Positioned in the heart of Europe, the country of Slovakia is brimming with cosmopolitan cities, beautiful castles, stunning palaces, lush forests, and a rich and complex history intertwined with its neighbors. Slovakia is a delight to explore. Here are the wonderful destinations in Slovakia you should visit.
Wonderful Destinations in Slovakia
The largest city in Slovakia, as well as being the capital, Bratislava lies on the River Danube and borders both Austria and Hungary. Come here for a trip to the imposing Bratislava Castle, perched on a plateau above the city and originally built in the 10th century.
The city is located in an area of lush vegetation so there are a wealth of parks, open spaces, and lakes in and around Bratislava, including Rusovce Lake, although if you choose to venture there, be forewarned, it is also famous as an area for nudists! If you head into Old Town in Bratislava be sure to take a ride around on the tourist train that will give you a whistle-stop tour of the city so that you can take in the history and culture from the comfort of a seat.
Bratislava is also known for its eclectic music scene, from underground clubs that feature up and coming experimental artists, to its annual Bratislava Music Festival and jazz festival known as Jazz Days.
The region of Liptov is considered by many locals and one of the jewels in the crown of Slovakia, and as such, it is one of the most visited areas of the country. The largest ski resort in Slovakia, Jasná, is found in the Liptov region, and if you enjoy winter sports then there are a wealth of trails here for all different abilities to try, including both skiing and snowboarding options.
If you prefer water to snow then you can visit Aquapark Tatralandia, one of the largest water parks in all of Central Europe, where all the water comes from thermal springs, said to have healing properties. For those interested in the local folklore, a trip to the sleepy village of Vikolínec, a UNESCO World Heritage Site is a must-do, and you will find log houses, a quaint wooden chapel, and a folklore museum.
3. Slovak Karst Caves
Slovakia is home to almost 2,500 caves, and more are being discovered as time goes on, with some 400 having been explored to date. The entire Slovak Karst region of caves has UNESCO World Heritage Site status, and if you like spelunking then you can’t miss a trip to one of the spectacular caves in the region.
If you want to see one of only three Aragonite caves in the world then you should head to Ochtinská Aragonite Cave. If you are feeling brave, you can also visit a section of Domica Cave that features boat rides on a river known as the River Styx, the river in Greek mythology that passengers had to cross to reach the Underworld.
4. High Tatras
As they are home to the tallest mountains in the country, the High Tatras make for some unforgettable hiking and rock climbing, while in winter, there are loads of great slopes and pistes to ski down. It is one of the wonderful destinations in Slovakia.
The majestic mountain range really is a sight to behold; its jagged peaks rise up imperiously towards the heavens, and sparkling alpine lakes and meadows can be found tucked away among its many slopes and valleys.
Occupying an important place in the national psyche, the High Tatras are almost a national symbol, and the snow-capped Mount Krivan is the most distinctive peak. Due to the breathtakingly beautiful landscapes, the mountain range lends itself perfectly to all different types of outdoor activities. There are plenty of paths and trails for you to hike, cycle, or ski along, and the views are simply out of this world.
5. Banska Stiavnica
Lying at the center of what used to be an enormous caldera, Banská Štiavnica is a fascinating city to explore. Much of its fabulous wealth derives from the rich mineral deposits that were once found in the ground around the town. The former mining town has a magnificent historic center, with lots of lovely churches, palaces, and museums.
Wandering around town, you’ll pass many amazing historic sights and cultural landmarks. In addition to all this, Banská Štiavnica also has two fantastic castles for you to visit, while the open-air mining museum is well worth checking out; it takes you deep underground to see what life in the mines was really like.
6. Slovak Paradise National Park
The Slovak Paradise National Park is much less known than the famous Tatra Mountains, but as one of Slovakia’s nine national parks, it has much to explore. The park, which opened in 1988, is home to lush gorges, climbing ladders, catwalks, and bridges, and certainly keeps you entertained as you move through it very much like a jungle.
Beautiful lakes, waterfalls, and dense forests make the national park a wonderful hiking destination. The walk through the Sucha Bela gorge is a particular highlight, as you dramatically climb up ladders that carry you through the gorge.
7. Devín Castle
Devin Castle is one of the most iconic locations in Slovakia. Located in Devín, around 13 kilometers from Bratislava, the castle has an important strategic position, located on a cliff overlooking the stunning confluence of the Danube and Morava rivers. On cloudless days you can enjoy a perfect view of the surrounding region from the castle.
This is one of the wonderful destinations visitors should explore.