Are you thinking about visiting Slovakia? We give you reasons to say yes to planning your trip here.
1) One of the safest countries in Europe
In 2017, just 6.2 percent of Slovaks registered crime, harassment, or vandalism in their neighbourhood, making it the EU’s third safest country. Pickpockets are quite common, but still not as common as they are in other European countries. When it comes to your valuables, be cautious; keep them hidden in your accommodation or at the very least, don’t bring them all in one place. Overall, Slovakia is very safe to travel to. Crime rates are low, even by European standards and violent crime is almost non-existent.
2) Cheap alcohol? Count me in!
For lovers of shots, Slovakia is the best place. Slovaks consume 13 liters of pure alcohol each year, with spirits accounting for 46%, beer for 30%, and wine for 18%. It is also a paradise for beer lovers, you can find places where 0,5 l of beer costs 0,80€.
3) Unique folk traditions and architecture
In Slovakia the main traditions come from our folk past. We have our own folk music, dances, musical instruments, clothes, arts and crafts, traditions and many more. If you want to visit a unique folk architecture there are two villages that have preserved untouched by the modern world in which we live now. Village Čičmany became famous because of original wooden houses with characteristic white ornamental decoration. The monument reserve consists of 136 wooden houses. One of the most visited Slovak villages Vlkolínec is not disturbed by new construction and represents a unique urban complex of original folk buildings. The protected buildings of the settlement include 45 wooden houses, in other houses you can find about 30 elderly inhabitants still wearing traditional clothes.
4) So many castles!
Slovakia has one of Europe’s largest concentrations of castles and châteaux per capita. There are about 220 castles and 425 châteaux. If you consider that Slovakia is not that big it’s like you have a castle everywhere you go. We really recommend visiting the Spiš Castle. Even though it is mostly in ruins, it maintains its charm and majesty.
5) Slovakia – country of wine?
Slovakia is rich with wineries and breweries. The wine region is mainly on the south of the country where they have a better conditions for vineyards. Autumn brings with it vintage areas, vintage festivities, wine tastings and other events associated with this drink. More than 140 wine companies grow and process grapes here. The largest wine-growing area in Slovakia is located at the foot of the Little Carpathians in Western Slovakia, where it includes 120 wine-growing villages grouped in a dozen districts. The smallest vine region called Tokaj region is full of endless vineyards and cellars from the time of the anti-Turkish battles, and you can get to know them best from the top of the Tokaj lookout tower or wandering along the Tokaj wine route.
6) Relax in hot springs
In Slovakia you can find many types of curative waters like water heavy in therapeutic minerals, thermal springs and delicious mountain sources. Slovakia is a territory very rich in the occurrence of many healing springs of mineral waters, thermal waters, it is also a source of medicinal means such as peloids, mud, peat, but also suitable climatic conditions. There are more than 1200 known springs of mineral and thermal waters in Slovakia, and this number ranks Slovakia among the richest countries for their occurrence. Thanks to the quality of spas, Slovakia is one of the most developed “spas” countries in Europe. As a tourist, you can visit one of the country’s 21 thermal spas for a warm soak and a massage at a very affordable cost.
7) Festivals – good music and amazing atmosphere
Summer is festival season in Slovakia, with foreign crowds heading to Trencin’s Pohoda Fest to see headliners perform in the open air. 30,000 festivalgoers pitch tents at Trencin’s old military airport for at least three days, over 160 special concerts, and dance, theater, and film screenings. You can even visit a Slovak Food Festival in Bratislava where you can eat and drink to compare countries diverse regions.
8) Dark and beautiful? Yes, you guessed it – caves!
Slovakia is remarkable on the surface, but do you know what lies underneath? A whole new world of beautiful and one-of-a-kind caves. Imagine that there are over 6000 caves and you can visit 12 of them. Every cave is different in their own unique way. For example Ochtinská Aragonit Cave is one of the only three aragonite caves in the world. Other than that we also have two ice caves – Dobšinská Ice Cave and Demänovská Ice Cave.
9) Oh, the nature
Nature in Slovakia is not only beautiful, but also full of rare finds and rarities. Slovakia is one of the most forested countries in Europe, with forest covering more than 40% of the land area. It is also a mountainous country, crisscrossed by many rivers and dotted with several lakes. In Slovakia you can find 9 national parks in which you can enjoy educational paths that will give you access to the most interesting places. Make a plan to visit Slovak Paradise during the summer months, when the waterfalls are flowing in the park. The most scenic trails take hikers across wooden food bridges and up ladders, following the same path as the waterfalls.
10) Can’t forget about UNESCO
Slovakia is active in all five programme areas of UNESCO: Education, Natural Sciences, Social and Human Sciences, Culture, and Information and Communication. It’s a country rich in world cultural and natural heritage. Today, in Slovakia we have 5 cities, 9 wooden churches, 6 caves, 1 castle and many more wonderful places inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage List. These places are worth a visit at least once in a lifetime. Slovakia also offers a UNESCO Intangible Heritage which consist of 7 items such as fujara – musical instrument, modrotlač – type of art made on a fabric material, drotárstvo – wire work, and more.
We would find more reasons for visiting Slovakia for sure, but knowing these 10 is already worth doing so, right?