From Pezinok, we took a train to Bratislava, Slovakia’s capital city FYI, which is about 20 minutes of travelling. It was a lovely hot summer day and thank god I had my very own travelling guide with me, or I wouldn’t have a clue how to get there… Slovak is a very odd language, at least that’s how it seems to me, and I can’t even understand a single word.
Anyway, Bratislava! What is there to see? First, the old city. Paved streets, old buildings, restaurants and pubs, the average city life! I found it very lively, lots of people out and about, tourists etc. On the architecture side, that’s when you know you are in the eastern block… I’m so sure Bratislava could be among the most beautiful capital cities of Europe if they were putting a minimum of efforts into it. Lots and lots of old buildings that just need a bit of restoration instead being completly abandonned. It is such a waste if you want to know, but I do understand that given the state of their finances it isn’t their priorities..Then, the castle. Remember when you were kids, and you had that phase where you’d be drawing castle all day long? Well, Bratislava’s castle to me, is the perfect incarnation of a kid drawing! There is a superb view from there, all the way to the Austrian wind farms.
We had lunch at the Slovak Pub, a very tipical restaurant where each room represent a particular era of their history, or something part of their history. We sat in the Janosik room, their most famous character… He is sort of Robinhood if you want, taking from the rich to give to the poor… Wikipedia calls it a ‘highway man’. Really?? Does anyone know what a highway man is?? My point, we took their special ‘halusky’ plate, which feature the three traditional dish of Slovakia. My favorite was the one in the middle, the halsuky filled with their very special sheep cheese (see photo below).
Anyway, my favorite part of the city was of course the fake beach they created on the Danube river banks. There is an area where you can confortably sit in the shade to read or sleep, there is an open air library, a pub with a pool, some sand and music, and a view on the castle. We spent all afternoon there, taking the sun and chatting.
There is a spot on top of the hill where you’ll have a great view on the city, I cannot remember the name but it is where they have their memorial of the soldiers killed during the war. It takes energy to climb up there, but it is a very quiet place to watch the sunset.
Of course the city holds some museums and other that sites of the sort, but being such a warm day we chose to keep outdoors. I have a very good memory of Bratislava, one of the most peaceful capital city I’ve had the chance to visit.