Last updated: August 1, 2017
Bratislava is one of Europe’s most affordable capitals, at least when it comes to food and drink and accommodation.
That, combined with all the historic buildings and fine architecture in the old district of Bratislava makes it an exciting destination, especially if you are looking for a place that is not crowded with thousands of tourists everywhere.
To make it easier for you, I have put together a list of my favorite attractions and top things to do in Bratislava, the capital of Slovakia!
Bratislava Castle is one of Slovakia’s most famous landmarks, and a visit here is certainly something that belongs on your list of things to do in Bratislava. The castle is located 85 meters above sea level on top of a rocky hill.
The castle itself is quite majestic, and here you also get the chance to learn more about the city’s history, as well as enjoy the view.
Old Town – Stari Grad
Bratislava’s medieval center is one of the lovely old towns in Europe. Here awaits cozy little streets and alleyways with cafes and shops. It’s not just tourists who gather here, but there are also plenty of locals here who contribute to a more charming and rustic atmosphere.
Bratislava’s Old Town is undoubtedly the highlight along with the castle on the hill, and here you can enjoy lots of beautiful buildings and alleyways with colorful houses. At the main square stands the legendary Roland Fountain, which is linked to many city legends.
St. Elizabeth’s Church (the blue church)
Tucked away on a back street about 5 minutes from Tesco, one will find this magnificent church. St. Elizabeth’s Church is colored in blue and is beautifully decorated both inside and out.
The church is built in classic Art Nouveau style and has many fine details.
Here you will find the “gothic pearl” St. John Chapel that goes all the way back to 1380. The Franciscan Church is the oldest church building in Bratislava and was completed as early as the 1300s.
It is the most beautiful on Saturday nights when the mass is held. A truly magical experience!
Address: Frantiskanske nam. 2nd
St Martin’s Cathedral
St Martin’s Cathedral is the largest and most important church in Bratislava. The church offers much history as it stood at the same location for over 700 years.
Address: Rudnayovo námestie first
The official residence of the president of Slovakia and a very spectacular palace built in late Baroque style. The palace is located in Bratislava’s central part and is one of the most famous buildings in the city.
Address: Hodžovo námestie 2978/1.
Many who travel to Bratislava stay only 1-2 days, which is sufficient for the capital. But if you stay for one or two extra days I can recommend a trip out to Devin, and the Castle located there. The journey takes about 20 minutes and can, of course, be done, even if you only stay for 1-2 days.
Devin Castle is right on the border between Austria and Slovakia and is especially interesting if you like history.
Be Free Tours free walking tour
City tours are available in most cities and Bratislava is no exception. Be Free Tours organizes free walking tours with local guides. On the tour, you will see the best sights and learn more about the city’s history and the buildings you visit.
There is also a pub crawl for those who are looking for party and entertainment towards the evening.
St. Michael’s Tower
In the old town stands St. Michael’s Tower, a single tower that remains from a great past. The tower originates from the 1300s and is one of the city’s oldest buildings. Next to the tower you’ll find the exclusive shopping street with a lot of well-known brands.
A classic tourist attraction in Bratislava, where you also get a great view from the tower out over the city.
Address: Michalska 22nd
Other tourist attractions and things to do in Bratislava
UFO Observation Deck
Another place that offers a great view is the observation deck, which is shaped like a UFO. Here you get a 360-degree view of the city, but the best view is undoubtedly the one you get over the castle. The header photo in this article is photographed from there.
The price to go up, is a bit steep, though, a ticket costs 6.5 Euros, so if you don’t want to take a photo of the Castle, I would skip this place.
The tower is 85 meters high.
Address: Novy Most 1.
At the Slovak Philharmonic, you get music and theater of high quality at low prices. The building is in a beautiful Baroque style, and if you like culture and music, I can heartily recommend a show at the Slovak Philharmonic.
Address: Palackeho 2.
From the beginning, Kofola was the Czechoslovakia’s counterpart to Coca-Cola, and after the fall of communism, it has continued to be a popular soft drink in Slovakia. In most countries, it’s only Pepsi and Coca-Cola who compete for real.
Slovakia and Peru are the only two countries with a similar drink that is almost as popular as the regular Coca-Cola. In Peru, it’s the Inca Kola and in Slovakia it is Kofola. For me, it was a must to try the famous Kofola drink.
It was not exactly what I expected, but it was fun to try, so if you like to try new things, then make sure to buy a Kofola at the supermarket.
Day trip to Vienna
Vienna is only an hour from Bratislava by bus or car, making it perfect for a day trip. Some travelers to Vienna, even choose to stay in Bratislava since the prices are 2-3 times lower.
Anyway, if you have a few days in Bratislava, do not hesitate to visit Vienna for the day.