, but I remember what happened in 89 and to actually be in Prague now, on Wenceslas Square was just amazing, especially re-seeing it all on the video. I highly recommend this stop if you're in Prague, if nothing more than to appreciate what happened in 89 and thereafter.

I stopped in a street market nearby and found the nicest man selling wooden toys he had made. My dad collects fire trucks, and I found the nicest wooden fire truck. I started to talk to the man, who knew very little English, but somehow I managed to convey my father's interest and then the man said he collect a certain scale model from Minnesota, did I know that? Well, this whole encounter and the sweet man really was the pivotal point of my days in just felt nice to talk to someone passionate about something my dad is too, a bond that crossed the language barrier. This street market also had a candy stall selling caramel covered cashews, which I visited a few times. Prague is becoming a place I could really get used to!

I found Wenceslas Square kind of seedy and I wasn't too thrilled about using any of the ATMs along there because none were attached to a bank. I'd seen ?holes in walls? ATMs in Ireland that were sketchy and not legitimate, so I stay away from those elsewhere now. I did the loop up and back on Wenceslas Square and then headed to Kavarna Slavia for lunch. This really does have a great view of the castle. To warm up (yes, a recurring theme!) I had onion soup and a salad with grilled goat cheese and honey Dijon dressing. Only day two and I'm already craving vegetables. The salad was delectable. The soup wasn't quite like what I'd had in Paris, but it was piping hot and did the trick. For dessert I succumbed to the pancaky temptation and had the palacinky Slavia, with strawberries, cream cheese and a dab of strawberry sherbert and slathering of whipped cream. Oh my...there will be more of this in my future! From here I walked to the Charles Bridge and crossed over into Mala Strana. Crossing the bridge, the crowds of people were pushed aside by what looked like secret service to let a small group of well-dressed people pass right along. Not recognizing them but curious nonetheless, I continued on. (I later found out this was the Czech and Slovak presidents out for a stroll!) I stopped at St. Nicholas Church, with its fine display of high Baroque. This was just so overdone but incredibly beautiful. I was so impressed because it was so pretty and yet different from anything I'd seen in churches elsewhere in Europe. Despite having the half day city tour the next day which I knew would include the castle, I headed on the long, steep uphill climb to the castle. The area in front of the castle has a wonderful view which I enjoyed before heading back down to the Church of Our Lady to see the Infant Child of Prague, stopping at Cream & Dreams for some Italian gelato on the way! A family friend told me I should check this out. I was pretty underwhelmed by reminded me a bit of the Mannekin Pis in Brussels, yet I know it has religious importance to Catholics (which I am not). I just can't appreciate it, I suppose. I then went back towards Old Town and planned to climb the clock tower since it was another glorious clear blue sky day, but the Town Hall was closed because aforementioned VIPs were inside. Earlier in the day I bought a ticket to see a concert at the Municipal House, so it was to an early dinner in time for an 8:00 show.

I ate at Hotel Cerny Slon which is right off Old Town Square tucked into a little side street and square. The restaurant was full, so I ate in the bar downstairs, which was fashioned like a beehive hut, with tightly packed stone walls and torches. Very warm and cozy. Here I had a caprese salad, pork schnitzel cordon bleu with potato pancakes. This was a wonderful meal. The schnitzel was really very well done and the potato accompanied it well. No time for dessert, as it was nearly showtime and I had to run to Municipal House.

The concert was the Vivaldi Orchestra Praga, and they did Handel, Bach and 2 Vivaldi pieces, including Autumn and Winter from Four Seasons (I really like Vivaldi, so this was a nice treat for me). The concert ran about an hour, which was just enough for a tired traveler, and the acoustics in Smetana Hall were just wonderful. The ticket cost me about $30, which was a bargain, but there was better to be had the next day?after a piece of apple strudel and a hot chocolate with Bailey?s and kahlua at the very touristy but nearby Grand Café Prague overlooking the Astronomical Clock, it was off to bed for me.

amyb Oct 23rd, 2004 01:41 PM

Tuesday: Today, another crisp and clear day, was horribly cold. Meeting the tour guide at castle hill at 9:30 was an exercise in insanity, as it is infinitely colder and windier up near that castle. Yet another Laifer traveler and I were crazy enough to do it. Unfortunately as timing would have it, I am getting my city tour on the day before I leave, but Linda had just arrived from Budapest, so at least I got to impart some of my knowledge from three days to her. The tour started at Loreto Square above the castle and wound down, on foot, castle hill, St. Vitus Cathedral, down through Mala Strana, under and across the Charles Bridge, through Old Town and up to Wenceslas Square. The only time the tour guide really stopped and spent time at a location was in the castle area and in St. Vitus. It is interesting to learn the cathedral was named for an Italian saint because there were no Czech saints yet. And then poor Wenceslas gets murdered for being too nice, yet they name a square after him and give him such a grand tomb! Interesting also that the man that designed Notre Dame in Paris also designed parts of this cathedral (so the guide said).

