As I mentioned in my Vienna blog, I went on a day trip to Slovakia during my last travels. Bratislava is only an hour away from Vienna which makes them the two closest capital cities in Europe!
(I got there by train and I can definitely recommend the Bratislava ticket you can get on every ÖBB ticket machine at Vienna’s central station. It only costs 16€ whoop!)
I had never been to Slovakia before and I thought it might be pretty cool to see a bit of this country when I can. And I must say it was certainly worth it! I only spent six or seven hours there but in that time I could see a lot of Bratislava and of how adorable it is.
Really, it’s not exactly a huge city (about 400,000 inhabitants, but then again Slovakia isn’t so huge either) and it doesn’t feel as much as a central, capital city as for example Copenhagen does (which doesn’t have loads more inhabitants!). Instead, it felt like a city perfect for a day trip or two days maybe, perfect for just walking around, enjoying the cute little streets, amazing views and… pubs? Seriously, I felt like there were quite a lot of them. Maybe Bratislava is a bit like Budapest, people mostly come there to get drunk. I’m a bit bummed I didn’t have time to eat dinner there because there seemed to be quite a few really lovely small restaurants but I didn’t want to get home late as I had to plan my next few days on that evening.
I definitely recommend walking up to the Slavin memorial/monument. It’s really impressive and you get a great view over the city. I’m quite glad I walked up the hill right after I arrived because it got really hot on that day. Also, it was quite good to know how the city looks before I walked to other places.
It’s a bit of a walk from the central station to the centre but along the way, you can see a few nice buildings and a park and the presidential palace (at least I think that one was before the centre really began). When you get to the old town suddenly tourists appear! Before that, I felt rather alone but there were actually loads of people exploring the city, mostly older tourists groups though. It never got crowded though and that was really nice. As I mentioned, the old town is full of nice little streets, cute houses, a few squares and fancy buildings and parks. I really enjoyed just walking around there.
At some point, I walked down to the river, enjoyed the nice breeze that made me feel less like a boiling potato and then walked up yet another hill to Bratislava Castle. The castle really is super pretty! It was renovated not long ago and you can certainly notice that. It’s lovely to look at, inside and out, and there is a museum with a couple of different parts in there. I, of course, had to go inside and I learned quite a few things about the Castle, Bratislava, Slovakia as part of the Austro-Hungarian empire and Slovakian art. The view from this hill is also really nice!
Afterwards, I basically just chilled in the park next to the castle, ate the rest of my food, and walked back to the train station. I actually wanted to go to the other side of the river as well but I was so hot and exhausted at that point, I just wanted to shower and sleep, really.
All in all, Bratislava might not be super exciting or a bustling city, but it’s certainly great for a trip and worth checking out when in the area.
See you soon ❤