Author Topic: “Light” Trip to Vienna & Prague  (Read 23742 times)

Offline moish

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Re: “Light” Trip to Vienna & Prague
« Reply #75 on: August 11, 2013, 03:36:13 PM »
Friday morning, we took a taxi to the old cemetery of Zizkov (near the TV tower) to visit the the kevarim of the Noda Beyehuda and R’ Eliezer Flaklas, the Teshuva Meahavah. My original research led me to believe that the cemetery is only open on Tuesdays and Thursdays, but I subsequently learned that it’s open on Mondays and Wednesdays between 11am and 3pm, and on Friday between 9am and 1pm.

Noda Beyehuda


We then took a taxi to the Stefanikuv Bridge where we picked up a Vltava River cruise. We went on the 1pm English cruise offered by Premient Tours, one of the better tour operators. They also offer hotel pickup IIRC.


Offline moish

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Re: “Light” Trip to Vienna & Prague
« Reply #76 on: August 11, 2013, 03:37:31 PM »
We then walked to the old town square to watch the ‘glockenspiel’ spectacle which occurs on the hour from 8am to 8pm on the old town clock. When the clock strikes the hour, a kind of politically incorrect medieval morality play begins. Two doors slide open and the statues of the Twelve Apostles glide by, while the 15th-century conception of the "evils" of life -- a Death skeleton, a preening Vanity, a corrupt Turk, and an acquisitive Jew -- shake and dance below. At the end of World War II, the horns and beard were removed from the moneybag-holding Jew, who's now politely referred to as Greed. I found it to be far less entertaining than the glockenspiel in Munich.





It's worth climbing the Old Town Hall's tower for an excellent view over the red rooftops of Staromestské námestí and the surrounding area. But be warned: The steps are narrow, steep, and quite physically demanding, so the less courageous should take the elevator, which we did.





Offline moish

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Re: “Light” Trip to Vienna & Prague
« Reply #77 on: August 11, 2013, 03:38:30 PM »
We then walked to the New Town Hall, a few minute walk away at Marianske Namesti 2, to see the statue of the Maharal and Golem installed in 1912.

Maharal?


Golem?


We then checked out of the Sheraton and checked in to the Hilton Old Town for a number of different reasons, but primarily due to the fact that it was way closer to the Jewish area thus less walking on Shabbos. As a Gold member with Hilton we were upgraded to a junior suite.





Offline Dan

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Re: “Light” Trip to Vienna & Prague
« Reply #78 on: August 11, 2013, 06:47:07 PM »
im pretty sure you can count on any higher end hotel doing that.

unpacking and packing your suitcase though, thats something else
+1
Save your time, I don't answer PM. Post it in the forum and a dedicated DDF'er will get back to you as soon as possible.

Offline Galitzyaner

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Re: “Light” Trip to Vienna & Prague
« Reply #79 on: August 11, 2013, 06:51:10 PM »
Moish, what camera did you use for these pics?

Offline A European

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Re: “Light” Trip to Vienna & Prague
« Reply #80 on: August 11, 2013, 11:35:44 PM »
Just WOW!!!
Moish you are amazing!!
GR8 TR.

Offline chuchem

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Re: “Light” Trip to Vienna & Prague
« Reply #81 on: August 12, 2013, 12:52:05 AM »
Moish
Nice tripreport

When staying at the St regis in beijing i had him unpack and pack my suitcases. Saves alot of time, especially if you are only there for a little. They press clothing, that dont look good and really do it perfect.
My flight left at 2 and i got to enjoy the morning shopping, knowing when i am back everything is packed and ready to go.

Offline moish

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Re: “Light” Trip to Vienna & Prague
« Reply #82 on: August 12, 2013, 05:55:35 AM »
Moish
Nice tripreport

When staying at the St regis in beijing i had him unpack and pack my suitcases. Saves alot of time, especially if you are only there for a little. They press clothing, that dont look good and really do it perfect.
My flight left at 2 and i got to enjoy the morning shopping, knowing when i am back everything is packed and ready to go.

i had them press some stuff too before shabbos.

my wife actually gave them a skirt to press and they on their own decided to wash and press without charging

Offline moish

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Re: “Light” Trip to Vienna & Prague
« Reply #83 on: August 12, 2013, 06:01:42 AM »
Moish, what camera did you use for these pics?
i mostly use a canon rebel t2i 18-135mm f3.5-5.6

but sometimes the canon s95

Offline moish

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Re: “Light” Trip to Vienna & Prague
« Reply #84 on: August 12, 2013, 06:02:22 AM »
Just WOW!!!
Moish you are amazing!!
GR8 TR.
thanks! i'm glad to see  someone appreciates it...

Offline Marco Polo

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Re: “Light” Trip to Vienna & Prague
« Reply #85 on: August 12, 2013, 09:10:02 AM »
thanks! i'm glad to see  someone people appreciates it...
FTFY :)
Quaerite et Invenietis.

