By Daniella Elwood
Moving from a city close to mountains, the sea and so much greenery – to a landlocked city known for its Old Town, cobblestone streets and iconic red roofs? I was quite nervous (to put it lightly).
How was I going to breathe? (as an asthmatic – this was genuinely my greatest fear) How was I supposed to access fresh air when there were barely any trees around to help keep it clean and provide me with oxygen?
I had visited Prague once before; we had stayed smack-bang in the middle of the Old Town and remained very central for those 2 days, also in the middle of July – i.e. peak suffocating-sweat-season. It was so beautiful and I loved the visit but in that short time it did not strike me as a particularly ‘lush-green’ city.
I was so happily wrong.
The TEFL Worldwide school is only a 15min train ride outside of the Old Town, and I cannot express how stoked I was to discover that it is right across the road from a green park full of trees. Yay! I was going to be able to breathe. Fresh air was right on my doorstep. Jackpot.
But wait, there is more; taking a left out of the school, about 50m up the road there is a river, with a trail alongside it, big trees and more big green parks.
Had I actually done any sort of research, before buying a one-way ticket to Prague, about the city or about the location of the school (I literally didn’t even Google map it… who doesn’t do that these days?) I would’ve known this already and known what to expect, easing my nerves about being able to breath – but oh well, you win some & you learn from some.
I did end up doing a little search after I had arrived and pleasantly found out the Prague is in fact THE greenest major city in the world!* It has the greatest percentage (57%) of green space by total city space (and here I was nervous there wouldn’t be any… how ridiculous!?) that they have been steadily working on and creating since the medieval period.
So not only does Prague have incredible access to green spaces, a brilliant (and cheap!) train, bus & tram network, loads of eco-conscious shops & initiatives; there is an awesome recycling scheme. There are recycle stations all over the city which makes it so easy along with lots of water fountains for you to fill up your water bottle wherever you are in the city. For a deeply established city as old as Prague, for it to have such positive environmentally conscious practices is a sure win; I tip my hat to them.
Better yet – once you yourself are aware of it, you notice how clean the streets actually are, how many parks there actually are and how all the single use items (cutlery, coffee cups, straws etc.) are nearly all recyclable or biodegradable! How awesome is that?
*according to TravelBird.nl