20th century Bratislava

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Basic Information
Total time
2,5 h
English, (check the booking calendar for availability)
„Pay what you wish” tours do not have a fixed price. It is up to you to evaluate your guide’s work and reward it. Some people give 10€, others 50€ depending on their satisfaction and abilities.
Meeting point
Frantiskanske Namestie, 81101, Bratislava. Look for a big tree and a fountain with a lady holding a jug. And a guide in a white shirt holding a big sign saying Free Tour.Go to map
Ending point
Old Town Hall

Bratislava, located at the heart of Europe, experienced all of the continents troubles and tragedies of the 20th century. It was a period of dramatic transformation for both Bratislava and Slovakia. At the century’s dawn, the city, then known as Pressburg, was a melting pot of cultures under the Austro-Hungarian Empire, boasting a vibrant mix of Slovaks, Germans, and Hungarians. Now it is all gone. Join our tour to understand dramatic events of the 20th century that changed Europe forever. 

The tides of change swept in with World War I, reshaping the political landscape of the region. In 1919, Bratislava became part of the newly formed Czechoslovakia, marking a significant shift in its identity. The interwar period saw the city flourish as a cultural and political hub, embracing its newfound Czechoslovak character. However, the shadows of World War II soon cast over the city. It experienced the turmoil of Fascist collaboration and later occupation, a dark chapter that brought suffering and devastation. Following the war, Bratislava, now within the Soviet sphere of influence, found itself behind the Iron Curtain, entering an era of socialist rule and extensive urban redevelopment under Czechoslovakia’s communist regime. The winds of change returned with the Velvet Revolution of 1989, a peaceful uprising that ended communist rule. Bratislava became the capital of an independent Slovakia in 1993 after the peaceful dissolution of Czechoslovakia, a moment that marked the beginning of a new era.

Join us and step into the captivating narrative of the 20th century. Learn the intriguing stories that shaped the city’s modern identity and embrace both its triumphs and its downfalls. Begin with our first main stop on the Uprising Square (ex Stalin Square), a pulsating hub that witnessed pivotal moments in Slovakia’s history. Visit the street with the Last Synagogue, symbol of resilience of the Jewish people, and learn about the cruel trials of the Holocaust. Discover the enigmatic Upside Down Pyramid, a stunning architectural creation that represents the city’s artistic and cultural renaissance. Witness the grandeur of the Presidential Palace, where political leaders who once ruled the country left their indelible mark. 

Guided by passionate local guides, our tour invites you to explore Bratislava’s latest history. Come, let us cast some light on the past and connect the dots that shaped today Slovakia and Europe. Join us on this unforgettable journey, where every stop carries the weight of history!

During this 2,5 hour tour you will see and learn:

  • Establishment of the 1. Czechoslovak Republic

  • Uprising Square (ex-Stalin Square, Velvet Revolution Square)

  • Last Synagogue of Bratislava

  • Socialist Realism Art

  • Radio Pyramid Tower

  • Presidential Palace

  • Iron Curtain Stories

  • Velvet Revolution of November 89


Meeting Point
Frantiskanske Namestie, 81101, Bratislava. Look for a big tree and a fountain with a lady holding a jug. And a guide in a white shirt holding a big sign saying Free Tour.

Our pay as you wish tours are designed for individual travellers and small groups. We don’t accept parties of more than 8 people on them. If you travel in a party of 8 or more (school groups, bigger groups of friends etc.), please choose a paid option, if it's available, or book a Private Tour. For more information on the latter, please contact us.

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This tour is also available as
a Private Tour.

Private tour