Stroll through Prague (Day and Night, plus interesting odd things!) (Ulog #35)

bengy
Bengy @bengy8 months ago | 6 min read

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Yesterday, I had a bit of a half day off before my concert in Prague and so it was a nice opportunity to just go for a bit of a stroll and explore the city and then have another bit of a stroll after the concert to see the night views. Seeing as most of the night shots were much more attractive than the day ones, it is the one that is featured on the top, but I'll just be doing the blog in the rough time order that I did during the day. It's also my first time trying to do a proper travel related blog with lots of photos, but here goes!

Most of the route was just a bit random, I wasn't aiming to visit anywhere in particular (except the Concert Hall, Rudophinum where I had to be at a specific time!). So, there aren't the usual tourist sights, and more just a little taste of the city, with some tourist sights if I happened to stumble across them. It was a walk that was mostly around the Jewish quarter, seeing as that was where I had to be for work and it was also where a restaurant was recommended to me by my neighbour (you'll have to wait for the @tasteem review for that!). The day section is first, but I think I prefer the photos in the night section!

The Day Walk

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It is quite pleasant walking in this area of Prague, with the nice stones and the cobbles just giving a great feeling under the feet (unless you are wearing heels, I wasn't...). The streets are wide and the buildings are quite beautiful to look at! Traffic was light, I"m not sure if that was normal or not, but it also made for a great city walking experience.

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Okay, I couldn't pass up taking a photo of this cake! Who wouldn't want that for their birthday?

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There is the Kafka memorial, which is a bizarrely interesting sculpture at the intersection of a number of roads. Born in the Czech Republic, he is also buried nearby at the New Jewish cemetery in Prague.

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I'm much more used to seeing "scary" gargoyles on the tops of buildings, so these little dumplings were quite a hilarious change!

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Again, I am just in awe of the style of buildings that they have here (well, in the older quarters at least). Coming from a new country like Australia, we just don't have these historic architectures, and well... Holland isn't really that famous for that sort of thing either, although there are some pretty curious new architecture there!

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Hey, why not just have a photo shoot on the road and block the traffic? I took this picture when there wasn't any cars trying to pass through, just so that you could see what was going on... however, immediately before there were several irate drivers trying get through!

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Another street shot that just shows off the majestic old buildings. I love how in Central Europe they have the buildings painted in these different colours, it makes for such a nice sight compared to the concrete greys of the more modern areas.

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This is the Maisel Synagogue where there is a permanent exhibition. I didn't end up going inside, as I didn't have enough time, but it is one of the actual tourist areas!

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The Rudolfinum, otherwise known as my place for work later in the day! It's a beautiful looking building with a beautiful stage (also a very nice acoustic to play in!), but it has a terrible terrible maze of a backstage area, but that is a post for another day!

However, I was early to the venue, so I decided to keep walking a bit to see more sights from the Mánes Bridge nearby!

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The side of the Rudolfinum, taken from the bridge.

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It was funny to see this lone fisherman in the river, amongst the tourist boats and the hustle and bustle of the bridge above him. Just in his quiet little world... although, I'm not sure I would be keen to eat fish from a city river....

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Now I believe that this is the Waldstein Palace which is the home of the Czech and an original Baroque palace. I did make a better photo in the night section of this post. Next time, I will definitely make an effort to come here, after all, I do play mostly music from this era of history!

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I've honestly not ever seen quite so many swans in the same place at one time! Coming to Europe, it was weird to see white swans.... in Australia, we have black swans and the white ones are unusual. I still find it strange!

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This is the view of the older Legions' Bridge taken from the Mánes Bridge. The other bridge had many more tourists walking around, I guess it was a better route for sightseeing. What I found interesting was the different styles of the tops of the buildings on the left of the photo.

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Connected?

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Okay, I've seen some bizarre sculptures before, but these are pretty strange?

So, that finishes the day walk and it was off to do the General Rehearsal, and then play a concert....

The Night Walk

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What can I say, the difference is just night and day! I love the way the buildings have been lit up for the night, they really just look much more beautiful! So, this was the Rudolfinum from the night time after the concert.

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... and the Waldstein Palace from the other side of the river. Again, the lighting makes it much nicer, even with a phone camera.

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Again, the streets of the Jewish quarter were much more stunning at night time. It really starts to look like a modern fairytale!

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On the way back I decided to take a quick detour to the Old Town Square. This first shot is of the tower with the old Astronomical Clock. Unfortunately, I overestimated the abilities of my phone camera for night shots, and so this distance shot is the only one that turned out okay...

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On the opposite side of the Square is the Church of Our Lady before Týn, it is the church that is towering above the smaller buildings in the foreground. It's a pretty impressive sight, but it is a bit of a pity that there are the buildings directly in front!

