The 1958 tram which takes tourists around the city's historic sites.
photo: Courtesy BIS
Every Wednesday, at 16:00, a tram made in 1958 begins its regular loop by the most significant and interesting spots in Bratislava. Tram conductors dressed in old time uniforms greet visitors and lead them down the city streets while discussing the history of the former coronation capital of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. The tour begins at Hurbanovo námestie (where Obchodná street turns into Michalská brána) - get on the tram marked with capital BIS letters standing opposite the Kostol Trinitárov (Saint Trinity Church), settle back comfortably in the old fashioned seat, roll down the window and get your camera ready.
Leaving the baroque church, the tram passes historical buildings as well as the country's biggest shopping mall Tesco. From there, you enter a street lined with pubs, where Jozef the II, Maria Terezia's son, slept before his coronation. Among Bratislava's theatres and hotels, guests learn that the historic Hotel Carlton is the oldest of its kind in Europe.
While listening to the storied legends surrounding the city's fountains and sculptures, the tram winds through the streets and offers a feast for the eyes. The tour then climbs up to the Main Train Station before returning to the Old Town centre: Krížna street, famous for its gallows, followed by Špitálska street and Jesenského street and its wineries. Then it's on to the Danube embankment, where the UFO restaurant on Nový most bridge and the Bratislava castle are viewed, through a long tunnel and back to Hurbanovo námestie.
The tour is enlightening and inexpensive. Riders of the historical tram inevitably leave with a broader knowledge of the Old Town and a deeper appreciation for the city's historical past.
Tickets cost 20 Sk for children and 40 Sk for adults. For further information contact Anetta Janošková at BIS information office, at Klobučnícka 2. Tel: 5443 4059.