A young country with a long history Slovakia is a fascinating place with lots to offer. From the stunning Tatra mountains to the captivating capital Bratislava, from the impressive Gothic churches to the 18th century Rococo town buildings there is plenty to see and do, ensuring a trip to the Slovak Republic is truly memorable.
Slovakia has a relatively continental climate, similar to most of Europe with four distinct seasons. The climate and temperature varies slightly across the country with Southern areas such as Bratislava being the warmest region with mild winters and pleasant summers. The mountain region suffers from more severe winters and milder summers. Rain is expected throughout the year.
The people of Slovakia acknowledge a number of public holidays including:
New Year's Day
1st May - May Day, Labour Day
8th May - Day of Victory over Facism
29th August - Slovak National Uprising
1st September - Day of the Constitution of the Slovak Republic
The largest international airport in Slovakia is Bratislava Airport. Another major airport is Kosice Airport.
As Vienna is only 40 miles (64km) from Bratislava it has been known for people to use Vienna International Airport. Bus services run from the airport to the main bus station in Bratislava hourly.
An extensive rail network links most of the country. Several daily express trains run from Bratislava to other major cities.
Direct connections are available to other European cities such as Berlin, Bucharest, Budapest, Hamburg, Krakow, Moscow and Warsaw.
Rail passes are available and it is advisable to make reservations in advance for major routes.
There is an extensive road network throughout Slovakia.
Traffic drives on the right and road signs comply with European standards.
Seatbelts are compulsory.
Speed restrictions apply: 60kph (37mph) in towns, 90kph (56mph) outside of towns and 130kph (81mph) on motorways.
Major cities benefit from both national and international bus services operating to a number of European destinations.
The official language is Slovak. Czech, German, Hungarian, Ukranian and Polish are spoken in some parts. English is more widely spoken in larger cities, generally by younger generations.
Here are some key Slovak phrases:
Hello: Dobrý Deň
Goodbye: Do videnia
Thank you: Ďakujem
Do you speak English?: Havoríte po anglicky?
The currency of Slovakia is the Euro which divides into 100 cents.
The domestic electricity voltage is 230v, 50Hz. The standard European round two pin plugs are used. Adaptors are available but it may be wise to buy these before you go.
The country code is 421.
The emergency numbers are as follows:
112 - any emergency
158 - Police
150 - Fire
155 - Ambulance
It is an offence to drink alcohol on the street in Slovakia with the exception of seasonal markets and outside seating areas of restaurants and bars.
A cash tip of 5-10% is appreciated in most tourist restaurants with table service. Locals usually round up to the nearest increment of 10 or 50.
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