Give a chance
Bratislava is a capital of Slovakia and one of cities which are skipped on a touristic map. If you are visiting for example Vienna, Bratislava can be a good alternative for a day trip. I wouldn’t spend there more than one day but for sure it’s worth a visit.
What to visit if we are in Bratislava
Bratislava Castle or Hrad sits on a hill overlooking the city. Initially a Roman frontier post, there has been a castle at this site since the 9th century. In 1881, it was reduced to rubble due to a fire and wasn’t reconstructed until the mid 1900s. Its appearance has been likened to an upside down table with four corner towers that look like table legs. In spite of its drab exterior the Castle is worth a visit for the museums housed inside as well as the panoramic views over the city.
The various rooms of The History Museum and the National Museum a worth to visit. A large section was devoted to art – approximately 3500 paintings, statues, and prints by domestic and foreign artists grouped according to theme. Religious art in one room, painting and portraits of royalty such as Maria Theresa and Maria Antoinette in another, more portraits and finally, sculpture and modern art such as Julius Koller’s question mark canvas. One of the highlighted displays was copies of 15th century altarpieces and church statues done by Paul of Levoca and many of his students.
St Martin’s Cathedral in Bratislava
Situated on the edge of the Old Town, St. Martin’s Cathedral is Bratislava’s foremost Gothic structure. The church, originally built in the 13th century in the Romanesque style, was replaced by a 3-nave Gothic Dome in the late 14th century. The new St. Martin’s Cathedral was consecrated in 1452 and underwent several lengthy reconstructions in later centuries. In the 16th century, the Dome became the coronation church of Hungarian kings and there were 19 Hungarian Emperors (including Maria Theresia) crowned in the cathedral until the 19th century. The cathedral was actually built into the town’s outer walls as part of its fortification.
Old Town Hall in Bratislava
Originally the site of a towered house in the 14th century, the old town hall arose in the 15th century by connecting several burgher houses, and then went through several reconstructions in the course of the centuries. After the earthquake of 1599, it was reconstructed in Renaissance style, while the town-hall tower was rebuilt in baroque style in the 18th century. In 1912 the rear wing was constructed in neo-renaissance style from the side of the courtyard, and neo-gothic style from the side of the Primacial square.
St. Michael’s Street and St. Michael’s Gate in Bratislava
St. Michael’s Gate and Street are one of Bratislava’s popular sights and is a quaint street lined with many shops and restaurants. In the summertime, the Michalska Ulica is teeming with tourists, street bands, and locals enjoying the cool Slovak summer nights.
Most of the building on the Michalska Ulica (street) date from the 18th Century and have survived several wars, occupations, and Communist rule, which was notorious for tearing down old, historic buildings throughout then-Czechoslovakia and replacing them with unattractive cell-block like high-rise apartments.
Novy Most (New Bridge)
If you want more spectacular views of Bratislava and its castle, it is worth a climb up to the observation deck on top of the Novy Most Bridge on the outskirts of the Slovak capital.Novy Most or Most SNP (New or SNP Bridge) was completed and opened to traffic in 1971. Unlike most monstrosities of Slovak Communist architecture, the Novy Most and tower actually blend into Bratislava”s centuries old architecture. Situated about 300 feet above the Danube River, the Novy Most, to me looked like the Seattle Space Needle from the distance.