Overshadowed by other nearby metropolises, like Vienna and Budapest, this city provides many not so obvious treasures, which you can find even while taking a casual stroll through the city.
Bratislava has places of importance located in the hills, providing a beautiful view of the city, bustling vineyards in the foothills and wide plains in the outskirts. Citywise - you can find beautiful historical buildings and bold modern architecture, next to each other - bound in an unlikely synergy.
It does not matter if you are visiting long-term, doing business or just passing through - we guarantee that you will find a place that you can fall in love with.
Here is just some of the places that you can visit.
Starting with the most obvious - visiting the Bratislava Castle is a must for the first time visitors. The castle is rich with history, dating back to the stone age. Because of this, it serves primarily as a museum. Other than that, it is used during the most important international meetings.
The courtyard and the park surrounding it is open for visitors and offers a view of the whole city. If you are hungry, we recommend visiting the restaurant “Hradná Hviezda” situated right inside the inner walls.
Continuing from the castle, you can visit the Old Town, situated directly underneath it.
Here you can find the historical centre of the city which is staying true to its original self, without the common affliction of any extreme, modern makeovers.
Some of the points of interest here are Michalská Brána (Michael’s gate) serving as the main gateway into the historical centre, splitting modern part of the city and the historical one. Going down the Michalská street, you will find yourself 300 years in the past.
Turning left after a while, you will cross the Main Square, where most of the official events and seasonal markets take place. Notice the fountain with statue of knight Roland on top of it - dedicated to King Maximilian II., who built this fountain in the past, as a public water supply.
The statue itself is turned every few years on New Year’s eve and is told to bring luck to whoever sees it turn.
From Main Square, we suggest you to head towards Hviezdoslavovo námestie (Hviezdoslav square). This square, stretching along most of the Old Town’s width, forms a boulevard with many restaurants, coffee shops, ice cream stands, and miscellaneous entertainment (like human size chess board and art expositions). The main point of interest here is the old building of Slovak National Theatre, built in the front end of the square. To this day you can visit it to see some of the classic opera and ballet performances. But if you plan to see a drama play or a musical - most other performance genres were moved into the new building of Slovak National Theatre situated next to Eurovea Shopping centre.
St. Martin Cathedral
After passing the whole square, you can head to St Martin Cathedral. This place put Bratislava on map as the coronation city of the Kingdom of Hungary in the past. Next to the standard masses that take place here, it is accessible to the public through guided tours.
It is also worth noting that every year in summer coronation celebrations take place here. These celebrations include reenactments of the whole coronation parade, together with the coronation in the cathedral.
Bridge of Slovak National Uprising
Undoubtedly the second most iconic place in Bratislava - together with the Bratislava castle, this place makes the Bratislava skyline stand out from other cities. While structurally unique, with asymmetric one pylon and only one row of ropes supporting whole bridge, it also incorporates a fully functional restaurant in the top part, shaped like an UFO (hence the nickname UFO Bridge).
You can reach the restaurant via a paid elevator. This elevator fee can be later deducted from your restaurant bill. The restaurant provides (next to some delicious food) an astonishing view of the city as a whole, thanks to its central location. Therefore, we recommend visiting, even though you are not interested in eating there.
These places are the most prominent and to cover the rest, we would have to make this article much, much longer. We definitely recommend to explore as much as possible, as you will definitely find many places that could be seen as hidden gems. To make moving around the city easier, we propose you to rent a car . Companies like RAI Internacional rent cars directly at the airport, so you can start exploring as soon as you land in Slovakia.
8. Jul 2019 at 6:00