St. Vitus Cathedral at Prague Castle
The first country I ventured to on my study abroad trip (outside of Italy however) was Prague in the Czech Republic! This is a gorgeous city with a very interesting history. The are known for regaining their country from 40 oppressing years under communist reign, the Protestants and Catholics fighting (like in many counties), but with an exciting twist of throwing each other out windows (know they are know for throwing people out windows during fights), and interesting President, modernistic artwork and precarious sculptures, and changing their country what seems like 20 times (from Czechoslovakia to the Czech Republic and many more). This country may be small, but they have just as much heart, passion, and intriguing history as any larger country!
Walking around was like being in a fairy tale. There are many different architectural styles, but Gothic and Romanesque were my favorite with pointing tops and decorative stone walls. Not to mention this city holds the oldest medieval castle in Europe, the Prague Castle! This castle is basically a small village from tiny houses where the king’s counsel used to reside until apothecaries and illusionists moved in, a huge basilica, three different courtyards, and more! There are even guards that stand watch of the castle and will not smile no matter how hard you try and make them, the changing of the guards was definitely fun to see. This was an absolutely amazing castle to see and I would recommend it!
The Prague clock tower was also very beautiful and centrally located in the town square (part of “Old Town”) it was built by a very talented clock maker. The legend says that the Czech people were so impressed by this man’s work they never wanted him to make a clock that beautiful for any other country. So their solution was to attack him and blind him, he lived through this attack and as revenge he sneaked back into the clock tower and broke the clock. The clock stayed broken for almost 500 years until a young architect fixed it! Now it is a beautiful working clock that moved every hour on the hour! A word of caution, this clock is gorgeous and you should definitely visit BUT the movement on the hour has been voted the second most disappointing European tourist site. So definitely see the clock and even if the clock’s movement is very impressive for how old it is, it is not some fantastic show so go with an open mind and definitely climb to the top for a wonderful view!
The Jewish Quarter was also very interesting to see, it is sad how the needed to stay in their own part of town, but it was definitely one of the most beautiful areas of the city. The graveyard was also interesting and a tad creepy, apparently they did not was to move any bodies even though there was no more room in the small graveyard they had, so instead they decided to create levels of bodies and stack them on top of each other. Now in this tiny graveyard there is something like 12,000 people buried!
If you visit definitely try the dessert calls “Turtle Neck”, the sweet aroma is around almost every corner of the city. They are hollowed out pieces of dough covered in cinnamon sugar and filled with Nutella! This proud and beautiful city isn’t one to miss and was an amazing start to my adventures!!! I enjoyed my visit so much, but as always was incredible happy to come home to Ascoli ❤