This little country is just full of surprises! I keep exploring Slovakia and it astonishes me every time I go there. I love its towns which are just perfect for short citybreaks, the nature here is wonderful and they make really great wine! Are You a little intrigued? Well how about You go to Slovakia and check it by Yourself? Head to Eastern Slovakia and enjoy an amazing stay in Kosice!
Have a walk around Old Town
In 2013 Kosice was named the European Capital of Culture which means that the city received additional funds for restoration. And they were well spent! Just look around when You are strolling down the main street: Hlavná ulica which by the way is the longest promenade in Slovakia. What will for sure catch Your eye are the old colorful houses – ain’t they just look lovely?
You can stop for a nice coffee in one the many cafés and restaurants and then just get lost in one of the narrow streets in the old town. And while getting lost You should come across the most lovely street in the city: Hrnčiarska ulica where still you can find some craft workshops.
In the evening You should definitely check out the little fountain show with lights which happens just in front of the Opera building. And then hit one of the bars nearby.
Enjoy the panorama of Kosice
If You already walked around the Old Town You have probably noticed the great buliding in the city centre – it is the gothic St. Elizabeth Cathedral which is also the largest church in Slovakia. There are at least a couple of reasons why it is worth visiting and I can tell You two of them.
One is quite funny as it tells the story of a builder who worked there during the cathedral construction. He had a wife that not only was very ugly but also drank too much. He wanted to put her in shame for her unsuitable behaviour and created a really nasty gargoyle which he then put on the cathedral facade. It didn’t quite work but now You can admire this piece of art – just look for it high beneath the main entrance.
The second reason why to visit the Cathedral is the beautiful view of Kosice that You can enjoy from the little observation deck – You just need to climb over 160 narrow and spiral steps of the Zigmund Tower (there is a small entrance fee). But the panorama is denfinitely worth it!
Get a little romantic
Head to the love bridge and lock Your love padlock on it. Don’t forget to scribble Your names on it! Then have a romantic walk around the lovely park which stretches between the Old City and the train station. There is a fountain in the middle of the park and the place is very popular among the couples.
Taste of Culture
A lot is going on in Kosice. How about visiting an art gallery that is located in the old swimming pool building? Check the Kunsthalle for that! Once they were only barracks but now they serve as a concert hall, ice rink and a museum – see it for Yourself and head to Kulturpark. What else can You do with an old tobacco factory? Make it a venue called Kulturfabrik Tabačka where concerts, film screenings and exhibitions can take place!
The treasure of Kosice
Life can be really full of surprises! That is definitely what two workers thought when they found a real treasure during the renovation of a house in nineteen-thirties. They came across an old can and when they opened it they were really astonished – it was full of gold! Literally, the found over 2900 golden coins, medals and a chain. You can see this treasure, now called Košický zlatý poklad, by Yourself as it is displayed in Východoslovenské Múzeum.
Street art in Kosice
Do you admire street art? Well, You will find some of it in Kosice as well. To be specific there are over 30 different murals in the city. Just a grab a map from the tourist information stand and enjoy Your walk!
Taste of Kosice
Do You know what is the most typical Slovak dish? It is called bryndzové halušky (potato dumplings with bryndza – a sheep’s-milk cheese) and You just have to try it! There is a little place on the main street called Haluškáreň and it is a good place to start Your journey with Slovak cuisine.
Want something more fancy? Try dining at Zore restaurant which is the first signature restaurant in Kosice. It is a paradise for your eyes and your palate! And You can even enroll there for some cooking classes and learn how to make pirohy (Slovak dumplings).
Enjoy wine in Kosice
Did You know that Slovakia makes really good wine? I didn’t until I visited Kosice (and then Tokaj wine region). Start Your wine tasting trip around the city in Dva Dve and ask for some local wines: organic or maybe an orange one (it’s about the color not the fruit). One thing is for sure: You just have to try Kaschauer which is called a wine perfect for drinking and love making. Now that’s what I call a recommendation! Try as well some appetizers with Your wine because I can still remember the taste of the unforgettable sandwich with pastrami. And love the interiors!
If You are looking for a little bit more chic place for tasting wine check out the Villa Cassa which has an impressive selection of Slovak wines. You will be delighted!
Have a beer
But not an ordinary one! Head to Hostinec which is one of the oldest restaurants in the World! And it is as well a local brewery serving some really nice beers – try the pink one called BB Love. It is just refreshing! You can also order some food here but this place gets crowded so book a table earlier.
Enjoy the nature
After walking around the town, drinking wine and beer and eating dumplings it is time to catch some fresh air outside the city centre and do some exercises. Just catch a bus that leaves from the stop outside the train station and head to what in the past was a castle. Not very much is left from it but there is an observation tower Hradová from which You can enjoy a beautiful view of Kosice and surroundings. Before You reach the tower You have to go through the forest and it is quite a nice walk.
Plan Your journey to Kosice
How to get to Kosice
There is an airport quite close to the city so You can easily reach eastern Slovakia by plane. LOT Polish Airlines has a direct connection between Kosice and Warsaw, You can also fly to Kosice with Wizz Air from Cologne, London Luton and Doncaster Sheffield. CSA offers a service between Prague and Kosice and Austrian Airlines has direct flights between Vienna and Kosice. From the airport You can reach the city centre by bus no. 23, journey takes around 20 minutes. This short trip will cost You 0,60 EUR.
Where to stay
If You are looking for a nice hotel close to the city centre You should definitely consider Boutique Hotel Bristol which is located just around the corner from the main street. It offers comfortable accommodation and serves lovely breakfast.