Look around every corner and you'll discover beautiful palaces, colorful gardens, and unbelievable grandeur. I followed a favorite guidebook to see some of the grandest sites like the Prague Castle and Charles Bridge. But it was when I strayed off the main course that I found the best of the best. Here are some of my "bests" (click on the photo for a larger view):
BEST VIEW OF THE CHARLES BRIDGE - A trip to Prague would not be complete without crossing the Charles Bridge, at least once. But few people have discovered that the best place to really appreciate the beauty of the bridge is from Manesuv Most bridge to the north. The view is a show stopper!
BEST TIME TO VISIT THE CHARLES BRIDGE - Cross the bridge in daylight and fight stifling crowds and countless street vendors. Cross the bridge at night and enter into a world of magic. Walking from Old Town toward Lesser Quarter, you'll find the bridge tower glowing under the night sky. Stop about three quarters of the way and you'll catch the perfect photo op with Prague Castle and St. Nicholas Church in the background.
BEST CITY VIEW - It's not hard to find a great view in Prague. Just climb the Powder Tower, the View Tower, or one of the Charles Bridge towers. Nevertheless, if you want the most unobstructed, undeniably beautiful, and utterly tranquil view, take in a meal at U Zlate Studne atop the Golden Well Hotel.
MOST MEMORABLE SITE - Sitting among castles, palaces, historic bridges, and beautiful squares is a small cemetery that marks a huge part of the city's history. The Old Jewish Cemetery is the burial site of those who lived and died in the Jewish ghetto between the 15th century and 1787. Space was so limited that graves were stacked one on top of another, sometimes 12 deep. The visible tombstones mark 12,000 graves with and estimated 100,000 beneath them.
MOST HAUNTING EXCURSION - A short day-trip to Terezin, a concentration camp used to imprison Jews during the Nazi invasion, proved to be the most disturbing, yet notable tour from Prague. With the assistance of a Wittmann Tours guide (many of whom are survivors of Terezin), the events in "the waiting room for hell" are described in detail -- a dramatic experience.
BEST SOUVENIR - Crystal is to Prague like wine is to Tuscany. But what could be a better souvenir than a piece of crystal that you create with your own artistic flair in a local gallery? Manto Gallery allows you to paint your own crystal bowl and fire it in their kiln for a unique take-home souvenir of your visit in Prague.