Prague before the flood
A few personal thoughts before we start: I first saw this wonderful city in 1987 but my only tram-oriented memory from that visit was that I don't like Tatras, or at least T3's (I liked the T5C5's of Budapest back then, though). That must have been because I was more vehicle-oriented those days. Now that I know a little more about public transport networks I appreciate the well-planned and well-organised tram system of Prague much better! Let me explain this: Budapest has also had a truly wonderful tram network, but it was systematically destroyed when the subway lines were opened. Prague started to build underground railways later, and when they were ready, they did not truncate the existing network as badly as they did in Budapest. The situation after the terrible floodings in the summer of 2002 would have been much worse had they done so, I think!
And now let's see the pictures of trams of "Golden Prague"!
Prague is located on both sides of the river Vltava (or Moldau) between and on top of small hills (with the Castle Hill being the most dominant) and that makes navigation and infrastructural engineering a bit hard, as there are hardly any parallel or perpendicular streets :) The tram network is wide-spreading, with many junctions and loops, which is greatly suitable for operating a flexible system: detours, supplementing routes are easy to do!
The company CKD Smichov, manufacturer of Tatras was one the biggest tram-producer of the world, so the obvious choice for vehicles here were their products for decades. On the picture: coupled set of T6A5 cars. These are, like all 4-axle cars in the city uni-directional. Some of them have 1+1, others 1+2 seat arrangement.
the "modern" center of the inner city. Originally there were trams here,
but those lines were closed, only one remained, at about half height of
the very long square (where the photo was taken from).
In the center of the square there's a motorcar accompanied by a trailer, acting as a café.
Very nice, I didn't expect anything like this! Czech people seem to take great care of their historic relics - they have great museums too!
Ulica Jindrisska, the street that runs through the middle of Vaclavske namesti, with the "Gunpowder-tower" in the background. In the foreground you can see a T3 multiple unit with refurbished cars.
An older T3 without electronic destination/route number display. These vehicles were produced between the 1960's and the 80's in great masses and I therefore canot tell you how old this particular car is.
The rear end of the same MU.
Trams behind the "Hradzin" (Prazský Hrad - Prague Castle). There are at least three or four routes climbing up to here on a steep accent.
Most of the cars feature the classic red-white (red-cream?) livery...
... but of course there are also some with all-over ads...
... like the one at the end of that MU.
Detour: when we were there, route 23 was shortened due to track renewal...
... and was supplemented by bus (Malostranske namesti).
One of the most famous landmarks of Prague is the Charles-bridge (Karlúv most). Once there were trams trafficing on that ancient bridge, now they're only passing by the bridgehead, like this T6A5 on route 23.
Krizovnicke namesti: I think this is a very good place...
... to take interesting photos...
... of trams going through this old house :)
Another set of refurbished T3's.