7 September 2019

3 hours (or less) from Paris: Prague

  I've been excited about writing up our magical visit to Prague, one of Europe's most beautiful capitals, capping the summer. Czechoslovakia - now shortened to Czechia - is where my Austrian-German mother was born, and so much of what I saw evoked a flood of childhood memories, of stories, and histories, of the Bohemian Forest. Of a city and country of incomparable beauty and rich culture.   

Everyone couldn't have been kinder and more generous as we spirited from castle to café to Kirche. With our elegant hotel just steps from Old Town Square (merci Terry!), we were able to walk almost everywhere. Street markets brimmed with street foods: crispy trdelník, fire-roasting ham hocks, fried cheese sandwiches, bite-sized chlebíčky, endless sausages, potatoes-on-a-stick and my favorite, halušky, tiny gnocchi-like potato dumplings tossed with kraut and smoky bacon. Palačinky, small yeast pancakes (almost but not quite as good as mom's) took me back to our family table and dishes I still make today.

Old-world coffee houses, phenomenal restaurants, a "ghost tour" (though night silhouettes of Prague's imposing baroque towers are spooky enough), a walk through the Jewish Quarter and a day trip to gothic Karlštejn fortress with a hike in the Bohemian Forest made this séjour unforgettable. - BPJ

Photos: knockout views from the top of Old Town Hall Tower

Monday - a week in photos
3 hours (or less) from Paris: Praha, “City of a Hundred Spires"

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