When I told people that I was going to Brno*, they laughed at me. “What would you want to go to Brno for?” They snickered. And I didn’t really know what to tell them.
Because it’s hard to explain to people (especially those already convinced of their truth) that you’ve got a feeling about a place. That from various blogs and people and tweety birds and east winds you’ve gathered snippets of information that gave you the initial feel for a place. A place that might be abuzz, might be alive, might be exciting, might be interesting. That a place is calling to you, luring you with promises of tasty treats and thrilling times. And that you suddenly have the urge to go there to see it with your own eyes and taste it with your own tongue and, bref, to experience it for yourself. (And because, let’s be honest – Brno, with its history and culture – deserves to be explored for its own sake, even though it’s only Prague’s plainer sister.) And so I packed a day bag, boarded a coach, and travelled three hours south-east.
As you may have guessed, my expectations of Brno were very high. True to my methodical self, I had compiled a detailed itinerary prior to my arrival, filling every hour of my stay with visits to cafés, restaurants, museums and various other places of interest. Boy, was I not disappointed! I didn’t get to do half the things I’d planned, but I left Brno feeling overwhelmed by the sheer choice of great things to do, see, and eat.
So, if you ask me? Brno is definitely a yes, yes, yes! Stay tuned for a post on what to do in Brno for 24+ hours. (Although, frankly, 24 hours is way, way too little.)
*Brno, the second largest city in the Czech Republic, is an agglomeration of about 500 000 inhabitants situated on the opposite end of the country from the capital, tucked into the sun-soaked and wine-drenched valleys of Moravia. It is best known for being a provincial backwater where nothing ever happens and whose only status derives from Supreme Court and the Supreme Prosecutor being headquartered there (a bone thrown to the city after it clamoured for status following the formation of the Czech Republic after the split of Czechoslovakia in 1993). Its inhabitants are notorious for speaking with a silly accent, having a high tolerance for neurotoxic psychoactive drugs, and an astounding level of naiveté which often manifests itself as intrusive friendliness. (In short, Brno to Prague is a bit like Los Angeles to New York, minus the celebrities.)