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By Joann Plockova in Prague—
Alright, so the spring season doesn’t officially start until March 20, but here in Prague the birds are singing and the temperatures have warmed up enough that I can finally wear a lighter coat. I can’t promise that we’ve seen the last gusts of winter, but for now (and later), here are some great ways to celebrate the new season in Prague.
1. Walk aimlessly
I’m a walker, and one of the many reasons I like living in Prague is because it’s a great city to get lost in. Just pick a starting point, start walking and see where the path takes you. It’s a great way to explore the city and stumble upon any of Prague’s myriad treasures.
2. Drink a beer outside
After walking for a while, you’ll naturally get thirsty. Of course there aren’t as many outdoor beer gardens open now as there will be in the summer, but I just passed one yesterday and the people looked like they were in Czech beer heaven. Sipping a brew outside is one of the country’s greatest pleasures; if you don’t do it, well, you just haven’t experienced the Czech Republic. Na zdraví! (That’s “cheers!” in Czech.)
3. Find a park bench
Prague has a number of parks, squares and even little corners with benches to relax, and from which you can watch the world go by. When the temperatures warm up residents emerge from their apartments and take in the sun on their favorite park bench. It’s great people watching!
4. Head to the farmer’s market
Last year a host of farmer’s markets popped up in various locations in the city. They were so popular that they’re doing it again this year, and the season has just begun. At the markets you can find cheeses, breads, fruits, veggies and a variety of Czech specialties. Check out the official Web site (in Czech, but you can translate it online) for info about when and where to find the markets.
5. See what’s in bloom at the Botanical Gardens
Head on up to Prague Botanical Gardens. Open throughout the year, the area includes a Japanese Garden, the Fata Morgana greenhouse and St. Claire’s Vineyard, where you can sample local wines in a lovely wine bar. The gardens are located in a residential area above the city center called Troja, which is an area you might otherwise miss. While there, why not stop by the nearby Zoo and Troja Chateau. Bonus: From March 18- 27, 2011, the Fata Morgana greenhouse is hosting an orchid exhibit.