Things to do in Bratislava

Looking to getaway to Bratislava Slovakia this year?

Must see places in Eastern Europe
The capital city of Bratislava is definitely one of the top Eastern European cities to visit, and it's popularly known for being home to the impressive Danube River running through the city.

Bratislava is also known as a crossroads city between the cities of Vienna Austria, Brno Czech Republic and Budapest Hungary.

Best time to visit

There isn’t a bad time to visit the beautiful capital city of Bratislava, although if you want to avoid the big crowds, avoid late July and early August.

One of the best times to have a better experience in Bratislava it’s in late spring and late August.

If you can travel during this time, you’ll enjoy fewer crowds and cheaper hotel accommodation.

Having said this, during the summer season you’ll find great airfare deals from many airline companies offering many charter flights to Bratislava during this time.

Bratislava Airport Transportation

The city of Bratislava is serviced by the M. R. Štefánik Airport, which is just 4 miles from the heart of the city center.

The airport has the modern amenities you’d expect like duty-free shops and restaurants. Once you land in M. R. Štefánik Airport, the airport transportation options consists of airport shuttles, car rental, trains, taxis and buses.

If you’re not too much in a rush, and want to save a bit of money, I would suggest getting the bus (No. 61), which will take right into the city center.

If you’re planning on renting a car to get around in Bratislava, I would also suggest renting from one of the city’s car rental companies rather than from the airport itself because they tend to be fairly pricey.

Getting around in Bratislava

The city of Bratislava has adequate and affordable public transportation system that consists of buses, trams and trolley buses which make getting around Bratislava and enjoyable thing to do.

Things to do in Bratislava: Outdoor Activities

Recreational Activities

One of the best places to enjoy some fun outdoor activities it’s at Zlate Piesky recreation area.

The recreation area boasts an artificial lake where you can enjoy beach activities like swimming, paddle-boating, fishing and canoeing.

The area also has a few accommodation options like hotels, and campgrounds right by the lake where you can spend a couple of days.

Danube River

Admiring the majestic Danube River from the city’s bridges is a sure nice thing to do, but you’ll certainly enjoy taking a tour ride along it.

One of the most popular trips you can take along the Danube River includes taking a trip to Vienna Austria, or Budapest Hungary.

Things to do in Bratislava: Places of Interest

The main point of interest in the city, it’s Bratislava's Old Town district which contains most of the city’s important landmarks and main attractions.

A bus tour is a popular way to explore the city, but one of the most enjoyable ways to experience the city’s attractions is on a walking tour (guided tour).

Attractions in Bratislava’s Old Town

Bratislava City Museum

The Bratislava City Museum (Múzeum Mesta Bratislavy) is an excellent place to find out more about the early history of the city.

Church of the Assumption

If you’re interested in baroque architecture, the Church of the Assumption (Kostol Nanebovzatia Panny Márie) is a must during your tour of the city.

The church actually got destroyed twice due to fires, but the church still features the original vault made in the late 15th century.

Old Town Hall

The Old Town Hall (Stara Radnica) is the oldest building in the city and a popular focal point for many tourists. The Old Town Hall now serves as a walking museum where you can see old dungeons and old weapons.

Slovak National Gallery

If you’re interested in art, the Slovak National Gallery features a beautiful collection of art ranging from the 13th century to the present.

Bratislava Castle

The Bratislava Castle (Bratislavský Hrad) is one of the most recognizable landmarks in the city offering spectacular views of Danube River, and visiting it it’s one of the most popular things to do in Bratislava.

You can tour the inside of the Bratislava Castle and see the rooms, halls with beautiful paintings and a well that is said to be bottomless.

Things to do in Bratislava: Shopping

One of the best things to do in Bratislava is to visit one of the city’s many open-air markets to mingle with the locals.

At the open-air markets, you’ll be able to get cheap local produce, as well as bargain items and souvenir gifts that you can take back home.

A few flea-markets worth mentioning include: Trnavské mýto Market, and Centralne trhovisko Market.

If you’re looking to enjoy a retail experience, the city center has a few small shopping malls like the Aupark shopping mall where you can shop around.

However, to get a full shopping mall experience, you need to head a bit further out of the city.

For instance, Avion Shopping Park and Palace Shopping are just located 5 miles east of the city, near the Nove Mesto neighborhood.

Things to do in Bratislava: Nightlife & Entertainment

Bratislava is one of the most popular destinations in Europe for stag parties, but that is not to say that the nightlife in Bratislava isn’t sophisticated.

Depending on your mood or your scene, there are nightlife spots to suit all. For instance, if you’re looking to hit the club and bar scene, head to Mlynska Dolina which is a popular hang-out spot amongst students.

For a trendier hang-out, head to Laurisnka where you’ll find many small bars offering live music entertainment, as well as Latin clubs like the popular Malecon.

One of the biggest nightclubs in the city is perhaps Remix which plays mainly dance and trance music.

Things to do in Bratislava: Events & Festivals

The city of Bratislava boasts many fun events and festivals throughout the year. However, if you’re traveling to the city between June and August, you can catch many of Bratislava’s summer cultural events.

Other popular events happening in the city include:

Bratislava Music Festival

The Bratislava Music Festival is one of the top cultural events in the city happening in late fall. The event features ballet and opera shows performed by famed Slovak soloists and music productions.

Bratislava Jazz Days

If you love jazz, you may want to make your trip to Bratislava coincide with the Bratislava Jazz Days which happens in early October. The event brings some the best international jazz musicians.

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