(C) 2008 by Daniel Duris
Bratislava offers various possibilities for biking trips. The itineraries proposed here suit different tastes and skill levels. Most of the trips use pedestrian sidewalks and paths, some use special bike paths and common roads. Bratislava does not have proper bike paths in the centre, however, you can always find streets with slow traffic that are safe for riding. Some special bike paths have been installed outside of the city centre, mostly along the dams by the Danube river.
No special equipment is required for adult cyclists within the city (children under 15 must wear a helmet), however, we strongly recommend carrying a helmet and using flashing red light under the seat. Helmets must be worn outside of city limits. Always check your brakes and ride at speeds that you are comfortable with. If you need to rent a bike see bike rental info at .
Bratislava bike trips could be chosen based on the type of bike trail preferred or effort one has to make in order to ride a trail. We have created a guide to the bike trips suitable for everyone. You will find shorter bike trips around the city centre, longer bike trips to Austria and some bike trips requiring you to ride steep hills. Just choose what type of bike trip suits you and enjoy the ride.
Bike trips are created in such way that you will be able to ride just an individual short trip or combine multiple trips for longer rides.
Within the City
X - Old Town Circuit (short, easy, about 15 minutes)
Old Town circuit offers short bike ride in the narrow streets of part known by locals as "Bermuda Triangle" - very small area in the pedestrian zone, where most of the popular tourist sights, street cafes, pubs and restaurants are located. Starting by the Hotel Danube continue by the road to Rybne Square with the St. Martin's Cathedral. Continue to the crossroad of Panska and Venturska and turn left (up Venturska). Follow the path up enjoying the historical buildings until you are right under the Michael's Tower. Turn right in front of the gate and follow the narrow street exiting at Frantiskanske square with kiosks selling souvenirs. Continue to the left by the Church through the narrow corridor. You are now at Primatial Square with the City Office on one side and Primatial Palace on the other. Follow the road straight ahead with parked cars (Klobucnicka) and you will come to the Old Market Hall. Turn right and continue to Laurinska street and again right. Watch out for the Paparazzi statue and turn right again and follow the path to Main Square (Frantiskanske Square can be seen in the distance). Continue through the Main Square (Hlavne namestie) marked by yellow-pink ground tiles, passing the watchman statue and Napoleon army soldier statue further. Turn left down Sedlarska and almost immediately you arrive to statue of Cumil, man in the manhole looking at passerbys.
Ride straight ahead and Hviezdoslavovo Square opens in front of you with Slovak National Theatre Opera building on your left. Ride through Hviezdoslavovo square, passing the statue of renowned Slovak poet Hviezdoslav and the fountains until you get to Hotel Danube. Stop here, if you don't want to do any other trips or follow the instructions to get to another starting point. Turn left by Hotel Danube and cross the street at the traffic lights going to Danube river. Turn left and ride straight ahead passing Slovak National Museum building on your left and continue until you get to the Old Bridge. From there on you can take other inner city trips (starting with point O).
Danube (short to medium, easy, various lengths)
Bike paths along the Danube river require the least effort and offer rides through pleasant surroundings. We suggest various paths via all five of Bratislava's bridges.
O - Old Town to Old Bridge (very short, easy, 5 minutes)
Starting from Safarikovo Square, ride slowly through the Old Bridge pedestrian path (riding on the bridge road is forbidden for cyclists!). Pay attention to the pedestrians and other cyclists as the path is quite narrow. Turn right and ride down to the large parking lot. You can now ride back or continue either to the west (upstream towards the New Bridge, Lafranconi Bridge) - see point W or east (downsteam towards Apollo Bridge, Harbour Bridge) - see point E.
E - Old Bridge to Apollo Bridge (very short, easy, 5 minutes)
Start from the parking lot under the Old Bridge and use the dam bike trail leading east. You will be passing a boathouse on the left and small bar on your right (stop by and ask for Slovak Cola-type drink "Kofola" on tap). Continue further on and you will pass under the Apollo Bridge. You can now continue further to the Port Bridge (E1) or cross the Danube and return back to the Old Town (E2).
E1 - Apollo Bridge to Port (Pristavny) Bridge (very short, easy, 5 minutes)
Continue to Harbour Bridge. Decide whether you want to continue further outside of the city (towards Rusovce) or take the ramp and cross the bridge back to the Old Town. Exit by the docks and turn left, use sidewalk to ride Pristavna Street to the traffic lights. Ride straight via Landererova Street to the next traffic lights. You can now cross the road to the other side at the pedestrian crossing and enter the pedestrian sidewalk riding to the left until you are back at Safarikovo Square (the starting point).
E2 - Apollo Bridge to the Old Town (short, easy, 15 minutes)
Take the farther ramp (beware, if you take the closer ramp, you will find yourself with stairs only on the other end!) and cross the Apollo Bridge. Eurovea project is under development, so you won't be able to ride on the Promenade by the Danube back to the Old Town. You will need to ride to the left and immediately right to the pedestrian sidewalk (passing the tall building Tower 115 on the left) and go to the traffic lights. Cross the road and immediately turn left riding via Landererova to the next traffic lights. You can now cross the road to the other side at the pedestrian crossing and use the pedestrian sidewalk riding to the left until you are back at Safarikovo Square (the starting point).
