One of the cities in Europe that was on the top of my must see list was Prague. There is something about it’s geographical location. It’s not quite Eastern Europe, but not quite Western Europe either. Although, I am pretty sure any citizen of Prague will argue that they are definitely western European.
I took a nine hour train ride from Stuttgart to Prague for a weekend trip. So, I don’t know why the Deutsche Bahn didn’t have a train that went from Stuttgart to Munich to Prague. Instead, I had to take the ICE from Stuttgart to Frankfurt to Berlin to Dresden to Prague. My ticket conductor actually laughed at the absurdity of the itinerary. In hindsight, I should have just bought a ticket to Munich and then another ticket to Prague. I probably would have saved some time and had a chance to see a little bit of Munich.
Upon arrival at the northern train station of Prague, it was close to night time. The northern station is called Praha Holesovice. It isn’t the main train station and doesn’t have information booth. The hostel I booked is close to this one because I knew I would be coming in late and the train stopped here. It was a clean enough train station but in a few short minutes I got lost. I was trying to find the main street out of the station but couldn’t find it. I ran into some young Korean tourists but they didn’t speak any English. They tried for a few minutes to help but just kept giggling. I thanked them and tried some locals. Good thing they spoke English and led me to the main street. I exited on the opposite side of the station.
Sir Toby’s Hostel
Sir Toby’s Hostel was the first hostel I have ever stayed at and it left a great impression of what hostelling could be like. They gave me a small pamphlet about the major sites in Prague and cool recommendations by the staff. What was especially helpful about the pamphlet was the information about the local area. It showed a local cafe, market, and restaurant.
I was hungry and wanted to eat something. I went to the restaurant, which was right next door and bought a whole pizza to myself. I think it cost me a total of two dollars worth of Czech crowns. It was a thin crust with a lot of meat. I ate my dinner in the kitchen and met some other travelers making their dinner and others finishing dinner. I talked to one traveler who was traveling from the south. She was raving about a town called Cesky Krumlov. She called it a mini-Prague; all of the great history without all the crowds. It definitely sounded intriguing. Some of the diners were finishing up a communal dinner. Sit Toby’s hosts a barbeque several days a month and it seemed I just missed it.
During my few days at Sir Toby’s, I shared a 4 bed room room with a couple of girls at the top of the hostel. It wasn’t very glamorous as I only saw them once and that was towards the end of my stay. I also met many characters during breakfast such as a student who transferred out of the Air Force Academy, but eventually got his flying license. The breakfast area is actually a really nice restored basement with brick on the walls. It is also doubles as the bar at night.
For my first hostel on my first European trip, it was a great day. Some of most vivid memories of Prague are of Sir Toby’s and would definitely stay there again. Even if it is a 10 min tram ride from the city center.