Bratislava is one of the smaller cities in Europe but there are still many things to do in Bratislava to keep you busy for a few days. From walking tours, to eating Slovakian food and taking a day trip from Bratislava.
I recently spent a few days hiking in the Tatras Mountains of Slovakia before ending my trip in Bratislava.
Here is my guide to Bratislava with the top Bratislava tourist attractions and things to do in Bratislava to complement a trip here whether you are here purely for the nightlife… I know a lot of people are, on a little city break getaway, or, on a wider Europe trip!
Things to do in Bratislava
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How many days do you need in Bratislava?
Bratislava is a fairly small city, you can see a lot of Bratislava in just one day!
Here’s my post on how to spend one day in Bratislava!
However, many people visit Bratislava for the nightlife which means you’ll want 2-3 days to have 1-2 nights in Bratislava.
Many people also visit on a wider Central Europe itinerary and visit between going to Budapest, Vienna, Ljubljana and Prague. As I mention below in where to stay in Bratislava.
I found accommodation here really inexpensive compared to nearby cities like Vienna, so you might want to stay a night longer in Bratislava rather than Vienna or Budapest to help save money on accommodation.
I was passed through Bratislava after hiking in the Tatras Mountains further North in Slovakia. I enjoyed my day in Bratislava but am glad I didn’t dedicate more time here and instead saw more of the places to visit in Slovakia!
How to Get Around Bratislava?
Bratislava is a very walkable city so you don’t need to worry about public transport although there is a tram if you need help getting around.
There are also tourist trains which I touch on below in this list of things to do in Bratislava.
Where to Stay in Bratislava
One of the things I loved about looking into accommodation in Bratislava is the prices! It’s so much cheaper than many other cities in Europe!
It’s best to stay in the Old City so you are within walking distance of everything.
I loved the look and location (and price!) of AC Hotel by Marriott Bratislava Old Town.
If you’re on a wider Europe itinerary going to Vienna before or after Bratislava as many people do. Consider staying a night in Bratislava and then heading to Vienna in the morning because accommodation will be much cheaper in Bratislava than in Vienna!
Bratislava Things to Do
You can easily find your thing in Bratislava and there are many Bratislava attractions and places to visit in Bratislava, but here are my top favourites:
1. Bratislava Free Walking Tour
Bratislava is a city with a lot of history and if its buildings could speak, they would have a lot to say!
Luckily, there are many free walking tours in Bratislava on offer with local guides to give you a real insight into the history here.
Whether you want a free Bratislava Castle and City Tour, Legends and Myths Tour, or you’re into Communist History there are available here.
I love starting my day with a walking tour in Old European Cities to get an understanding of the city from a local and afterwards, you can explore places again on your own.
With Bratislava being so small, you can certainly fit a city tour within your Bratislava itinerary.
2. Private Walking Tour
As I said, there is so much history in Bratislava from myths and legends to war and communist history.
If you want to get a true understanding of the city and country of Slovakia in your own time, look into a private walking tour like this as one of your things to do in Bratislava.
3. Bratislava Castle
Easily top of the list of the top tourist attractions in Bratislava, Bratislava Castle cannot be missed.
Note that the Museum inside the Castle is closed on Tuesdays, but the grounds are open all day all week.
Bratislava Castle is sat on top of the hill opposite the Old Town and provides incredible views over the Old Town, Danube River and wider city.
I didn’t go into the museum as I didn’t leave enough time on my day in Bratislava but I saw many people go in. Instead, I enjoyed the views and castle gardens which are free to enter.
If you’re looking for free things to do in Bratislava, head to the castle but don’t go into the museum and you’ll still enjoy it!
4. Micheal’s Gate
Bratislava is a medieval city and Michael’s Gate is the only remaining fortified gate.
You really can’t miss this when sightseeing in Bratislava because it feels like all streets in the Old City lead here and it draws you in as soon as you see it.
For one of the Bratislava Viewpoints, head to the top of Michael’s Gate, but note, it’s not open on Mondays.
5. St Martin’s Cathedral
St Martins Cathedral is another one of the things to see in Bratislava. It’s worth pinning it on your map so you don’t miss it but it’s likely you’ll walk past it anyway.
I went past on my way from Bratislava Castle over to the Old City.
6. UFO Tower
The UFO Tower looks like a UFO on top of a bridge and it is literally called this too.
It’s one of the super unique things to do in Bratislava and you can dine at the top of here, or visit for a sunset drink.
There are a few options for visiting though. There’s an observation deck at the top of the UFO Tower which you can visit without needing to go to the restaurant or bar, this is another one of the best Bratislava viewpoints.
Or, you can go for dinner and dine 85 meters high, or for a drink in the bar. I believe if you visit the restaurant for dinner, you get access to the observation deck for free, so be sure to check this if you go!
7. Walk along the Danube
Slovakia is one of the 10 countries the Danube River passes through (here’s the Danube Route in case you aren’t familiar with it) so spending part of your day in Bratislava walking along it, even a small section is one of the lovely things to do in Bratislava.
