Krumlov House

Cesky Krumov House HostelTwo years ago Karin also did a photo-journalism report on the hostel in which we stayed.  We recommend it highly because we had a spacious, comfortable and interesting room and the owner and staff were very helpful and friendly.  What more can you want!

Hostel Krumlov House was voted Best Atmosphere in Europe by Hostelbookers customers in 2010 and won this year’s 2012 HOSCARS (Hostel Oscars) for the Czech Republic!

They have an excellent web site and Facebook fan page

Karin’s photos and comments:  Cesky Krumlov House Hostel


Travelling Out of Prague

It was always our intention during our winter stay in Prague 2011/2012 to take several side trips to surrounding cities in the Czech Republic as well as surrounding countries.  We have done some of that but not as much as we had envisioned.  Prague itself is just too addictive, I guess.

So look up to the menu line in the header.  See the new page titled ENVIRONS and click on it after you read the travel advisory below.

One thing we learned during this last train trip is that it does not pay to walk up to the ticket window and just tell them you want a ticket to your destination.  It turns out that doing that cost us twice the amount we paid on the return journey by buying three separate tickets.  It seems that part of our itinerary was along the route that Czech Trains competes with Student Agency Trains so they had a special rate for that portion that we didn’t get by buying the one ticket.  The sad part is that we only discovered this when the train depot in Klodzko, Poland would not sell us a ticket to Prague but only to the border.  This was very disconcerting at the time but the kind English speakers at our hotel found out that we could just get on the train and by the next ticket from the conductor.  We were worried about being stranded somewhere but it all worked out quite easy as well as cheaper.

RegioJet:  Student Agency trainsBy the way we saw one of the Student Agency trains and decided to try them for our next journey in the limited directions that they go.  We have read that they are quite good and thus forcing the national railway to improve.  The guy in the photo is Radim Jančura, owner of Student Agency.  I bet he gets a kick out of having his own train set.

A National Museum closing: Memories

The original building of the Czech National Museum has closed for five years for extensive modernization.

I have fond memories of the National Museum building and some not so fond ones.  Starting with the latter I need to point out that the building is at the same location as the Muzeum metro station, a major crossroads for us.  To get to and from the station we would frequently need to walk around the huge building and through an underpass that was always dirty and smelly due to the food stalls there.  Prague and the metro stations are usually quite clean so this hike stood out like a sore thumb.

The building itself we always found interesting for its massive size looming over Wenceslas Square.  We loved the story about the bullet holes that are still visible in the facade because the Czech workman ordered to repair them by the new communist overlords in 1945 purposely made them standout by miss-matching the patch.  I wonder if they will remain after this current renovation.

Visualisation of the National Museum reconstructionThis is an artists rendering of the proposed works.

The National Museum like the National Gallery can be confusing because it consists of multiple buildings.  We did go to several other exhibitions in other buildings but these rooms of prehistoric history, minerals, zoology and the like never made it to the top of our To Do list.  So when we saw a notice for a Christmas concert to be held there we bought the tickets immediately.  The performance, a selection of arias, was held on the central staircase.  We enjoyed the location and the music, the experience, very much.  For more see Christmas Concerts in Historical Buildings

The scheduled June 2016 re-opening is a life time away, but don’t worry the National Museum will be hosting a great many exhibitions at other locations.  See their web site for schedules.

Our favourite is the Czech Museum of Music.  Below is Karin’s account of our visit there.

Czech Museum of Music tour
Czech Museum of Music