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Prague

Discussion in 'Photographic Locations' started by Zou, Dec 4, 2012.

  1. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    We've booked four nights in Prague at the end of April next year to celebrate our 10th anniversary. Really looking forward to it. Just wondering what not-in-the-guidebooks locations you can recommend visiting? I've picked up a few sites from the Flickr groups but frustratingly most 'geo-tagged' locations are just dumped a kilometre or more from where they should be. Meh. Architecture, interiors, good viewpoints etc all appreciated.

    Also, what's the general attitude towards photography? I am assuming it's ok in most churches etc but no flash?

    Thanks.
     
  2. gray1720

    gray1720 Well-Known Member

    I gather FotoSkoda is legendary... but take lots of Euros!

    Adrian
     
  3. Molendinar

    Molendinar Well-Known Member

    Actually, take Czech Koruna, they don't use Euros! :)
     
  4. gray1720

    gray1720 Well-Known Member

    Ooops, shows you how much I know!

    Adrian
     
  5. Molendinar

    Molendinar Well-Known Member

    Only reason *I* know is that I'm headed there for Xmas, and have just picked up my currency. Otherwise, I would have assumed Euros too.

    If I spot anything fabulous, Zou, I'll let you know!
     
  6. spangler

    spangler Well-Known Member

    Only four nights, once you've been you'll be wanting to go back! It is a truly beautiful city with no shortage of photographic opportunities. I have never encountered any problems there when taking photos.
    One word of advice, as much of the city is cobbled ensure you have sensible, comfortable footwear as its a city where you'll want to walk and explore.

    Andrew
     
  7. beatnik69

    beatnik69 Well-Known Member

    Pay a visit to the Golden Tiger pub. It's a traditional pub where the beer is delivered daily and stored in a tank. You drink, the waiter makes a tick on a piece of card on your table and keeps bringing more beer and marking your card until you put a beermat on top of your glass to signal that you are replete or think the world is now upside down. Also, try the goulash.
     
  8. Gromit

    Gromit RIP

    I was there this October. On the currency front I found that using an ATM gave me the same rate as the best exchange I could get at home. I'd still advise to change currency before you go as you won't know what exchange the ATM gives until you check your bank statement, but if you run out then use the cash machines.

    As far as photography is concerned, no one seems to care who or what you point a camera at. A few places will charge for photography permits but only at the Prague Museum was I ever challenged to show it, although being a pensioner it was free anyway. The main Post Office has an interesting interior but doesn't allow photography. However I had taken about half a dozen shots before realising this, the security guy just waved his hands at me, I put my camera down and he walked away. So no confrontation at all, a welcome change to over here.
     
  9. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    I suppose the other thing to start thinking about is which cameras to take... Fortunately I do have several months to work on this decision... :rolleyes:
     
  10. ianwaite

    ianwaite Well-Known Member

    Thing to remember in Prague is the crime rate is quite high, especially at night. Tourists with big flashy cameras are seen as easy game, during the day, certainly in the centre it's not too bad.

    At night time I would carry a camera which is discreet, pocket sized, like a CSC or Compact. During the day I was quite happy to carry my 1DS Mk3 around in a Lowepro toploader. Pick pocketing is rife on public transport at night, taxis much safer.

    The people of Prague can get touchy (unless you pay) if you photograph them. Overall central Prague which ever way you turn you will find a good shot from, architecture, bridges, boats on the river, the market area and there are some really interesting cemeteries.

    Have a good time

    Ian
     
  11. GlennH

    GlennH Well-Known Member

    Not so long ago taxis in Prague were famous for fleecing tourists. Perhaps it's been a little less common since the undercover mayor of Prague was ripped off after feigning an English accent: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/w...-to-expose-the-great-taxi-ripoff-6154834.html

    A lesser shot subject? If you actually visit the clock tower in the Old Town Square there's a very futuristic-looking lift inside that has a fair bit of potential. I went there several times before I discovered that. Getting up at 6AM will give you an unspoiled view of the Charles Bridge, as well, before the vendors and buskers install themselves.

    If you have a taste for the macabre, there's an unusual 'Bone Church' at Kutná Hora outside of Prague, although you may find that the excursions that visit it don't allow you enough time.
     
