- Prague Saturday
- Operation Anthropoid
- The National Memorial to the Heroes of Heydrich Terror
- Charles Square to Mustek
- Grand Cafe Orient
- Old Town Square Easter Market
- Mala Strana & Kampa
We started out Saturday morning with a lunch reservation at the Grand Cafe Orient, via a fairly indirect walking route from our hotel. We headed to the river and enjoyed a walk through the Farmářské tržiště Náplavka (Náplavka Farmers Market). We made a right turn and headed towards Nové Město (New Town), where we come to the National Memorial to the Heroes of Heydrich Terror, located in the catacombs of Saints Cyril and Methodius Cathedral. The POS, Reinhard Heydrich, was #3 in the Nazi hierarchy, and the architect of the “Final Solution to the Jewish problem”.
Sorry, for starting this off on such a heavy note, but I feel the story needs to be told.
The Czechoslovak government in exile formulated “Operation Anthropoid”, which covertly sent in several British trained Czechoslovak paratroopers to Prague to execute the Reich Protector, who happened to be Heydrich. On the 27th of May 1942, the paratroopers, blew up and wounded Heydrich, who died of his wounds 8 days later.
The National Memorial to the Heroes of Heydrich Terror
Located in the catacombs of Saints Cyril and Methodius Cathedral, is The National Memorial to the Heroes of Heydrich Terror which stands as a poignant tribute located in the heart of Prague, Czech Republic. It serves as a solemn reminder of the brave individuals who fought against the Nazi regime during World War II. This memorial symbolizes the sacrifices made by those who resisted oppression and gave their lives in the pursuit of freedom. The site encompasses a serene and contemplative space, inviting visitors to reflect upon the courage and resilience displayed by these heroes.
The National Memorial to the Heroes of Heydrich Terror stands as a powerful testament to the indomitable spirit of the Czech people and serves as a place of remembrance for generations to come.
Charles Square to Mustek
After paying our respect to true heroes, we continued our trek, we turned left at Karlovo náměstí (Charles Square), and enjoyed a nice casual walk through the park and neighborhood, we ended up in Mustek, and the last weekend of the Prague Easter markets. This is where we transitioned to the quiet of the neighborhoods to the noise and crowds of the main tourist areas. We picked up a few gifts for family members at the Easter Market.
Grand Cafe Orient
One of the big draws of the Grand Cafe Orient, is the cubist interior design, which was much better than the service. We have heard many stories of how awesome this restaurant supposed to be, we were not impressed, it was good, but it was not great, although the cubist doughnut was worth the mediocre service.
Old Town Square Easter Market
Leaving the Grand Cafe Orient, we headed west towards Staroměstské náměstí (Old Town Square) and the final weekend of yet another Prague Easter Markets. We picked up a few more things (Czech Made) for gifts and keepsakes. I shook my head when my wife bought decorated empty eggshells, I envisioned crushed eggshells when we got home, but they are tougher than I thought. We had our fix of Easter Markets, and wandered around the perimeter of the square and continued west, since the weekly protest was headed east.
Mala Strana & Kampa
We crossed Mánesův most (Manes Bridge) in to Mala Strana, and started heading south. We were walking through the park, as we came around a building, we heard familiar music decidedly not Czech, American country music, and we saw possibly the most random thing, a group of Czech 20/30 something’s lines dancing to “Cotton Eye Joe” and having a blast doing it. We continued south to the perník (gingerbread) shop, FYI, if you’re in a sketchy Prague neighborhood late at night, and someone offers you perník, you may want to decline, perník is Czech slang for meth.
In the courtyard behind the gingerbread shop is an offbeat sculpture & fountain named “Golden Shower” by Czech artist David Černý, featuring 2 urinating men with mechanical pelvises.
As we continued south, with fresh gingerbread, we came across what, in my opinion, is one of the stupidest tourist attractions in Prague. The “narrowest street”, as we passed, there was a line across the street of people waiting to go down the 20 meter “street” only to turn around and wait in line to back up the “street”. Not far away (300 meters) just past the Charles Bridge is the “shortest street” in Prague, no line or traffic lights.
Continuing south on Kampa Island, we came across more of David Černý’s work, the “Crawling Babies” a dozen more babies adorn the Žižkov Television Tower, 2 miles to the east.
We walked around and enjoyed the sights and sounds of the neighborhoods of Mala Strana, and Smíchov while making our way back across the Vltava, passing Tanci Dûm (The Dancing House) the to the hotel, and dinner.