While there are places in Europe that are on everybody’s mind. There are some hidden treasures in this continent which are yet to be publicized.
One such gem is Bratislava, the capital of Slovakia. This small city with a small population is big in terms of culture and high on travel.
Believe it or not, this has been the coronation site and legislative centre of the Kingdom of Hungary.That’s definitely not a small thing. This place has been influenced by people of different countries as well as religions.
We reached during the Easter and the celebrations were in full swing. We started seeing around this amazing city from a place that is quite centric to it.
This square is named in the memory of Slovakian National Uprising (Slovenské Národné Povstanie). This place has been the centre stage for numerous demonstrations by the people of Bratislava.
It’s more like people’s square than just a mere square of tourist attraction. There are lots of restaurants around it and this is an amazing place to experience life in Bratislava.
Apart from the SNP square there is also bridge named SNP bridge.
This bridge is the 7th largest hanging bridge in the world. Also called UFO bridge due it’s UFO shaped cupola, is truly a wonder of engineering.
The spaceship like observatory also serves as a restaurant. The place surrounding the bridge is treat for the shutterbugs. The romantic ambience, beautiful walkways and calmly flowing Danube.
It’s a place to relax and relish the present and the presence in Bratislava. This beautiful bridge becomes completely sassy during evening and a sight not to be missed.
The closest known place around the bridge is St. Martin’s cathedral.
St. Martin’s cathedral
This is one of largest and finest churches in Bratislava located in old town. This the place where Queen Maria Theresa was crowned (a little memoir of our Viennese expedition).
Its high towers of about 85m dominate the skyline over it. The towers were formed with the purpose to fortify city against external threats.
The complex in and around the church is very peaceful, yet colourful in terms of architecture.
The surroundings are adorned by the picturesque remains of outbuildings and a monument to the synagogue which was destroyed under communist government. The small streets around are really fun to walk.
From there to one of the oldest buildings in the city.
The only city gate to be preserved of the fortifications, this structure was built in 14th century and later re designed in 1758.
The tower is located in Michalska street and is quite a favourite spot for the tourists to click pictures. The tower houses the exhibition of weapons of the city museum.
Since it is the entrance to the old town, one is sure to pass by it. The streets around it are very busy with nice cafes and restaurants all around.
After clicking some pictures around the area we reached Old Town Hall.
Old Town hall
Although it came into existence in 15th century, when town houses were connected, this is a complex of buildings from 14th century in the old town of Bratislava. It’s designed with combination of Gothic and Neo-Romanesque style of architecture.
This is also the home to the oldest museum in the city. One can see lot of iconic structures like main square and Roland’s fountain around this place.
From there we walked around the old town and stumbled upon one of the most photographed entities of Bratislava, the human size statues.
These statues are really cool and eye catching. To say the least, if one has not clicked photograph of one of these, the trip to Bratislava will be incomplete.
After walking around , we went to see the Bratislava castle.
Situated on the hill above the old town, this is the main castle in the city.
It is a massive rectangular building with four towers standing on its corners. It is quite a dominant feature of the city.
The structure of this castle has changed many times under the rule of different rulers like Sigismund of Luxembourg and king Ferdinand, from Gothic to renaissance style.
Since independence this castle has served as the representative venue for Slovakia. The interior is closed for the tourists.
This is a very sophisticated structure with simpler designs and part of it is a park.
The most beautiful feature of the castle are the castle gates.
These intricately designed white gates provide a great view of the city from the hill, with great wind blowing across.
From there we headed to see one of the famous churches of the city.
St. Elizabeth church
This church also known as the “Blue Church“, is a catholic church located in the eastern part of the old town.
Built in Hungarian art nouveau style, this church is quite unique and praise worthy in terms of its design.
The interior of the church is equally beautiful with richly decorated altarpieces.
The calmness and peace in the church really helped in letting of the steam and relaxed the body, mind and soul.
Since we reached at the time of Easter, there was a sense of celebration in the environment and beautifully designed Easter eggs were on display.
But the most beautiful, was the one in Hviezdoslavovo Square. This Easter egg was gifted by Croatia to Bratislava.
After New York, Berlin and Vatican, the artists bestowed their gift on this city.
The huge egg was painted with motifs of Slovakia. It was truly amazing and unbelievably artistic.
We had our dinner and walked across the streets. We enjoyed the festivities at night and finally bid adieu to this gem of a city.
The visit to Bratislava was all so special also because of the partying in Budapest after which a relaxed outing was needful.
The city is a tranquil, peaceful and friendly place to spend a decent holiday away from your hectic work.