The first time I visited Prague was in 1991. The city was like a princess who had just been kissed awake and was still a bit foggy about what happened. People still had to get used to the new situation. I remember there were oranges displayed in shop windows, decorated with christmas decorations. People stopped in front of the shop windows to look at the oranges, but nobody could afford to buy them.
Now, in 2016, the situation was completely different. Hordes of tourists taking over the city. Great facilities. Still displaying the grandeur that attracted me in the first place. This time I visited not as a student, but as a digital nomad. I stayed in a cute Airbnb studio in Vinohrady: the old vineyard area in Prague 2, where many expats live. Walking distance from the city center and major sites. It was nice to stay in a residential area.
My host left recommendations for restaurants in the area. I loved each and every one of them! These are my favorites:
Zanzibar: great for breakfast and lunch. They have vegan and vegetarian options.
Zelena-Zahrada: a hidden jewel: a great restaurant with a nice garden. I celebrated my birthday there with a nice lunch and great cheesecake dessert…
Las Adelitas; the best Mexican food outside of mexico. I ate here almost every other day…
You could also just hang out at Letna beer garden. Doesn’t sound like a place I (as a non-beer-drinker) would recommend, but the park is beautiful. At sunset many relaxed locals and some tourists gather to watch the sunset over the city and there is a small kiosk where you can buy some drinks.
I was surprised at the quality of the food at the pavilion. Pricy for Prague, bit still reasonable considering the location overlooking the city and river. Great for sunset drinks or dinner.
It is nice to visit the Gothic castle, Karlstein, just half an hour by train, followed by a 20 ‘trek’ up the hill, through a small village which has converted itself to ice cream and souvenir shops and restaurants. But not as tacky as it sounds.
Highlight was visit to private house. Villa Vojkov. The organizer of DCx Prague (Dynamite Circle: a global network of successful entrepreneurs I recently joined) took us to his parents house in the country side. Some kind of secret weekend/summer restaurants, with great food, friendly people, in a picture perfect setting.During the summer weekends they serve home made food in their lovely garden. The burgers are amazing! They have Cava on tap; a first for me.
I loved to see the statue of Franz Kafka, the famous writer of bizarre or surrealistic predicaments and incomprehensible social-bureaucratic powers.
The statue of his head keeps moving, so that the bureaucrats in the surrounding office buildings never know what direction he is looking. The symbolism, of course, fits perfectly in my life as a digital nomad, living outside of ‘the system’. The play of light on the statue is mesmerizing. I could have stayed and watched it for hours.
The city is beautiful, grand. The Wenceslas square is full of shops, prices are extremely low. Other square feels like Austria, logically because once the entire area was known as Bohemia.
I enjoyed Prague and could see why so many digital nomads want to live there: it is cheap, convenient and has a good vibe. However, I did not like the eating culture so much: I did not like the ‘dumplings and beer’ standard food so much and missed my fresh veggies. Internet is not as fast or dependable as I expected, so I can think of better places to live. However, for a visit I can definitely recommend Prague.