Take The Bratislava Free Walking Tour Then Enjoy Lunch On The Danube.
Is it worth it to go to Bratislava? Should I make a detour and check out Slovakia? Wait a minute. Where is this country? Are you thinking these thoughts? I sure did. Although I am half Hungarian and have been to Austria, Hungary, Poland and the Czech Republic many times I never once thought to come to Slovakia and its capital Bratislava. So why did I end up here for one night and a day? I had one week to make my way from Florence to Budapest so I thought I’d check out Bratislava. What did I think of Bratislava? After joining The Bratislava Free Walking Tour I pondered why Bratislava is wildly different and lackluster compared to its neighboring European cities.
THE BRATISLAVA FREE WALKING TOUR
The Bratislava Free Walking Tour began next to the statue of Pavol Országh Hviezdoslav which is directly in front of the US Embassy. Look for a tour guide holding an orange FREE TOUR sign. The 2.5-hour tour was entertaining, informative and delved deep into the history and traditions of Bratislava. The guide was incredibly passionate and I could feel the love she has for her hometown, however, the sights we were shown – St. Michael’s Gate, Blue Church, and St Martin’s Cathedral were interesting but nothing I would rush back to visit. Even their Castle and SNP bridge were disappointing. When Slovaks refer to their Castle as an upside-down table and their bridge resembles a UFO clearly something is amiss. Even when we explored the cozy streets of the charming Old Town there weren’t many sites I was keen on capturing with my camera.
LUNCH AT DUNAJSKY PIVOVAR
When the tour came to an end an American chef and I decided to cross the Danube for drinks and lunch on one of the huge ships that are permanently docked. Dunajský Pivovar, in particular, has been converted to a microbrewery and restaurant. Sitting on the Danube enjoying a glass of rose and lunch brought back memories of when I went on a Danube day cruise in Vienna with my grandfather. Unfortunately the views this time around were pretty underwhelming. The chef and I commented on how letdown we were by Bratislava. In 1993 with the dissolution of Czechoslovakia, came the Czech Republic and Slovakia and Slovakia seemed to get the raw end of the deal. The rich history and pristine beauty of Vienna and Budapest, the vibrant and historical towns of Poland, and the buzzing atmosphere of Prague is where you should head because Bratislava had very little if not any of these qualities. Harsh, right?
- What: The Bratislava Free Walking Tour
- Where: Next to the statue of Pavol Országh Hviezdoslav which is directly in front of the US Embassy
- When: Everyday. 11.00am & 4.00pm. Duration 2.5hrs
- Price: By donation