To Slovakia or not, that is the question. Formerly part of Czechoslovakia, Bratislava is Slovakia’s capital city. It Is located on the train route from Budapest to Vienna, sits along the beautiful Danube River, and very close to the Austrian border. It became the capital as recent as 1993. But the nightlife is said to be among the best in this part of Europe, though the city itself is nota raving beauty.
Notably a nice place to hang out, Bratislava is safe, friendly, and hassle-free. And there is always something to do, which I like. With a population of only 415,000, it is smaller than the city of Fresno, next door to my home in Clovis. The city still has a goodly share of Communist era buildings in the modern city center. The city has two main squares.
My favorite professional cyclist, Peter Sagan is from Slovakia, though he now resides in Monaco. He has won two World Championships, along with numerous other races, including the Amgen Tour of California in 2015, and seven individual stages of the Tour de France.
Slovakia joined NATO and the EU in 2004, after the Velvet Revolution of 1989 pushed the Communists out of the country. It sits on several borders, Austria, Ukraine, Poland, Hungary and Czechia. It is about twice the size of New Hampshire, with about 5.5 million population. Slovaks make up 81% of the population. The government is a parliamentary republic.
Bratislava has almost half a million people, and is the only national capital that borders two sovereign states. It is only about 30 miles from the Vienna city center. So, I decided to make a stop on my way to Vienna.