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... I'm not totally sure where this was, by this time I was a bit lost! However, I did think it was a nice sight to make a photo of! However, I had to start tidying up the walk, as it is going to be a long day of travel today, and also...

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Things were starting to get interesting with the locals...


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bengy

Musician with a Science background, I write about many things, causing collateral damage to a wide variety of topics!

petervenkman
Pete @petervenkman8 months ago

One of the most beautiful cities I've ever had the pleasure of visiting. Brussels in Belgium is up there, too.

Thanks for sharing so many wonderful images of this gorgeous city!

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bengy
Bengy @bengy8 months ago

My pleasure! I visit Brussels often, I should explore it a bit more...

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Thanks for the pictures! I was in Prague back in 1994 with my college concert band ("wind orchestra", now), and remember seeing the castle and cathedral. I also remember that one of our venues was a church built into a crowded city block, with a tram line running down the street in front. So we had to hurriedly unpack from the tour bus between trams.

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bengy
Bengy @bengy8 months ago

Ha ha, Yes in Europe there seems to be always these crazy situations of crowded space and just trying to fit stuff between cars and public transport!

Hope you liked it in Prague!

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8
jaichai
JaiChai @jaichai8 months ago

Dude!

Everytime I read about your gigs in all those cool places, I imagine you as both a musician AND an undercover operative.

Lol!

Source

Namste, JaiChai

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bengy
Bengy @bengy8 months ago

Ha ha! I wish it was quite that exciting... Or maybe not, unexciting is also a nice way to stay alive!

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This is amazing, @bengy!
Question: are there lots of Czech flags around? I.e. do they display patriotism much? I saw several in one of your images, but just wondered. I wrote an article about patriotism the other day... it's something I'm definitely curious about.

Amazing article though - I'd love to get @curie attention on it. (@lovenfreedom)

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bengy
Bengy @bengy8 months ago

Thanks for the support and glad you liked it!

Europe tends (on the surface) to be a little less overtly patriotic than the US, however, there is a current wave of nationalism sweeping the continent... I hadn't really noticed the flags in the photos, but looking back, it seems to be two of the photos, which are the two sides of the same building. So possibly it was something for that building of perhaps there was some other explanation... I'm not sure! But you did pique my interest in your article!

I can't find your post, do you mind dropping me a link?

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It was understanding the difference between UK (at least) and US patriotism that made me wonder more. But in the UK it's seen as akin to racism to be proud of your country. I'm trying to learn more about how other countries are.

I might not have put it on Steem, as I'm often looking for something to post on Whaleshares, etc, when I have something that's Steem only.

https://whaleshares.io/photography/@viking-ventures/patriotism-good-or-bad

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bengy
Bengy @bengy8 months ago

Interesting... I personally find that the American way of patriotism is a bit too much heart on sleeve and too overt. It is something that seems to me to be a bit weird, as it seems (from the outside) to be ritual rather than substance. Of course, for some it is really substance, but I think (again from the outside) it is mark of belonging that is often highjacked.

Other countries are patriotic as well, just no need to show it so overtly on the surface? A sort of inner pride rather than something to shove in other people's faces... especially when the people that you are "showing" are fellow citizens! (This is from an Australian point of view, I am horrified by overt displays of what sometimes is passed off as "patriotism").

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I was definitely curious about the Aussie point of view as well. I do feel it slightly odd that we Americans are so impassioned about a piece of fabric, but many are. I would be more interested if the flags of the local native tribes were also honored as part of the whole thing a bit more!

I was in the UK too long to feel 100% American anymore. :-)
Still, in the UK, there was a lot of self-deprecating remarks made about being British or even English. I often felt that a little more national pride (other than for football or rugby - few are proud of the cricket) would be a good thing for the youth. The flag is one expression of this.

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bengy
Bengy @bengy8 months ago

I think it is more the mentality of the people... in general, the UK and Australian outlooks are more along the lines of no sacred cows... well, it used to be! Definitely it was more acceptable to poke fun at ourselves (something that I believe shows a strength of nationality and self to be able to do). Likewise, we (I) would poke fun at others if I felt them to be strong enough to handle it, but we wouldn't do it against the weaker... However, this is only one person's perspective!

So, I guess strength through putting your self down (as you have to be strong enough to be able to do that)... but putting others down is not so acceptable, there is no strength in that.

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Nothing wrong with putting yourself in jest - or to point out your weaknesses, but when children constantly hear how Europe is doing things so much better than England, it eventually seeps into their being. I heard far more people complain about England and how they'd be better off almost anywhere than I heard of people being proud to be British. Maybe it's just that understating habit that the Brits have (and probably the Aussies by extension) - some Americans have it too, but to a lesser degree.

