Prague – City of Diversity and Contrasts

Charles Bridge, Franz Kafka and a historic old town. When you think of Prague, you immediately have a fixed idea in your head. At least that’s how most people feel. For me, a person who detests  pigeon-holing, this was reason enough to discover the Czech capital on my own. My third trip in the ‘Falkensteiner Year of my Life’ therefore took me to Prague. Why Prague reminds me of my hometown, Salzburg, & why it’s much hipper and more diverse than you think… Read on to find out!

Prague lies in the heart of the Czech Republic. The well-developed infrastructure means you can reach the metropolis on the Vltava River in less than 4 hours from Vienna. This makes Prague an ideal destination for a weekend trip. The holiday starts as soon as you arrive in Prague Central Station ‘Praha Hlavní Nádraží’. Due to its perfect location between Prague Central Station and Wenceslas Square, the Falkensteiner Hotel Maria Prag is the ideal city hotel. The hotel with Prague charm has not only the charm of a city hotel, but also that of a gourmet hotel. The rich breakfast buffet leaves nothing to be desired and in the Acquapura City SPA wellness area you will find everything you need after an extensive city stroll.

Prague and my hometown Salzburg share many similarities in certain aspects, in my opinion. Walking around the city is the best option thanks to its central, historical centre. I always say that you should experience a city and not just visit it. The narrow, romantic lanes are there for you to get a little lost in, because this is the only way to find the hidden shops and the fragrant snack stands.

Prague Castle is the largest closed castle area in the world and is situated on Hradchin Hill. A visit is a must for anyone interested in history. This place is pretty full of visitors on weekends especially. For romantics and individualists, therefore, I have a secret tip: Vyšehrad is a Prague stronghold on whichSt Peter and Paul Church and the Vyšehrad Cemetery stand. It is situated in the new town of Prague, directly on the bank of the Vltava River and can be reached from the Falkensteiner Hotel Maria Prague in 20 minutes on foot. This complex radiates incredibly authentic and romantic charm and is one of my favourite places in Prague. In contrast to the Prague Castle, the crowd is small here and, in the neighbouring park, there is a free park bench every day of the week on which to while away time with your beloved.

I was incredibly surprised by the diversity and the many contrasts of the city. In addition to the old, historic squares, Prague also boasts a wealth of modern art and hip, young trendy districts. There are art exhibitions for every taste and so Prague is turning into a true art Mecca and doesn’t need to hide behind trendy cities like Berlin or London at all.

The John Lennon Wall is a colourful wall full of street art. It is located opposite the French Embassy near the Charles Bridge. What looks like a normal, urban graffiti surface has its own story and bears the name of John Lennon, who never came to Prague during his life. However, John Lennon was a true hero of Prague youth. During the communism of that time, western music was strictly forbidden. The freedom-creating messages of John Lennon were a thorn in the side of the Communists. As a protest against the regime, however, young people listened to his music in spite of that. After John Lennon’s death, a stranger painted the slogan ‘Give peace a chance’ on this wall. The quotations and paintings increased in number night after night. This place is both a place of successful street art and a place of freedom and liberalism.

Letná Park is another young, hip place near the Old Town. The park is a great place for relaxing and many locals come here for leisure or sport. In addition to the huge metronome there is also a skater park, playgrounds for young and old and inviting beer gardens. In contrast to many people, I believe that here in Letná Park you have a more beautiful and authentic view of the golden city on the Vltava River than from Prague Castle.

Art & hip neighbourhoods, a dreamlike old town centre, romantic parks and a Falkensteiner City-Hotel like something out of a picture book – Prague has all this and more to offer. We fell in love with the city on the Vltava. So let’s go, Prague is worth a trip at any time of the year – see for yourself!