The great affair is to move. It was time and there came my first solo venture at one of the most lively places in Europe. Bratislava it was, the capital of Slovakia. And to begin with my conscious traveling, being honest as I must admit, this was the first time I had heard the name of this city and I was amazed by the people over there, crazy I must say.
Being the centre spot of Europe, holding unique history, attractive sights, rich cultural life, excellent local gastronomy, quality wine and modern shopping centres make Bratislava an ideal city- break destination.
I took flight from London to Bratislava, which was around 2 hours flight, and I reached there by late evening. Here, what I had heard of this city held true that one minute when I was enjoying the view of the majestic Cathedral, the next moment I was enjoying the cuisines, which was then followed by a freshly brewed espresso in one of numerous cafés in picturesque narrow streets and squares. The ancient wine cells, scattered across the city centre, offer wine tasting definitely with a difference.
I had put my bags in the room and just ran out to the roads like a crazy wanderer. I so wanted to shout like a crazy ass, "Yay, dude I'm in Europe".
After sometime, I straight away went to explore the night life of this place. Till then, I had no clue about Bratislava, it was just a part of my itinerary. I went around hoping cafes, sipping beer and meeting people, I encountered some Irish Guys, some Polish and a few more and had really amazing conversations with them. This is the best part of travelling solo, one gets to meet people of different places and holding various viewpoints and experiences. I partied whole night and when I returned to my room it was already 5 in the morning. I still did not want to sleep. I wanted to explore more, but my body had to take some rest for the upcoming fun.
The following day started with an awesome breakfast in the city center, I walked the city wandering around, looking for places, food and the ice creams. Here one can not resist with just a single scoop of ice cream. Even though I could not explore much of the city as I was so engrossed in the city centre, the main attraction here is the Bratislava Castle. The massive rectangular building with four corner towers stands on an isolated rocky hill of the Little Carpathians directly above the Danube river in the middle of Bratislava. Because of its size and location, it has been a dominant feature of the city for centuries.
The location provides excellent views of Bratislava, Austria and, in clear weather, parts of Hungary. Many legends are connected with the history of the castle.
Another touristic place is the gateway to the Old Town Bratislava, The Old Town Hall. The Old Town Hall is located in the heart of the city center, between the Main Square and the Primates square. It is next to the Jesuit Church and near the Greek and Japanese embassies. It is easily recognizable by its colorful tiled roof. The building was used as a town hall from the 15th century through the late 19th century. At times during that period, however, it also served other purposes, including housing a prison and mint, and being place of trade and celebrations. It was also used as the city's arsenal depository and municipal archive. Today it hosts the Bratislava City Museum, displaying exhibitions of Pressburg's history. Exhibited items include torture instruments, the old town dungeons, antique weapons and armour, paintings and miniatures.
My curiosity of finding new adventures brought me to the One cart arena for go karting. Go Karting was so much fun, even though I stood 4th out of 8 guys, still the experience had been worth penning down.
Tripadvisor had suggested me to take the wine tours in the city centre. Then, I got to know about an old wine shop which offers wine for tasting. The guy took me two floors in the basement, they had renovated the old jails used during the medieval time and it looked really artistic. I had never developed liking for wine till now, but this place totally changed my taste for wine. He offered me 5-6 different types of European Wines, and that totally changed my views for wine.
If one is a beer person, Bratislava has so much to offer. Cheap beer is available everywhere and one often feels like sipping beer and hopping around cafes in the city. Here, I also tried a 90% alcohol shot which was seriously crazy.
Being in a party destination in Europe, one can not miss the strip clubs. Bratislava had so many strip clubs and one can try them for their pending share of fun of this city, it’s worth an experience.
The following day, I got to know about the free walking tour of the city. It is quite common to take the free walking tours in different cities of Europe, though it's not allowed in Italy as they do not believe in anything for free. Starting with the tour, there was this girl who was guiding the group of around 50 people from all parts of the world, taking all across the old town to the new town explaining the history of the Slovakia and showing all the touristic spots in the city of Bratislava. A tip of 10 Euros is considered good as this is something to appreciate their effort of guiding so many people.
No wonder Bratislava feels like so much of energy, with a frenetic mix of old and urban, classic and contemporary.