Photowalking Prague with BeRightBack Travel

I’ve always thought about going to one of the many gothic cities across Europe, but I just never got around to it. Maybe my initial perception of the “eastern-block” as a place which might be unsafe for me as a “black man” made it more of a reason not to go. I guess this idea was strongly based on images from football matches and hooliganism in the 80’s – 90s, but thanks to the awesome guys at BeRightBack I can say from my experience that’s not the case. So here’s my guide to Prague as I went #Photowalking through the Czech Republic Capital thanks to BRB.

What Is BeRightBack Travel?

BeRightBack (BRB) is a UK subscription-based travel service which takes the hustle of working out where to go next. If you like surprises, or simply just go to the same old places all the time then BRB could be what you need. Read more about why I recommend BRB, and how you could join me on my next surprise destination.

A Little About Prague

As previously mentioned, Prague is the capital city of the Czech Republic. Like my home town of London, it is split in two by the Vltava River. In the early 19th centry, it was dubbed “the City of a Hundred Spires” by Austrian historian Josef Hormayr. Looking across the city from Castle View I can see why.

 

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Prague is known for it’s Old Town Square, it’s historical colourful baroque buildings, the Charles Bridge, Gothic churches and the medieval Astronomical Clock.

Photowalking Prague

Prague is packed full of beautiful architecture and everywhere you turned there was something well worth snapping.
As I love London at night I wanted to see what #LowLightPrague would have to offer, so off I went into the night for some photography whilst joining a local ghost walk.

Prague at Low Light

Photowalking… on water

Drawing comparisons with the London’s River Thames, the Vltava River runs through the Czech capital and is spanned by 17 Bridges. So the quickest way to see them was to book myself onto a river cruise. From the BRB site, you have easy access to the GetYourGuide site which is where I booked my spot. Food, Drink and English Narration were provided, making it easy to identify what I was seeing.

 

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Staying in Prague

As part of my BRB #SupriseDestination package, your accommodation is also sorted out for you. For this adventure, I stayed at the Royal Prague City Appartments, which was pretty much in the centre of the city. As with most of the city, the apartments are located in a historical building between the Vltava River and the Petřínské Sady park. My room was very stylishly decorated with modern touches which complimented the old Edwardian look. When I checked in I was given discount vouchers for two local restaurants, which was definitely a bonus. The wifi signal was perfect, which I needed as I was working on the move. The room itself had an ensuite bathroom, kitchen, small dining area with TV, safe and an awesome, super-comfy double bed. Definitely somewhere I’d stay again.

Food and Drink

As someone with lots of food allergies, I always have to be careful with what I eat, no matter how much I love the sight of a well-presented dish. All of the places where I stopped to eat had English menus available, so it was easy to spot any allergens to avoid.

There was no limit to the array of restaurants offering international food, from Chinese and Thai to Italian and Indian. So I took the short stroll from my apartment to Medduzy’s and ordered the popular Czech Fried Chicken Schnitzel, together with a glass of hot apple juice.

When it comes to discovering somewhere to eat, the Old Town is the perfect place to start. For me, this is where I found the traditional Bohemian dessert, Tredlník. A sort of spiral sugar and a cinnamon doughnut, topped with a choice of double flavoured of ice cream, also known as “Chimney Cake”.

The main thing is there is something for everyone and you definitely won’t leave Prague without your taste buds being tingled and a few snaps of your food for the old Instagram.

Discover Prague

To me, Prague is full of beauty. From the amazing carvings and sculptures which decorate almost every building in the Old Town to the views you get from hills and towers which adorn the city, I think there is something for everyone. The Prague Card  offers 2, 3 or 4 day discounts for shows and tours, or free entry to attractions and historical monuments. Here are a few things to do which I would like to try on my next visit.

