|Arrive: 12/25/13 ---||Depart: 12/25/13 ---|
Bratislava is Slovakia's capital and largest city. The Carpathian Mountains, which begin at the Iron Gate of Romania, finally come to an end here. Vineyards on the slopes of the Little Carpathian Mountains meet the Danube River. The Austrian border is almost within sight of the city and Hungary is less than 15 miles away. Many beautiful monuments survive in the old town to tell of its past under Hungarian rule, and Bratislava's numerous museums are surprisingly rich. Franz Lizst visited Bratislava 15 times, and the opera productions of Slovak National Theatre rival anything in Europe. The old city, which is packed with museums and palaces, and the castle are the best parts of Bratislava - the rest of the city is pretty drab. Climb up the castle for great views and to check out the very interesting Museum of Folk Music within. The Slovak National Museum and the Slovak National Gallery on the river are also worth a visit. Hviezdoslavovo námestie (square) is a convenient orientation point, with the old town to the north, the Danube to the south, and Bratislava Castle to the west.