A Quick Trip Through Slovakia




Banska Bystrica

Oh what a lovely town on the edge of the Tatra mountains. We were looking for somewhere to break the journey between Krakow and Budapest, and this little town was one of the few that the Flix bus stopped at along the route. So I booked an Airbub for a couple of nights a little unsure of what we would find when we got there.

The trip on the bus was absolutely stunning travelling through the Tatra mountains, with raging mountain streams and pretty villages. At one point we stopped briefly at a large ski resort, apparently Slovakia has excellent skiing and has a number of resorts scaltered throughout the country, stands to reason really with such a hugh mountain range running through the country

We arrived at the bus station on the edge of town late in the afternoon and wandered in circles for a while looking for a taxi. With none to be found we trudged the 2 ish kms in the rain into the town centre to find our apartment, my brolly was at the bottom of my pack and at the last minute I had taken my rainout out …… so I was pretty soggy by the time we got to the other end. We were staying right on the town square so it was simple to find and a very cute apartment perfect for 2 nights.

Banska Bystrica is definately well off the english speaking tourist ant trail and the type of place we love to visit – local visitors, little to no english and definately no horrible US chains.

Banská Bystrica, has a rich history dating back to the Middle Ages. Founded in the 13th century, it became a significant mining town due to its abundant copper deposits, drawing German settlers and establishing itself as a vital economic hub. The town flourished under Hungarian rule, gaining royal free town status in 1255. During World War II, it was the center of the Slovak National Uprising against Nazi occupation in 1944. Today, Banská Bystrica is known for its historical architecture, vibrant cultural scene, and its role in Slovakia’s national history.

After dumping our bags and drying off we wandered off to the town square in search of dinner. The town square is stunning with fountains and statues in the centre and surrounded by beautifully restored buildings. There were a number of resteraunts and cafes dotted around the square but many of them were closed or only doing snacks. It seems this little town is very busy during summer but there was not much happening on this stormy thursday evening.

We ended up in a restaurant in a basement that looked like it had once been a wine cellar serving traditional (and very delicious ) Slovak food. I had chicken served on a potato pancake and AP had a potato pancake with cheese – both were huge serves and we left suitably stuffed full. We enjoyed it so much we went back the next evening for dinner.

We only had one full day in B.Bystrica and we had a bit of a wander around looking at the historic buildings, visiting a cake or two for coffee (and wine) and generally enjoying this pretty mountain town.

The next morning we hiked back to the bus station to catch our bus south. For some reason my pack felt really heavy on the trek there, it’s odd some day my pack Is really easy to carry and other days it is heavy …… on this grey morning In a little Slovak town it was really heavy.

Finally… we arrived at the bus station and found a cafe for a coffee before getting on our bus Budapest bound.

Join us next in Budapest!