Central Europe beckons

Hot on the heels of our Malaga holiday we decided to head in completely different direction for our next travel fix.

Hence we found ourselves heading to central (almost Eastern) Europe in the shape of Slovakian capital Bratislava and the sprawling beauty of Budapest.

Here’s Bratislava as seen from the castle, with the Danube River in the background.

10450826_10152153947887353_7726035039455681828_n

Positioned in southwestern Slovakia, occupying both banks of the Danube River and the left bank of the Morava River it borders Austria and Hungary. It’s the largest city in Slovakia and has a population of about 500,000.

10443525_10152153947762353_2451831042604488155_n 10494523_10152154002257353_8336968039288328353_n10505404_10152153947267353_2340646628334993251_n

Interesting fact alert!!! It is the only national capital that borders two independent countries.

While the old town is compact and it’s easy to see all the main sites in half a day at a push, it’s the kind of place that you either breeze through quickly or find yourself content to just veg out for weeks!

These’s a lot of statues in the old town, ranging from the oft photographed “man at work” of a worker peeking out of a man hole, to Napoleon prying into the affairs of seated tourists.

10462942_10152153947207353_492440398667382953_n 10513279_10152153947042353_2504510170276385509_n 10477090_10152154002412353_4861104149285464803_n

Neil, as usual was forced to pose with anything that I spotted!!! (He loves it really) Here he is as a) Slovakian lady  d) porky mates c) chillin with Napolean d) ice cream testing

10423646_10152153946992353_3639624540168186413_n 47246_10152154002427353_478379225610612765_n 10487289_10152154002372353_6929580386550397977_n

10410897_10152154002492353_5830569873017457133_n

We stayed in two different hotels during our stay in Bratislava. First up is the Hotel Devin. Wonderfully situated on the banks of the River Danube, it’s five minutes walk to the old town and 15 minutes from the train station.

With a rather imposing Soviet facade the hotel has had a complete refurb in the past few years and is now a sumptous, luxurious and lovely place to stay. There’s a wonderful wellness centre with pool, sauna, plunge pool and steam room plus the best breakfast I’ve had in Europe!

Here’s the view from room 318 across the Danube and towards the UFO bridge. The hotel is also minutes away from the national theatre.

10516811_10152153946882353_5973624071338039102_n10257451_10152153946562353_7842821513670664613_n10452310_10152153946637353_955276863344992992_n

It’s a short walk from the main bus station too. (Which we couldn’t find initially – hence having to walk all the way to the river from the train station to find the hotel!!)

10431442_10152153948452353_3869310824185456301_n

It features some thoughtful graffiti (and some not so thoughtful too!!!)

10418429_10152153948397353_7646775532486057093_n

Artwork is a feature of most European towns and Bratislava is no exception. Here’s Neil striking a pose.

10492402_10152153947632353_830746384642512693_n

And in stark contrast to the harsh new traditions, we also stumble across a festival celebrating Slovakian traditions. Here’s a rather imposing gentleman working the anvil (plus an odd green man too).

10511252_10152153947682353_5126882281904953478_n 10491233_10152153948427353_7764730925491707673_n 10491209_10152153947727353_6584710355228898226_n

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s