Happy Christmas from Prague and London!

Well, I can conclude that it was all worth it. The last few weeks have been pretty miserable weather-wise–and I’ve missed Australia terribly–but now that Christmas is finally upon us, oh, it’s good to be cold!

Christmas lights on Regent Street

Christmas lights on Regent Street, London

Even more to the point, dark, actually. All those twinkly lights and frosted pine trees…that’s Christmas to me. There’s such an incredible sense of goodwill in the cold and dark, even in ridiculously busy shops with all on high pressure missions, packed in like sardines. Perhaps we’re just appreciative of sharing body warmth!

Christmas lights at Claridge's, London

Christmas lights at Claridge’s, London

It’s incredible the lengths shops, hotels and other businesses go to in decorating their buildings in London. I walk around slightly blurry eyed at how heart-warming it is (actively disregarding all commercial reasons for them doing so!). It feels as though so much effort is made for all to enjoy, that mankind is brought together in a way totally unlike any other time of year.

Christmas lights by Piccadilly Circus

Christmas lights by Piccadilly Circus, London

The observant amongst you will notice that it isn’t the Thames but the river Vltava running under the very famous Charles Bridge at the top of the page. Paul and I sneaked in a trip to Prague at the weekend; somewhere I have wanted to visit for over a decade. It was my first trip to continental Europe since we’ve been back and I’ve definitely got the bug for more trips as and when we can.

Wenceslas Square, Prague. Hard to get more Christmassy than this!

Wenceslas Square, Prague. Hard to get more Christmassy than this!

Prague is a stunning city with incredible architecture, although with a high of zero degrees, definitely on the chilly side. We did visit a couple of gardens, but soon realised that the weather was neither conducive to standing around admiring them nor helpful to the plants in their quest to look their very best.

A straw nativity outside St Vitus's Cathedral

A straw nativity outside St Vitus’s Cathedral, Prague Castle

So I thought a very short post this week, showing you the best of Christmas in Prague and London, to get you in the mood for the weekend and to wish you a wonderful time with family and friends, wherever you are.

I adore the colourings and detail of this wreath on Golden Lane

I simply adore the colourings and detail of this wreath on Golden Lane, Prague

Thanks so much for joining me here throughout 2016 and I wish you a very happy 2017, when I’ll be back with many, many more gardens to come!

St Clement's Cathedral, Prague

We attended a carol concert on Saturday evening at St Clement’s Cathedral, performed by the chamber ensemble Musica Pragensis, who specialise in music from the Baroque period

I absolutely adored this pathway at Prague Castle with angular stones showing the main path and rounded stones either side. Just stunning

OK, I admit, this isn’t terribly Christmassy, but I absolutely adored this surface at Prague Castle with angular stones indicating the main pathway and rounded stones either side: the way the light caught it was simply stunning

Christmas Tree at Prague Old Town Square

Enormous tree at Prague Old Town Square. Happy Christmas!

21 thoughts on “Happy Christmas from Prague and London!

  1. jangorman says:

    Happy Christmas Janna and Paul. It has been delightful enjoying gardens and adventures through your eyes and informative blogs.Wishing you both all the best for the new year. Jan and John.

  2. Barbara says:

    Happy Christmas, Janna from a scorching, 41 degrees Perth. Yes, cold and dark mean something around Christmas. I will be looking forward to your new garden adventures in 2017.

    • jannaschreier says:

      Thank you Barbara! 41 degrees. Wow. It’s so hard to imagine that as I sit here in my fleece! I’ve been planning garden visits for January today…really looking forward to both seeing and sharing them. Enjoy your very warm Christmas.

    • Suzanne says:

      Lol…we obviously are enjoying the same day here in sunny Perth, and enjoy some of the same blogs. Isn’t IT amazing? Enjoy your day and have a great West Aussie Christmas.

      • Barbara says:

        Thank you Suzanne, have a happy and safe one too. As for blogs, I also faithfully follow Dan’s aka Frustrated Gardener, Deirdre’s, and of course Garden Drum :).

