Thursday, January 16, 2014

5 Jul 2013: Prague's Old Town Square and more

5 Jul 2013:

Musicians play!

A day of adventure started. I took it as an opportunity to learn about a new country and to spend time getting together with friends.

Getting to the platform of the train station nearest to the hotel where we stayed at proved to be a special challenge. Perhaps I was too used to taking lifts to avoid taking lengthy escalators, the lengthy escalator that would lead us to the train platform did not suit me well. Thankfully, with the kindness of my travelling mates who looked out for me, I managed the ride up and down the escalators.

In Prague, the metro train stations did not use the gantries that the MRT train stations in Singapore use. A visitor to Prague would need to purchase the appropriate ticket and then just before they entered the train station or board a tram, they would need to validate the ticket. The validated ticket will state clearly the date of travel. There may be checks conducted by the staff to ensure that each passenger has a validated ticket. The penalty of carrying a non validated ticket or a ticket that is not properly validated for that day of use would be a fine.

I was feeling thankful that it was a day of good weather. We were on our way for the Old Town Square. To get there, the metro stop would be Staromestska (line A). I felt very thankful that there were a few people in the group who have done their research to find the way to Old Town Square. While I had prepared sketchy directions to get there, those were last minute attempts just the day before the departure. On our way there, we passed by Powder Tower.

The Powder Tower, as I learnt much later, is one of the original 13 city gates in Old Town, Prague. It is a Gothic tower. While its history did not stick into my mind, I remembered it as a majestic tower.

The shops in Prague offered a different treats for my eyes than those in Singapore: Bohemia Crystal, Slavonic Art and more. At the Old Town Square, we saw many temporary market stalls being set up. There were stalls selling hand-crafted products.

For lunch, I had goulash soup in one of the eating places, named Pizzeria - Cafe. I love the taste of the potatoes with the tomato flavoured soup base.

That afternoon, I had the opportunity to visit the Astronomical Clock Tower. At the viewing gallery of the Astronomical Clock Tower, there were plaques that described some of the important buildings in Prague. At the viewing gallery of the Astronomical Clock Tower, I had the privilege to listen to a trumpeter playing his trumpet to announce the time. When asked, he said that he would do so every hour, when he is on duty.

The view from the Astronomical Clock Tower, Prague.

The trumpeter played.

Looking down from the viewing gallery.
St Nicholas Church. Prague.

The view from the Astronomical Clock Tower.

The horses on the streets of Prague attracted my attention. I suppose it was due to the novelty of seeing horses on the streets? Against the backdrop of the streets of Prague's Old Town Square, I felt as if I was in the land of the fairy tales. Old Town Square was a charming place in my opinion.

After exploring the Old Town Square, we walked to the Staromestska's metro train station to take a train ride. We were on our way to the Prague Castle.

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