Eastern Europe Goth scene: Bratislava, Slovakia! Leopard print skirt, Halloween murals & Gothic bars.
I had a brush with Death in Bratislava, Slovakia… but I must say, I rather enjoyed his company!
Where is this Eastern European city, and what makes it worth visiting? Read on and I’ll share my Slovakian secrets.
My film team and I rode the rails from Vienna to Bratislava; it only took one hour, and trains depart regularly. We had passes from Eurail.com that let us take 15 rides within 2 months. It was easy: hop on, get your pass stamped, hop off.
Wood sunglasses: a present from Moat House Eyewear. These ‘Gothard’ Retro frames are ultra-distinctive and beautifully made; no splinters or rough edges!
Black bat-wing top: TwoPercent Hong Kong. The cut is flattering and you can get a similar one here.
Leopard print skirt: Banana Fish, from Closet Child (sad that the brand is gone, but Lanvin’s skirt is close to this.)
Black white platform sandals: Puzzle, from Izzue HK
As you can see, riding with Eurail is a clean, modern experience. The train interiors have padded seats and air conditioning.
There weren’t too many of us in first class. This girl’s face is a hilarious, common reaction to fashion bloggers’ outfit posing…
During the ride, my filmmakers and I like to read, play cards, listen to music, work on the laptop, or best of all… write in “The Miffy Book.” It’s impossible to remember all the names, places and funny moments during our travels — so we jot them down, whenever we have a spare moment, in this cute notebook.
First impression: Bratislava’s charming. We wandered the cobblestone paths, peering into kitschy craft stores and admiring the Medieval architecture.
Slovakia borders both Austria and Hungary, and has been entwined in their history over the centuries. It became part of the Communist Eastern Bloc, until the late 1980s fall of the USSR.
Today, Bratislava is an intriguing mix of modern and Medieval. The Old Town is a popular tourist destination. One of the top attractions is Roland Fountain, the oldest in the city — established in 1572!
These classic monuments contract starkly with the ever-present DIY graffiti and ruins. (Photography by Melissa Rundle.)
The historic center contains a mix of architectural styles. My favorite: Baroque.
On the futuristic end, a UFO hovers over the Danube River. It’s actually the human-built Nový Most (New Bridge), or “Most SNP” Bridge of the Slovak National Uprising.
I was impressed by the walls of colorful street art underneath the highway. I felt at home in this haunted forest ruled by a cute owl.
Very cool, the 3D effect and placement of these characters. I suppose they are pudgy death-minions putting up posters.
The posters reveal a young, alternative nightlife that most tourists don’t get to experience. There is the occasional Goth party; Subclub is an underground music venue for spooky kids to get together.
We trekked up to Bratislava Castle (Hrad), 85 meters above ground. This hill site has been inhabited since the Bronze age. The castle burned down and was rebuilt in the 1950s, so it has a bit of a Disney restoration feel…
Everyone we spoke to in Bratislava was extremely nice. When we couldn’t find the tram, a Slovakian couple went out of their way to walk us to our destination.
We met our friends for a drink at Midnight Cafe (Radlinskeho 24/B, 811), located outside the Old Town. This area has more of a lived-in local feel. Midnight Cafe caters to a Goth crowd, with shelves of absinthe and red Rococo wallpaper.
After a few drinks, Devon and Adam took us for dinner at a traditional restaurant. Think potatoes, heavy cream, cheese, sausages. By the end, we felt as stuffed as those Death-Janitors on the stairway!
I encourage you to come to Bratislava, especially if you’re spending time in Vienna. It’s a quick and easy day-trip if you take the train with Eurail.com.
Do you dig my outfit of the day? Did you know much about Slovakia before reading this article? If you’ve been here, what else would you recommend?