The Ultimate Guide to Slovakia
A land full of mountains and castles, Slovakia is a gorgeous country that is full of lush gardens and breathtaking landscapes. A must-visit for nature lovers, the country has some of the most beautiful national parks in Europe. We will be sharing some of our favourite places in Slovakia, our recomendations of where you can stay, as well as safety measures that are in place currently.
COVID-19 Travel Advice
Travellers from Ireland are allowed to go to Slovakia without needing to quarantine on arrival or when they return back home. However, you will have to self-isolate if you have stayed or transited in a country where Slovakia requires self-isolation 14 days prior to coming to Slovakia.
Rules in the Country
- In public spaces, social distancing of one metre must be practised at all times. Face masks are mandatory in all enclosed public spaces.
- Face masks are also required in local public transport, cinemas and shops.
- Most restaurants, libraries, bars and tourism and leisure facilities are open and social distancing/ hygiene measures are enforced.
Travelling to Slovakia
The easiest way to get to Slovakia is to fly to Bratislava.
The main airport in Slovakia is the Bratislava Airport. Alternatively, you could also fly to the international airport in Košice, which operates flights to and from London, Dublin, Vienna and more. Another option is to fly to Vienna, as flights to the city are typically cheaper. If you choose to fly to Vienna, you can take a 1h 30 minute shuttle-bus to Bratislava that will cost around €10-15. These services are offerred by Eurolines and Postbus.
Must-Visit Places in Slovakia
A city with numerous attractions and a unique history, Bratislava also offers travellers a vibrant cultural experience, mouth-watering cuisine and quality wine. Explore the Old Town Hall, admire the gorgeous St Ladislav Chapel, and learn about the city's history at the museum. A short walk from the Old Town Hall is the Primate's Palace, a neoclassical palace that was built in the 18th century, and also regarded as one of the most beautiful buildings in Bratislava. A visit to the Devín Castle is also a must in Bratislava, as it offers some breathtaking views. Most importantly, when in Bratislava, you have to try some of the classic Slovakian dishes! A popular delicacy in the city is bryndzové halušky, which are dumplings with sheep cheese. Another delicious option is the gulášová polievka, a goulash soup that usually consists of beef, potatoes and onions. Yum!
Where To Stay in Bratislava
The best place to stay in Bratislava is in the historic city centre: Staré Mesto. Our hotel recommendations are:
Named Vysoké Tatry, the High Tatras are a mountain range that stand on the Slovakia-Poland border. A true paradise, the Tatras are home to some of the most majestic mountains, greenest lakes, and stunning hiking trails. Enjoy the serene waterfalls and gorgeous meadows as you explore the landscape. If you visit Slovakia in the winter, then you can experience how the snow changes the hiking trails into skiing areas!
Hotels Near High Tatras
The best place to stay near High Tatras is in the city of Poprad. It offers great views of the High Tatras, but also has its own perks, such as cute restaurants and Baroque-style houses. Our recommendations of hotels in Poprad are:
The largest city in east Slovakia, Košice is a city of great historic value, due to its location between Hungary and Poland. A super interesting street to explore in Košice is Hrnčiarska street, also known as The Crafts Lane. Strolling down this cobblestoned street you will find many local craft shops selling a variety of handcrafts and other local goods. Next, visit the St. Elisabeth's Cathedral, the easternmost gothic cathedral in Europe. For €3, climb up to the North Tower for some amazing views of the city. The Jakab Palace is also a nice landmark to explore. Although the inside is not open to visitors, the attraction is still worth it as the exterior is stunning!
Best Hotels in Košice
A two-hour drive from Bratislava, Bojnice is a small town in central Slovakia that is full of cultural, historical and magical attractions. The town is famous for its fairytale castle: the Bojnice Castle that was built in the 12th century, and then reconstructed in the 20th century by the last owners, the Pálffy family. To explore the castle you have to book a guided tour which also includes a visit to the travertine cave, as well as the Pálffy family tomb. Surrounding the castle is a beautiful park, a perfect opportunity to take some nice pictures and enjoy the scenery. Another highlight in the town is the National Bojnice Zoo. Make sure to also visit the gorgeous butterfly garden!
Affordable Hotels in Bojnice
We hope you have a wonderful trip to stunning Slovakia! Check out our post-covid travel list where we’ve answered all the important questions you might have before you embark on your next holiday. Before you pack your bags though, please check the website of the Department of Foreign Affairs to keep up to date with the latest travel advice for Slovakia. No matter where you choose to go, make sure to wash your hands, maintain social distancing and wear a mask when necessary. Safe travels!
Want to read more?