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Day Trip to Bratislava from Vienna

So it’s been a while (10 years) since we visited Bratislava. Decided to make a day trip today.

Bought our Bratislava Ticket from an OeBB ticket machine at the station near my house. The ticket is 16 Euro for adults and 8 Euro for kids 6 and up. The ticket includes round trip train travel on regional trains as well as public transportation in Bratislava.

The train ride takes an hour. Not very scenic. There are two main train stations in Bratislava. We arrived at Bratislava-Petržalka. Took the 80 bus to the center, over the UFO bridge.

Our goal for the day was to eat cheeseburgers, eat ice cream and visit the sporting goods store, Decathalon (shops are open on Sunday, you see).

We walked around the historic center, which was pretty much restaurant after restaurant of mediocre quality. I’m sure there are gems, but our expectations were not high. The cheeseburgers were ok. Lots of Brits drinking lots of beer and lots of Americans in U of Michigan hats on riverboat cruise walking tours. They all looked bored and hot.

We climbed the tower at the main gate and enjoyed the views. The tower included old weapons, which was interesting for my kids. Walked into the town hall courtyard, which was pretty. Architecture in Bratislava is pleasant. Got ice cream which was pretty good and at it by the shady fountains near the Opera House.

We then walked to Eurovea Mall to the Decathalon. The grassy area in front of the mall was very inviting and we will probably eat there on our next visit. Got what we needed at the store and took the bus 88 back to the train station and back to Vienna.

For navigation, I used google maps, which was spot on with public transportation. For the train, I used the OeBB Scotty app on my phone.

The trip took about 7 hours door to door. I can’t imagine spending more than a day in Bratislava. Lots of construction was happening, but you can still tell that the economics of this area are very different from Austria.

Posted by
745 posts

I read, somewhere - maybe right here on this site that RS finds Bratislava and Bucharest to be the least impressive capitols in Europe. He didn't say he didn't like them - just that they don't measure well as locations of interest. I like them both, but what do I know?
Here's a little tale told to me by my friend Mario, who is Romanian and lives in Bratislava with his Slovakian wife of 20 years. He doesn't speak Czech and she doesn't speak Romanian - they communicate in English. They have a teenage daughter who speaks all three languages. When Mario is upset with his wife, he speaks to her (probably colorfully) in Romanian and when his wife is angry with Mario, she speaks to him (probably colorfully) in Czech. When the angry parent leaves the room, the daughter translates what was said. A tough act for that kid, sometimes.

Posted by
533 posts

Thanks for posting this. I'm currently in the planning stages of a trip that I hope will include some time (less than a day) in Bratislava, and it's always helpful to have another data point on what to expect.

Posted by
85 posts

I've been to Bratislava a couple times. The views from the castle are impressive, the main squares are small. I actually prefer visiting there during holiday time, the markets there are wonderful. If you do stay overnight, the vibe is much different after the day trippers depart.