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Berlin’s Glass Mountain (And More) By Night

During our weekend filming some of Janset’s acoustic sessions, we had a bit of time to explore parts on Berlin. Even though I’ve been a few times for the Karnival Der Kulturen, there were a few spots I had never visited. Here are a few spots Simula & Mimi, introduced us to.

The Sony Center, Berlin

From a distance, the led lit roof of Sony Center and the plaza looks like Mount Fuji in Japan, which of course is Sony’s home country. Standing at 26 floors tall and designed by Helmut Jahn, The Sony Center houses an Imax cinema as well as many places to eat, drink, and chill. We recommend Alex, for something to hang out. It’s also where I discovered Mezza Mix!

The Berlin walk of fame

Yes, you read right! Not the Hollywood walk of fame, but the Berlin walk of fame! Berlin’s “Boulevard der Stars” can be spotted by the island of red asphalt in the middle of the road at Potsdamer Platz, just yards from the Sony Centre. If you look down, you’ll see the familiar starred shapes dotted around the floor with names and icons signifying the part they played to earn the honor. However the difference between the names here and that of the Hollywood counterpart, are that these are only German-speaking stars of film and TV. Another unique selling point of this attraction is the hologram cams, where you can see the ghost of these appear in front of your very eyes.

Teledisko at Holzmarktstraße

Possibly the works smallest disco located inside a telephone box on the banks of the River Spree! There are no words to explain how much fun you can have in there! Seriously! Once you’re in there, the party is well and and truly yours! Select your track, take control of the smoke machine, and bash away at the strobe light button until your hear it content! Simple things!! 😀
Photo ©Tim Mühling

Holzmarkt

During the day can hang out at the local cafe and bars, whilst being inspired by the street art and laid back urban style on the banks of the Spree (Yes this is the home of the Teledisko!). By night this place is just a beautiful and serene. Walk under the Giant Glitter ball at the entrance and stroll over to Wein bar, for a drink in the cosy cabin style shop. Bliss.

Alexandraplatz

Home to the rotating World Time Clock and the iconic TV tower, Alexanderplatz, is full of nightlife, music and good vibes. If you’re looking for signs of the traditional East German architecture, it will be hard to find, but you will see a Decathlon, Primark and the odd busker! At the foot of the TV tower you’ll find a park with ornate water fountains and street performers during the day. Next time, I will have to go up to the top, as the views are apparently amazing. In between photo-walking the square we stopped off for a dance and a drink at AlexOase. #GoodVibes.

Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe

By day there is an aura that makes me feel a sense of loss and a degree of sadness even before knowing what these 2711 concrete slabs of different heights represent. But at night, this immerse outdoor exhibition evokes even more intense emotions. The memorial covers 19,000 square metres between the Brandenburg Gate and Potsdamer Platz and was designed by Peter Eisenman. A must do experience.

Have you been to Berlin? What did you get up to? Share your experiences in the comments below.
And if you haven’t why not book your spot?

Why not take a look for yourself?

Berlin is full of arts, culture, history and nightlife so you will definitely find something for you. If you like Carnival, I recommend going for Karnival Der Kulturen which this year in on from the weekend of Friday 7th June. Whilst there, you can visit Potsdamer Platz, which is home to the Sony Centre.


Booking.com

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Red and Green at Christmas

The Colours of Christmas

Have you ever wondered why Red and Green are commonly used to represent Christmas? Well there are many reasons which go way back into the sands of time. Most the colours and their meanings come from the western/northern European traditions and customs, when Christmas is in the middle of winter and it’s dark and cold. Here are a few with reasons with some of our own Christmas themed snaps.

Green

Green is though to represent the sign of new life. Evergreen plants, such as Holly, Ivy and Mistletoe have been used for thousands of years to decorate and brighten up buildings during the long dark winter. Evergreens also serve as a reminder to people that spring will come back soon and that winter doesn’t stick around forever!

Apparently Romans would exchange evergreen branches during January as a symbol of good luck. Even the ancient Egyptians used to bring palm branches and decorate their homes during the mid winter festivals.