  12. ianwaite

    ianwaite Well-Known Member

    Prague’s street taxis are legendary for their bad reputation, things are changing for better as authorities are cracking on the system. Still if you need a ride it’s better to call a central dispatcher in advance instead of finding one on the street to be assured of safety.
    There are lots of dependable and well regulated radio-taxi companies in Prague with English-speaking operators (AAA Radio taxi is one of most popular ones) and courteous service. Your hotel will be happy to provide you with a number or arrange a taxi ride for you.
    Local taxi rates are quite cheap: drop charge is 40 CZK plus 28 CZK per kilometer, and 6 CZK per one minute of waiting time. The ride from airport to Prague center will cost you about from 550 CZK to 650 CZK.

    Regards
    Ian
     
  13. Molendinar

    Molendinar Well-Known Member

    Post Xmas trip now, all of the above is good advice.

    Architecture? It’s every which way you turn – no shortage of subjects. Good viewpoints? Anywhere up near the castle or monastery will get you a great city view, weather permitting. Top of the clock tower in Old Town Square likewise. Interiors? Any church – they’re all completely baroque and OTT. Also the Municipal House, an art deco building now housing a bier-keller type restaurant in the basement, and some very 1900s tile-work and mosaics. Lots of little details on a lot of buildings; always keep looking up.

    Never had a problem with shooting in any church, although no flash is probably a good rule; sometimes there are genuine punters trying to pray.

    Some places want a fee for you to take pictures; Strahov Monastery and the Loreta were culprits, and have mittel-european Little Old Ladies who chase you down and demand money if they see you point a camera. Thought this was something of a rip-off myself, given that an entrance fee had already been paid, but the photo fee was only a pound or so.

    All those fabulous pictures of Charles Bridge, completely empty? Forget it! Unless you’re willing and able to be there about three in the morning, it’s heaving with bodies all day and into the night. Good place to keep one hand on your valuables.

    Cobbled streets, trams, illuminated monuments, all give a lot of scope for night shots. If you can’t take a tripod, at least try to take a monopod. Mine wouldn’t fit into the suitcase, sadly, but I could have used it.

    All in all, if I’d known Prague was this photogenic, I’d have gone there years ago. It still remains on my list, but now as somewhere to go back and Do Properly, with more than just a CSC and one lens.

    Enjoy!
     
  14. Catriona

    Catriona Well-Known Member

    Went in 2005. Loved it. Never felt unsafe. Just walked everywhere that took our fancy.
    One place not to miss when you just want to chill is
    http://www.cafeslavia.cz/index.php?id_page=uvod&id_rest=slavia&id_lang=en

    Apart from being beautiful inside - and having superb food and hot chocolate to die for - we, at least, just followed the example of the locals there and chilled. Read a newspaper, stare out of the windows, watch the other tourists being rushed in and out. Sit and stare. A place of refuge for us at least. :)

    Get high. Marvellous views of the city.

    Kate
     
  15. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the recent input. :)

    Good news (photographically speaking)... Mrs Zou wants to take a proper suitcase not just carry-on, so that liberates enough space for the DSLR and possibly the Zero 45. Maybe the Holga 120WPC instead of the Zero but why I have an inkling I'd find more to fill 5x4 than 6x12 frames. Dark slides, changing bag etc more bulky but Holga fairly compact. Hmm. One to chew over. The only problem this leads to is colour or mono - oh the dilemmas one faces when one shoots film. ;)
     
  16. Catriona

    Catriona Well-Known Member

    I would say colour. You will find mono areas but the warm colours are also there especially overlooking the city and it would be a shame not to capture their softness and subtlety.
     
  17. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    It has been a while since I checked colour sheet film prices. About £3.50+ per sheet to buy, so adding development we're talking over £6 per image. Ouch! That's a bonus point to using the Holga as it's much cheaper to run. Having said that you only live once eh!
     
  18. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    Well the weather looks like it *should* be ok. Maybe one wet day but warm (20+) and sunny. Looking forward to it!

    Finally decided on my gear:

    [​IMG]

    Only colour film - if I feel the need for mono I can convert in PP. Ooh, I feel almost dirty for having typed that! :eek:
     
  19. Catriona

    Catriona Well-Known Member

    Yeah! Have a great time.
    Don't forget to cross the bridge and eat at the cafe slavia http://www.cafeslavia.cz/index.php?id_page=uvod&id_rest=slavia&id_lang=en
    where the coffee is wonderful, the ambience the same, relax, read or just gaze out of the windows. The hot chocolate is exactly that too! the puddings are to die for. Act local! :)
     
  20. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    Missed the Slavia. For some reason I thought you had suggested the Imperial, which we did go to and enjoyed. Great wee break with one major problem - all those ................... tourists! ;)

    Images to follow in due course, over in the EL.
     

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