One of the youngest capitals of Europe with rich history. Beautiful streets of old town and tasty food and beer. Bratislava is a must see for every traveller.

Bratislava is the only capital bordering two countries in once. So, you can make a trip to Wien (which is around one hour driving from Bratislava or Budapest, 2,5 hours). The old city is small but magical place with a lot of historical statues, squares and charming little shops and coffees.

Best things to do in Bratislava

Start your tour at Michael´s gate, which is an entrance to old town. This gate is 51m high and it is the only preserved gate from medieval times. The old legend says, that the student, who will walk through gate without saying a word will successfully pass the exam. Under the gate, look for golden circle. It illustrates the distances from Bratislava to 29 other capital cities.

From Michael´s gate continue to the city centrum. By wondering the streets, you can find the most beautiful building of Bratislava- Primatial Palace. The Slovak National Theatre - Opera & Ballet House stands in the end of beautiful Hviezdoslav Square full of trees and often a place for exhibitions of art works. Grassalkovich Palace, also called Slovakia's White House is a home to Slovakia´s president. Palace´s baroque garden is open to public even when president is in residence. Grassalkovich Palace is located on Hodza Square. It is especially beautiful during the Christmas time.

Grassalkovich palace bratislava slovakia
Grassalkovich Palace, Photo by Dennis Jarvis via Flickr

But coming back to the main square, look for several nice statues of men. The most popular is “Cumil” (in English it is called "Watcher" or "Man at work"). You will find it on Panska street.

Cumil, Statue bratislava
Cumil, Photo by Dennis Jarvis via Flickr

Panska Street will lead you to the St. Martin´s Cathedral, dominant church of Bratislava. If you want to, you can go inside, where 11 Hungarian kings and 8 royal wives were coronated.

Under the bridge next to St. Martin´s Church are steps, which will lead you to Bratislava Castle. It is a short 15 minutes’ walk. From the castle, you will see the stunning panorama of the whole city.

View from Bratislava Castle, Slovakia
View from Bratislava Castle, Photo by Kamil Rejczyk via Flickr
Bratislava Castle Slovakia
Bratislava Castle, Photo by Dennis Jarvis via Flickr

From the castle you also saw something like UFO, right? That’s Bratislava´s symbol, UFO tower. To go there, cross the bridge “Novy most”. The lift to UFO´s observation desk will cost you 6,5 €. The beautiful view can be enjoyed with the sunset and cup of coffee in UFO´s restaurant.

Panorama with UFO Tower and view of Petrzalka, Bratislava Slovakia
Panorama with UFO Tower, Photo by Kurt Bauschardt via Flickr

The nice night walk on promenade next to the river Danube is a perfect finish of this beautiful day in the capital of Slovakia.


Outside the old town

If you have an extra one day, we suggest you visit Devin castle and Slavin.

Devin Castle above the confluence of the rivers Danube and Morava is one of the three oldest historically acknowledged castles in Slovakia. Castle has been a National cultural monument since 1961 and it serves as a museum now. The atmosphere of this castle is very peaceful. We strongly suggest you visit this historical beauty.

Devin Castle Bratislava Slovakia
Devin, Photo by Marzper via Wikimedia

Slavín is a memorial monument and military cemetery in Bratislava. Thousands of Soviet Army soldiers, who fell during the World War II are buried here. The monument of Slavin is often visited because of its beautiful views of the city. There are many more statues in Slavin from famous artists.

Slavin Memorial Slovakia
Slavin, Photo by Pythin via Wikimedia

Local food

Between the visits, refresh yourself in one of beautiful coffee of tea houses. There is a large selection of small charming places. During the summer months, sit outside and enjoy the atmosphere of surrounding historical buildings. There are also many restaurants. For authentic and local experience, choose some of the Slovak ones and taste halusky (traditional Slovak food), cabbage soup, goulash soup, potato pancakes and, as a desert, funnel cake or Slovak pancakes.

Slovakia in general is famous for its typical sheep cheese called “Bryndza”, so everything with this cheese is a right choice. Another popular cheeses are called Korbaciky, Parenica or Ostiepok and It is often eaten like a salty snack.

Halusky, National Slovak Food
Halusky, Photo by Gregory Finster via Wikimedia

Where to stay

If you look for eco-friendly hotel in the nature, you can accommodate in Zochova Chata, just 30 minutes by car from Bratislava. You can also choose Viktor Apartments in Dubravka, part of Bratislava or Marrol's boutique hotel in old town. Unfortunatelly, Bratislava do not have many ecological hotels, so the selection is limited.



Author: Nikola Meciarova

Cover Image: Photo by xlibber via Wikimedia