Roundup: Old Rača vineyard, fjúžn festival, visit to Skalica

One of the best Hungarian films, Sátántangó, will be screened in Bratislava. Read more in this week's briefing.

People enjoying a nice sunny day on the lake in Ivanka pri Dunaji on September 15, 2020. People enjoying a nice sunny day on the lake in Ivanka pri Dunaji on September 15, 2020. (Source: TASR)

Before you scroll down to travel tips for the weekend and other culture news from this week, here is a weekend film recommendation if you happen to be in Bratislava:


The monumental and seminal work of the Hungarian film director Béla Tarr, Sátántangó (1994), will be screened on Saturday, September 19, in the Bratislava cinema Lumiére.

The art drama film, based on the book by László Krasznahorkai, follows members of a small, defunct collective farm in rural Hungary after the fall of Communism. Some of them want to steal villagers’ money and flee to another part of the country. Their conspiracy collapses after a mysterious character, believed to be dead, returns to the village, changing the course of people’s lives forever.

The eight-hour film, shot in black-and-white, was digitally restored last year on the occasion of its 25th anniversary. On Saturday, the screening will have two breaks.


Post-war carriages may return to Kosice Region railroads

The Children's Railway of Košice has renovated several carriages from the Railway Museum. If test rides go well, the carriages could soon be back on the narrow-gauge railroad for nostalgic trips to places outside of Košice.

Tip for trip: Jelšava Castle

Old Jelšava Castle provides tourists with an easy hike, some history and a quiet view of the town of Jelšava. The trails to the castle and the Skalka lookout point are among the two main routes of local tourism.

Slovak peak to hike: Sivý vrch

On the summit of Sivý vrch mountain, you can admire the Liptov region and the Liptovská Mara water reservoir, as well as the Orava region and the Oravská priehrada reservoir. You will also see Babky, another peak for you to climb.

From our archive: A rotunda hill offers the best view of Skalica

Chris Togneri reminisces on his two visits to the town of Skalica in western Slovakia, the first of which happened in 1997. Skalica’s most recognisable monument is St. George’s Rotunda, found on a hill just north of the city centre, he writes.

More information about travelling in Slovakia
Please see our Spectacular Slovakia travel guide.

Podcast: [fjúžn] festival

The [fjúžn] festival, which brings foreigners and Slovaks together, begins in Bratislava today, September 18. Nina Galanská and Kristína Hamárová of Milan Šimečka Foundation came to the studio to tell Spectacular Slovakia listeners what to look forward to. Are you ready for a special walking tour with tattoo artist Les Paskarenko, concerts, discussions, a quiz night, and the Umbrella March?

Weekend reads

A global microchip conspiracy pays off for neo-Nazis

The award-winning Slovak film director Marko Škop claims that extremists are waiting for another opportunity to rise up. Instead of refugees, they will use the pandemic to their advantage. Škop reflects on extremists in his latest film, Let There Be Light.

Slovaks have gained lots of self-confidence over the past 15 years

People in Bratislava are also more open to communicating with strangers, Dutch-born photographer and activist Illah van Oijen claims. Even though she is a foreigner, Slovakia has become her home. So, what should Slovakia be proud of? Read more about Van Oijen's life in Bratislava.

I have never been an expat, I was an international student who decided to stay.

Dutch photographer and activist Illah van Oijen

How to keep an old vineyard alive

Jozef Mórik and his friends decided to revitalise one of Bratislava-Rača's oldest vineyards in 2011. At that time it was in bad condition, with hundreds of 60-year-old vines. Today, 95 percent of the vineyard accounts for the Frankovka wine, produced mostly in Rača, thanks to thousands of new vines.

Before you go, here's your culture news in short:

  • FESTIVAL: The multi-genre festival White Night has been cancelled. Organisers said: “The increasing numbers of infected people, the growing pressure and the continual toughening of conditions prevented us from continuing preparations.”
  • ART: Liptovský Mikuláš has its first mural displayed on the side of one of the buildings in the city.
  • EXHIBITION: LGBT+ history over the last 100 years in four countries - Slovakia, Czechia, Serbia, and Hungary - is the core of the multi-genre project Loading: love, which walks exhibition goers through the times when homosexuality was illegal.
  • MUSIC: Singers Katarína Knechtová and Adam Ďurica have released a duet called Takí sme (This Is Who We Are). Listen to the song.

That is all for this week. Have a lovely weekend!

The next Spectacular Slovakia Weekly: September 25.

Read last week's roundup.

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News digest: Health care staff still lacking, president asks for amends

Slovakia is preparing to launch the nationwide testing on Saturday morning, but the government admitted they still need hundreds of health care staff. Kotleba violates quarantine and hospitals in the north are full.

The Bratislava Self-Governing Region started testing its staff on October 30.

Testing is impossible to carry out as planned, president says

President Zuzana Čaputová asked the government to reconsider measures for people who do not get tested, many will not get a chance.

President Zuzana Čaputová met with the representatives of the armed forces.

The big test is upon us. What are we to do?

For a foreigner living in Slovakia, there is yet another concern.

Health care professionals still lacking ahead of Saturday's testing

Government avoids mobilisation for now, PM offers an extra bonus to health care professionals who can serve the whole weekend.

Dolný Kubín