Enter the land of castles and mountains, steeped in history.
Slovakia is incredibly underrated as a tourist destination with many preferring to visit the countries surrounding it, including Hungary and Czech Republic. However, it is an amazing location for an adventurer. It is home to an abundance of activities. From mountaineering to cave bathing and exploring breweries, you would need at least a few days to explore the gems this country has to offer. Need a place to start your research on Slovakia? Look no further as in this feature, we bring to you 5 unmissable adventures to pack for in Slovakia.
1. Chase waterfalls at Slovenský raj
Righfully translating to Slovak Paradise, this National Park is located in the eastern part of Slovakia. It is home to an incredibly diverse karstic (limestone) landscape of plateaux, gorges, waterfalls and caves. It even has one of the larget ice caves in Europe, Dobšinská ľadová jaskyňa cave which had been named a UNESCO heritage site in the year 2000. The rugged terrain will challenge tourists with its more demanding and technical parts. However, the views are unparalleled. Through the deep ravines emerge at the bases of beautiful waterfalls or on Tomášovský view where you will be able to see peaks sloping into valleys, blanketed in lush flora.
2. Stroll through Ochtinska Aragonite Cave
Can’t get enough of nature? This one-of-a-kind cave in Ochtina, Slovakia will leave you at a loss for words. This is one of only three Aragonite caves in the world. Its surface is covered with hauntingly beautiful Argonite formations. These were forged through the interactions between atmospheric waters and crystalline limestones. Walk through the cave into its main attraction, the Milky Way Hall. White and greyish-blue colours of the argonite let off soothing glows in the presence of lamplight, mimicking the appearance of millions of stars in the midnight sky.
3. Explore the Ruins of Cachtice Castle
This castle was home to to Countess Elizabeth Báthory, the world’s most prolific female serial killer who inspired Bram Stoker’s Dracula. Embroiled in facts and myths, this castle is infamous as the Countess’ killing ground where over 600 young women were killed to fulfil her morbid fantasies. Now, visitors can visit the ruins of this highly sensationalised castle. Hike up from the town of Cachtice and walk through the crumling ruins. Known for more than its gruesome history, this castle is perched on top of a hill which offers visitors a spectacular view of the surrounding area.
4. Ski at Low Tatras National Park
The beautiful terrain in Slovakia makes it perfect for winter sports enthusiasts to pursue their passions while being encircled by snow-blanketed peaks and coniferous forests. Moreover, the Low Tatras National Park is a reknowned location for skiing and the resorts there even offer great deals on ski packages. Clear blue skies dominate the views overhead as you whiz down the slopes of Chopok and enjoy the cold wind against your face. Don’t forget to enjoy a warm bowl of hearty soup when you are done with your day’s escapade!
5. Soak in a Slovakian bath
Slovakia is home to many waterbodies and natural heaters. It offers one the experience to dive into naturally-heated waters during wintertime. Enjoy warm waters, enriched with minerals against the backdrop of snowcapped peaks. Near Poprad, you can find Thermal park Vrobov, a bathing complex. Open all year long, its geothermal waters is filled with essential minerals. Also, it is heated to a temperature between 26° C and 38° C. Bask in the steamy waters as you wind down after a long day of skiing and soak up the natural beauty that Slovakia has to offer.