Best Day Trips From Bratislava: With Local
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Welcome to Slovakia, a landlocked country in Central Europe. If you’re considering traveling to Bratislava and exploring more of Slovakia, you’re right here. I’m a Slovakian citizen, born in the country, and have lived there for 18 years. So in this article, I’ll give you the best ideas for day trips from Bratislava.
If I am completely honest with you, I don’t recommend staying too long in Bratislava. It’s a beautiful small city, but there is not much to do. One day in Bratislava is enough. So check out some of these unique day trips from Bratislava and explore the rest of Slovakia. I’ll also point out, which are the best nature day trips from Bratislava. You’ll fall in love with the country.
List Of The 7 Best Day Trips From Bratislava
Here is a list of the best day trips from Bratislava:
- Devín Castle
- Wine Tasting In The Carpathian Hills
- Hiking In Fatra Mountains
- High Tatras National Park
- Bojnice Castle & Traditional Slovakian Village
- Thermal Spa Aphrodite & Traditional Slovakian Village
- Banská Štiavnica & Trenčín
Out of these, here are the top 3 nature day trips from Bratislava:
- Wine-Tasting In The Carpathian Hills
- Hiking In Fatra Mountains
- High Tatras National Park
How To Make The Best Day Trips From Bratislava
The best two ways to make these day trips from Bratislava are renting a car in Bratislava or joining an organized day trip from Viator agency.
A: Rent A Car In Bratislava
If you want to travel alone and do these day trips at your own pace, renting a car is the best option. You can do so in Bratislava, and even extend your trip, seeing more places in Slovakia.
B: Book An Organized Day Trip
In case you want to have a stress-free trip and see these places with a guide, book some of the amazing organized day trips from Bratislava that I write about.
Everything will be organized for you. You'll taste traditional Slovakian things and thoroughly learn about its culture and history. You can book these organized day trips below each activity, so check them out.
1. Devín Castle
Devín Castle was part of two major historical events; the Napoleon Wars and the Iron Curtain.
When Napoleon captured Vienna in the 19th century, he came to the Devín Castle with his army. They wrecked it. Yet you can still explore its ruins nowadays and learn more about Slovakian culture and history.
This castle is mentioned in several Slovakian poets. It's the symbol of the national awareness and reciprocity of the Slovak nation.
Devín Castle was also part of the famous Iron Curtain, introduced by Willston Churchill in 1948. It was in section 14 of the curtain, at the border with Czechoslovakia and Austria. One day, the rules got much stricter, and they banned locals from crossing the Iron Curtain. Many were killed because people were very offensive and wanted to fight against this regime.
Nowadays, you can learn about these events by visiting the Castle.
The best way to explore the castle from Bratislava is to rent a car and drive there directly.
Organized Day Trip To Devín Castle & Wine Tasting
Alternatively, you can make an organized day trip to the Devín castle. It also includes wine tasting in one of the best wine regions in Europe. So you'll kill two birds with one stone by making this day trip.
A professional guide, transfer to all attractions, an entrance ticket to the castle, and the entire wine-tasting experience are included in the price. The meeting point is in Bratislava, at the parking next to Hotel Carlton.
Book A Trip To Devín Castle & Wine Tasting
2. Wine Tasting In The Carpathian Hills
Bratislava is surrounded by beautiful vineyards. Both Slovakia and Austria produce delicious wines in the regions around them. So it would be a pity to miss the experience of wine tasting.
You can try delicious Slovakian wines in a family-run business around Bratislava. They also offer you local snacks such as cheese plates, teach you how they produce wines and show you how they run the business. So if you're a wine lover, this is one of the best places to taste local wines.
The best way to do a wine-tasting is by booking an organized day trip from Bratislava.
They'll pick you up from your hotel in Bratislava and drive you to Pezinok. It's a small town famous for its viniculture and handmade ceramics.
Transportation, a professional guide, wine tasting, and cheese plates are included in the price. So check it out by clicking on the button below and enjoy some of the best wines in Central Europe.
This would be one of the best nature day trips from Bratislava, too.
Book Wine Tour In The Carpathian Hills
3. Hiking In Fatra Mountains
Slovakia is famous for its stunning national parks, mountains, and great hiking. One of the best mountains ranges to be in is the Fatra Mountains. There are two of them: Little Fatra and Grand Fatra.
Little Fatra is the closest to Bratislava, which makes it a perfect nature day trip from Bratislava.
You can take a train to Žilina, and from there, take a bus directly to the Vrátna, the gateway to the Little Fatra Mountain Range.
Once you're in Žilina train station, turn left, walk across the street, and you'll see a bus station. From there, take a bus to Vrátna. It leaves from platform number 10.
Check out all train and bus connections at CP.sk website, official Slovakian timetables.
Or rent a car in Bratislava and drive directly to the starting point of your hike.
