- Exploring Copenhagen
- Getting Engaged in Prague
- Day Trip to Kutna Hora
- Vienna and Dinner at Steirereck
Since we had booked round-trip flights to Copenhagen as part of the deal I found, this meant that we needed to book separate flights to Prague, Vienna, and then back to Copenhagen. I don't have a ton of experience with intra-Europe flights, but even after searching around for a while, the best options I could find were much more than I was willing to pay for these short hops. So I ended up using 25,000 United miles each to book round-trip award tickets, utilizing the free stopover along the way, so my routing was CPH - PRG (stopover) -VIE (destination) - CPH. I tell my friends this all the time, but definitely make sure to use the free stopover (and double open jaw) options when booking a round-trip using United miles.
We arrived in Prague after a short trip from Copenhagen. Traveling within Europe is really easy and puts domestic travel within the US to shame. After arriving, we hopped in a taxi and headed straight to our hotel. Since I was using Hilton points in both Copenhagen and Vienna, I decided to splurge in Prague and booked our 3 nights at the Mandarin Oriental. Since I was proposing in Prague, I also wanted to find a place that would be special for us to remember.
The Mandarin Oriental is a pretty cool hotel - it's actually a former monastery that was converted into a hotel. It's located down a quiet side street, but in general is in a very central location, about 5 minute walk to the Charles Bridge and a 15-20 minute walk (mostly uphill) to the Prague Castle. This was my first time staying at a Mandarin Oriental, but overall I thought the hotel and service were very good. The package I had booked included breakfast, which was somewhat limited in terms of the options offered, and in all honesty wasn't nearly as good as our Hilton Copenhagen airport hotel buffet.
After settling in, we headed out to dinner where I had made reservations at Terasa u Zlate Studne. I picked this restaurant based on the good reviews on TripAdvisor, and because it had good reviews as a romantic place. For some reason, I have no pictures of the dinner itself, but the food was really good and in particular I really liked the duck. The views are really nice too - since it was summer time and the weather was warm enough, they opened up the outdoor deck and almost everyone was eating outside. They also have a smaller private deck on the floor below which has equally nice view of the city, and this is where I popped the question. Naturally, I was my usual charming and romantic self, and Lisa was swept off her feet. I also don't seem to have any pictures of that moment, so you all will just have to take my word for it.
|view of the city from Terasa u Zlate Studne|
We spent the next couple days enjoying Prague, and it's one of the most charming places that I've ever been. It's really a fantastic city. We spent one afternoon doing a segway tour of the city, and that helped us cover a lot of ground within a couple hours. I would definitely recommend this for first-timers to see as much of the city as possible. We didn't eat anything fancy over the next couple days, but really enjoyed the food. In particular, the sausages, pig knuckle, and Czech donuts (with plum jam) became a regular part of our diet.
The only thing that we weren't crazy about was going to see a "royal orchestra" performance at the Prague Castle. The tickets weren't ridiculously expensive, but it honestly was a string quartet formed by college kids playing in one of the halls of the Castle. I take pride in not falling for tourist traps while traveling, but I definitely was suckered in on this one.
But overall, we really enjoyed our time in Prague. Especially since it will now always have a special place in our hearts, we will definitely be back at some point.
|wall of graffiti on segway tour|