In many parts of Europe during the middle ages, Paradise plays were performed, often on Christmas Eve. They told Bible stories to people who couldn’t read. The ‘Paradise Tree’ in the garden of eden in the play was normally a pine tree with red apples tied to it.

Even though today’s Christmas Trees have quirky design and new takes, they are still the most common use of green at Christmas time.

Building Christmas #dublinatchristmas #workinprogress #christmas

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Red

Many people associate red with the big Coca Cola trucks rolling into town blasting out the “Holidays are Coming“, however for those who see the less commercial side of Christmas, an early use of red were the apples on the paradise tree (as mentioned above). These apples (some believe they were pomegranates) are said to represent the fall of Adam in early theatre productions / plays.

Coca Cola is also (mythically) given credit for Santa’s red uniform, but one more plausible reason as to why Santy (love this new name for Santa which I picked up from our Irish roller skating team) wears red is because as a Bishop, St. Nicholas would have worn red robes!

Red is also the colour of Holly berries, which is said to represent the blood of Jesus when he died on the cross. The Holly was also represents the crown of thorns which Jesus came to wear at his crucifixion (which is Easter but never mind!).

 

More Red & Green on Insta

Love Christmas purely for the endless possibilty to take #lowlight shots that really become timestamps

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#Christmas was made for #boomberang

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Your Christmas Colours

If you have your own ideas of colour at Christmas or what they mean, feel free to comment below.

Also don’t forget you can follow our Christmas adventure @jiggycreationz on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and Pinterest

#JiggyXmas Everyone.

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Petition · European Parliament: Save the Freedom of Photography! · Change.org

On 9 July 2015, the European Parliament might destroy photography. The Freedom of taking photos in public places is under attack. Until now, in most countries in Europe you were safe to take and publish photographs that are taken from public ground – This is called Freedom of Panorama. When you were on vacation, you could take a photo from the London Eye and share it with your friends on Facebook*. If someone wanted to pay you for using this photo, that was okay as well. Both is about to change may destroy photography as we know it.   Julia Reda, member of the European Parliament, tried to bring the Freedom of Panorama to all countries of the EU , as few countries like France and Italy don’t have such law yet. In the majority of countries such as the UK, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Netherlands, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria and Croatia, you’re safe to take, publish and sell photos of public buildings when taken from public grounds.   However, the current draft turned the proposal upside down .  Instead of bringing the Freedom of Panorama  to the few countries that don’t know such law yet,  it would take it away from all those who do . With this, Street-, Travel- and Architecture-Photography would be dead as we know it. It is impossible to find out the architect of every public building in order to ask for permission before you can publish and possibly sell the photo.   I therefore call on the members of the European Parliament to Not limit the Freedom of Panorama in any way and instead to Bring the Freedom of Panorama to all member states of the EU so that the European Citizens can be assured to act within the law when taking and publishing photographs from public buildings anywhere in the European Union. This is necessary to embrace our European Culture and Art!   For the media, please see:  https://www.facebook.com/Sumfinity/posts/502360496584684 *As Julia Reda, member of the European Parliament, points out, even the private upload of a photograph on Facebook would need the consent of the architect, as with the upload you grant Facebook a license to commercially use the photograph.

Source: Petition · European Parliament: Save the Freedom of Photography! · Change.org

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Berlin Carnival Weekend 2015 – Photowalk

When you think of Berlin, or more so Germany, what springs to mind? Take a look at what we discovered, during our time and work with Rollers-Inc.  For us Berlin is a real hub of #creativity. Street art can be found wall to wall, juxtaposed with new and modern towers and converted warehouses which are beginning to line the Spree.  Join Craig, Letitia and Berlin’s First Lady of Rollers-Inc, Julia, on our photo walks during the Karneval Der Kulturen weekend…

Mobile Photography with Nokia Lumia 1020

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