Bratislava: the city of hidden castles and chic cocktails

This year I celebrated my birthday in Bratislava with my best friend. Actually, it was her present to me and I have to say it was amazing.

Many people have asked me why Bratislava. The answer is easy – we had never been there before. So, new place, new adventure. Plus, we knew that no matter where we would go together, we would have a blast.

So on Friday evening I was on my way to Bratislava.

Must say there are not many connection flights to Bratislava, but you can easily fly to Vienna and then take a bus for 5 euros to Slovakia. It comes every hour and is very comfortable.

Got there around 7 PM, which didn’t leave us a lot of time for many things in the evenings. So, we went for a walk downtown and a drink.

First impression? The city is not big and relatively quiet on a Friday night, as it is not packed with tourists. But the city center is beautiful. As you walk around all this majestic houses (which I found out later they are previous royal residences and castles), around the corners you can find a lot of awesome statues in all different kind of postures.

From time to time, the streets get together in beautiful squares with fountains. It is like a small land of a tale, in which time has frozen, as each statue has it’s one story to tell. Doing acrobatics, or dancing in the street, or working down in the sewage or simply “chatting” on a bench, every single one of them has something unique.

Though it is fun walking around the city center, my advice is to take the guided tour – you can do it either by walking or with the touristic mini bus. It’s 10 euros and totally worths it as you will find out many interesting about the houses that used to be palaces or the story of the statues.

Lemontree Skybar

As night was falling, we decided to have a drink at the Lemontree Skybar. The bar is located at the border of the pedestrian area, in a very beautiful old building and it features a restaurant and small terrace outside.

We ate only seafood starters and they were great. But what really impressed me where the cocktails – simply divine! There’s a long list of unique cocktails that you can try. And what is really interesting is the way they served it. For example, there’s one named Jack and the Duck, which comes with a yellow duck floating next to your drink.

My friend had one that tasted as liquor candies and came in a recipient resembling a coconut shell.

But I must say that the best was Nostra Mer, a combination based on gin, which came in a lamp. Absolutely delicious!

Ohh, and services are one of the kind! Probably one of the best I have ever seen around the world.

UFO Restaurant

The last night, on Sunday, we had reservation at the UFO Restaurant. I know the name sounds weird, but you need to check the picture to understand it makes a lot of sense – it’s like Star Wars is invading Earth.

Situated on top of a bridge, the UFO deserves its name as it is a 360 platform hosting one of the most famous restaurants in Bratislava. The place is composed of two parts: the restaurant and the open observation deck at the next level. Food is good, service is also nice…but obviously, the best is the view. This is the most amazing place to eat or have a drink in Bratislava, as you can see the whole city from top. The best view is the one with the castle – simply stunning.

Rio club and terrace

On Saturday night, we decided it was about time to check the nightlife. So, we after asking for recommendations, we headed to The Club. After searching up and down the street, we found out the place was under mild renovations. And tired of walking on the cubical sidewalk in high heels, we stopped at Rio.

My friend said she knew this place has good ratings so we decided to stay. The place is composed of two parts: the basement where there’s a club with a DJ and the restaurant with a terrace on the ground level.

The club is not bad, quite small, but with good music. However, since we felt like chatting, we decided to stay outside and enjoy the beautiful weather. Soon the first interesting cocktail appeared: this time a bulb, lit up in blue, placed in a mini ice bucket.

We spent a great night there, talking to strangers and drinking delicious cocktails.

At the end....

As a conclusion, Bratislava is a great city for a weekend. It is much cheaper than other European cities and cocktails are simply WOW! Even more, because it was my birthday everywhere we went we would get celebration cakes, cocktails and even champagne. It was a fantastic weekend. Bratislava, thank you for having us!