Day 11: Beautiful Prague

Prague Travel Blog

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5:38 pm:

Made it to Prague all in one piece! What a long train ride. I did however have an awesome sleep. There was some really nice scenery during the ride this morning as well. Prague is definitely the most beautiful city I've seen so far: rolling hills, the river, lots of trees, old gothic buildings, nice city squares, etc. The weather has also been the best here. It's finally a hot sunny day! Just the way i like it. The hostel seems pretty nice (Prague Square Hostel). The beds are big and comfortable and its in the best location you can probably get (right on the main street). I haven't met any roomates yet. I went on the free walking tour this afternoon when I arrived. The company just started the Prague tour a couple weeks ago so it wasn't as awesome as the other cities but it was still really good. I made small chat with a few people but no one I really wanted to hang out with. There's definitely not as many English speaking people here. I'm also trying to get used to the money here. One Canadian dollar is 17 Czech Koruny so it takes a bit of math. I'm planning on going on the pub crawl tonight. This will be the first time I go on one without anyone i've met so I'm hoping its a good crowd. I'm probably going to nap a bit and then get dinner and maybe get a souvenir before I get ready for the crawl but first I'll list my ten things for Amsterdam:

1) Watch where you walk: Pedestrians are at the bottom of the totem pole. Cars don't stop for you and if they do, there will be a line of bikes coming towards you. The huge amount of bikes makes it a bit of a challenge to walk around sometimes.

2) Only a tiny part of Amsterdam is actually the Red Light District: its not what the whole city is about. Its only a few streets. Also, the new conservative government is trying to slowly shut down the RLD so its not as big as it used to be

3) Amsterdam can be as tame or as wild as you want it to be: People who look down on Amsterdam saying its a city full of sin couldn't be more wrong. Its actually a nice, quiet, laid back city. There are families and elderly people all over the place and it has a nice atmosphere. It's not all drugs and sex. That being said, if you want a party, you've come to the right place. There are very few rules in this place and tons of people come here to take part in activities that would normally be illegal in their home countries.

4) Enjoy some cheese: I saw more cheese shops here than i did in Paris. Its not that pricey either so definitely get some local stuff. They have lots of varieties.

5) If you want groceries and are near the train station, get them there: I barely found any grocery stores (I was staying in the tourist area though). I was 2 minutes from the station though so I stocked up on some drinks and snacks instead of paying at restaurants and concession stands.

6) Almost all the locals speak perfect English: The Dutch are really laid back and friendly (such a nice change from the people in Paris) and they always understood me.

7) Try some fries with mayo: Everyone eats fries and mayo in Amsterdam (locals and tourists). Any time you walk by a restaurant you will see a plate at every table. And the mayo is piled on. I don't eat mayo but I tried it once just because I was in Amsterdam. It was ok but I definitely prefer ketchup.

8) Don't do the Heinekin Experience: all our tour guides and even those who went on it said it wasn't worth the money

9) Bring your ID to the coffeeshops: People think you can just get in and do whatever you want but they are strict about checking ID to make sure you are over 18 (at least at the popular places).

10) Don't buy alcohol at coffeeshops: By law, they can't sell alcohol and drugs at the same place (it has to be one or the other) but some coffeeshops still hae beer on their menu. This beer actually is non-alcoholic but they don't tell people that (a tourist scam) and no one notices because they are already influenced by the drugs.
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photo by: vulindlela