Czech Republic Bucket List

Happy Travel Tuesday!

Travel Tuesday

 

It’s time for bucket list time! One of my favorite things.

Even though we are trying to see as much of Europe as we can (in fact, we just came back from Berlin…although primarily there for our visa interview, we squeezed in some exploring! Check out some photos on my instagram), I also want to see as much as possible of this lovely little country we are currently calling home, the Czech Republic.

I’m still learning about more places every day, but here’s a start! If you know of any more, I’m always looking for new suggestions!

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One of my students has mentioned this castle to me a few times, calling it the most beautiful in the Czech Republic; then, last week, after seeing Tina’s post, I can’t help but think I really need to visit! I love the black roof–it looks so dramatic and castley. 

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I’ve already visited the lovely little Český Krumlov, and I really fell hard for this little medieval town. I hope to see it in every season, if possible. I hear it’s amazing in the winter, but I have a feeling this place is amazing year-round.

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This spa town is strangely not popular with Czechs (because it’s full of “Russians” I’m told…) but it is certainly a popular international destination. It looks beautiful, and I always am willing to try gross water that’s supposed to have incredible healing powers!

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I have to visit the infamous bone church before I leave the Czech Republic. I’ve also heard that the church has foundational issues, so it may be dismantled this year. Since no one seems to be sure how it was made, it might not get put back up…so I guess you should see it this year, too!

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Last weekend we visited South Moravia, or Czech wine country, and I originally wanted to stay in Pavlov. We ended up staying in Mikulov, because Pavlov was completely booked (it’s a small town!). Mikulov was a nice town, but I still want to go back and stay in Pavlov. I like smaller towns, and this is still wine country, with the addition of ancient ruins. These are a few of my favorite things… (sing in the way of Julie Andrews, if you’d like).

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I have a confession to make: I don’t actually like Pilsner Urquell, the ultimate Czech beer (and definitely the most famous). I prefer dark beers and it just doesn’t taste that spectacular to me. However, I still would like to see how its made and visit its hometown!

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This little town is supposed to be one of the cutest in the Czech Republic, and maybe even in Europe. I am instantly sold on anything that’s supposed to be that cute!

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This past weekend in Berlin solidified my desire to visit Terezin, a concentration camp from World War II near Prague. It won’t be the most fun visit ever (as it shouldn’t be), but I think it is important to see this part of history.

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While this town isn’t known much outside of the Czech Republic, the students we worked with at English Camp were from here and invited us to visit. We’ll be going in January for their graduation prom! (Whatever that is…I haven’t quite figured it out yet).

Question of the Day:

Do you have a bucket list for places in your area?

Each week BonnieJessiCamila and I choose one post from the previous link-up to feature. Be sure to check out their blogs to see who they chose!

This week I am spotlighting Clem & Marcella from What a Wonderful World and their post about the Perito Moreno Glacier in Argentina. The colors are so incredible, and it’s just a very different world than I’m in right now, so I loved the taste of a new environment. Make sure to check it out–it will make you want to hop on the next plane to Argentina!

THEMED TRAVEL TUESDAY PROMPT

Next week it is time for this month’s travel-themed prompt! The prompt for this month is…

City vs. Country–what’s your preference? Do you prefer a city break when you travel, or to get out amongst nature? Or combine the two? Share your favorite stories and reasons for your preference!

Ready to link up?

1. SHARE a post about travel! From road trips to trips abroad and from past travels to dream vacations. You can write about travel tips and tricks, favorite places to stay, or anything in between! Just make it about traveling somewhere!

2. GRAB the lovely button above. If you run into trouble, just make sure to mention Bonnie, Amy, Jessi and Camila in a link!

3. LINK-UP goes live every Tuesday at 0800 GMT. Make sure to comment here, on the co-hosts blogs, and visit around!

TIPS:

1. Please only one linked up post per blogger. Save other posts for future link-ups!

2. The last Tuesday of every month will be a themed prompt if you want to join in!

3. HOP around and meet new travel loving bloggers! Check back to visit some of the newer travel posts!

How NOT To Travel, Part 3

All of these unfortunate situations have happened to me a dear friend so I have it on good authority this is how NOT to travel. See parts one and two, also!

1. Do NOT think that arriving two seconds before the train leaves will guarantee you a seat because you have tickets. It doesn’t, and you will have to sit in the stairwell.

IMG_1938^^it was a novelty for about 20 minutes. the next three hours, not so much.

2. If there are one hundred wines to taste at a wine tasting and you already paid, do NOT taste all one hundred. You will feel the pain, no matter how much fun it is at the time.

IMG_6600^^and then all of your pictures will be even blurrier than this.

3. Do NOT assume every bathroom will have toilet paper. They don’t always, and you’ll discover this lack of toilet paper just when you need it the most.

4. Do NOT avoid looking in your shoes if you are afraid of cockroaches. Stepping on one is much, much worse that finding it first.