Offline AMZ450

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Re: “Light” Trip to Vienna & Prague
« Reply #86 on: August 12, 2013, 12:14:26 PM »
Moish- you did it again, great tr.......

Offline moish

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Re: “Light” Trip to Vienna & Prague
« Reply #87 on: August 12, 2013, 05:47:30 PM »
Moish- you did it again, great tr.......
thanks, are you the one i met in the Vienna shtieble?

Offline moish

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Re: “Light” Trip to Vienna & Prague
« Reply #88 on: August 12, 2013, 05:47:57 PM »
Friday evening we taxied to the Chabad house, where I had prepaid for the Shabbos meals on their website through paypal. The meal was very nice and enjoyable, though more of a restaurant’ish experience as opposed to what I’m used to at Chabad houses around the world where it’s more “heimish”. After the meal, one of the gentile workers walked us back to the hotel where I had a 200 CZK waiting for her that I prepared before Shabbos (Disclaimer: Not all situations are the same, so speak to your local Orthodox rabbi).

Shabbos morning I davened at the Altneuschul for the ‘chavaya’ and unfortunately was a bit of a letdown for reasons I won’t go in to. The highlight of the service was the Kiddush the Rabbi sponsored after davening, in celebration of his birthday. The meal at Chabad didn’t go too well either. Although a new, modern building, there was no A/C on this sweltering day. To make things worse, they had supposedly run out of soft drinks and served only room temperature water (and later beer), even though the menu clearly states that they provide “unlimited soft drinks”. While that in itself might have been excusable, the fact that some tables were still able to get while others weren’t ‘zoiche’ is what made me upset. (There’s more to this story, but not appropriate for a public forum). Though the cholent was delicious…

Our flight on motza”sh was scheduled for 12:05am. Being that Shabbos only ended at 9:42pm, we had our stuff mostly packed from before Shabbos. By 10pm, we were already in the taxis on the way to the airport. With the airport located a half hour away, it appeared to be smooth sailing from there.

How wrong I was.

In the taxi ride to the airport, I switched on my phone to check my emails. I had an urgent email from my brother back in Israel who told me that 2 men were caught trying to break into my apartment on Friday night and were chased away. It was not clear if they had succeeded in entering, since the neighbor who had a key was also away for the weekend. So that already put me on edge.

Upon arrival at the airport, I looked at the departures board and could not find my flight. I asked around and was directed to the Travel Service ticketing office that thankfully was still open. They looked at my ticket and flight number and informed me that my flight was at 10:45pm. Apparently, there was a schedule change, and no one notified me. Not the airline and not the agency I booked it through, Israir. There was another flight at 11:20pm, but there were only 2 seats available, and I needed 4.

The agent called the local Czech representative for Israir who asked me, “Can you please explain to me why you arrived at the airport at 10:30 for a 12:05 flight? You had to have been at the airport minimum 2 hours before flight time!” Instead of apologizing for not informing me, he laid the blame completely on my shoulders. Had I arrived at the airport at 10:05, I would have made the 10:45 flight. At least that’s what he said. The earliest flight was the following day, Sunday, at 11pm, but he wasn’t sure he could get us all on. He told me to book 2 rooms at the airport hotel, but couldn’t confirm that he would cover it. I instead opted to go back to the Hilton Old Town, where I had already paid for the second night (it was cheaper to do cash + points for the second night than to do 10pm late checkout).

On Sunday about noon, he called me and told me that the only thing he could do was to put my wife + baby on the Travel Service charter, and I would fly with the 2 older kids on the Czech flight leaving an hour later. With no other option, I accepted his offer.
« Last Edit: August 12, 2013, 05:54:09 PM by moish »

Offline moish

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Re: “Light” Trip to Vienna & Prague
« Reply #89 on: August 12, 2013, 05:49:19 PM »
With a half day left in Prague, we took a taxi up to Petrin Hill and the Petrin Observation Tower there (the Czech Eiffel Tower), for amazing views over Prague. There are also gardens and a nice mirror maze the kids enjoyed. There’s also an observatory up there, but during the daytime only sunspots can be viewed so we skipped it.

"The Czech Eiffel Tower"


Vltava River


Charles Bridge


Prague Castle


We took the funicular down the hill and walked along the river, over the Charles Bridge and to the Old Town Square, where we relaxed and had some local beer in one of the many seating areas. As I was finally out of excuses, I reluctantly “ponied” up (pardon the pun) the 800 CZK for a horse and buggy ride around the Josefov area that my kids had been asking for the whole time.

Funicular


We then ate dinner at Dinitz, checked out of the hotel, went to the airport with the Israir supplied van, submitted our VAT refund receipts and checked in for our respective flights to TLV. (To my delight, Israir reserved us in Business Class. Although it was only coach seats with an empty middle, it proved to be invaluable as my kids were able to lay out and sleep the whole flight)


And that’s how we did a “light” one week trip to Europe 3 weeks after having a baby. THE END!!