So, the tent is now drying in stages on the airer in the spare room, we’re slowly emptying the car of everything we’ve accumulated over the past 5+ weeks and I’m watching far too many bread baking videos on Youtube, which is probably the surest sign that I’m ready to go home.
We visited Cesky Krumlow on Monday. Described by our Lonely Planet Guide as Czech’s only other world class sight and ‘must-see’ outside Prague, 180kms south and close to the Austrian border. I’m not sure about that, I’m really enjoying travelling here, but Cesky Krumlow was well worth visiting. Beautiful old town with a huge Renaissance Castle overlooking it. As we looked over the old town from the castle, it felt as though the view had probably not changed in centuries, there were no modern buildings and only a few advertising signs on old buildings to suggest that we were actually in the 21st Century. Located on the Vltava River, which also runs through Prague and flows out into the North Sea. We camped beside the river on Monday night at Camp Paradijs, our last night of camping on this trip. The river’s gentle sounds just a few metres from our campsite were a nice ending to the 14 nights we’ve spent in our much-loved tent on this trip.
On our way into Prague, we stopped at the Sedlac Ossuary to look at the ‘Bone Church’. I’m not even sure how to describe it – strange, weird, creative, ghoulish. The small church in Sedlac monastery has been decorated almost exclusively with bones – 4 huge piles of them, plus garlands, crosses and other shapes, all made out of human bones. Interesting but weird.
We’re spending 4 nights in an Airbnb apartment right on the edge of the old town, above Prague Castle. Parking is only a minor problem here – we can’t park right outside the apartment because it’s for residents only, or we have to SMS something to somewhere, or some other thing that is a bit out of our range of expertise; however it’s possible to park about 5 – 10 minutes walk from here, on the other side of the freeway. Just a short walk over a pedestrian bridge and on a few quiet streets. Greg has done this walk numerous times, I’ve done it once!
Yesterday we walked down to, and across, the Charles Bridge. I’m sure there were more tourists there and around the Old Square than we’ve seen anywhere this trip! Even Dubrovnik wasn’t as crowded. Gorgeous place, though – the bridges, the buildings, the squares. We just happened to be at the Astronomical Clock as it was about to strike on the hour – well, the huge crowd of people gathered expectantly nearby gave us a clue that something was about to happen, so we waited to see. And we’ve extended our Trdelnik Chimney Cake experience by adding an Apple strudel ice cream cone one and a pizza one to the range we’ve eaten!
We caught up with our Czech friend Peter last night. We met him when he was cycling in Tassie a couple of years ago, then he came and stayed in ADL with us for a few days and we’ve kept in touch ever since. He encouraged us to come to Prague on this trip and I’m really glad that we did. So anyway after tossing around a few ideas of when and where to meet, we decided to have dinner here at the apartment, which was an excellent plan until I realised about 45 minutes after putting the chicken and potatoes in the oven that the oven wasn’t working due to operator error! There is a beautiful terracotta Schlemmer Topf roasting dish here and I was keen to use it, but messed up the oven settings, so dinner was a bit later than we had intended. It tasted good, though and I’m going to keep an eye out for a terracotta dish at the op shops I haunt in my never-ending search for Women’s Weekly cookbooks. Then we had Medovnik Honey Cake for dessert. I’m definitely going to have a go at making one of those when we get home – layers of honey cake with buttercream icing in between, and caramel & walnuts on top. It was good, but very filling.
Peter has given us great tips on where to go and what to see, and we’re getting together again tonight to eat Czech food in a restaurant. Good times!