8. Danube Boat Cruise
Fancy getting out onto the Danube River instead of just walking along it? There are Danube River Cruises in Bratislava available.
This website gives cruise options, or, you can head down to the River and see what boats are ready to leave soon.
If you want to explore Bratislava with a guide, by boat or by bus, there are lots of tour options to book like this:
9. Day Trip to Vienna by Boat
If you are in Bratislava for a day, you might not want to leave, but you could head to Vienna for the day if you want!
This would be great if you actually have 2 days in Bratislava or 3 days in Bratislava as there are many places to visit in Bratislava and you can also spare some time for day trips from Bratislava. This is how you could spend another day!
10. Day Trip from Bratislava
One of the best things about Europe is how easy it is to see other places. If you have 3 days in Bratislava, I’d say you have to spend one day going on one of the day trips from Bratislava.
Here are 17 great day trips from Bratislava you can choose from!
11. Presidential Palace
I love European Cities that have Palaces right in the middle of them and this is the case with Bratislava!
Known as Slovakia’s White House the Palace is just a few minutes walk from Michael’s Gate.
Access inside isn’t allowed but the gardens are open to the public and are a great place to eat a quiet lunch as well as taking in the unique statues within the gardens.
12. City Train Ride
I saw a cool train running many times around the city in Bratislava and it’s known as the Bratislava Tschu-Tschu Train!
As I’ve mentioned, Bratislava is only a small city and very walkable, but if you have children, issues walking far, or fancy giving your legs a break, this is a fun way to see the city.
Book the hop on hop off Bratislava sightseeing Tschu-Tschu Train for as little as £10.00 which includes an audio guide and transport around the city to all of the best places to visit in Bratislava!
13. Statue Spotting
Bratislava is full of interesting, unique and sometimes funny statues. Many of which will make you look twice as you walk past them.
They’re great for photo opportunities so look out for them as they are Bratislava must-see attractions, here’s a guide to the statues in the city!
14. Dinner on the Danube River
Walking along the Danube River I noticed many boats which looked like they were permanently on the water, I checked Google Maps and realised many are hotels and restaurants on the River Danube.
If you’re looking for places to eat in Bratislava check out Ponton and Dunaj Brewery and Hotel on the river!
15. Eat Chimney Cake
Can you be in this part of Europe and not eat a Chimney Cake? I don’t think so!
Located down the street to the right of Micheal’s Gate is the only Chimney Cake shop I saw in Bratislava. It has a constant queue outside and after trying mine, I can see why!
16. Explore by Scooter or Segway
So many cities in Europe have Scooters to get around which is a really cool way of seeing a city.
I saw lots of teal-coloured scooters available around the city which can be rented. Just check the details on the scooter to see what app is needed.
Alternatively, if you love exploring a city by segway, check out this Bratislava City Segway Tour to see the Riverside, Castle or both!
17. Have a Tea in a Bomb Shelter
I saw this sign whilst walking the streets of the old town and loved the uniqueness of it!
If it’s a rainy day in Bratislava when you’re there, you might as well have a break underground in a bomb shelter and unique place.
The cafe is called Čajovňa v podzemí (here are the TripAdvisor reviews) and you’ll probably see this sign as I did whilst walking to Micheal’s Gate.
18. Try Slovakian Food
I love a country and city where the food is unique and you can get a feel of the country in just 1 local dish. I think this is certainly the case in Slovakia.
Although not great for vegetarians, and definitely not for vegans, there is a wide range of Slovak dishes on offer which you can try easily in Bratislava. I opted for fried cheese!
There are many restaurants along the streets of the Old Town in Bratislava. These will cost you a bit more because they are touristy places but most offer nice views and atmosphere plus menus in many languages so they are easy to eat in.
19. Bratislava Museums & Galleries
There are a range of museums and galleries in Bratislava. Here’s a great list of them, if you are looking for things to do in Bratislava when it rains, one of the museums of galleries is a great idea!
20. Bratislava Sightseeing Bus
Finally, although Bratislava is a small city and very walkable, sometimes a sightseeing bus helps you see more, and helps if you have limitations walking.
As well as the motorised city train that you can book, there is also a small vintage sightseeing bus and I love the idea of this over one of the big red double-decker sightseeing buses you see in other major cities!
Because of the small size of both the train and bus, they are driven all around the streets of the Old Town so you can see them easily!
I hope this has helped you plan your things to do in Bratislava!
- For more of my Europe blog posts see:
- PERFECT One Day in Bratislava Itinerary & Things To Do in Bratislava in 1 Day!
- 16 BEST Winter Sun Destinations in Europe & Nearby
- 2 Day – 2 Week Southern Spain Itinerary! A Complete Guide to Planning Your Trip!
- 3- 5 Day Norway Road Trip Itinerary! Bergen to Alesund & Atlantic Ocean Road.
- 36 BEST Things To Do In Istanbul With Insider Tips!