Europe’s Top Cities- #5

              I had my wallet, bikes and a fridge magnet stolen, got hit, broke my phone, was ill, got pulled over by the police, nearly died on the drive and got hit by a tram, but Prague is still one of my favourite cities in the world. As wild as it is, it is also wonderful and the bad drives, as well as crazy drunk nights I enjoyed in the Czech capital, made me love it even more. And it was me who stole my wallet so that doesn’t count.

              It is the only city on this list that I have been to twice and both visits were spectacular. It is where my route from 2016 intersects my route from 2018, once passing through from Vienna to Berlin and once from Munich to Poland. The first time four of us packed into the van whilst on the second trip I met up with a group of friends for a five day break from driving and each visit was hilarious, crazy and blissful.

              The bar crawls of Prague are deservedly legendary, combining reservoirs of spirits with the biggest, most insane clubs in Europe and in my experience they have always ended in a hilariously disastrous success. Piecing together their events on the following mornings inevitably leads to laughter which is far too breath-taking for a hangover. Friends have got separated, lost, found each other on trams, been locked out of flats, tried to climb in through windows only to be at the wrong apartment and I’ve woke up in the van instead of in a bed. The bars are lively, friendly and full of people from all around the world. The clubs have floors and rooms for every taste, sporadically illuminated by flashing lights and light-up dance floors. It seems impossible not to have fun inside when surrounded by good friends, music and drinks.

              Besides the phenomenal nightlife, Prague is rich in day time activities. Dissected by the playful river Vltava which is perfect for a pedalo trip, both banks are full of things to see and do. The island Streleky Ostrov in the middle is a relaxing urban park surrounded by calm waters (as is a common feature of islands) and perfect for relaxing on the grass with a book or a group of mates. The old town is regarded as one of the best-preserved in the world, full of medieval buildings, a huge square and a labyrinth of old streets filled with museums, shops, restaurants and entertainers. The iconic astronomical clock resides in the old square along with the striking town hall. Crossing over famous Charles Bridge can lead you up to the massive castle which encases St. Vitus cathedral. Not far below is the Lennon Wall, a colourful, modern attraction as popular and interesting as the unique architecture of the Dancing House on the opposite side of the river. All of this within walking distance of one another.

              When I first drove to Prague I was alone in the van after picking it up from a Viennese mechanics. The drive was a constant stream of roadworks being battered amidst a storm, my windscreen wipers failed and I had to resort to using a selfie stick to push one up and down the glass so I could glimpse out at the near-collisions of lorries hurtling down the restricted lanes. It was frankly terrifying, but at the end of the road was Prague and it was worth persevering to make the most of my time in this truly great city. Even if I did go on to mug myself.

If you want to read my original posts about Prague- follow these links-

https://thecampervanmanblog.com/2017/08/26/europe-20-prague-fools-bar-crawls-and-lennon-walls-2/

https://thecampervanmanblog.com/2018/09/09/europe-2018-11-prague-1/

https://thecampervanmanblog.com/2018/09/14/europe-2018-12-prague-2/

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