Travel Thru’ The Lens: Spotlight Singapore- Brno & Prague, Czech Republic

Prague. That name just inspires black and white street images and definitely feelings of romance and fodder for good daydreaming. And the visit to the city is nothing but immense anticipation, thinking of what will be good places to shoot, to people watch and just enjoy the atmosphere.

Prague is really right smack in the middle of Europe and is rightfully a gateway to both eastern and western parts of the continent. The amount of energy and activity is a testament to its vibrant economy and it is an exciting city, merging both the old and the new and expecting something more powerful to blast out into the open. Hence the attractiveness of Prague where everything is possible!

But first we have to pass by Brno, the administrative centre of the Southern Moravian Region, forming the Brno-City District. We would have expect Prague to be the place where we will find the judiciary authority of the Czech Republic since it is the capital. But we are all wrong. Brno houses the major Courts of the Country. Apart from being a centre of education, it is also the railway hub to the other parts of Europe and due to this fact alone, it houses the Brno Exhibition Centre, one of the largest exhibition centres in Europe.

Time to Change Money!

The main church in Brno City

Parnassus Fountain and the Cabbage Market. 

The Burcak is a drink derived from the grape juice and is sold just before it is fully fermented to become wine. Delicious with a slight hint of alcohol.  

Hustle and Bustle.

The kids are chilling out!

The Cathedral of Saints Peter & Paul

One of Brno’s Exhibition Centre’s building and it is just one of many in the sprawling place!

The ladies taking a “broad view” of the place. 

It was a long walk. We took nearly 20min of walking from one end of the exhibition space to another.

We reach Prague! That’s the Prague Castle Town.

Mr Iskandar Ismail and Partner at the Prague City Hall. Impressive place!

The Spotlight Singapore-Prague opening is now in progress!

We are at Ruckl Crystal Factory!

Forming the crystal ware.

Blowing gets the job done.

Waiting for the shopping to end.

We are at Staropramen! Prague’s best beer (they kept saying it).  Fact of the matter. Their beer is cheaper than mineral water or bottle water. Really! It is a shame that our certain animal beer costs so much and yet taste like plain water. I guarantee you the beer tasted throughout this journey was nothing but ultimate beer paradise. If you want me to recommend, the Bažant Radler Citrón is the best lemon laced beer I have drank and will keep drinking if I have the chance too. The ladies loved it too!

That beer! So good that I have NO HEART to buy Duty Free beer when I returned to Singapore.

Thoroughly enjoying it! 

Mor3 beeerrr~~

Dinner cruise along the Vltava River.

 

Onboard Entertainment.

A few words by Ming Yen. You can feel the hunger eyes staring at the food!

Some great party on the top deck while cruising down up and down the river.

Charles Bridge at Night. Beautiful and lack tourists! LOL!

Heading towards the Prague Castle. Gorgeous!

Doing the Touristy Thing

Doing the guard thing.

The Cathedral

The group shot.

The main gate.

Wonderful Street Performance. They ought to be treated better!

The view of the Old Town from Prague Castle

Delicious Pretzel based pastry and then coated in nuts or cinnamon. I smell F&B business!

Addy would have approved!

Charles’ Bridge. People Mountain People Sea – i.e. just too darn crowded!

Old Town Square

The Famous Prague Astronomical Clock. We basically rush through Prague Castle and reached there at 1pm just for 1 minute of mechanical show of Apostles showing their faces from two windows on the clock face. Quite a feat considering that the clock was built in 1490 and then added in the Apostles in 1865-1866. 

The old Citroen, on old cobblestone road. Wait till I do it in black and white!

That’s A Skoda!

Feeling Oldish?

Ok…only 60s oldish with the James Dean Special.

Gina our fierce Waitress. I have to gain her approval before I can take this picture. I love my Fujifilm X100 very much!

Stout immersed Pork Ribs and then Barbequed to perfection. Go imagine the taste if you can! Darn…have to wipe the saliva off my table again.

You guessed it! More beer!!

Strike a pose Jo!

Doing that Touristy thingie. Outside the Jewish Old Cemetry

I thought Lim Chu Kang was bad. This basically feels like 5 million graves in one small plot of land.

Tombstone of one of the Chief Rabbi.

Fairy puppet

Roasted Ham at the Old Square! The colour is fantastic!

Waiting for my ham and cheese crepe! I think I won’t buy them anymore in Singapore. I would sure compare them to the ones I had in Prague!

Street Performers galore!

Wenceslas Square & The National Museum. Awe inducing sight. Especially on a full moon’s night.

The King’s Statue. Majestic in the night!

Ave Maria Concert? What a good way to make an announcement!

Street side Cafe

Absinth. A special drink. Need acquired taste buds

Paintings for sale in the middle of the night. Adding colour to darkness


The morning sunrise shoot team.

Charles Bridge. Note the absences of people. A welcomed relief. Just further down is a group of photographers.

When the sun rays peeks through, not only note what it illuminates, but also what it leaves behind: shadows and silhouette.

Good morning Prague! The 7th shadow went missing as she took the wrong tram. 180 degree pano with Fujifilm X100.

Lunch at the local bar. That’s a barf bag from Emirates. How quaint. We are going to take Emirates flight back to Singapore!

The Duck…

the chicken…

The Pork…

and the…??? some vegetarian thingie? Yes! The Goat Cheese…

On hindsight. The trip to both Prague (Brno) and Bratislava was very fruitful in terms of the shots I take. It better be as I woke up early just to shoot the sunrise, walk the old towns till blisters are formed, even with my best walking shoes that is the most comfortable pair I have. Comparing the two cities is like comparing orange and apples.

Yes Bratislava is much smaller but I felt that being the quieter of the two gave it a more magical sense than the buzzing Prague. I would think that Prague would have been like Bratislava just after they rejected communism and started their market economy. That would add to the charm of the city. Sometimes too much activity do spoil the mood of the place.

I would like to thank the staff of The Old Parliament House whose dedication and top notch service gave us an unforgettable memory that is Eastern Europe. I will try to bring some people back to Prague/Bratislava and maybe go into the country side to enjoy the other side of the countries.

Darn. I miss the weather, food and beer.

More photos: http://www.flickr.com/photos/wilzworkz/sets/72157631681374080/

Video Montage: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OYm2zkMXLMk&feature=plcp

Music of the montage is taken from Andrea Buckova & Maria Kmetkova’s “In The Middle Of…” Album. The songs are Dream, More, Kanaka and Why.

Andrea Buckova, the Norah Jones of Slovakia.

Maria Kmet’kova on harp.

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