I was baffled at seeing the water lines in Mala Strana from the 2001 flood, which were over the tops of the doors on many houses. At the end of the very cold tour, Linda and I decided to eat at the restaurant at Municipal Hall which I was unsuccessful at getting reservations at for any night I was in Prague. This was Plzenska Restaurace and to be honest I was a bit disappointed. I had beef/vegetable soup and goulash with dumplings, and had really had better at Clementinum We did score big with the dessert cart and had chocolate mousse cake with a peach in it!

From here we walked to pick up tickets for a 5:30 concert at St. Martin in the Wall church. From the fliers this looked like a great program and I was anxious to see it. Linda and I split up for the afternoon and met at the aforementioned caramel covered cashew stall to stock up and walk to the church together. While on my own again, I did climb the clock tower and the view was wonderful on such a nice day. It is really neat to see the rooftops and the square from such an angle. I also popped into St. Nicholas church on the Old Town Square, which is built by the same guy who built the one in Mala Strana, yet this one is much more tame. The chandelier in here is quite pretty thought.

We met back up for the concert which was just wonderful for a mere $16! It was played by a four strings and was kind of like a "best of" classical concert. I heard Vivaldi's Spring (so three out of four seasons isn't bad!), Mozart's Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, 2 Ave Marias and Bach's Air, among others. This ran just over an hour and was beautiful. Such a bargain...oh to have more days and time to hear more!

I took Linda to Kavarna Slavia where we enjoyed a night view of the castle and bridge. I had the salty pancakes with loads of fresh veggies and turkey and the goat cheese salad again. Linda and I both had the Slavia pancakes, and I said goodbye to both Linda and Prague after a quick photo stop on the walk home for night shots of the bridge and castle.

amyb Oct 23rd, 2004 01:44 PM

Wednesday: Driver picked me up and a few other Laifer travelers to head to Vienna. Our flight was at 9:15 and we were in Vienna and at our hotel by 11. I decided to immediately head to Schonbrunn Palace, as I thought the next morning I would cover the main sites on my included half-day city tour. My hotel, the Hotel Rathauspark was perfectly situated on a quiet side street right near the rear of the city hall (Rathaus). Within a few minutes, I could be either on a tram or on the underground. I decided it was time to make use of public transport to keep warmer (as Vienna was colder still than Prague) and get to places without worrying about weather (which was dark and gloomy after Prague's bright sun), so I bought a three day transportation ticket for 12 euros. So I hopped on the U2 at Rathaus and within about 10 minutes, I was at Schonbrunn Palace. I had been to Versailles 5 years ago and wasn?t terribly impressed, but I really enjoyed Schonbrunn. I think a lot of it had to do with there being no crowd at all, whereas at Versailles we were herded through like cattle and there was little room to breathe, let alone see the rooms. The audio tour, which was included in the admission price, was very worthwhile and I did the tour which was 40 state rooms and the additional Elisabeth apartments. I really loved the details like in the round Chinese rooms with the porcelain vases all over the walls, or the grandmother's handstitched tapestries in one room. The Grand Hall was just exquisite and overall the tour, covering just a small part of the entire building, was very impressive. I meandered out to the gardens afterwards, but the flowers had already been pulled up and Vienna was dark and gloomy and too cold and windy to walk much further, so I headed back to the city center.

As an aside, there is something amazing about European public transportation. To stand there on the platform and know by looking at the marquee board that the next train is in 2 minutes (my longest wait, by the way) is incredible. I've stood waiting for my commuter rail train in Boston for upwards of 20 minutes with no word or warning. Incredible. The interesting thing in Vienna is that there are no turnstiles, since people like me who have a pass or something similar, only punch it the first time and then just have to make sure they have it on them if asked by an official. This is great in that I just made sure it was in my wallet but not at the ready, but I noticed a lot more homeless folks on trams and subways and wonder if this easy access doesn't promote more of them riding the trains to keep warm.

