After Budapest, we had difficulty deciding where to go next. We had already booked a flight out of Vienna to go to Stuttgart, so we narrowed it down to 2 options of where to be prior than that. We could go directly to Vienna and explore there, or go to Slovakia and stay in Bratislava.
We ended up choosing Bratislava for a few days and it was a really interesting experience. Before diving into what we did and whatnot, I do want to highlight some of the things that makes Bratislava worth visiting. I will say this… Bratislava is worth visiting but, I would limit the amount of time you stay there. There really isn’t a whole lot to do, so would recommend keeping the trip short, or even having it be a day trip.
Why visit Bratislava?
– It’s more affordable than other options, such as Vienna and Prague, but you still get the incredible architecture and designs
– There are quite a few great restaurants and their markets are a great experience
– The history is incredible, and there are some interesting monuments dedicated that are worth seeing
– The castles and views are beautiful
Bratislava is right on the border of Slovakia and Austria, so it’s really convenient to visit both countries within the same short trip. Bratislava is a bit more affordable than Vienna. Great city to walk through. Along the river, through the town, and through the different castles.
We stayed right in the center of the old town, which was perfect to stay in due to the proximity of everything. There is elegant architecture and colors on all the buildings. Inside the old town it’s really welcoming with excellent restaurants as well. We had some of our best meals here which was really surprising! The first restaurant we went to was called Jasmine and the food was incredible. We ended up going to a Pub called Bratislavský meštiansky pivovar down the street that had some pretty good beer. I will say that although the food was great at a lot of these places, the service isn’t always as welcoming.
Like other cities, we took advantage of the free walking tour. I think it was her first time doing a walking tour because she seemed fairly lost and actually did the walk in high heels. Rain and I got a good laugh out of it, because rather than providing details as we walked, it was more we had to ask her questions of what we were looking at and what the significance was. It was one of the more bizarre, but entertaining tours we had taken because of it.
During your time here, I really recommend going to the Old Market. It’s predominately indoors and has tables setup everywhere of local goods. It’s fun to grab some wine, walk around and shop. As the sun started to go down we made our way to the main square which had a really good Christmas market setup. They had so much food to choose from and a lot of different hot wines and liquors to choose from. We of course took advantage of them serving warm absinthe!
If you have some time to kill, it’s a nice walk across the bridge and seeing the other side of the city. There isn’t as much to do, but there are some nice parks and it’s a serene setting along the Danube river. We found a boat restaurant around the way and stopped for a beer and to enjoy the view. It was called Dunajský Pivovar and was pretty good. The castle is really one of the highlights. It’s got great views of the city and the river.
Overall the city was a good time and was a slower pace. I doubt we would return, but happy we saw it!