5. Do NOT think your bus pass is good for everywhere just because some rando told you it was. It could get you kicked off the bus in the middle of nowhere and that bus driver will not have sympathy for you unless you can pay up.

6. Do NOT expect that flavors will be the same, even if they are the same color.

IMG_6640^^although it clearly says paprika on this one, so I don’t deserve much sympathy.

7. Do NOT think that just because the street happens to be quiet, it is an okay spot for a mini-tantrum. That old guy definitely saw you throw your water bottle in a rage from his window.

8. Do NOT assume it’s beef. It might not be beef!!!

9. Do NOT assume that cobblestones will be softer on your feet.

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10. Just because it is cute, does not mean it is clean.

IMG_0470^^but when a puppy is THIS cute, who cares how dirty?

11. Do NOT think it is always best to be over prepared, especially when you are the one responsible for carrying that preparedness all over the world and back.

IMG_0119^^I’m trying really hard not to wince.

12. Do NOT assume the wetness on the floor of your shared hostel bathroom is water. It probably isn’t.

13. Do NOT think that it will not matter if your backpack is so stuffed it is crooked. It will especially matter on the back of a motorcycle taxi.

14. Do NOT think it’s a good idea to wear a white tank top when visiting a place known for its “red dust.”

DSC_0095_3^^yes that tank top used to be white.

15. Do NOT agree to a “little jaunt” on any trail, anywhere, especially if you are wearing rain boots, unless you know exactly what it will entail. It will not be a little jaunt to you and it will hurt for days afterwards.

IMG_6343 IMG_6348 IMG_6369^^the time I climbed a mountain and was told it would be an easy little jaunt.

16. Do NOT underestimate the value of making friends with beer.

IMG_6029^^obviously my new BFFs.

17. Do NOT think it “doesn’t matter” where you sleep because you “can sleep anywhere.” You are not as young as you used to be, son.

18. Do NOT assume that just because you are drunk you are actually any better at karaoke, especially in a different language. In fact, you are probably worse. But get up there and have fun anyway, because its way easier to karaoke at that moment in time.

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19. If the beach you are visiting has a bunch of cute raccoon pictures, run. This means that they are using live raccoons as zoo animals and that does not make for relaxing time on the beach.

IMG_4505^^we drank lots of drinks really fast in the shade to avoid the raccoons.

20. Do NOT think the gorgeous, remote places you see on the internet are completely real. Sure, they exist, but there are likely ten thousand other people clamoring for the same shot as you. Push on through and you’ll get that shot, and it will be great, but you will step on a few toes.

IMG_6541^^how cute is Germany? Even with the crowds? I took about twenty shots trying to get one without twenty people but no such luck.

Question of the Day:

What are some things you’ve learned about travel?

Welcome to Travel Tuesday!

Travel Tuesday
Each week BonnieJessiCamila and I choose one post from the previous link-up to feature. Be sure to check out their blogs to see who they chose!
traveltuesdayspotlight_edinburgh
This week I am spotlighting Sammy from To The Days Like This and her post about finding herself in Edinburgh. I love her honesty about traveling…she’ll make you think (and laugh, if you’ve ever wondered what exactly “finding yourself” means)! Even though she needs a re-do of Edinburgh, I always love to see more pictures of one of my favorite cities. Make sure to check out her post yourself!

Ready to link up?

1. SHARE a post about travel! From road trips to trips abroad and from past travels to dream vacations. You can write about travel tips and tricks, favorite places to stay, or anything in between! Just make it about traveling somewhere!

2. GRAB the lovely button above. If you run into trouble, just make sure to mention Bonnie, Amy, Jessi and Camila in a link!

3. LINK-UP goes live every Tuesday at 0800 GMT. Make sure to comment here, on the co-hosts blogs, and visit around!

TIPS:

1. Please only one linked up post per blogger. Save other posts for future link-ups!

2. The last Tuesday of every month will be a themed prompt if you want to join in!

3. HOP around and meet new travel loving bloggers! Check back to visit some of the newer travel posts!



Daily Life in Prague, v. 2

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+We finally have (mostly) figured out our washer! I’m not sure what most of the buttons mean, still, but the clothes are coming out clean, sans soap, and not dripping wet. Which clearly means we know what we’re doing and it’s definitely not a happy accident.

+ On Friday we headed to South Moravia, better known as Czech wine country, for a quick little getaway (as in, less that 24 hours getaway). We arrived in Mikulov, late, tired, sore from standing on a train for the better part of three hours as it was so packed, and promptly got lost. I’m not proud of the tiny tantrum I may have thrown as we searched for our hotel, but we found it, and immediately found out that the pension (which also had a pet wallaby…what?) also had a wine cellar. Evening saved! The rest of our time, in Mikulov and Valtice, was great. Both are cute little towns and I love me some wine tasting! We went to the Wine Cellar of the Czech Republic and immediately got tipsy because there were so many wines to try and we wanted to make it worth every penny we spent. Yes, we were those people at a wine tasting and it was a lot of fun. After, we made the not-so-wise decision to taste bercak, or young wine. That stuff goes down smooth and needless to say, I’m still recovering.