At Stephansdom, I found the steeple under construction and covered in scaffolding and phone company advertisements. I've never seen that before! I fell victim to a man dressed as Mozart who convinced me to buy a ticket to that night's Mozart Orchestra show at Musikverein. His costume should've clued me in, but I paid the price (40 euro) and was lured by the joy of my music experiences in Prague. I did some shopping around Kartnerstrasse and headed for a early evening dinner at Figlmuller. Having read about this in numerous places, I was anxious to try it. I ate at the one on Backerstrasse first (note, the "first") and loved the décor and pub-like feel to the room I was in. In a word, the weinerschnitzel is heavenly. It is perfectly thin and not a hint of gristle or fat on it, lightly breaded and fried (I had visions of grease, but none to be had). The accompanying potato salad and grape juice from their vineyard were perfect and I left quite happy. I almost managed to finish the schnitzel, but I wanted to be able to finish my day off without lapsing into a food coma, so I headed out to the Albertina for the Michelangelo exhibition I had read about.

The Albertina is really a very pretty building in an easy-to-reach location near the rear of the Opera House and next to the Hotel Sacher (which I tried to get into for pasty, but settled on Café Mozart instead after the Albertina). From what I could gather, when the Albertina has three exhibitions going on as it did when I was there, there's no permanent exhibition. Again, not speaking German, I wasn't sure, but when I asked to see where the Durers were, the staff told me that I could only see the three exhibits, there was no permanent collection today. Hmmm. So this is where it comes in handy to speak the language! I felt bad for them and for me for the communication gap, but enjoyed the Michelangelos, which were heavenly. I'm a big fan (see my Italy trip report) and loved seeing the pencil sketches they had there, about 12 of them, along with a lot of Rafael and Fra Bartolomeo to show how he influenced his contemporaries.

At Café Mozart I had an amaretto hot chocolate and cheese strudel while I caught up on my travel journal and enjoyed the atmosphere before going to the hotel to rest up for the Mozart concert. The Hotel Rathauspark is quite modern. The rooms are minimalistically decorated but they are very clean and somewhat quiet. I did hear a lot of hotel noise and even street noise from a couple streets away during the night, which was not the case in Prague. Rathauspark advertises their buffet breakfast to be the best power breakfast in Europe, but I'd give it a close second to that at the Maximillian in Prague!

The Mozart concert was really a wash for me. I was overtired and shouldn't have gone, but I did. My seat was in the third row in the middle of a group of tourists with cameras poised at the ready for the return of Amadeus himself. The musicians, while immensely talented, really played up the period costume and I just felt like this was a cheap, cheesy experience. I enjoyed the music of the first half and left at intermission to get a good night's sleep.

m_kingdom2 Oct 23rd, 2004 01:45 PM

I'm curious as to why everyone found Wencelas Square seedy. There were dumpy clubs there, and downmarket casinos, but I never found it threatening. It wasn't Berkeley Square, but hardly dangerous. I think far too many people are paranoid with safety - I was there in August, and in the dark too, nothing menacing whatsoever.

amyb Oct 23rd, 2004 01:47 PM

Thursday: I skipped the organized half-day tour when I found out it was including Schonbrunn, where I'd already spent a good portion of the previous day. Oh itinerary today was full. I rode the tram for a bit just to see the area near my hotel, then I started out at the Starbucks at the bottom of Kartnerstrasse where I paid nearly 5 euros for my usual drink at home (hey, I'd gone almost a week without it at this point, I was desperate!) Fully energized, I shopped some more near Karnerstrasse and toured St. Stephens, which was beautiful with its wooden altar. I walked toward Hofburg Palace and stopped at Café Demel for Bailey's hot chocolate and Sacher torte. Demel became my favorite stop from here on out. I loved the upstairs area where it was quiet and you could read and sip coffee for ages. I also like seeing into the kitchen where they make the elaborate tortes that you see in the window displays. From here I toured the Hofburg Palace, including the silver collection and the Royal Apartments. I find the royal family here to be quite interesting, especially Elisabeth and her life which Princess Diana's seemed to parallel, and Maria Teresa. It's all quite an interesting story. But the Sissi Museum was interesting to me for that reason. I then toured the Treasury, seeing the crown of the Holy Roman Empire, among other things. I stopped into Burgkappelle, where the Vienna Boys Choir sings on Sundays, how small and quaint, that must be so wonderful. At this point I took the underground to the Kunthistoriche Museum for its European collection. I love the Spanish masters, so to see that set of Velasquez was great for me (having only ever seen his work at the Met in NYC, I haven't yet made it to Spain!) I loved the Carravaggios as well. After wandering through the Italian/Spanish section, I was exhausted but wanted to see the Vermeer in the Dutch/German/Austrian section?sadly it was on loan to Tokyo. Again, the audio guide was included with the price of admission, which I think is a wonderful thing.

