Although I only had two days in Bratislava at the end of my European wilderness trip I had a great time spending the early part of the night moving around the section of the city along the Danube and near the Nový most (new bridge) taking pictures of the city at night.
To follow up on these shots, here are eight more pictures of Bratislava by night.
This is the famous Bratislava Castle (same as the first picture) taken from the UFO tower on the west end of the New Bridge across the Danube River. The castle dominates the city from a rocky Carpathian outcrop just above the river. Because Bratislava sits at such a strategic location along the river and at both the lowland passage between the Carpathians and the Alps and the trade routes from the Baltic to the Rhine, the Black Sea and the Mediterranean, the location has been vital to control for literally thousands and thousands of years. The oldest castle or fort known to have been constructed on the hill dates to about 3500 BC. The Hallstatt people expanded and strengthened the hilltop fortifications in around 500 BC.
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This view is looking downriver from the walls of the castle. A light rain was falling at the time and I was surrounded by snogging teenagers. I’m never very impressed with churches but the way St. Martin’s Cathedral juts from the edge of the old city reaching the heights of the castle walls is pretty darn beautiful. The cathedral is the center of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese and took nearly two-hundred years to build. It was completed in 1452.
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Again, the castle. The reign of Maria Theresa still impacts this area of central Europe. Her influence was profound. When she became Queen of Hungary in 1740 she assured the powers that be that she would give equal attention to both the Austrian and Hungarian portions of her Kingdom and so she had the castle at Bratislava (then called Pressburg) remodeled between 1761 and 1766. That remodeling gives the castle much of the look and feeling it has today. This picture was taken from almost underneath the New Bridge on the western shore of the Danube.
The highway and roadworks leading up to the New Bridge on the eastern shore of the Danube taken from the walls of the castle.
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Ok. Ok. this isn’t a night shot. I know. But it is late afternoon just before sunset and I really loved the colors of the river and the trees. Again, from the castle walls looking southwest across the Danube River. This is again the New Bridge and the UFO Tower. I went up in the UFO tower for some shots but I didn’t stay to have a drink in the tower bar. I kind of regret that now but looking at the fancy people lined up to get in there I’m not sure they would have allowed me to set a foot inside.
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And the UFO Tower and Novy Most from pretty much the same spot as above just a few hours later.
After all the picture taking I retired to the old town in Bratislava for a beer and a plate of Bryndzové Halušky and a giant sausage. Yum! It seemed that the hip thing for the cool backpacking set to do in Bratislava by night was to hit the hookah bars. It was rather astounding to see just how many young backpacking tourists were sitting out along the narrow streets blowing smoke. By this time however I was spent. So I just sat the camera up on the table and snapped a few lazy shots before I wandered back to the boatel for a snooze.