The Old Town Square, or Staroměstské náměstí, is one of the first things NYU students see when they arrive in Prague. It is like the equivalent of the Empire State Building in New York City or the Eiffel Tower in Paris — you need to take a picture proving you have been there before you continue your trip. Since the NYU academic center is on the other side of the square, most students pass through it almost every day. Here are the top five things you can expect to see in the heart of the “city of a hundred spires.”
Motorized scooters invented over 10 years ago, Segways are very popular in Prague. Men and women, and sometimes children and toddlers, can often be seen riding them in the square.
Trdelnik is a type of Transylvanian pastry, especially popular among newcomers. They are made with cinnamon, sugar, dough and walnuts, wrapped around a wooden stake, which is called a trdlo in Prague, and baked — simply delicious.
Built in the 15th century, the square’s astronomical clock is the third oldest clock of its kind in the world and the oldest one that still works. This clock is one of the most heavily advertised tourist attractions of Prague. It seems that at least a hundred people gather in front of this clock when it strikes every hour.
The musicians in the square, who captivate crowds with their music, range from teenagers dressed in medieval garb and pounding on their electric lutes to local musicians with Steirische Harmonikas.
Countless couples get married in the square’s town hall each day. The Prague Town Hall is directly under the astronomical clock, and the bride and groom are welcomed by nearly 100 people every hour as they walk out of the hall’s doors.
Neha Hirve is a foreign correspondent. Email her at email@example.com.
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