Bratislava is one of the most underrated cities in Europe. Being closer to popular destinations like Vienna and Budapest, it is often overlooked by international tourists. Situated on the banks of the mighty Danube, the city is known for its rich history and culture. It is also the only national capital that borders two sovereign states. From Baroque architecture to a vibrant nightlife, the city has something on offer for everyone. In this post, we give you a lowdown on top things to do in Bratislava.
You can visit Bratislava from Vienna as a day trip as well. There are bus/trains/cruises on a daily basis.
WANDER THROUGH THE OLD TOWN
Designed in Baroque style, the old town is one of the major attractions of the city. Most of the attractions are dotted in the old town. The old town of Bratislava is home to historical sights, churches, museums, cafes, and restaurants. There is a multitude of things to see in the old town. You can also stumble upon bunkers converted into quirky cafes.
Must-See Attractions: Bratislava’s Main Square, Old Town Hall, Grassalkovich Palace, Primate’s Palace, Michael’s Gate, Quirky Statues
VISIT BRATISLAVA CASTLE
Bratislava Castle is a dominant feature of the old town of Bratislava. Located beside the Danube, the construction of the castle began in the 9th century and the existing structure wasn’t completed until the 19th century. Not only it offers a wonderful view of the city but it is one of the most popular attractions in Bratislava. On a clear day, it also offers views of Austria and Hungary. It only takes around 15 minutes to walk up the hill to the castle and once you’re there we suggest taking a stroll through the Baroque gardens.
DON’ T MISS THE BLUE CHURCH
One of the most popular places to visit in Bratislava is an interesting unique blue church. Built-in the year 1913, in Hungarian style this church is also known as the Little Blue Church because of the color of its façade, mosaics, majolicas, and blue-glazed roof. The church is located in the eastern part of the Old Town and can be easily reached on foot from the Old Town. The church is quite popular among locals for weddings.
ENJOY THE SUNSET & HAVE A DRINK OR TWO AT THE TOP OF THE UFO TOWER
A flying saucer-shaped restaurant offers breathtaking 360 degrees of the city. A restaurant, an observation deck and a panorama walkway called Skywalk is located on top of the tower. We highly recommend to visit the place during sunset, try their cosmic drink, and take in the amazing view. Book in advance if you are planning a fancy dinner at the restaurant.
( Price for the Skywalk: 39 Euro )
ENJOY A TRADITIONAL SLOVAK MEAL AT SLOVAK PUB
Slovak Pub is not just popular among tourists but with locals alike. Do try out some of the Slovakian delicacies at the pub and wash it all down with local’s favorite drink — Kofola, an alternative to Coke/ Pepsi for lunch.
ENJOY A MEAL AT 360 DEGREE REVOLVING RESTAURANT
Altitude restaurant located in the Kamzik TV tower is the tallest place in Bratislava. The rotating tables of the restaurant provide a 360 degrees view of Bratislava.
Dedicated to the soldiers who died during World War II. Slavin is the largest war memorial in Central Europe.
HALF DAY TRIP TO DEVIN CASTLE
Located 12 kms from the city center, Devin castle is a great place to visit for history buffs. The castle was blown up by Napoleon’s army. The castle offers beautiful panoramic views and has been declared as the natural cultural monument of Slovakia. It is hard to imagine but not so long ago, during the cold war, the area surrounding the castle used to be a militarized zone.
OTHER IMPORTANT INFO
- VISA – Schengen Visa
- CURRENCY – Euro
FOR STUNNING VIEWS
- UFO Tower – Best to visit during Sunset or Night.
- Michael’s Gate ( 5 Euro per person ) for views of the Old Town
- Bratislava castle
- Rooftop by Regal
- Kamzik TV Tower – There is a 360-degree revolving restaurant
HOW TO REACH BRATISLAVA
- Train – You can reach Bratislava by train from Vienna or Budapest. It takes about an hour from Vienna Central Station to Petrazalka station.
- Cruise – Twin City Liner operates a ferry service from Vienna to Bratislava and it takes 1 hour and 15 minutes to reach.
- Bus – There are frequent buses from Germany, Austria, and Hungary to Bratislava.
- Flight – The closest airport is the Bratislava airport and there are flights to all major European cities.
- Avoid Taxis from the station as they charge close to 20 Euros to take you to the city center.
- UBER is a perfect and cheaper way to reach the city center or old town from the railway station.
- You can also use public transportation like trams and buses to get around the city.
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