Then you can make some of the best hiking trails in the Fatra Mountains:
- Veľký Rozsutec
Once you get through the forest, you'll be walking on the top of the hills with stunning views of Slovakia. It's a beautiful experience. After, stop by a restaurant and taste some delicious Slovakian food, such as bryndzové halušky (bryndza cheese gnocchi) or gulaš. Or enjoy it even up on the mountain Chleb in a mountain hut.
Hiking To Chleb Mountain
If you decide to hike to Chleb mountain, you must start at the Vrátna Výťah cable car station. You can also take a cable car up the mountain and walk down. Or take the cable car both ways if you don't want to hike and just want to enjoy the beautiful views.
So once you're in Žilina about to take a bus, the end station where you have to get off is called Vrátna Výťah.
There is a hut just below Chleb mountain where you can have lunch. It's called Chata Vrátna (Vrátna Hut).
HIKE INFO: 2 hours and 30 minutes from Vrátna Výťah to Chleb (one way); full hike up and down is 5 hours, 9 kilometres/3 miles
Hiking Trail: Vrátna Výťah to Snilovské Sedlo (following green hiking sign), Snilovské Sedlo to Chleb (following red hiking sign)
Hiking Difficulty: Easy
Hike To Stoh Mountain
If you want to hike to the Stoh mountain, you'll have to take the same bus from Žilina to Vrátna Výťah, but get off at 1 station before, which is called Štefanová.
From Štefanová, you'll walk to the Medziholie and hike up Stoh mountain.
HIKE INFO: 3 hours and 30 minutes; full hike up and down takes 6 hours, 10 kilometers/6.2 miles
Hiking Trail: Štefanová to Medziholie (following the green hiking sign), Medziholie to Stoh (following the red hiking sign)
Hike Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
Hiking To Veľký Rozscutec Mountain
Alike with Stoh, you'll also start your hike to Veľký Rozsutec from Štefanová. First, you'll hike to Medziholie (as with the Stoh mountain). Then, from Medziholie, you'll turn left and ascend to Veľký Rozsutec.
This is the most difficult hike of all three, yet the views are the most beautiful.
HIKE INFO: approx. 3 hours, the full hike takes about 5 hours and 30 minutes, 10 kilometers/6.2 miles
Hiking Trail: Štefanová to Medziholie (following the green hiking sign), Medziholie to Veľký Rozsutec (following the red hiking sign)
Hiking Difficulty: Moderate to Difficult
You can enjoy these top three hiking trails as a day trip from Bratislava by visiting the Little Fatra Mountains (Malá Fatra in Slovakian language).
Make sure to take a train from Bratislava early in the morning. This way, you'll have enough time to enjoy the hike and return to Bratislava.
Organized Hiking Trip From Bratislava To Fatra Mountain (Hike To Chleb)
You can also go on an organized day trip from Bratislava to Fatra Mountain. They'll organize train tickets for you from Bratislava to Žilina with a private transfer to Vrátna. Then you'll take a cable car to the Snilovské Sedlo (the first hike I mentioned) and hike up to Chleb Mountain, which I mentioned above.
You'll always have your trekking guide with you, who will explain everything about the surroundings and Slovakian culture.
During your trip, you'll also taste our delicious Slovakian liquor (called Slivovica) and a typical biscuit called 'Horálka.' I eat Horálka biscuits every time I go hiking in Slovakia. It's a must-to-have item in your backpack, lol. You'll also get hiking pools.
With this organized day trip, you don't have to worry about anything. They'll pick you up from your hotel in Bratislava, and you can enjoy yourself.
Train tickets with seat reservation (return ticket), private transfer from Žilina to Vrátna, one-way cable car ticket to Snilovské Sedlo, 0.5l of water, horálka, Slivovica tasting, trekking guide, and hiking pools are all included in the price. So book this day trip by clicking on the button below:
Book A Guided Hike To Fatra Mountains
4. Explore High Tatras National Park
High Tatras is hands down the most beautiful place in Slovakia. You'll be blown away by its stunning nature, waterfalls, mountain lakes, and amazing spa/wellness facilities.
You can go hiking, take a train alongside the mountain range, walk around mountain lakes, see some waterfalls, or relax in the mountains.
If you visit the High Tatras, take at least a 2-day trip from Bratislava. That way, you can overnight in some of the beautiful hotels. It'll be a great nature day trip from Bratislava.
How To Get To High Tatras From Bratislava
I suggest taking a train to Štrba from Bratislava. From there, take a mountain funicular to the Štrbské Pleso. Then walk around the Štrbské Pleso Lake and enjoy the stunning views.
The best way to get to High Tatras is by renting a car. Get one in Bratislava and make your own trip to the High Tatras, spending 2 or more days at your own pace.
Stay in one of the following best hotels overnight and enjoy some relaxation:
Learn more about the best hiking trails in High Tatras in my separate articles. Or try this 5-day itinerary for hut-to-hut hiking in Slovakia High Tatras.