  3. Adriana says:

    What a lovely post Janna! Here some councils in their stupidity have banned public decorations (PC world gone mad!). Prague is definitely on our list too, along with St Petersberg (at some stage). 35 predicted here on Christmas day (first really hot day after a long cool spring). Prefer the cooler weather – actually Ian and I should have been Englanders. 22 and sunny – yes perfect summer weather. 28 and hmmm getting a bit too hot, 35 ergghh hell on earth – hide inside! I hope that you and Paul have a lovely Christmas.

    • jannaschreier says:

      Thanks, Adriana. I did actually think of the perils of saying Happy Christmas on a blog that has had visitors this year from Azerbaijan, Bhutan, Cambodia, Dominican Republic, Egypt, French Polynesia, Ghana…you get the idea…but then I thought I, personally, would very much enjoy reading a ‘Happy Diwali’ post, so hopefully there won’t be too many complaints. If you like the idea of Prague you would definitely love St Petersburg; the architecture is incredible. Make sure you go around 21 June and you will be amazed to have the sun on your face at midnight! Anyway, thanks for the good wishes and I hope your Christmas forecast has been ‘over-baked’ and a lovely 22 degrees eventuates!

  4. Suzanne says:

    I really dislike being cold BUT each year I think it would be wonderful to have a chilly Christmas; to want to be indoors cooking up a sumptuous feast; to WANT to eat a sumptuous feast and to have time off from the garden, just for a little while, to do Christmassy stuff. So I envy you [a little] your traditional English Christmas, those incredibly beautiful decorations [lights loose something when it’s daylight until 8 at night and you can see all the wires] and the excitement it all generates.
    However, I do love our family tradition of breakfast in the back garden with the smell of ripe mulberries and the whiff of horse, the Norfolk Island hibiscus raining pink flowers over us [who needs snow?] all under my much loved Aussie icon. The only thing I really miss is the Sydney mob.
    Very best wishes for the festive season to you and Paul, Janna. I look forward to sharing your wonderful adventures and garden visits as you trip around the world in 2017. Hope that special present is in Santa’s sack. XX

    • jannaschreier says:

      Oh, that traditional Aussie Christmas with eau de horse!! You do make me laugh. Love the idea of snowing hibiscus though and, frankly, every day would be wonderful having breakfast in your garden. Christmas is all about rituals and it’s fascinating how every family has its own set of them. Much love to you all.

  5. germac4 says:

    Lovely to see Prague at Christmas time. Your photo of Claridges all lit up & the red buses at night took me back to my first Xmas in London aged 16 …. I thought “oh yes this is the way it is in story books!” Enjoy yourself .. Keep warm and lookout for gorgeous gardens along the way..

    • jannaschreier says:

      It is all very fairy tale like, apart from the fact that the ‘bus’ photo wasn’t taken at night but at four o’clock in the afternoon! The darkness does challenge me somewhat. But, hey, it’s 21 December today – hoorah for more light from tomorrow! I’ll certainly be keeping my eyes peeled…enjoy your Christmas in Canberra.

  6. Louise Dutton says:

    Prague and a cold Christmas in London on my list of must do…….
    Merry Christmas to you both over there. I hope it is full of laughter and love. Looking forward to visiting the many gardens you bring to us in your blog in 2017.

  7. Kerrie Wendon says:

    Dear Janna,
    Wishing you a very happy and healthy Christmas 2016.
    I love my new courtyard. The Exterior Outdoor Matt and his crew were fabulous!

    Kerri Wendon

    • jannaschreier says:

      Oh, Kerrie, you have made my day! Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a message. I am absolutely thrilled that you love your new courtyard – you had such great ideas and after pulling them all together and getting the help of Matt, I am delighted that you are so happy. I am sure it will make a huge difference to your life in your new (ish!) home. I’d absolutely love to see a photo if you’d be able to email one to me, sometime when you are not too busy with work. Thanks again for getting in touch and I do hope you get to sit out there on Sunday and relax in your lovely space!

    • jannaschreier says:

      Thanks, Dave. Happy Christmas to you, too. 2017 is the year I’m coming down to see you! Without a car, Southern Rail is a little off putting, but there are too many lovely Sussex gardens to stay away, methinks. Have a good one.

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