W - Old Bridge to New Bridge (very short, easy, 5 minutes)
Exit the parking lot by the Old Bridge and ride through Stara Viedenska road to the right (passing Arena Theatre building on your right). Alternatively, you can ride directly by the Danube instead. You are now riding through Park of Janko Kral, the oldest public park in Central Europe, on the left and a relaxation area by the Danube (on the right). Continue by the petanque playfield and under the UFO tower of the New Bridge. You now have two options - either return to the Old Town via New Bridge (W1) or continue through the embankment further to Lafranconi Bridge (W2).
W1 - New Bridge to the Old Town (very short, easy, 5 minutes)
Ride up the ramp to the New Bridge path for bikes and pedestrians. You can even choose which side of the bridge to ride on - choose the one overlooking west of the city including Bratislava Castle or the one overlooking the Old Town with St. Martin's Cathedral, three bridges (Old Bridge, Apollo Bridge and Port Bridge). Once you crossed New Bridge, ride down and stop by the Hotel Danube at Hviezdoslavovo square.
W2 - New Bridge to Lafranconi Bridge (medium length, easy, 15 minutes)
Continue under the New Bridge straight ahead and enter the embankment trail (bikes and pedestrians only) within about 200 metres. You will now be going through a somewhat boring three-kilometre stretch with the Incheba Exhibition Center office tower on the left and rest of the Old Town on the other side of the Danube (including the Castle hill). Continue until you hit the Lafranconi Bridge. Bike path splits here as well - you can cross Lafranconi Bridge back to the Old Town (L1) or continue along the trail further to the border with Austria (L2).
L1 - Lafranconi Bridge to the Old Town (medium length, easy, 15 minutes)
Ride from Petrzalka through Lafranconi Bridge back to the Old Town - you can choose which side of the bridge you want to bike on. Choose the closer one to look over the Old Town or the farther one to see border villages of Austria and new districts of Bratislava. Once you cross the bridge, ride on the Promenade - the bike path by the Danube river back to the Old Town. You will be crossing River Park, a new development as well as passing by a few botels (hotels on boats) and the Memorial of Chatam Sofer on your left (across the road by the Botel Marina/last River Park buildings). Use the bike path to the inner Old Town under the New Bridge (X).
L2 - Lafranconi Bridge to Austrian border (medium length, easy, 20 minutes)
You have now crossed under Lafranconi Bridge and you are riding the trail to the Slovak - Austrian border. Again, the path is somewhat boring with remnants of a few defense bunkers from World War II that can be seen on the plains to the right or the district of Petrzalka with apartment blocks seen on the left.
Continue until you reach the end of the bike trail on the Slovak side. There are no border controls as Slovakia is part of the Schengen Area, so feel free to cross to Austria (A1). They really have well planned bike trails there, which you can even ride as far as to the city of Passau, Germany.
Outside the City
Rusovce (long, easy, 45 minutes)
Starting from the Port Bridge ride the trail located on top of the river dam. You will pass by horse stables and a horse racing field on the right and see the Danube in the distance on the left. The dam (knows as 'hradza' in Slovak) is very popular with Bratislavians, so you will be meeting lot of cyclists, inline skaters and joggers. First stop is the bar with parked cars, buy you can skip it for now. Continue on the bike-only paths (a few meters to the right of top of the dam trail). Biking paths end after a while (about 15 minutes) at the second stop (another bar with parked cars). Use the wide bike road located to the right as it is very convenient compared to the narrow dam trail with slow inline skaters. Ride until you see a lake on the right, where you can stop for a swim.
Koliba (long, steep, 45 minutes)
Start from the YMCA building and ride up Karpatska Street. Pass under the railway bridge and turn right, continue up the hill, pay attention to the cars and trolleybuses as the road is quite narrow. Keep to the main road until you reach the trolleybus turning space. You can stop here at the pub to the left (stop by and ask for Slovak Cola-type drink "Kofola" on tap) or continue up to Koliba forests. Once at the open plains with multiple pubs, parked cars and generally a lot of people, take a short break. You will be riding downhill in a moment, so check your brakes, fasten your helmet and get ready. Continue straight ahead on the road and you will quickly find yourself going downhill. In about five to ten minutes you will descend to Cesta Mladeze (Youth Road) in the Zelezna Studnicka area.
A1 - from Slovak-Austrian border to Wolfsthal, Austria (short, easy, 10 minutes)
Ride the bike path crossing the borders. There are no border controls as Slovakia is part of the Schengen Area. Wolfsthal is a small village located about five minutes from the borders. You will probably not find anything interesting in the village itself, but you will get a taste of Austria. For a longer bike trip, consider visiting the town of Hainburg, Austria (A2).
A2 - from Wolfsthal, Austria to Hainburg, Austria (long, easy, one hour)
Continue riding the bike path in Wolfsthal further on. You will now need to follow the bike signs navigating you to Hainburg. You will be riding very calm paths through the fields, forests, by the railways and car roads. Bike path will end about a kilometer before Hainburg and you will enter a slow road for cars. From there you will soon enter Hainburg town limits. There are some bars and cafes in the centre of the town, where you can rest or just find some place near Danube (a little downhill, to your right).
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Author & Credits
Copyright: © 2017, Jakub Zilincan, bratislavaguide.com
Images credit: author