Tuesday 12 December 2017

Prague - Need to know

Liz Kearney

Getting There

Aer Lingus (0818 365 000; aerlingus.com) flies direct to Prague from Dublin six times a week. Prague airport is less than half an hour's drive from the city centre and, while there's no train link, you can hop on either the 119 or 100 bus or take an Airport Express bus from the arrivals terminal.

Staying There

The Kempinski Hotel (00420 226 226 111; kempinski.com) is perfectly located for sightseeing in the Old Town and has comfortable, spacious rooms and stylish bathrooms. Rooms start at €190.

where to eat

KOGO restaurant, on Havelská Street in the Old Town, offers delicious Italian fare, with a huge menu which ranges from pasta to seafood and steaks. It's a favourite with locals and it's easy to see why -- the focus is on simple, fresh and authentic Italian cooking.

All too often hotel restaurants are fusty, over-priced and bland. Le Grill at the Kempinski is a happy exception. The accomplished kitchen staff put on an impressive display of fusion cooking. Don't forget to sample local wines -- the reds are surprisingly good.

The Kafka Café (Siroka 12/64, Praha 1) an old-fashioned, wood-panelled, smoky coffee house with an intellectual air on the fringes of the Jewish quarter is a good place to warm up with a strong coffee or a hot chocolate. Don a black polo neck, carry a well-thumbed copy of The Trial and light a cigarette and you'll pass for a regular.

Five Things to Do

  • Explore the narrow cobbled streets on a walking tour. See pragueexperience.com.
  • Book a seat at the Prague Spring festival, which takes place in May and features stellar names such as Anne-Sophie Mutter and Andre Previn. See festival.cz.
  • Visit the Kafka Museum, once home to Prague's best-known writer and author of The Trial and The Metamorphosis.
  • Take a boat trip for great views of both sides of the river.
  • Taste the local brew at the Czech Beer Festival (ceskypivnifestival.cz), which takes place from May 14-30 and is heavy on foam, fun and folk dancing.

Irish Independent

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