It feels like I was there for weeks, but it was only a couple of days! From thursday to Sunday last week my boyfriend, Mark Charade, and I celebrated out 5 year anniversary in Prague.
This was our first holiday together which didn't involve work (although performing in Prague would be wonderful!), and we managed to pack in a lot of sight-seeing in such a small amount of time.
Prague is an incredibly beautiful city, even just to walk around. There are a lot of things you can see and do that don't require a hefty budget and the food is amazing for a decent price. The only downside I can possibly think of is that there were a lot of tourists, so I'd probably suggest going in September when it's not too cold but will be likely to be a little calmer.
We stayed in the wonderful Art Deco Imperial Hotel, which is about 10-15 minutes walk from the Old Town Square.
I'd definitely recommend the hotel, not only were the staff friendly and helpful, the rooms were beautiful and the other areas of the hotel were stunning. We particularly liked the fact that this statue looked like she was in the middle of saying "FUCK THIS SHIT" and flipping tables.
We had a ridiculously early flight, which was slightly painful, but it actually mean't we had pretty much a full day on the thursday. We had a wander and went to the Jewish Museum and surrounding synagogues (as well as the Jewish Cemetery, which you can see in the very top right of this post).
The Spanish Synagogue, images can't even capture how detailed it was. Opulent religious buildings are one of my biggest inspirations, and Prague definitely had plenty of that, as you'll see below! The Spanish Synagogue, and the other synagogues that comprise the Jewish museum, had cabinets full of interesting pieces of Czech-Jewish history (it also turns out that I may have Czech-Jewish family on my mother side!).
St. Nicolas Church in the Old Town Square. Really beautiful painted church that doesn't have an entrance fee or photo-fee. We came back here on the last day to a live music concert, which was incredibly calming.
On Friday we took a tram up to the Prague Castle. I'd read that the inside of the castle wasn't particularly interesting, compared to walking around the grounds/cathedral, so we didn't take a tour. The inside of St. Vitus Cathedral is absolutely beautiful, and although I didn't see it, there was also a stained glass window designed by Mucha.
Another one of the many churches I had wanted to see was the nearby church in Loreta. Although a fairly small and unassuming church from the outside, the inside was what I like to call Opulent As Fuck.
It also had some incredibly creepy cherubs. Yes, that's a plate with breasts on. Yes, the bottom cherub does look like it's saying "FOR ME?!". On the opposite side was a cherub holding a bloody tooth and a set of pliers. This was extremely bizarre not in context; the two sets of cherubs are referring to St. Agatha (had her breasts cut off during torture) and St. Apollonia (who had her teeth shattered in torture). There were further paintings and beautiful artefacts in cabinets within the church grounds, referring to the Saints and other Catholic scenes.
I believe the bottom two images and top right are from Loreta Church, and the top left is another church we found while walking around.
Cathedral of the Assumption of Our Lady at Sedlec (outside of Prague).
For as long as I've been taking photographs I've felt inspired by this kind of religious opulence. I particularly find the goriness of the tortured Saints (and of course the crucifixion) a stark and interesting contrast against the rich tones and glittering gold. The wealth and opulence presented is usually at odds with the majority of religious base religious concepts - the main figure in Christianity being Jesus, who shunned wealth.
I plan to work this more into my artwork at some point very soon!