Foreigners: Top 10 events around Slovakia in December

The selection of events not to miss in the various regions of Slovakia this month.

St Nicolaus‘ Ride with historical diesel trains. St Nicolaus‘ Ride with historical diesel trains. (Source: Courtesy of KHKV)

In all regional cities, as well as other bigger cities and towns, Christmas markets mushroom in the holiday season, offering traditional seasonal meals, artisan products, gifts, carols, Nativity scene re-enactments, and more.

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HISTORICAL TRAIN RIDE: Košice, Prešov, December 2
TRADITIONAL MARKET: Liptovský Mikuláš, Banská Štiavnica, December 8-9
MUSICAL ON ICE: Cinderella, Košice, December 9
NIGHT RUN: Nový Smokovec, High Tatras, December 9
CHRISTMAS AT A CASTLE: Červený Kameň, December 27-30
CHRISTMAS CONCERT: Košice, December 18
CHRISTMAS AT A CASTLE: Bojnice Castle, December 6 – January 6, 2018.
BALLET: The Nutcracker, Košice, December 30
CHRISTMAS CONCERT: Žilina, December 13-17

HISTORICAL TRAIN RIDE: St. Nicholas historical train ride (Mikulášska jazda historickým vláčikom), Main stations Košice, Prešov, December 2

A special St Nicholas train ride will take place between Košice and Prešov, with historical diesel trains Magda and Ľubka, and real carriages from 1950s. The fantasy characters that accompany St Nicholas, an angel and a devil, will distribute packages with sweets among children, in line with the Slovak tradition.

From Košice, special trains will leave at 8:42 and 11:00; from Prešov, at 9:50 and 12:20. A photo session with the fairytale team is included. The ride takes 150 minutes.
Tickets: €4-5 (one-way/return) children without packages, €10-11 (one-way/return, with packages); €8-10 adults (one-way/return);
More information and tickets here.

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TRADITIONAL MARKET: Mikulášsky Jarmok / St Nicholas Market, Námestie Osloboditeľov Square, Liptovský Mikuláš; Kammerhof, Banská Štiavnica, December 8-9

The towns of Liptovský Mikuláš, Banská Štiavnica and others organise traditional markets around the feast of St Nicholas (Dec 6), with traditional products and crafts, visits by St Nicholas, an angel and a devil, lots of cultural events and more.
More info about the Liptovský Mikuláš market. (Slovak only)
More info about the Banská Štiavnica market. (Slovak only)

MUSICAL ON ICE: Cinderella / Popoluška, Steel Aréna Košice, Nerudova 12, December 9, 13:00 and 17:00

The legendary musical on ice returns to košice after five years, with 50 singers, actors, dancers and ice-skaters from seven countries (e.g Lucie Bílá and Ondřej Ruml, Jiří Korn, Martin Dejdar, Sabina Laurinová, Josef Vojtek, Dana Morávková, Vlastimil Harapes, Leona Machálková, Hanka Krížková, Magda Malá; and skaters Anastasia Martysheva and Konstantin Gavrin), as well as live animals, by Czech authors Jindřich Šimek, Petr Malásek and Václav Kopta (lyrics).
Tickets: €15-€25,
Buy tickets here
More info here.

NIGHT RUN: Night Trail – ZBS – 2nd Round, Nový Smokovec, Villa Siesta, December 9, 17:00.

The already popular winter night run in the High Tatras is 7 kilometres long, and has a number of categories: men (younger than 1977), men 40 (1976 – 1967), men 50 (1966 – 1957/), men 60 (1956 +); women (- 1977), women 40 (1976 – 1967), ženy 50 (1966 +) and Nordic Walking, M and F.
More info and registration: Sport Club 1896 Štrbské Pleso, Štrba

CHRISTMAS AT A CASTLE: Červený Kameň Castle, Častá, December 27-30 each full hour between 10:00 and 16:00
Cinderella / Popoluška – The annual performances marking the end of the year offer different stories – in the Slovak language but often understandable for non-speakers. The tale of Cinderella will be performed in the authentic environment of the Medieval Castle as special Christmas tours. Admission: €4-€8. More info:

EUROPEAN XC CHAMPIONSHIP: X-bionic sphere, Šamorín December 10, 8:45- 16:00

The first athletic championship on Slovak territory, Cross-country European Championships, take place in the new athletic complex in Šamorín, offering a special experience for top athletes as well as audiences. The programme starts with a festive opening at 8:45 and lasts until the awards ceremony and announcement of overall results (men and women individuals and teams, relay races, etc.) at around 15:30.
More info here.

CHRISTMAS CONCERT: House of Arts, Moyzesova 66, Košice, December 18, 19:00

II. Vianočný Koncert / 2nd Christmas Concert – The second of the two Christmas concerts of the Košice State Philharmonic (ŠFK) brings an international cast: ŠFK conducted by Maroš Potokár, with violinist Julie Svěcená, soprano Elisabeth Boudreaut, mezzo-soprano Marie-Andreé Mathieu, tenor Jaroslav Březina, and bass Peter Kellner, with the Collegium Technicum choir. The pieces on the programme include Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven.
Tickets: €12-14 (€8-10 discount tickets), €17 loge;, 055 / 2453-123.
More info here.

CHRISTMAS AT A CASTLE: Bojnice Castle December 6 – January 6, 2018, 10:00-18:00.

The programmes at Bojnice Castle will be enhanced with seasonal decorations, demonstrations of traditional customs and rituals, of Christmas dinner, the most famous carol, and more.
Open: daily except Mondays, Dec 24-25, and Jan 1.
Admission: €3.50-8.
More info:

BALLET: P. I. Tchaikovsky: The Nutcracker, Historical building of the State Theatre Košice, Hlavná 58, December 30.16:00

The popular ballet fairytale fits perfectly with its theme in the Christmas season. In State Theatre Košice, it is directed and choreographed by Ondrej Šoth (choreography together with Lyudmyla Zhytnykova, and Oleksandr Khablo), with stage design by Ondrej Šoth, costume design by Andrii Sukhanov, film interludes by Vasyl Sevastyanov and Martin Ondrejka, music rehearsing Miloslav Janíček, conductors Igor Dohovič, Peter Valentovič.
Ticket: €2-4, can be purchased here.
More info here (in Slovak).

CHRISTMAS CONCERT: Fatra House of Arts, Dolný Val 47, Žilina, December 13-17, 19:00

The series of Christmas concerts offered by Slovak Sinfonietta (ŠKO Žilina) conducted by Simon Chalk, with Katarína Bírošová on violin, Klaudia Remencová on cello, soprano Renatka Feriková, and the Žilina Mixed Choir performing Handel, Tchaikovsky, Bach, Mozart, Webber and others.
Tickets: €16-20 (season tickets only valid for Dec 14 concert), can be purchased here.
More info here.

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