5. Visit Bojnice Castle & Traditional Slovakian Village
Slovakia is well-known for its fairy-tale castles. Unlike Devín, which is more of a castle ruin, but with interesting history, Bojnice Castle offers a unique experience. It's the most beautiful castle in Slovakia. And it really looks like painted for a fairy tale with a happy end.
Learn about its history on a day trip from Bratislava. On the way, I highly recommend visiting Čičmany, a traditional Slovakian village with painted houses. This is a perfect spot for lunch or dinner and to see how Slovakians live. The painted houses are beautiful in this village, so don't miss out on the opportunity to see them.
If you want to make this day trip from Bratislava by yourself, just rent a car in Bratislava and drive first to Bojnice Castle and then to the Čičmany village.
Organized Day Trip From Bratislava To Bojnice Castle & Čičmany
You can take this organized day trip from Bratislava to Bojnice Castle and Čičmany. The meeting point is next to the Slovak National Theatre. First, you'll drive in an air-conditioned vehicle to Bojnice Castle, which many also called as the Cinderella Castle. Admission ticket to the castle is already included in the price.
In the afternoon, you'll visit the beautiful Slovakian village of Čičmany and learn about how Slovakians live and their traditions in a local museum.
You'll also get to taste traditional Slovakian liquor called Slivovica.
The entire trip is organized for you to enjoy the experience with a professional guide.
You can book this trip by clicking on the button below:
Book A Tour To Bojnice Castle & Čičmany Village
6. Enjoy Slovakian Thermal Baths With Traditional Slovakian Village
Similarly, you can combine the visit to the Čičmany traditional village with painted houses with a relax in one of the best Slovakian Thermal baths. First, visit the Čičmany village, and then enjoy the beautiful rides through one of the most stunning Slovakian regions (Rajec) to the Thermal Spa Aphrodite.
Thermal Spa Aphrodite is located in the Rajecké Teplice village, close to Čičmany. You can pay entrance on the spot and enjoy a relaxing half-day in its thermal spa. Also, book a massage to have an even better experience.
If you want to do it yourself, rent a car in Bratislava and drive from Čičmany village. After, drive to Rajecké Teplice and enjoy the thermal spa experience.
Organized Day Trip From Bratislava To Čičmany & Thermal Baths
You can also make an organized day trip from Bratislava to Thermal Baths and Čičmany. In addition, you'll also visit the most beautiful and largest Wooden Bethlehem, all carved by hand by a Slovakian man. You'll also have time to spend in Žilina and go shopping.
Altogether, you'll visit 4 stunning places on this organized day trip: Čičmany village, Rajecka Lesná with its carved wooden Bethlehem, Aphrodite Thermal Baths, and Žilina. The guide and the transfer from Bratislava to all these spots are included.
Book A Trip To Thermal Baths & Čičmany
7. Travel To Banská Štiavnica & Trenčín
Banská Štiavnica is one of the most charming towns in Slovakia. That's why I've also included it in my Slovakia road trip itinerary for 8 days. It's mainly famous for its mining industry. This place is also called Silver town because Silver has been the primary mining material here.
You can visit the famous mine called Štôlňa Michal and learn more about the mining history of this town.
Interestingly, Maria Theresia established the first University in this town for mining technology in 1762. It was the first University of such kind on the continent.
In the afternoon, you can drive to Trenčín. It's a Slovakian fashion city with a stunning Trenčín Castle. It's worth walking through the center and seeing the castle. Then, get some good food and drive back to Bratislava in the evening.
Organized Day Trip From Bratislava To Banská Štiavnica
If you want, you can make an organized trip with to Banská Štiavnica with a professional guide. You'll learn history and visit the main sights in town, such as Old and New Castle and Holy Trinity Square.
Then have delicious lunch with local beer tasting in the Microbrewery Erb. You'll also get to taste delicious homemade sweets and coffee.
Book A Tour To Banská Štiavnica
More Travel Tips For Slovakia
These are the best day trips from Bratislava. Choose one or two according to your interest. I hope you have fun and get to know Slovakia better. It's a beautiful country full of traditions and culture.
If you need more inspiration for Slovakia travel or have more time to explore the country, get my Slovakia road trip itinerary for 8 days. It'll show you the highlights.
Get this Slovakia itinerary if you want more inspiration for day trips from Bratislava. You can pick one or two places from the itinerary and customize your day trip.
To learn more about High Tatras National Parks, read my article about the best hiking trails in Slovakia.
Or, to learn about more activities, check out my article about how many days in Slovakia you should spend with the top 10 travel tips.
If you only have a little time, get my full itinerary for what to see in Slovakia in 3 days.
Go to my Slovakia page for all articles about this amazing country.
This country is full of surprises, so don't hesitate to visit it. It won't disappoint you for sure.