Surprise Snow Day Trip To Bratislava, Slovakia (Ten Photos)

Bratislava is the capital of Slovakia. It was once part of the Habsburg empire, and later became part of Czechoslovakia during the Soviet era.  I decided to take a day trip there when I was transiting home for the holidays through Vienna. Bratislava is just an hour long trip by train from Vienna. The weather slowed me down drastically, but I did get a chance to experience a bit of the city.

1: This is Bratislava Castle. The castle was bombarded into ruins by Napolean in 1811. These ruins are depicted in paintings and photographs from this time frame. It remained in a sad state until 1953 when restoration began. Notice the green grass at the base of the castle?
2: Statue of King Svatopluk I of Moravia, who reined in the 9th century. At its peak, the Moravian Empire occupied a large swath of Eastern Europe.
3: A view of the Danube from the castle. Still no snow! Being converted to a museum, I spent a couple hours inside the castle looking at exhibits.
4: In the midst of exploring the museum, I noticed snowflakes coming down. Upon walking outside, this was the result. Unfortunately I was only wearing a hoodie and running shows and not prepared for snow. It made for a gingerly walk back down the hill.
5: A birds eye view of a downtown Christmas market, with the castle hill set in the background.
6: The Christmas market was very similar to those in Vienna. They sold a type of hot mead (honey wine) called Medovina, which did wonders for keeping me warm. You could also buy a number of various local Christmas handicrafts and gifts.
7: The Slovak National Theater built in 1885.
8: Statue of the martyr Saint John of Nepomuk, with Michael’s Gate in the background. Saint John was killed by being tortured and thrown into a river and drowned on order of King Wenceslas IV of Bohemia in 1393. His statue is a feature of bridges all over Europe.
9: Michael’s Gate was built in the 1300s, and is one of the oldest buildings in Bratislava.
10. This statue titled “Man at Work”, depicts a man crawling out of a manhole. It is a popular tourist spot for photos.

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