Bratislava

08/06/2011 at 5:47 pm 2 comments

Crippling hangover. Too much “Vienna Blood” the night before. Have to get a train to Bratislava. No time for breakfast and couldn’t face the thought of food anyway.

Fortunately it is only a short train journey from Vienna to Bratislava and I managed to avoid being sick everywhere. Always a bonus.

We arrive in Bratislava when the sun is at its hottest and make the walk to the hostel. The hangover shows no signs of easing and the heat isn’t doing anything to help matters. Most of the afternoon is spent sleeping as neither of us really feel like doing anything.

Fortunately Bratislava is a pretty small city and you can see all the main sights in a day. Following a pretty average breakfast consisting of bread, jam and some brown water the two of us took a stroll to Bratislavský hrad (Bratislava Castle) which sits on a hill overlooking the River Danube. The castle dates back to the 9th century and during its lifetime has been subjected to various conversions and reconstructions. Most notably, in 1811 the castle was completely destroyed by a fire accidently started by troops garrisoned there. Idiots. The building remained a ruin until 1957 when the restoration finally began. Evidently the restoration is still not complete as there was still plenty of scaffolding in place when Chris and I visited. Not a lot of actual work seemed to happening though. The workers are probably all sat in cafés drinking coffee.

Anyway, it’s an excellent reconstruction and you get some great views over the rest of the city. The castle sits in the traditional looking Old Town. Across the other side of the Danube is the more Soviet looking part of the city. Essentially lots of identical looking apartment and office blocks. The uniform look is not particularly inspiring. The two sides of the city are connected via a number of bridges including Nový Most, which translates as “New Bridge”. How imaginative. On top of the bridge is the so called “UFO restaurant”, possibly because it looks like a UFO.

In the afternoon we took a walk through the very pleasant looking Old Town. It has a small main square with a handful of restaurants and bars around the edge. Chris and I decided to stop one such eatery for a well deserved bagel and coffee. I got that impression that this was not a traditional Slovak thing to do as the menu was only in English. After a further short walk the two of us decided to go all healthy and eat some fruit. We found a Tesco of all things and bought some corporate fruit. Tesco gets everywhere these days, it’s only a matter of time before they have their own private army and take over the whole.

In the evening we ate at a restaurant called Prašná Bašta located in the Old Town. Once again I feasted on a salmon related dish and 500ml of Erdinger Black beer. There is definitely a pattern emerging here.

Next stop on the tour, Budapest.

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Entry filed under: Slovakia. Tags: , , , , , .

Vienna Budapest

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Geoffrey  |  10/06/2011 at 8:00 pm

    Please please PLEASE, after all I’ve taught you about the fantastic beers of Europe since you were 5 years old, stop prattling on about all this ersatz crap like Stella Artois, Schneider Weiss, and Pilsner Urquell.

    Well OK, Pilsner Urquell isn’t bad but you can get it all over London. Prague and Bratislava have some fantastic real ale pubs-to be fair most of them look like, and probably are, brothels, but that’s part of the fun.

    Seriously, educated your dad last week on the pleasures of Orkney whisky and beer.

    Really enjoying you blog. I’m on my way to the Singapore beer festival-will report back if I sober up by the time you get back.

    So that’s the challenge-drink a great beer I’ve never heard of.

    Geoffrey

    PS make every effort to go to Kiev-even if you have to pay. you’ll know why as soon as you sit in an open air pub speaking English- and you think Polish girls are beautiful.

    Reply
  • 2. Rob Bloggeries  |  12/06/2011 at 10:11 pm

    Never made it there, hopefully this year if I ever make it out of Varna. Small world and not enough travel bloggers. Can relate to crippling hangovers and the old town sounds worth checking out.

    Safe travels

    Reply

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