Although Bratislava has eagerly embraced the joys of the free market economy, and swanky westernised hotels, bars, restaurants and cafés cater for the high-fashion-clad beautiful youth, there are still many places where you can find remnants of the past regime, when Czechoslovakia was part of the Eastern Bloc behind Churchill’s Iron Curtain. Here are some places to check out the Socialist relics.
Authentic Slovakia Tour
One of the bunkers visited on the Iron Curtain tour © Lucy Mallows
Two brothers, Branislav and Peter Chrenka, take visitors on a ‘Post Socialist City Tour’ in a vintage, 1970s Škoda 110 around off the beaten track remnants of Bratislava’s communist past. Alternatively, pedal away on a guided cycle ride to the watch-towers and bunkers of the former Iron Curtain border.
© Pavlovsky, Dreamstime
The most densely populated area in central Europe; these greying concrete tower blocks were constructed between 1973 and 1976.
© Tomas1111, Dreamstime
A memorial by Ján Svetlík (1960) to the 6,850 Soviet soldiers who died in the battle for Bratislava and a statue of a soldier raising a flag by Alexander Trizuljak are found on this grassy lookout point above the city.
Slovak Radio Pyramid
© Joymsk, Dreamstime
The inverted pyramid building of Slovenský rozhlas that appears to defy gravity was built in 1967–83.
© Lucy Mallows
This street has two reliefs in plaster on an offi ce building: one of architects planning and the other of workers toiling.