For an early dinner I headed back to Stephansplatz and had dinner at Plachutta. My MO in Vienna was to have a large breakfast, a café snack late morning and a good dinner early afternoon, to avoid any potential discomfort eating alone in a crowded restaurant and also to get a seat at a popular restaurant. This worked out for me. Plachutta was wonderful, and really a splurge meal for me after doing so well in Prague. I had beef broth as an appetizer and a beef fillet with fried onions and roasted potatoes (like hash browns). How wonderful the meat was about a quarter-inch thick and very tender and well cooked. Very delicious. I had crème caramel with caramel ice cream and a raspberry schnapps for dessert. The service was just wonderful, I had a stream of 3 waiters at my beck and call and they made sure everything was perfect. The whole meal was about 60 euro, but worth every penny.

I had a very very early night as I felt pretty run down from the last two days and wanted an early start on my last day in Vienna. For an evening snack I picked up a sample of the Mozart liquor and a marmalade donut from this wonderful bread stand in the middle of the Stephansplatz. You know, just in case I woke up with the munchies...

amyb Oct 23rd, 2004 01:50 PM

Friday: Today I felt great and got out early. I went to Stadtpark to seek out the Strauss statue (another thing I'd watched on my webcams at work) which was quite pretty. From there I walked to Haus der Musik, which was a wonderful stop. The first floor is a museum on the Vienna Philharmonic. There are batons there on display from great conductors like Toscanini, Bernstein's tuxedo. It was cool for this Boston girl to see Seiji Ozawa mentioned so favorably. The upper floors of the building were all interactive on the science of sound and music. I can imagine this must be great for kids if I enjoyed it so much. I liked the floor which was a museum of composers, where the included audio tour filled you in on details of each composer's life. This was an unexpectedly great stop for me.

Nearby, I dropped a lot of euros for 2 books in the British Bookshop. What a find!

From here I strolled back to Café Demel for apfelstrudel and hot chocolate. Today seemed a little warmer but was raining off and on. Overall it was dark and gloomy for my entire stay in Vienna, but I was making the most of it.

Next I walked to the Jewish Museum of Vienna. It was very specific to Vienna, but thorough. The audio tour was included here as well. The collection of belongings not returned to exiled Jews was quite interesting, yet sad. The belongings couldn't be returned either because the owners had been killed or just not found. The exhibits on the socialist propaganda about Viennese jews was very disturbing for me. Again, with this being my first exposure to this part of the world and this point in history, I really was just in disbelief not only in the things that were done, but the beliefs and things that were put forth in these pamphlets and posters. Amazing. There was a whole exhibit on the niece of Mahler, who was a musician in her own right, but was sent to Auschwitz. Facing certain death, she was spared to form a mini orchestra to play for the workers as they came from and went to their slave labor every day. Sadly, she succumbed to botulism in the camp.

My last tourist stop of the day was at the Figaro House, where Mozart wrote the Marriage of Figaro. Seeing the sheet music and notations was worth the price of admission, but there was not much else there to see. I dropped all my shopping back at the hotel and changed for my afternoon of culture. I visited the Figlmuller on Woeille for a repeat of my first Figlmuller experience. I think I liked the Backerstrasse location better, just for the less cramped and cozier atmosphere.

I then headed to Musikverein, where my ticket awaited me for the Vienna Boys Choir in Brahms Hall. This was the event of my week. It was just so beautiful. The hall was gorgeous all gilded in gold. I had ordered the ticket on the internet and found myself in the front row. In all, there were maybe 150 people there and the boys were just wonderful. They opened with Orff's Carmina Burana (another favorite of mine) and sang in so many languages and had such a wide program, I was astounded. I truly believe that what I heard is what one hears when they get to heaven, it was just astounding.

The concert lasted an hour and 40 minutes, and I had 20 minutes to get to the Spanish Riding School for a charity given by the Lippizaner stallions (bought ticket at home before I left and had it delivered to hotel). This was indeed impressive, but as an animal lover it really bothered me to see them forced to do those things, all the while drooling profusely and being hit and huffing back in seeming frustration. I'm sure to horse people it's great, but it really did bother me.

