Bratislava is a cool city in Slovakia that used to be a part of the Soviet Union. Despite being the third richest region in the European Union according to Wikipedia, tourism in Bratislava is surprisingly reasonable. If my memory serves me correctly, Bratislava was one of the top three cheapest cities I visited in Europe.
From Krakow, Poland, I took the train to Bratislava. It’s a little tough to pinpoint the details, but I had the distinct impression that I was transitioning from Western to Eastern Europe. Or, given Krakow is further east than Bratislava, whatever those terms mean to me.
I discovered a wonderful deal on a charming tiny motel. DONET Penzión left a lasting impression on me. I had originally planned to stay for two nights, but the bed was so comfortable that I decided to remain for another two. They also did an excellent job washing my things for a reasonable fee. I might have stayed for a week or two if I hadn’t had a meeting in Budapest.
Bratislava is a unique city with a wonderful vibe. It felt a little like the post-apocalypse wandering around some of the streets. Or as if something had happened and all of the folks had vanished.
I had recently returned from a three-month trip to tourist-heavy locations. It felt unusual to be in an area where there weren’t a lot of tourists taking pictures and following tour guides.
There would be a lot of tourists in some regions, but most areas seemed to be devoid of tourists and locals alike. It was like visiting a Spanish village during siesta, or perhaps all of the people go on vacation once the high tourist season has passed? Only one automobile passed me on the street as I walked 1 or 2 kilometers to have some lunch. It was just a bizarre feeling.
Consider this large park with a refreshing fountain. It appears to have been quite good in the past. It’s now deserted and covered in graffiti. It raises a lot of questions in my mind. What was the purpose of this structure? What became of it? It’s a great riddle to solve while on the road. There’s also a smidgeon of peril. I never felt threatened, but in comparison to certain places that felt like Disneyland, Bratislava had a bit of a bite to it.
These images date from a few years ago. I’m curious if the park has been restored or if it has deteriorated more.
Another oddity is a massive office structure shaped like an inverted pyramid. The structure appears to be quite formidable. However, it appears like someone simply closed the door and never opened it again. Seeing something like these piques my interest. I just want to look into it and see what I can find out.
The history of this structure intrigues me much. I conducted some research and discovered it’s a radio station?
I’m not going to connect to the text’s source because it’s a terrible travel website with a lot of pop-ups. Pop-ups are a thing of the past.
When I passed by the building late at night, one of the offices had a light on. When only one light was turned on, it added more mystery than if they were all turned off. Is anyone still employed there?
In Bratislava, there are many interesting and historical areas to visit. It’s a fantastic place to stroll about with your camera.
Some of the structures have fantastic Soviet-era ornamentation. The shot above appears to be a daycare or school. I find the small heads protruding a little unsettling.
In Bratislava, there is a lot of pretty cool graffiti, but there are also a lot of really bad tags.
Bratislava, more than any other city I visited, had the most murals. This city is brimming with artistic talent.
Bratislava is divided by a river, which is crossed by a long bridge. It doesn’t take long to walk across, but there isn’t much to do on the other side.
During the day, the city does have an abandoned aspect to it. When the sun sets, it comes to life. Many people frequent restaurants, bars, and nightclubs.
Here are a few more images from my wanderings. There were plenty of side alleys and passageways leading to interesting things to photograph.
That brings my trip of Bratislava to a close. I had a fantastic experience in this city. The meal and beverage costs were among the lowest I’d seen in Europe. The weird atmosphere of the city was more of an appeal for me than a deterrent. The strangeness of it all appealed to me.
I hope you enjoyed this City to City tour episode. The magnificent and opulent city of Vienna will be our next stop!