Endless forests, rugged mountains and deep valleys with roaring waterfalls is what creates Slovakia’s beautiful landscape. Here one gets the feeling that nature is still the way it should be, with wild and often hidden treasures. For example, a large part of its scenic wealth can still be found underground. In the thousands of caves there are bizarre stalactite establishments as well as graceful ice formations. It also feeds the countless mineral springs of the country; whose water and mud create healing qualities and provide a very special wellness experience.
Facts & Figures
Official name: Slovenská Republika (Slovak Republic) Location: Central Europe, situated between Poland and Hungary Area: 49.030 km² Capital city: Bratislava Population: 5.4 million Religious and ethnic groups: 69% Roman Catholic, 10% Protestant, 4% Greek Catholic / 85% Slovak, 10% Magyar, 2% Roma Language: Slovak (official language) Geography: Mountains in the north and centre as well as in the south of the lowlands. Highest point: Gerlachovský štít (2655m) Time zone: Central European Time (UTC + 01:00) Political and economic: Parliamentary democracy, GDP: EUR 78,85 billion (2016) Currency: Euro (since 2009)
Arrival and departure
Slovakia can be reached by land, car, bus and by train, with the railway connections being considered very good and well developed. Air passengers mostly use the airport of Bratislava. Visa: Vaccinations: On site: Since the highways are only slightly developed, there is usually a high traffic volume on the remaining streets. Many travellers resort to the rail network, which is dense and reinforced by buses.
Climate and best time to travel
The climate in Slovakia is temperate and characterized by cool summers and cold, humid winters. Winter average temperature: -4°C (average minimum temperatures around -10°C in February) Summer average temperature: 16°C (maximum temperatures of around 22°C in July) Water temperature: 18°C in July The best time to travel to Slovakia lies between June and September.
The most beautiful holiday regions
Hont/South - Wide valleys and Hont Parade Festival Veľká Fatra - Mountain forests and ski resorts West coast - Carpathians and main city of Bratislava
Public holidays and celebrations
Day of formation of the Slovak Republic (January 1), Magi (January 6), Good Friday (March / April), Easter Monday (March / April), Labour Day (May 1), Victory Day over fascism (May 8), St. Cyril and Methodius (July 5), Anniversary of the Slovak National Uprising (August 29), Day of the Constitution of the Slovak Republic (September 1), The Seven Sorrows (September 15), All Saints Day ( November 1), Feast of the struggle for freedom and democracy (November 17), Christmas Eve (December 24), Christmas (December 25/26).
DOs and DON'Ts
DOs • Use the “Ahoy” greeting. This is the typical greeting for friends and acquaintances. The Slovaks will be happy if you use it correctly. • Take caution in the forest. Since there are still wild bears in Slovakia, you should be especially careful in remote forests.
DON'TS • Don't disregard traffic regulations. In Slovakia, you are obligated to drive with the headlights on at all times. In addition, there is a 0.0 Blood Alcohol Content limit and infringements of these laws can be expensive.
Can you drink the tap water? The tap water is generally safe to drink. Do I need an adapter? In Slovakia, there are several types of sockets. The connectors are not always compatible, so an adapter is needed. What about medical care? Medical care is considered satisfactory in most cases. However, since this may be different in the more rural areas, a travel health insurance with medical evacuation transport is highly advised.
Top tips and discoveries
Spiš Visible from afar, the Spiš Castle stands out from the surrounding countryside. Even though it is in ruins, it is still an impressive sight and it is easy to imagine it in its former glory hosting past weddings as a stronghold with high towers. The entire region around the castle was recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site; the reason for this is evident everywhere in the small castles, the picturesque villages and the gothic cathedral of Saint Martin.
Demänovská Ice Cave The water of Demänovská carved out deep into the rock millions of years ago, leaving behind a wide-ranging cave landscape. One of the most beautiful sights is the so-called Ice Cave, whose eponymous ice formations are constantly changing. Bear witness to its impressive natural power. In earlier centuries, the cave was legendary, as the bare bones inside were considered remnants of dragons. The nearby Freedom Cave is part of the same underground river bed and attracts visitors with meter-high stalactites.
Bratislava Bratislava is a feel-good city. The cosy atmosphere in the winding streets of the old town with its baroque buildings and lively marketplaces invites you to stroll and linger. The Danube, which divides the two parts of Bratislava, was once the bustling lifeline of the city and today hosts the hustle and bustle of locals and visitors among the small cafés on the shore. If you climb the city hill to the medieval castle, you will not only be rewarded with a historical flair, but also with a view that reaches into the neighbouring countries in good weather conditions.
Although every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the above text, SpaDreams cannot be held responsible for any out-of-date or inaccurate information.