• Krista the Explorer

Stay Bratislava, Visit Vienna

Updated: Jun 12, 2018

Call me a genius if you want, because I found the best way to visit Vienna without breaking the bank, and at the same time explore a second city. The answer? Stay just across the Austro-Slovakian border in Bratislava. It's a beautiful city in itself, and in my opinion doesn't get the credit it deserves, especially being the country's capital. It sits along the Danube River, has a gorgeous pedestrian only old town, is overlooked by a stunning castle atop a hill, and isn't as crowded as other capital cities. It's also incredibly cheap. We rented a fully equipped apartment just a short walk from the city centre with a balcony, and it cost less than half of what it would in the UK for a hotel room. What more could you ask for?

Hlavné námestie, the main square in the Old Town.

How beautiful is St Michael's tower at the end of this street? One of my favourite shots from the trip.

There are loads of restaurants with seating outside like this, serving traditional food which is delicious!

Who doesn't love a river cruise?!

There are lots of gorgeous buildings throughout the city as well.

Naturally we stopped at this pub.

Primate's Palace is a hidden gem. It's only €3 to enter as well!

And then there's the castle. Although you can't go inside it, you can explore the grounds and take in its outer beauty.

The view from the castle isn't bad either.

Looking around Bratislava takes about a day, two days maximum if you want to explore at a leisurely pace. Which (if you stay a few days) leaves you with time to hop on a train and cross the border into Austria! Vienna is notoriously known for being an expensive city, and when I researched staying there I found that to be true. Luckily, trains from Bratislava to Vienna are only €10 each way (1hr journey!), or if you ask at the ticket office you can get a "special" return ticket for €14! Transportation sorted, now how to get around Vienna? You can walk, but it was excruciatingly hot when we were there so we bought a ticket for Big Bus Vienna which took you to all the main locations, including Schönbrunn Palace which was definitely too far to walk to. Other than a cheap bike rental, bratwurst and Cinnabon (yes! there is one there), the bus is the only thing we spent money on and somehow it cost as much as it had for two days in Bratislava! Yes it is expensive in Vienna, but it was such a magical city that it was worth it.

First stop Belvedere Palace, the perfect way to start the day.

Followed by The Hofburg, the former imperial palace of the Habsburgs right in the heart of the city.

Vienna's city hall (rathaus) poking through the trees.

The Burgtheater sits opposite the city hall and was one of my favourite buildings. Just look at the architecture!

Great for seeing all the sites, but they didn't take the cover off the top so it was boiling inside!

Three palaces in one day, bliss. Schönbrunn Palace was further out of the city centre but the bus dropped us off right outside the gates which was ideal.

Oh yes, there are bikes. A nice alternative to getting around the city!

We finished the day with a stroll down the main shopping street, grabbing a bratwurst and Cinnabon along the way.

I'd love to go back to Vienna and take more time exploring it. Send me a message if you have any recommendations!


My name is Krista, and like many people I love to travel! I think it's important that people share their travel experiences, so I hope that mine help you in some way in your own travels, or inspire you to travel more! 

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© 2018 by Krista the Explorer