Bratislava in Winter Time | Travel Guide
Bratislava in winter time is just wonderful and we really enjoyed this charming city with its unique romantic flair. We came without any special expectations and we left positively surprised: A city with a picturesque old town, wonderful viewpoints and things to see, lovely restaurants to eat and lots of trendy cafes and bars. Spoiled with 3 days of sunshine, the city has shown its best side.
We had been there in December, which was a fantastic choice: Additionally to the main sights of Bratislava, there are some beautiful Christmas markets to explore! In this travel blog post we will show you the best places to visit in winter, write about the Christmas markets and we will give you a hotel recommendation.
So, let’s explore Bratislava in Winter! Here is our list of the best things to do in Bratislava:
Top attractions of Bratislava for a visit in winter:
Old Town Bratislava
Getting lost in the Old Town is probably the best thing you can do in this city. There are so many hidden gems, wonderful small streets and beautiful buildings. Behind each corner you will find a fantastic photo spot. Furthermore, there are plenty of cute shops, nice pubs and good restaurants! There is always something going on and not for nothing Bratislava is so popular for its vibrant nightlife. Furthermore, in winter there are several Christmas Markets set up throughout Bratislava.
Main Square & Old Town Hall
Inside the town hall you will find the oldest museum in Slovakia. After climbing up the narrow stairs leading to its 45-metre-high tower, we had been rewarded with a beautiful panoramic view to the Christmas Markets at the Main Square.
Probably the most photographed tourist attractions of Bratislava! You will find this famous sculptures all over the old town – near the Main Square. It was so much fun taking some pics with the Cumil, the Schone Naci and Napoleon.
St. Michael`s Gate
This unique gate counts to the top sights of Bratislava. We recommend to visit the upper terrace of its 51-metre-high tower! From there we had an enchanting view of the Bratislava Castle and the Old Town.
Walking around the Danube River
It’s really special walking over this great Danube River! You will find plenty of fantastic views crossing the bridges and along the river. Most people are crossing the Novy Most for visiting the UFO viewing platform. We also recommend to walk next to the river side and also to use the Stary Most Bridge. It’s the next bridge downstream and we had been overwhelmed about the amazing view.
The UFO in Bratislava is an observation deck on the edge of the SNP Bridge. With a height of 95 meters it offers one of the best viewpoint of the city and even in winter this attraction can be visited!
A fantastic photo motive is the Blue Church or St. Elizabeth’s church which was built in the Art Nouveau style at the beginning of the 20th century. We loved the unique blue color of that church. If you would like to go inside you have to be there very early in the morning – the opening hours are from 7.00-7.30!
St. Martin`s Cathedral
The 85 m high tower dominates the old town and the cathedral counts to the top sights of Bratislava. It’s located between old town and the castle. The best view you will definitely have on the way up to the castle and from the castle garden.
This white photogenic castle sits on the hill top of Bratislava. It was lovely hiking around the castle gardens and to gaze this brilliant piece of history.
How much we loved this street with all its old houses. The Kapitulska Street is just behind the St. Martin`s Cathedral, don`t miss it when you are around. It felt like time travelling, walking through this historic street!
The Primate’s Palace
With its light pink color and its outstanding architecture, the Primate’s Palace is one of the most beautiful building in Bratislava. Don`t miss to visit the Primatial Palace inside! Aslo in winter, there is an awesome option for ice skating just in front of the palace.
The Palais Grassalkovich serves as the seat of the President of the Slovak Republic. Unfortunately the place was under construction when we had been to Bratislava.
Bratislava Christmas Markets
One of the best things to do in Bratislava in Christmas time is to explore all the beautiful traditional Christmas Markets. It was a pleasure walking around this beautiful markets! Try some of the traditional Slovakian dishes and drink some mulled vine. Additionally, the handcrafts are absolutely lovely! The Bratislava Christmas Market is one of the best Christmas Markets in Europe and we really emjoyed our visit!, is that this Christmas markets are not that commercialized like in other European countries. The Bratislava Christmas Market is one of the best Christmas Markets in Europe and we really emjoyed our visit!