IMG_6604^^in the cellar! nothing cooler than drinking wine in a cellar, am I right? IMG_6608 IMG_6634^^that pink stuff, bercak, is known as the most dangerous drink in the Czech Republic because it’s so easy and delicious.

+ Next week we (somewhat unexpectedly) need to go to Berlin for our visa interview. We were originally scheduled for the end of October, but when a spot opened up earlier, we snagged it, as we need to get those long-term visas ASAP. I’m still unclear as to why we have to leave the Czech Republic to get a long-term visa here, but it is what it is, I guess. We also have to go back to Berlin in about a month to pick up the visa, assuming all goes well (and our visa handler is convinced that it will). Since the appointment is on Monday, we are going on Sunday to explore Berlin. Anyone out there been to Berlin have any recommendations? I need some!!

+ Speaking of travel, we are also starting to plan the Great Christmas Escape of 2014. I have a lot of ideas on where to go, because I always have ideas, but since we don’t know how long we’ll be in Europe, we are planning to spend almost every minute of our time off exploring more countries. Currently, I am thinking Germany-Liechtenstein-Switzerland-Belgium-Luxembourg, but I feel that may be a bit lofty. We need to narrow it down! I’d love to hear from you–where are you favorite places to spend Christmas and/or New Year’s Eve in Europe? I also would love to stay in Prague for Christmas, but I’ve heard it doesn’t always snow here, and I would love to be somewhere with snow. Okay, I need to be somewhere with snow. I’m spoiled by snow at Christmas and a non-white Christmas is a tough pill for me to swallow.

+ Almost every day, E and I look at each other and say “we live here! In Europe!” It doesn’t always seem real, even after two months. I am feeling more settled here. Looking back, I think that the first month was kind of magical–we were in our training program, which was hard, but we had a group of built-in friends, a place to live, and lots of extra time to explore. The second month, to be absolutely dramatic, was kind of awful, and I’m glad it’s over. It really hit me during the second month that we are here for the long haul (it hit me right around the time we signed our lease…) and I panicked. Few friends, and no desire to make new ones; new jobs to support us here that I did not feel qualified for at all; so much red tape to cut through in a language that refuses to stick in my brain; homesickness and the realization that I won’t get to go home until who-knows-when; and on and on. Now that things are more settled, I’m feeling giddy about being here again. I expect that will probably change…ooooh the roller coaster.

+ Does anyone know where we can go to celebrate Halloween here in Prague? I know it’s not a big holiday here (or a holiday at all?) but I’d like to celebrate somehow. If we do find somewhere to go, I guess we need to figure out costumes…what can I make with the clothes in my closet? And with E’s clothes? And black eyeliner and/or silver eyeshadow?

+ I went back to IKEA and it was WAY less stressful than last time. And I sprung for a fall candle! I love candles and fire and mostly they are the closest I can get to a fireplace. Someday, maybe!

+ Thank you to anyone who gave me ideas for one-pot meals! My aunt shared this website with me and everything looks amazing. I am trying to make this recipe but I have not been able to find basil, still! Maybe I can substitute spinach?? That’s pretty much the only other leafy-green thing I’ve seen besides romaine lettuce and iceberg.

+ I’m working with little kids right now and after only two weeks, I’m already feeling an illness coming on. Maybe because three kids at last count have sneezed on me? Despite this possible cold/flu/something, I really enjoy working with kids. I’m putting together a post about the hilarities of ESL teaching–expect that soon! Spoiler alert: one of my classes involved a live grasshopper. Kids!

IMG_6584^^this is part of my “commute.” Yep, that’s the castle and a sunrise through those trees! But it’s not perfect…this is at the top of a giant hill I have to hike up.

+ Today we grabbed a coffee (my favorite Sunday activity) and rode a tram near the castle and the Charles Bridge. It’s a great way to see the more touristy sights touched by fall but without getting stuck in the crowds. This place really is beautiful, guys! We rode the specific tram I take to work, because it has a beautiful view of the city, and if you get a good seat, you can get a sudden view of the castle as the tram rounds a corner. It’s especially spectacular as the leaves start to change color. (I guess I’m one of those bloggers that talks about fall all the time now.)

IMG_6585^^I spy some fall decor!IMG_6637^^so sunny today!

+ This week, an old high school friend is passing through Prague as she travels through Europe. She asked for recommendations and sadly I still don’t know enough about Prague to really make recommendations…but I’m excited to see a familiar face!

What’s new with you? Do you have any fun plans for this coming week?


We Took the Road Less Traveled