Morning in Bratislava, Evening in Budapest

Morning in Bratislava, Slovakia. Photo ©  2015 Aaron Saunders

Morning in Bratislava, Slovakia. Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Our Viking River Cruises’ 15-day Grand European Tour aboard Viking Lofn is all-too-quickly coming to a close. This is what I realized this morning as I enjoyed yet another breakfast in The Restaurant before heading out to explore the port of our latest adventures.

Viking Lofn tied up at her berth in Bratislava on Saturday, July 25, 2015. Photo ©  2015 Aaron Saunders

Viking Lofn tied up at her berth in Bratislava on Saturday, July 25, 2015. Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

This morning, we docked in Bratislava, Slovakia for a few short hours. To help guests make the most of their time here, Viking once again offered up a comprehensive walking tour of the city in two distinct varieties: normal walking, and “gentle walking” for those who either want to take more time, or who have mobility issues.

If you went through history class before 1993, you probably remember Slovakia better as Czechoslovakia. In fact, Slovakia’s name has changed multiple times over the last century. One hundred years ago, it was known as the Kingdom of Hungary, then the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and then Czechoslovakia after the end of World War I. In World War II, it was temporarily known as the Slovak Republic before once again becoming Czechoslovakia in 1945.

It might be quiet, but Bratislava certainly is pretty in the sleepy hours of morning. Photo ©  2015 Aaron Saunders

It might be quiet, but Bratislava certainly is pretty in the sleepy hours of morning. Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

With all those name changes, it’s no wonder that modern-day Bratislava feels like a bit of an amalgamation of a number of different cultures. It’s easy to see the city as a sleepy, rough-around-the-edges version of Vienna, or maybe Budapest without all the tourists.

Wandering through the streets, however, it quickly becomes apparent that this is a city that comes alive after five o’clock. Or 17:00 hours. We are in Europe, after all.

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Our Live Voyage Report from onboard Viking River Cruises’ Viking Lofn’s Grand European Tour continues tomorrow from Budapest, Hungary! Be sure to follow along with our adventures on Twitter @deckchairblog.

 

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