DIY Necklace Holder

I've been trying to declutter the home, starting with the bedroom. I cleared the bedside tables, put on white sheets, set up my minimalist clothing rack, and there they were, my necklaces entangled with one another, collecting dust on the shelf.

I managed to pare down my collection to just my favourites. I have a couple of chunky necklaces that I display on a tray, but for some time I was stumped on how store the more delicate ones.

I then thought of this simple idea - all I needed was a wooden dowel and some twine. It cost me a grand total of $5, with enough material leftover to make another 4 more of these.

I really love how it adds to the minimalistic feel of the room!

What To Eat And Drink In Prague

A lot of our time in Prague was spent searching for food - very typical of us! I had a list of foods that I wanted to try and very fortunately managed to tick most of them off.

#1: Nakládaný hermelín

It's hermelin cheese (a soft cheese that tastes a little like camembert) marinated with herbs and spices in lots of oil. It was so delicious but I couldn't stop wondering what was going on in my arteries..

#2: Svíčková na smetaně

This is one of the most popular main meals in Czech Republic - beef sirloin served with cranberries, whipped cream and bread dumplings. My first thought - where are the vegetables? Well, there aren't meant to be any. This dish wasn't for me as I found every component too rich or filling, how anyone finishes the bread dumplings is a wonder to me!

#3: Tatarský biftek

I was really brave on the first night and ordered steak tartare for dinner! While waiting for the food to come, I really thought I was going to regret it, but hey, it wasn't as bad as I'd thought! It definitely helped that the meat was really fresh, and there were lots of condiments to flavour (perhaps mask, in my case?) it. The toasted bread that came with it was really yummy as well.  

#4: Kulajda

A simple soup made with potatoes, dill, egg and mushroom. Thick and delicious, especially for a colder day!

#5: Koleno

Roast pork knuckle is also another popular dish, thought I found it a little bit too tasty / salty, and those bread dumplings again, I felt full just by looking at them!

#6: Trdelník

Trdelník is a form of sweet pastry grilled on a hot stick, giving it a hollow structure. While it isn't uniquely Czech, you will see them sold in many little stalls in Prague. They are so simple but so delicious, I enjoyed mine as is and also with some chocolate sauce!

#7: Medovnik

This heavenly little thing is a honey cake constructed from many, many layers and it is oh so delicious. Sweet, soft, crumbly, ahhhh, I want another slice as I'm typing this! It took us ages to find someplace that served it, but eventually we found the beautiful Kavárna Obecní dům. There are lots of other sweets to choose from, so be warned! I now realise that this is the original of the one that I had in Perth years ago

#8: Palačinka

We had breakfast one morning at Národní Kavárna and it was amazing. I had these warm sweet pancakes simply dusted with cinnamon sugar and it was one of the best breakfasts I had ever had. 

#9: Krupicová kaša

Hubby ordered a semolina porridge with cocoa and butter at the same place, and he loved it so much to the point that he asked me if I could make it at home. Guess I'd better get my hands on some semolina!

#10: Chlebíčky 

These are open sandwiches, usually lathered with butter and then topped with all sorts of delicious things - pickles, eggs, cold cuts, whatever. We had them at Golden Cross Deli, where we got to devour them standing up at counters amongst lots of other customers. I definitely recommend a visit to this deli - there were so many things to choose from!

#11: Bramboráky 

A simple grated potato pancake but yummy all the same!

#12: Kofola

I know beer is huge in Czech Republic but let's not forget some of the other beverages too. Kofola is a soft drink similar to Coca-Cola, and I'm not sure if it was just because I was on holiday, but I thought it tasted way better!

#13: Medovina

On our way up to Karlštejn Castle we sampled some warm mead / honey wine on the way, and we loved it so much hubby decided it was worth it to lug two bottles of it for the entire 7 hour hike. We still have a bottle sitting in our cupboard, can't wait to pop it open!

The only two things that I didn't get to try was koláče (sweet fruit pastry) and smažený sýr (fried cheese), I'm hoping with some luck I can find them in Melbourne!

Prague, Czech Republic

Last stop - Prague. At this stage, we were feeling a little exhausted from the train rides - this time we managed to get seats from our journey from Vienna to Prague, but we had to sit through an hour's delay. We were ready to take it easy for the rest of the trip!

Where We Stayed

We stayed in Hotel Residence Spalena, which had a great location - walkable to many attractions, shops and public transport. It was clean and affordable, but unfortunately, sound-proofing wasn't that great, and we were put off by other guests who were smoking on the balcony, despite smoking being prohibited on the grounds.

What We Did

I wasn't too fussed on catching all the must-see sights but the iconic Charles Bridge wasn't one I wanted to miss. Here's a tip - avoid the crowd and climb to the top of the Old Town Bridge Tower for amazing views. It's one of the those places that seem to be overlooked, and easily so as the entrance is a little hidden! We climbed to the top and there were only two other people there - we just sat there watching the sunset, soaking in the views. 

What To Eat And Drink In Vienna

Food is always one of my top priorities when I'm travelling. While in Vienna, I was on Trip Advisor every night searching for the best places to sample the local cuisine. Here's a list of dishes and drinks that I think give a great overview of what Austrian cuisine is like!

#1: Wiener Schnitzel

Every list of must eats in Vienna has got to start with the Wiener Schnitzel. It is a thin piece of veal (pork is a poplar variation) crumbed and pan-fried to perfection. It is usually served with a side of salad or potatoes. We tried it a couple of times and loved how it was so crispy and tender at the same time!

Vienna, Austria

Our train ride from Salzburg to Vienna felt like forever because there were no seats. We had to sit on the floors between carriages, we felt a little like wanderers, sipping on our elderflower drinks!

It took me some time to warm up to Vienna. Hubby was there to attend a conference, so I pretty much had three full days to myself. I have to be honest, I took my time there for granted at the start but regretted it halfway through the second day as I realised how much more I wanted to see and eat.

Where We Stayed

Our accommodation was Apartment 1 in Apartment 6 Rooms 1060 and it was no doubt my ultimate, most favourite place to stay throughout our trip. I am normally suckered in by five star ratings and fancy hotels but decided to go with 6 Rooms instead for a variety of reasons - the photos looked nice, the price was affordable and it was close to a U-Bahn station, and I couldn't have made a better choice. We really felt like locals living in Vienna.

The apartment is within a 1800s building, with a traditional elevator (where you have to use a key and manually slide the doors - it will not work if you don't do these properly!), spiralling staircases and checkered floors. Museumsquartier was just about 5 to 10 minutes walk away, so it was really easy to get around.