beer in bratislava

Sometimes you get a feeling the moment you arrive in a city that it is going to be pretty quiet. Arriving in Slovakia’s capital city on a freezing winter Monday morning was never going to be the time of the week where you rock up and think, ‘wow this place is where it is, there is so much happening here’. It was quieter than your average midweek day in Hereford High Town. And to be honest that was no bad thing.

We explored our second capital city inside a handful of days with no hassles or annoying Japanese or American tourists getting in the way of photos of the redeveloped castle on top of the hill. There were no annoying travellers banging on about this, that and the other in any of the many pubs or bars that we frequented in our twenty four hours in Bratislava. Perhaps Bratislava is always this quiet, given the lack of security at the President’s palace located next door to our hotel I’d suggest Monday morning or not, this is a capital city that is used to quiet times.

Our original (rough) plan was to catch the twin city fast boat between Vienna and Bratislava. When we turned up at the docks on the Danube in Austria’s capital it was pretty clear from the boats inactivity that they were shut up for the winter. Instead we took the 50 minute train journey for 14 Euros that linked the two capitals together. Apparently they are two of the closet capital cities in the world with just forty miles separating the two hubs. They train ride was pretty uneventful – think any train ride in the UK through flat fields and drab, misty weather. The highlight was undoubtedly boarding the train to see a baseball cladded gentlemen jump off to take a photo of the train – cue hysterical screams from his two (you guessed it) American daughters who thought their dear ‘Daddy’ was going to be left stranded in Vienna forever and ever. If that’s the drama he has to put up with at home then if I was him I’d of kept on walking, hoping the train would leave the panic ridden teens to toughen up or ‘chillax’ as Fred put it.

Wow, that was an old school Hereford Rich travel rant. I enjoyed that.

Anyway, after a short look round the castle and a walk through the compact old cobbled streets of the old town we decided it was beer o’clock. Bratislava has many things that Vienna did not – cheap, welcoming bars. Don’t get me wrong, Vienna had some very nice places to have an afternoon tipple; they just weren’t those warm, welcoming, cosy places you crave on the road, especially when it’s minus three outside. We consumed plenty of local beers at rock bottom prices, the cheapest being a pint of Zlaty for 1.40 Euro (£1.20) This was more like it on the beer front! Vienna was almost like being back in Australia at times with the high cost of ale. It might be viewed as typical Brit abroad, but when it’s so wintery outside there is nothing better than getting slowly drunk in one of these bars with such charm and character – especially on a Monday afternoon when the rest of the world is working.

If bars or coffee shops aren’t your thing then I’d suggest Bratislava in November is not a place for you. You can walk round the old town and its surrounds in no more than an hour. It was as small as it looked on the map. I enjoyed the twenty four hours I had in Slovakia and I have a feeling I’ll be back, even if it is a boozy stag weekend.

Especially at 1.40 Euro a pint!


3 Responses to “beer in bratislava”

  1. 1 DK
    November 22, 2011 at 2:00 pm

    Interesting… funny and imbued with alcohol…nice Blog! Where next…I wonder …

  2. 2 Andy Mac
    November 22, 2011 at 2:28 pm

    Sorry dear boy bit I really do have to ‘pick you up’ on this one. I am quite prepared to tolerate your lack of capitalisation with the name of a capital city, but to omit same from the word BEER is inexcusable, particularly at the beginning of a title.
    I have made some allowance for your tender years, but to abuse life’s great staple thus is entirely inappropriate.
    Otherwise ,,,,, carry on.

  3. 3 mart
    November 22, 2011 at 7:33 pm

    Stag weekend? Something we should know?

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