We interviewed another amazing person who has something to say about Prague. When she visited Prague, she even fell in love with her so much that she decided to move into it.
Enjoy our interview and hope to help you organize your holiday in Prague.
Can you introduce yourself to us? Who you are/what you do, etc.
Hi! My name is Alexandra Booze and I am the editor of the travel and food blog, East Coast Contessa. Currently based in Prague, I’m a native of the United States by way of Maine, Kentucky, and Washington, DC. Prior to becoming an expat, I lived and worked in Washington, DC for nearly a decade in media and public relations for corporate companies, nonprofits, and private firms. These days, I operate my own consulting business, teach English writing and grammar, and of course manage East Coast Contessa. While the business started out in 2016 with a sole focus on food, it’s flourished into mainly travel collaborations with, of course, food highlights (because no one can travel without eating!) To date, I have partnered with nearly 500 hotels, restaurants, and tourism boards from across the globe. Readers can find me on Instagram at @eastcoastcontessa, and on the web at www.eccontessa.com.
When and for how long is it best to visit Prague?
Since I’ve called Prague home for the past nine months, I have witnessed the city in each season. All of them have their charms (the snow in winter and the cherry and magnolia blossoms in spring), but my recommendation for the best time to visit would have to be autumn. The trees and shrubbery around the city are on fire and the weather is a comfortable 10-12 Celsius. The number of tourists that visit the city each year continues to grow, but the most popular sights (such as Old Town, Charles Bridge, and the baroque gardens) aren’t as crowded during the fall. This isn’t saying there won’t still be people, but they are much more manageable. There’s so much to see throughout the city and even outside of it, but in order to fit in a majority of them, I would recommend someone visiting for the first time come for at least three full days.
What place in Prague did you love the most and why?
Prague is truly a magical and gorgeous city, but my favourite part of the city has to be Vrtba Gardens. Not only is it one of Prague’s most stunning baroque gardens, but it’s also always so serene each time I visit. While it is closed during the winter, the garden boasts seasonal blooms and colourful shrubbery throughout the rest of the year and has one of the best lookouts in the city. I also love that I can buy an affordable annual pass to visit the garden anytime I want to read, sun, or just relax without it being too overcrowded.
Have you visited another place in the Czech Republic?
I love wandering through Prague, but some of my best moments in the Czech Republic have occurred outside of the city limits! Last November, I hiked Bohemian Switzerland National Park with a tour group out of Prague called Prague Active. It was a very small private tour and we took a van with an experienced mountain climber (and Czech native). We walked through and over the rock formations, enjoyed the autumn colours on the trees and hillsides, and then enjoyed a traditional Czech lunch of duck and dumplings at a resort in the national park. I’m not much of a hiker, but the tour guide made it very enjoyable for the entire group and went at a comfortable pace. I also travelled to Brno with a local Czech blogger, Lucka Srbova, in March for collaboration with Anybody Hotel and Infinite Maximus Resort and Spa. Brno is truly a fairytale experience — the food, the people, the architecture. I had the best eggs benedict of my life at 4Pokoje and would go back a thousand times if I could! For anyone visiting the Czech Republic, I think it’s so important to explore outside of Prague. Prague is a must, but there’s much more to the country than meets the eye.
Which foods do you love the most and can you recommend them to our readers?
There are always new restaurants and bars popping up all over Prague in addition to the tried-and-true establishments like Lokal. I love soups and bread, so put a bowl of hot dill or garlic soup in front of me with fresh Drzkovsky and I’m set! I also love Smazak (breaded fried cheese squares) with tartar sauce, and, of course, chicken schnitzel with potato salad. If I’m in the mood for a snack, I always go for the Prague ham appetiser and a Kingswood cider at Lokal. It comes with creamy whipped horseradish that gives the meat a nice additional flavour. Other cafes and restaurants I would highly recommend in Prague are Cafe Savoy, the Donuterie, Eska, and Kuchyn. For expats and visitors who may need to ease into Czech cuisine, I would recommend Fancy Fries, Cacao, My Coffee Story, and Muj Salek Kavy in Karlin for amazing brunch (the tacos!)
Why have you decided to move to Prague and not to another great country?
I had visited Prague previously in the spring of 2017 and felt a really deep connection to it. It was the first foreign city that I visited where I thought to myself “wow, I could really see myself living here someday.” Later that year, I toyed with the idea of saving up enough money to move abroad and make a career change from public relations in DC to teaching. I researched quality of life, Visa laws, tax laws, and job opportunities in multiple countries in addition to the Czech Republic. I figured if I could also manage to get a few clients for my own consulting business, that would help supplement some income. It was two years of planning, but in July 2018, I quit my full-time job and spent some time back home with family before making the move in October.