Monday, March 23, 2009

Slavia

Prague has two big sports clubs which have both hockey and football teams: Sparta and Slavia.  According to my casual observations, Slavia has nice, shiny, new facilities and Sparta plays in old communist dumps.  Word on the street is that Sparta is the club that is generally followed by the blue collar workers and Slavia tends to be supported by everyone else.  

Anyway, we went to a Slavia football match last weekend.  They are at the head of the Czech football league (which is called the Gambrinus league--take from it what you will).  I really enjoyed it.





Sunday, March 15, 2009

Somewhere in Western Bohemia

Monday, March 9, 2009

Cheb

On our way back from the spa this weekend we stopped in Cheb. It is an old Medieval town about 30 kilometers or so away from Mariánské Lázně that has been called for much of its history by its German name of Eger. The city was mainly inhabited by part of Bohemia's large German minority until they were expelled from the country after the Second World War.

On a cliff overlooking the Ohře (Elbe) river sits a behemoth hulk that is the ruins of a castle built in the 12th century for the Holy Roman Emperor Frederich Barbarossa.











The Ohře river:





The main square, námestí Krále Jiřího z Podebrad, dates from the 13th century.






The Church of Svaty Mikuláš (Saint Nicholas)


Mariánské Lázně

Mariánské Lázně is a spa town in Western Bohemia close to the German border.  We were there this weekend for relaxation and wellness.  The town was lovely, but the weather was disheartening.  I was not mentally prepared to be reminded that it is still winter.  It will never cease to amaze me how the temperature in Prague can be hovering around 50 degrees fahrenheit for over a week and yet an hour and a half away it is below freezing and snowing.

We stayed at the Hotel Sun, which was very nice and we were able to get a pretty good deal because it is the off-season.  They have a wide variety of spa treatments available to guests.  Our room was beautiful and had a balcony overlooking the park that forms the main square.