Charms of Bratislava

I took the train from Budapest to Bratislava in the morning and got there just before the afternoon. The Sunday morning was quiet. I wondered what had happened in the city. I did not expect the capital to be so empty.

As I reached the hostel, I chose a the lower bed for myself in the 6-bed mixed dorm and put down all my stuff on the bed. The temptation to sleep was real; It was the kind of Sunday when you don’t want to do anything. But I did not want to waste my time. So, as always, I googled for the free tour of the city and just in luck, the tour in Bratislava started in the afternoon. I even had time for lunch at the old town.

The group waiting for the free tour to start

I learned so much from the free tour, including how the tourism was affected because of the movie Hostel. The movie was about this gruesome hostel experience by American tourists in Bratislava. A friend had told me about it when I mentioned that I was heading to the city. It affected the industry so much that the director of the movie was invited to the country to experience the obviously-opposite experience.

I also thought that the crown on top of the St Martin’s cathedral so interesting because it looked really small, but yet it could hold a horse up there. Not that somebody had tried that before, nor stealing the 8 kg worth of gold.

There was a fountain that was said to run on wine once a year at a festival in August. I forgot the name of the festival, but people would line up to get the free continuously flowing wine from the fountain. I found it hard to believe, though. I could not tell if the guide was joking but this is the kind of thing that I would not want to google because it sounds cool as it is. Whether it is true or not, well, you decide. The fountain also has three levels where water flows through; bottom (for animals), middle (for humans), and top (for birds).

Scars from the war could be seen around the city too. One of them was a hole in a newly renovated building that was supposed to remind people that destruction war brought to the city.

I spent most of the day taking pictures of the beautiful city.

I went to flagship restaurant for dinner and bought a mushroom soup, which I thought was a starter and the traditional dish with the famous ingredient of sheep cheese, Bryndzové halušky. Those two turned up to be really big portions. It honestly could have been served for 3-4 people. But I paid 11 Euros for them. I was so surprised and really satisfied (really good soup and potato in cheese), but also guilty because I could not finish the food. I saw people looking at me weirdly because of the large portions of food in front of me. I mean, I could pretend to be a food blogger or something.

When I got back at the hostel, I tried to book an accommodation for the next day in Vienna, but could not find one. It was weird because I was always able to book accommodation even a night before. I guessed it does not happen every time. I had no choice but to extend the stay in Bratislava for another night and hopefully, I could find an accommodation in Vienna. But I had to find something else to do as I pretty much had explored most of the old town.

Thanks to my past self, there was a starred location just next to Bratislava on my Google Map when I was browsing for places to visit. It was Devin Castle, a medieval castle that many people had described to be just like where Game of Throne series would have been filmed. I decided to ask the receptionist how to get to the place.

Castle visit tomorrow!

23 April 2017

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