Prague Week-end

YOUR ITINERARY:

PragueDay 1

On your arrival at Prague airport, meeting with your individual guide and transfer to your hotel.
"From Strahov Monastery to Prague Castle" —our introductory tour around Prague and first acquaintance with Czech pubs
Prague Week-endWe begin our walk at the Strahov Monastery, founded in 1140 by the Premonstratensian order. The frescoes on the ceilings and walls of its two libraries superbly set off an impressive collection of manuscripts dating from the 9th century. After sampling a beer from the monastery’s brewery, it is on to Loretanske Square and the Loreta – home of the Lesser Order of Capuchin Brothers. The edifice offers an extravagantly-detailed eighteenth century façade, the tower of magical bells tourists all over the world flock to hear, and within the cloister walls, the seventeenth-century Santa Casa, home to one of Europe’s legendary Black Madonnas. Leaving the square, we make our way along the winding street known as Nový Svet (the New World) – a true slice of medieval town life that remains one of Prague’s best-kept secrets. This historic gem captivates the spirit with its quiet, romantic atmosphere. Our final stop brings us to the grand structure known the world over as Prague Castle and the towering Gothic cathedral of Saint Vitus. Situated high above the Vltava River, the resplendent Prague Castle served for centuries as the residence of emperors and Czech kings; today the President of the Czech Republic calls it home. Within the castle’s monumental walls lies legendary Golden Lane, a miniscule alley lined with tiny cottages, where medieval alchemists labored to uncover the ancient secret of the philosopher’s stone…
Lunch in the Czech pub "U Hrocha"
The Czech pub U HrochaLunch at the traditional Czech pub U Hrocha is not a tourist attraction, but it is an honest-to-goodness treat for beer aficionados! U Hrocha serves up the best beer, hands down – Plzen! While you whet your whistle there are plenty of traditional Czech pub dishes to sample, such as the soft, pickled Hermelin cheese, and fried pork fillet with potato salad. If you are really hungry, nothing beats koleno, a huge pork knee with horseradish that you can easily share round with all your table companions!
"Little Quarter and Charles Bridge"
Prague Week-endIn the Middle Ages, when numbered addresses were unheard of, the citizens of Prague often distinguished their residences with house signs. Many of these fanciful signs, usually over the main entrance door to a medieval house, still exist and are in use. So on this outing we may find ourselves “At the Black Eagle”; we may meet “At the Gold Star" or "At the Bowl". As we follow the winding streets of the Little Quarter, we will seek out some of the more outstanding examples of Prague’s house signs, and learn about their fascinating history. We will take the road less traveled by tourists, the twisting back streets that reveal some of the Little Quarter’s secret treasures. Hidden behind the high, thick walls and grillwork of aristocratic palaces lie magnificent gardens. Down a dim alley are age-old canals, dripping with greenery, where aged water mills still rhythmically turn in the shadows. We finish the tour at this magical city’s most enduring image: the majestic Charles Bridge, with its massive Baroque statues disposed the entire length. Construction on the bridge began at precisely 5:31 pm, the 9th of July 1357 – the date had not been chosen at random. Astrologers of the time decided on this numerical combination in order to ensure the stones would hold and the bridge would enjoy a long life. Since its completion almost 600 years ago, this magnificent structure has withstood the ravages of time, war and floods. Medieval astrologers would not have been surprised.
Dinner in the traditional Czech restaurant "U Kalicha" *
The traditional Czech restaurant U KalichaParticularly everything will make you feel part of the famous Czech novel “The Good Soldier Svejk” by Jaroslav Hašek, the theme on which the restaurant is based. It has all the essential features of a traditional Czech pub: the main dining space hosts several hundred guests; the menu offers generous portions of traditional local food washed down with 1-liter glasses of Czech beer. The walls are covered with large cartoon depictions of the literary character Svejk & quotes from Hašek’s book. This is a veritable Mecca for visitors to Prague!.

Prague — Krušovice — Loket — Karlový VaryDay 2

Breakfast at your hotel.
Full day excursion to Karlovy Vary with the visit to Krušovice Brewery and medieval castle Loket

Krušovice

Krušovice BreweryOn the way to Karlový Vary and Loket, we will stop off at the city famed for its world-class Krušovice beer, brewed here since 1581. Be forewarned: in 1583, when the Emperor Rudolph II stopped in Krušovice to taste the unique flavor of the brew, he ended up buying the brewery for the Royal Crown. Here, in the heart of the Krušny Mountains, amidst the pure spring waters and sweet scented hops of the fields surrounding Krušovice, you will experience what goes into making this fabled brew. Mother Nature and the skills of famed brewers combine to create this unique liquid gold. Our tour ends with a sampling of Krušovice’s three varieties of beer: dark, light and light ležak. Moreover, as at any taste testing, no one will limit your consumption!

Karlový Vary

Karlový VaryIn 1358, while out on an Imperial Hunt, Emperor Charles IV spied one of the deer mortally wounded by his party fall at a small spring in the woods. As he rode towards it, the deer roused, lapped at the spring waters and, to his amazement, leapt up and bounded away. The inexplicable curative powers of the spring so impressed the Emperor that he ordered his court architects to build a hunting lodge at its source. This is the legend behind the founding of the spa city, Karlovy Vary, and its city symbol is taken from the little deer “that got away” that day 600 years ago.

Karlový VarySince then Karlovy Vary has been known as the cosmopolitan European spa with renowned curative energies – Goethe and Beethoven, as well as a few emperors, took “the cure” here. This graceful, ancient spa, surrounded by forested hills, with a rich history and Belle Epoch architecture, has long been considered one of Europe’s most beautiful cities. A wonderful walking tour around the city center awaits you in Karlovy Vary, where you will have the opportunity to visit the Moser Glass Factory with its famed souvenirs from local porcelain craftsmen.

Loket

LoketThe town of Loket sprang up around its unassailable fortress, founded during the Middle Ages on the very borders of the Czech lands by the Premyslids, the first Czech dynasty. Its hoary past speaks of glory and ruin - the vagaries of history. Wandering through this dreamy town, we pass through over a thousand years of history as we travel from the powerful walls of the old fortress to the fairytale Baroque houses rimming its market square.

Return to Prague
Dinner in the oldest Prague brewery "U Fleku" *
The oldest Prague brewery U FlekuA building which has served a pub to countless generations for more than 400 years, eight spaces, each with its particular charm and character and folk brass bands playing everywhere… You can sit on a timber chair which is 150 years older than you and order a branded old Czech goulash with dumplings, the recipe of which is kept in a secret for long centuries. This was also the watering hole of the world famous Czech writer, Bohumil Hrabal. No wonder – take this opportunity to drink a pint of U Fleku’s exclusive local-brewed dark beer. Then you will know where the author of Closely Watched Trains and Larks on a String got his inspiration!

PragueDay 3

Breakfast at your hotel. Free time.
Transfer to the airport with your guide, departure.
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