I suspect it's more related to being more subdued by nature (the Brits) combined with the fact it was generally the more outgoing types who would have emigrated to the Colonies first. Obviously, the situation with Australia was a little different, so it throws out the logic about whether they were more outgoing or not.

The reason I say this is because of my observations regarding cheering...
In the UK, cheering for someone is considered to be a very American thing. Whereas in the US it's very normal - and possibly rude to not cheer.

(BTW, on a totally different note, when I got back to the US, having just spent a year in South Wales, I realized very suddenly that you Aussies have Welsh vowels! I was watching H2O with my girls when I had that revelation.)

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bengy
Bengy @bengy8 months ago

It must be a different mindset, I feel pride in my country (mostly), but I'm quite happy to make fun at it! I think that tends to be the same for most of our people. The kids grow up with that same internal and contained pride...

... And with that cheering example, I guess that is at the heart of the difference? I would find it weird to cheer for something that you didn't find good! But cheering, just because it would be rude not to, and because everyone around was cheering... Strikes me as strange! So it is with the overt displays of patriotism!

Ha ha, Australia and Wales! Who would have thought! Although, it is interesting to see how the Australian accent has changed dramatically since WW2. It used to be more 'british'!

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It's not that we're cheering for something we don't find good - It's not that we feel forced to. It's just that we wear our heart on our sleeves a little more. There isn't this cultural expectation to be "reserved" and to keep the "stiff upper lip" or to understate everything the way the Brits do. I know they still do this because I learned to do it myself when I lived there.

I guess one of the biggest differences between Europe and the USA is that we made our country - rather than inherit it. Although it wasn't my immediate ancestors who fought - even for the west, I can still tell you who it was in my lineage who helped establish this country. (I am the fifth generation of my line born in the state of Oregon - though none of my children, nor the cousins who shared that part of my lineage, were.)

As we get further and further away from our founders, US patriotism may change within the next 100 years, who knows?

When I looked into Welsh emigration to Australia, it turned out to be a very big thing - probably the greatest single influence other than the original forced settlers. Hence, even, "New South Wales"...

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natubat
natubat @natubat8 months ago

I can't wait to go to Prague! (Which I will do when I can raise the money.) Gorgeous photos - not sure about the hare at the end though! A friend recently visited Prague, and her photos also featured quite a few quirky creations and sculptures. It looks like a magical city.
I never knew that black swans were a thing in Australia! I have never seen a black swan.

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bengy
Bengy @bengy8 months ago

From memory you are in Scotland? It is really cheap here, so it makes for a really good holiday destination!

Until I came to Europe I had never seen a white Swan!

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natubat
natubat @natubat8 months ago

Yes, I'm from Scotland. I've visited Vienna and Budapest, so it's about time I got round to seeing Prague. I hear the beer is good too!

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bengy
Bengy @bengy8 months ago

It is really good... although there is one that someone just pointed out smells like pot... now I can't drink it!

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natubat
natubat @natubat8 months ago

😂

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Amazing architecture, romantic old city and buildings, what a pleasure it has been seeing this share @bengy

#steemitbloggers

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bengy
Bengy @bengy8 months ago

Romantic city, yes.. I would describe it as that!

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Prague is on my bucket list, and it looks more beautiful during the night time.

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bengy
Bengy @bengy8 months ago

Yes it does look much better at night, on the other hand it was an overcast day which didn't help the day photos...

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Very cool pics!! I visited Prague too once and I loved it, it has become one of my favorite European cities. Especially because it is relatively unknown compared to other cities, but equally (or perhaps more!) stunning! I thought it was pretty funny/strange how the whole city is covered with statues that are pretty much all about two dudes killing eachother in some barbaric way. From one guy beating another over the head with a club, to people stabbing eachother with spears... it's like violence was the main inspiration for many statues that I saw.

If you have the chance, try to check out that church nearby that is made entirely out of skulls and bones!! Not kidding!

And also, drink the local beer. Czechs seriously know their beer. They're bigger beer drinkers than the germans.

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bengy
Bengy @bengy8 months ago

Ah yes, the beers are pretyy decent... Although, my colleague pointed out that there is one that smells a lot like pot when you open it... Now I cant drink it!

I will have to visit this place when I'm next there. It was a different age, even the churches from that time had skulls and stuff like that as motifs... The cleansing effects of the Victorian age had a lot to answer for!

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bozz
Bozz @bozz8 months ago

Wow, great pictures! Thanks for sharing your stroll through Prague. It looks like a really interesting place to visit.

Also looks like a pretty cool place for a concert! Nice post!

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bengy
Bengy @bengy8 months ago

It's a great place, and living in Western Europe, it is very cheap in comparison! So I think it will be a great holiday location for me to revisit! The concert hall was lovely to play in!

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bozz
Bozz @bozz8 months ago

That is really cool!

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