Things to do around Bratislava
The Devin Castle
Devin Castle is set in an amazing beautiful natural scenery and it remembered us somehow on Scotland. It is located just 10 km out of Bratislava. We went there by car, but you can also take the bus or go there by boat.
Where to stay in Bratislava?
For our stay we had been at the Grand Hotel River Park – what was a fantastic choice! Located at the edge of the Danube River we had a fantastic view every morning. The old town is in walking distance or also reachable by tram. The Hotel has a beautiful spa in the 11 the floor – pools, sauna and amazing view inclusive. It was just wonderful relaxing inside the hot pools after a long and cold day of sightseeing. If you are up to some kind of luxury and relaxing city trip we highly recommend this hotel! Click here for prices and reviews.
If you are looking for a cheaper place to stay in Bratislava, you definately should check out this budget options. Our favorite hostel in town is the Chors Hostel, which is brand new, clean and super comfy!
City Tours & Excursions
As you can see, in Bratislava you can experience a lot of amazing things. If you would like to join a guided city tour or an excursion, then we can recommend the following experiences:
Insider Tips – Bratislava city trip
- Best restaurants in town: Check out where to eat in Bratislava for the best recommendations!
- Where to go for a coffee: The Five Points is such a cool place for having coffee – they also serve good lunch!
- Where to sleep: Bratislava has it all, you will find both accommodation with reasonable prices and more exclusive hotels.
- Where to park: Parking in Bratislava can be expensive. Some Car park take up to 30 Euro per night! If you are up to free parking we have a special insider tip for you: Go to the Divadlo Arena and there is a free parking next to the Stary most bridge.
- Bratislava Card: If you are planning to do a lot of sightseeing, you should consider buying a Bratislava Card. With the card you will get some free admissions and a few discounts for the most sights.
Read more about Bratislava:
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On my last trip to Vienna, I became friends from someone from Bratislava and they showed me such lovely pictures that I was inspired to visit ! I love all your pictures too, would love to walk around in the old town or enjoy breathtaking views from the UFO (I love such vantage points). Also the Christmas markets look pretty cool ! Good to know that they’re not as commercialized as probably the ones in Austria. The Devin Castle also looks pretty awesome, as does the idea of a walk along Danube.
I haven’t been to Bratislava yet, but I have heard only heard good things about it. Reading your post, I am convinced that I have to visit it as soon as possible! It looks really charming and I absolutely love old cities, filled with history! You’ ve presented it exquisitely!
This is one corner of the world that I haven’t had the opportunity to visit yet. Bratislava looks like a great place and it appears you guys had a great time. Will have to see when I can get it on a trip in the future. Appreciate the tips – the Grand Hotel River Park looks like a great option for when I go. Thanks for sharing!
I love the debate on if the Cumil statue is a pervert. I also love how you put together an extremely photo rich post without taking up too much page size. You free parking tip is also one to remember. Saving 30 Euro a night is nothing to sneeze at.
This place looks truly amazing, I would love to go here and explore it. All of the buildings are so different from where I lived I would love to see it in real life. Your pictures are stunning and definitely making me want to go there.
Bratislava looks so charming and romantic. Would love to explore this some day. Thanks for sharing.
I loved Bratislava so much! We went for the Christmas markets and you’re right, it was romantic and full of snow. Also it’s so not expensive as one might think so thumbs up!
I have never been to Bratislava, but after reading this post it has to go on my list. I love the UFO and the blue church. Old town looks like it has a lot of rustic charm. And their are a plethora of castles and churches that deserve a look.I definitely want to go in December to experience the Christmas markets.
It’s amazing to me how picturesque Bratislava is. It looks like your photos were staged, they’re so beautiful and foreign and wonderful. Fantastic photo spread, you guys!