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Day 6 (May 23): Vienna -> Prague

sunny 73 °F

Feeling somewhat beat after the hectic activity the previous day, we chilled for part of the morning, then decided to go take a look at the Hofburg, which was the principal residence of the Hapsburg rulers (the Schonbrunn was the summer residence).

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There's a tour, of course, and it's in two parts.

The first is a walk through the silver collection, which is surprisingly vast (multiple rooms with hundreds of glittering items) and, could take up to an hour (maybe more) if you are in a mood to gaze at every single one of them with long rapture.

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We kind of swung by the whole thing in about 10 minutes. My personal take? If you have seen one, you have seen them all.

The second part of the tour takes you through the various living quarters of the palace, very much like that in the Schonbrunn summer palace. Again, if you are a history buff you can spend all kinds of time in this walk through.

There was so much more we could have done in Vienna, but Prague was calling, so we hit the road early afternoon.

Soon, we crossed the storied Danube river.

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After another hour's drive, just inside the border, we bought a 10-day vignette (permit to drive in the Czech Republic) for 17 euros.

For the rest of the drive to Prague, we were regularly hit with patches of roadwork that squeezed the left lane into a narrow gullet. Inevitably, a broad truck would straddle the right lane--any attempt to pass the truck through the slender left lane came with the threat of having the frame shorn off your car. This resulted in cars kind of sidling up in the left lane to within kissing distance of a truck on the right, then trying to find a breach when the lane got just wide enough to sneak through. This ongoing dance kept us entertained for a good part of the drive.

Getting to the outskirts of Prague late afternoon, we hit a whole lot of rush hour traffic, and it took almost an hour to reach the old town
area, where we were staying at the Intercontinental.

The rooftop restaurant ("Zlata Praha") served up great food in the most artistic presentation

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Plus, it afforded some great views of the old town, and there was just enough light to take some quick pictures.

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It was apparent that Prague was a very special place.

Posted by sesh 08:37 Archived in Czech Republic Tagged buildings rivers restaurants palaces

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