Day 7: Veltrusy, Czech Republic to Prague, Czech Republic

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Start: Veltrusy, Czech Republic
End: Prague, Czech Republic
Distance: 37.8km
Elevation Gain: 1200ft
Elevation Loss: 987ft
Time: 4h2m
Reading Material: The Unbearable Lightness of Being – Milan Kundera
Audio Material: none

Some reports on the internet claimed that from Berlin to Prague I would find the people becoming less friendly. This is entirely false. On this last, short day into Prague, I met many folks who wanted to stop and chat. I road alongside a security officer from Hotel Prague for several kms who was out on a day ride along the river (he works nights). We took photos (that’s why you get the first shot of me in this post) before heading off. And, in Letna Park high above Old Town Prague, one of the maintenance workers stopped to compliment the bike and told the story of his trip from Denmark to Berlin.

I had my first extended climb (as you’ll see in the elevation plot), gaining ~600ft in 4km and was rewarded with a windy descent back to the river. And, coming down from Letna Park into Prague was the steepest descent yet (200ft in 200m) straight into massive traffic. I had to ride the brakes hard.

Bicycling in the city itself is another matter. No bike lanes and recessed tram rails on every road make it very difficult to ride (you do not want to get a wheel stuck between a tram rail with a fully-loaded bike). I tried to take the most direct route to my hotel but had to dodge tourists on cobblestone near the famous Charles Bridge.

Luckily, when I arrived at the hotel Kristina had a beer waiting. She is by far the most friendly hotel proprietor I have ever met and completely deserves her astronomical TripAdvisor rating. After a shower and a detailed map overview from Kristina, I was ready to tackle Prague.

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