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No matter where you are in the city, Bratislava Castle is impossible to miss, dominating the landscape from its hilltop setting. Four white towers mark the corners of this grand, rectangular palace, which stands directly above the Danube River. Admire the view from the banks of the river then venture inside the massive defensive structure to roam its halls and browse exhibitions on Slovakian history.
The castle dates backs to the 9th century and since that time has undergone numerous renovations, restorations and expansions. The work continues to this day following a devastating fire in the 19th century, although the building remains open to the public.
Go for a stroll around the castle grounds, stopping by the courtyard. This space is occasionally used to host plays and concerts, mostly during the summer. Book tickets and you may be able to see Shakespeare under the stars or a classical music concert.
See the impressive gates, such as the 16th-century Nicholas Gate and the Sigmund Gate, a 15th-century construction. Climb to the highest tower of the castle to enjoy panoramas of the city. Look north for views of the Carpathian Mountains in the distance and the old town below. Note the diversity of architectural styles evident in the castle, including Baroque and medieval elements.
The castle houses the Museum of History, which chronicles the development of Slovakia from the Middle Ages to the present day. There are more than 250,000 objects in its collections. Browse paintings, textiles, glass and ceramic pieces that are hundreds of years old.
To get to Bratislava Castle, ride the trolleybus to the Hrad stop. From there, it’s just a 2-minute walk to the castle. Parking is available, for a fee, in the lot nearby. There is also a free parking lot beneath the rock the castle sits on. An admission fee is required to access the museum, but you can wander the grounds and gardens for free.
Make the most of your time spent at Bratislava Castle. Here's a list of the most popular activities:
If you're after more activities, have a look at our Bratislava things to do page.