Slovakia: Bratislava

  • Bratislava Castle
  • Around the Town
  • City Sculptures
  • St. Martin's Cathedral
  • Capuchin Church
  • Old Town Hall
  • St. Michael Gate
  • Tower with Restaurant
  • Trinity Church
  • Restaurant
  • Burgher House

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Bratislava Castle

We had been wanting to visit Bratislava for some time now.  We flew to Bratislava on our way to Szombathely Hungary to visit the dentist.  The dental experience is explained on the Szombathely Hungary webpage on our site.  We had about 7 hours to explore the castle and the old town located next to the castle.  Bratislava is a cute town with many shops.  There are many different types of restaurants from countries all over the world, so it's a great place to experience different cuisine.  We found that our 7 hours here was just about enough to explore the city, but there is still much more to see in Slovakia outside of Bratislava.

A bit about Bratislava, it is the capital of Slovakia and the country's largest city, with a population of some 450,000. Bratislava is the political, cultural and economic centre of Slovakia.  It is the seat of the Slovak presidency, parliament and government, as well as home to several universities, museums, theatres, galleries and other important economic, cultural and educational institutions. Most of Slovakia's large businesses and financial institutions have their headquarters in Bratislava. The city's past has been characterized by the strong influence of various nations, including Slovaks, Germans, Hungarians, Czechs, Austrians and Jews.

Bratislava Castle: The first residents of the castle were the Celts, later the Roman and then the Slavs. The first written evidence dates back to the year 907 in the annals of Salzburg, in reference to the battle to Brezalauspurch, marking the end of the Great Moravian Empire.  During the centuries the castle has been modified and reconstructed.  In 1811 a terrible fire caused from the recklessness of Napoleonic soldiers destroyed the castle completely.  The castle was restored to it's original beauty in 1968.  Today the castle houses some collections of the Slovak National Museum, and the State Room of the Slovak National Council.
Castle From Afar

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Castle Exterior

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Inside the Castle Walls

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Castle views from the city

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Remains of the 9th century Great Moravian Basilica located within the castle walls

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Flag of Slovakia flying over the castle 

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City views from the castle

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Around the Town: Various photos of buildings, churches and signs around the town.
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City Sculptures: Located throughout the city are various sculptures that are very entertaining and fun to discover as you walk the city streets.  These photos show a few of them.
Sculpture: Man at Work

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Various other Sculptures

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St. Martin's Cathedral: The Gothic cathedral with a nave and two side aisles, has been constructed in the 15th century over the ruins of one Romanesque church.  In the right nave a plate remembers Ludwig van Beethoven on 13 November 1835 directing Missa Sollemnis op. 123.
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Capuchin Church: The Capuchin order arose in 1520 when Matteo da Bascio, an "Observant" Franciscan friar native to the Italian region of Marche, became possessed of the idea that the manner of life led by the Franciscans of his day was not the one which St. Francis had envisaged. He sought to return to the primitive way of life in solitude and penance as practiced by the founder of his order.

His superiors tried to suppress these innovations, and Friar Matteo and his first companions were forced into hiding from Church authorities, who sought to arrest them for having abandoned their religious duties. They were given refuge by the Camaldolese monks, in gratitude for which they later adopted the hood (capuche) worn by that order--which was the mark of a hermit in that region of Italy--and the practice of wearing a beard. Ironically, the popular name of their movement originates from this feature of their habit. In 1528, Friar Matteo obtained the approval of Pope Clement VII and was given permission to live as a hermit and to go about everywhere preaching to the poor. These permissions were not only for himself, but for all such as might join him in the attempt to restore the most literal observance possible of St. Francis' rule. Matteo and the original band were soon joined by others. The Observants opposed the movement, but the Conventuals supported it, and so Matteo and his companions were formed into a congregation, called the Hermit Friars Minor, as a branch of the Conventual Franciscans, but with a vicar of their own, subject to the jurisdiction of the general of the Conventuals.
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Old Town Hall: The old town hall is found in the Main square directly in the historical center of the city. It is the oldest stone building in the city. The tower was initially for defensive of the people living in the house, but today it is one of the symbols of the city.
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St. Michael Gate: Of the original four gates, this is the only one preserved of the medieval city fortification. Its Gothic foundations were laid in the 1st half of the 14th century. Between 1511–1513 it was heightened and rebuilt to its present appearance.  Between 1753–1758 a statue of St. Michael was placed on the top of the 51-metre high tower. At present, the Museum of Weapons and City Fortifications is located in the tower.
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Tower with Restaurant: This bridge over the Danube River has a revolving restaurant in the tower.  Some of the best views of Bratislava can be seen from the restaurant.
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Trinity Church: The 1700's church is a copy of the church of St. Peter in Vienna.
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Restaurant: We liked the food and the interior of this underground restaurant close to the castle.  It's located on the small cobblestone road leading up to the castle.
Modrá Hviezda
Beblavého 292/14, 811 01 Bratislava - Staré Mesto-Bratislava, Slovakia
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Burgher House: This is the window of Burgher House on the Frantiskanske Namestie Square.  We had dinner at a German wine bar restaurant below.
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