Experience Slovakia by train
|Population||Ca 5,5 million|
Slovakia – discover Bratislava through a mobile game and stroll around paradise
Slovakia has its own little paradise that you can wander around and get new energy from. Waterfalls, lakes, forests, canyons and dramatic mountain scenery are like a balm for the soul. In Bratislava you will experience sharp contrasts and you have to look really carefully at the Old Town, so that you almost squint with your eyes.
The Slovaki Paradise National Park in eastern Slovakia really lives up to its name. It is a small paradise with limestone mountains with pits and holes shaped by water. Wander around in canyons and forests, waterfalls and lakes. There are many natural areas in Slovakia and a bit from paradise you will find the Tatra Mountains, with dramatic mountain scenery and rock blocks. Here you can make long day hikes and if you have the opportunity you should get to Gerlachovský štít, Slovakia’s highest point at 2655 meters. To climb the mountain, you need to book a guide, so be sure to do so in advance. Just near Tatra is the small village of Kežmarok with large and very colourful buildings. The evangelical church is so beautiful with its red colour and the mountain scenery in the background. In the village there is also a yellow castle and another large, even yellower building and small red and yellow houses. If you can’t get enough of the mountains, you can go to Malá Fatra and walk on suspension bridges between the cliffs and visit small mountain villages.
There is a game called “City Discovery” where you get clues to help you solve small puzzles to take you further into the city. You play through the mobile and the game takes you to interesting places and some places that would have been difficult to find on your own. The old town of Bratislava is very beautiful with its baroque buildings, fountains and fabulous alleys. But beware, because here you may encounter some tourist traps. One tip is not to settle down in a cafe or restaurant that you can see without difficulty, the trick is to look a little extra carefully … Look in between the houses, go into narrow alleys, suddenly you might find a small café where you can eat and drink with the locals.
Communism left its mark and you can get a guided “post-communist tour” where you can learn more about the communist era, you can see the monument Slavin, the border area of the Iron Curtain and buildings typical of communism. It may not be the most uplifting trip but still interesting. To get some contrast to the grayscale, you should visit Hotel Galeria Spirit which is located right at the train station. A more colourful, extravagant and odd building is hard to find! The unique avant-garde architecture and colours really stand out from the crowd. The building houses both a hotel and an art gallery.
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