Country #14

October 18, 2005

We arrived in Olomouc (Ollo moats) last night and decided to take advantage of the hostel's cozy living room to read and have a relaxing night. We are staying at the Poets' Corner Hostel which is fabulous! Anyone heading this way should really stay here. The owners Greg and Francie take a lot of pride in their hostel and want to make sure their guests are well informed on the town of Olomouc and the surroundings areas. They were willing to give us directions and plenty of guidance on where to eat, what places to see and they are Australian so we could understand them! :) So we got going at a fairly decent time this morning and our first stop was to the main square and we took some photos around the area. There is an astronomical clock in the area so we hung out until noon so take in the ringing of the clock. It was funny as at the end the gold rooster crows like it's his last and it very anti climatic.

After that we continued just wandering around the different squares and looking at the amazing architecture of the city. It was a bit chilly outside so we took a mid afternoon break and had a mug of hot chocolate and some chocolate pie for Tina and an apple crisp for Craig at Cafe 87. The hot chocolate is the real deal as they melt a slab of chocolate in warm, frothy milk and it's almost so thick you have to use a spoon to drink it. No complaints here. We continued our walk with our full bellies which led us to The Dominican Monastery and the Church of Saint Michael. Greg had mentioned that there was a tower we could climb inside but when we arrived it was closed off. Instead we wandered around the church and were simply amazed by the gorgeous Baroque furnishings and paintings.

During the day we also visited some other churches and monasteries which were also beautiful and quite exquisite. I believe the town itself has the most churches per capita in Czech. We finished our tour with a nice walk in one of the parks surrounding the old town which took us back to our hostel. We had a nice conversation later on w/ Francie and Greg and some other guests and then headed out for dinner at Hanacka Hospoda which again Greg and Francie recommended and the dinners were great! Big portions and low prices are exactly what the doctor ordered after a long day walking outside in the chilly weather. Afterwards we met some other guests for a couple of cheap and tasty Czech beers at a local pub. Czech is known for their beers so we felt is would be an injustice to the area if we didn't investigate this claim quite thoroughly while we visit the country.

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