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Christmas in Bratislava

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Dublin, Ireland
posts: 1
Christmas in Bratislava

hi ive arranged a pre christmas break 20th to 23rd of december for my fiance and i in bratislava and would like to know what can i expect in terms of atmosphere,christmas feel,markets? outdoor food stalls mulled wine that type of thing?

also whats the shopping like and is the hotel keminsky as luxurious as the website suggests?

2 replies to this topic
London, United...
posts: 164
reviews: 1
1. Re: Christmas in Bratislava

Hi there

Great choice - the Christmas markets in Bratislava is really good fun. The links below give more info but you may need to use google translate (I couldn't find many english sites with info). Looks like this year will run from 23 Nov to 23 Dec, in the old town, over 2 main areas.



You can eat, drink and be merry - a few stalls have really good food such as grilled meat/sausages, traditional slovak dishes, mulled wine, beers etc. It's absolutely one of the best times to visit and the atmosphere then will be great being just before Christmas (Slovaks celebrate on the 24th by the way).

There are 2 main malls - Eurovea and Aupark - both very good standard and very modern, as well as a number of smaller shopping centres, and the usual designer style shops and souvenirs in the town centre. The Hotel Kempinsky looks amazing, and receives great reviews on various sites, but I have never stayed there so can't confirm myself.

If you wnat to visit a few pubs, there are a few real gems just under the castle, kind of on the way from your hotel to the old town - try U Certa, Vydrica, or U Dobreho Pastiera - usually very good atmosphere in these pubs, and a bit different from many of the usual tourist oriented places. There are also loads of pubs right in the centre of the city, and a little bit further (towards Mlynske Nivy on the map - the main bus station) is a great Irish bar called Goblins - the guy who owns it, Shane, is a top guy and the pub has a really good mix of locals and expats - I would recommend it, not just cos it's an Irish bar, but cos it's just a really good pub.

There are quite a few thread son here of other stuff to do and see, places to go, just one thing is that it could be really quite cold at that time of year so do bring proper warm clothes if you plan to spend time outside, it will likely be much colder than Ireland at that time of year.

If you fancy a wee trip outside the city, I would also recommend visiting the Christmas markets in Vienna - it is really great as well, and the part outside the town house (rathaus) is beautiful - sure there will be loads of info on the Vienna forum, and it's only something like an hour away by train or bus.

Have fun!

Bratislava, Slovakia
Destination Expert
for Bratislava
posts: 455
reviews: 92
2. Re: Christmas in Bratislava

The official outdoor Christmas markets take place at Hlavne namestie (Main Square) and connected square Frantiskanske namestie. These are organized by the city to ensure that stalls provide original local products, like local food specialties (and mulled wine too), handmade gifts and souvenirs etc. Some stalls can be found also at nearby Hviezdoslav Square, where there is usually also an ice rink. Cultural events take place at this time, too - there are various live performances either at Hlavne namestie or at Hviezdoslav Square under the arbor, usually in the afternoon (4-6 pm) etc., some concerts take place also in churches - St. Martin's Cathedral and other. And there are also bigger events at concert halls and arenas, e.g. this year on Dec 20 there will be concert of Andrea Bocelli.

Regarding more serious shopping, of course, you can visit shopping malls as mentioned by Andrew, and there are some more located out of centre (Avion close to the airport, for example).

Seeing the spectacular atmosphere of Christmas in Vienna is also very good idea - you can easily make a day trip by train or bus.

Kempinski is indeed very comfortable and luxury modern hotel (recently built), although it is located slightly out of main central area - 1600 yards along the river, or 2-3 stops by tram. I think the hotel also provides ride to city centre by limousine free of charge. So it is a good choice - you might also consider Sheraton (directly in the Eurovea shopping area), Marrol's, Tulip or Arcadia.

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