I ended my stay in Vienna by doing more café research, and ventured to Café Central for Viennese potato soup and apfelsaft gersplunkt (apple juice with a kick) and then something called punschestorte, which had some sort of alcohol kick to it but was delectable in its white and dark chocolate layers. In the end, my vote still goes to Demel for overall food, ambiance and location.

amyb Oct 23rd, 2004 01:52 PM

Saturday: I'll abbreviate my 20 hour commute home with only the basics. Forty minutes is more than enough time to transfer at Prague. The airport is miniscule. I had 20 minutes to kill when I got to the gate. However, if you want to claim your VAT here and are transferring, you're out of luck. I couldn't get the papers stamped in Vienna since that wasn't my last stop, and there's no where in the terminal to get them stamped in Prague. I would've had to exit the airport and come back in, going through security and passport control again to get them stamped there. So I didn't bother. Sure, I had time to kill, but who knows how long that would've taken.

The flight home was fine, although I was in the middle of 6 children under 2 in the first two rows of coach. Ugh. The transfer at JFK is odd, an hour and a half to get my luggage, then you hand your landing card to the agent, and throw your luggage BACK on a carousel to be sent on to your final destination. And then you go through security, despite the fact that you never left the secure luggage area? Odd. The whole thing took 2 1/2 hours, so I was glad for my 4 hour layover.

All in all, a wonderful trip...I posted some of the 250 pictures I took online. Please enjoy.

Already I have a craving for planning the next one...anyone have suggestions for do it yourself Spain?

amyb Oct 23rd, 2004 01:55 PM was the trashy clubs and casinos and downmarket stuff that made it seedy IMHO. I never felt unsafe anywhere in either Prague or Vienna, not even there. I just felt Wenceslas Sq. was rundown and trashy (seedy) and didn't spend much time there at all.

bardo1 Oct 23rd, 2004 02:38 PM

Thanks for the detailed report - it's going straight into my Prague file.

h2babe Oct 23rd, 2004 02:39 PM

Amy, I enjoyed reading your report, thank you! I filed this in my Prague file for my trip next year :)

m_kingdom2 Oct 23rd, 2004 02:43 PM

My dear, if that's as trashy and downmarket as it gets, then you've never seen real trashy and downmarket. London gets a lot worse than that I assure you.

platzman Oct 23rd, 2004 03:13 PM

Enjoyed reading about your trip. One of the restaurants you mentioned, Plachutta, has a website (
and you can read the entire menu(in German only) with prices.
I always try one of their 5 "Klassik" 3 course menus.

ThinGorjus Oct 23rd, 2004 04:35 PM

I am ROFLMAO at the fact, Amy, that you are from Boston and you were out of sorts with the cold in Prague!!! I went to prep school in Cambridge, and I can remember wearing an anorak to school in May.

I was in Prague in July and it was chilly. You should have done your homework on the weather. You can't go by what it was the week before, but on the average for the time of year.

I agree that Vaclav Namensky was somewhat seedy. I was propositioned by a prostitute near Marks & Spencer. I thought it was very funny, however. I never felt unsafe.


hopscotch Oct 24th, 2004 01:03 AM

Thanks for a very nice travelogue. Take me along next time. ;-)

dwzemens Oct 24th, 2004 02:38 AM

Nice report, Amy. My wife and I are headed to Vienna and Prague next may, with an additional stop in Amsterdam. We were thinking 3 nights in Amsterdam, four in Prague and three in Vienna. Would you have added your fourth night in Prague or Vienna, if you had to make the choice? Thanks!

dwzemens Oct 24th, 2004 02:40 AM

PS I *love* your photo under the Charles Bridge!!

JulieVikmanis Oct 24th, 2004 04:27 AM

Great report. Sounds like you really enjoyed yourself and you certainly make things come alive for a reader. It's apparent that you're quite a music lover. Prague and Vienna are perfect for music lovers. Enjoyed your report.

amyb Oct 24th, 2004 09:12 AM

Just wanted to add about the was in the 70s the week before and was forecasted to be 50-60 while I was there. I was prepared with layers and a coat that I'd wear here in 50-60 degree weather. Even when I was there I was checking daily forecasts, and it never got anywhere near the 50 they were predicting. It is 45 here in Boston today, and still warmer than my week there. But hey, I have another winter coat to add to my collection!

amyb Oct 24th, 2004 09:14 AM

DW, I'd add an extra day in Prague if I had the choice. I would've used it to go back and comb through the castle area on my own (missed Golden Lane and didn't get into the museum there) and I'd definitely listen to more music, as much as I could cram into the day. It's so accessible and affordable, I could hardly believe it.

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