GLXY Travel Guide - Exploring the LGBT Scene in Bratislava, Slovakia

30 Aug, 2017
In this article you can find out why and when to visit Slovakia and Bratislava, how friendly is this city for LGBT persons, where to go for gay-friendly dinner options, bars, clubs and other venues, what are the most important LGBT events of the year not to be missed; how to meet locals; and other interesting and important practical details.

About Slovakia and Bratislava

Bratislava is the capital of Slovakia, with about 450 000 inhabitants, located on the border with Austria and Hungary. Bratislava and Vienna are closest to the main cities in Europe, only 60km away, they were once connected by tram.

If you travel by car to Bratislava you will need about 4-5 hours of driving from the Croatian border, depending on the route you choose. As soon as you cross the "border" between Austria and Bratislava, do not forget to buy a Slovak vignette. Namely, the city is just a couple of miles away from the "border" and nobody will check if you have bought a vignette, at least not arriving. When you come back, at the "border" the police stop each car and check if you have a vignette if you do not have a penalty of € 110. If you are lucky as you are and run to a policeman who is often in Croatia, you may be thrilled and you will pay 30 €.

The city is divided by the Danube to the industrial-residential (Petržalka) and the city part that are connected by bridges, the most famous are:
1. Novy Bridge - ULO restaurant is located at 84 meters above the bridge.
2. Apollo now

Most of the sights are located in the very center of the city, not far from the Danube. However, the beautiful castle on the hills, Bratislavsky hrad, is in front of you. They are often referred to as an "upwardly facing table" because of the tower that acts as the feet of the table when we turn it upside down. The castle dates back to the 15th century, originally used as a royal residence, then as a seminary and then a barracks. In 1811, Austrian soldiers were burned and the castle burnt to the ground. The communists rebuilt it in the 1950s, but some renovations still take place today. Today, there is a museum in the castle, but most of it is closed for renovation. For 2.5 € you can see four very tiny rooms. Right next to the castle there is a Slovak Parliament building with a beautiful view of the city and the Danube, and Austria and Hungary are supposed to be in nice weather.

LGBT situation

Slovakia is country which is more conservative in terms of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons than Czech Republic. Homosexuality is legal in Slovakia but is not currently recognized by the same-sex partnership.
There is a small LGBT community in Slovakia. There are several gay clubs, mostly housed in Bratislava. A common migration of LGBT people to other countries is seeking a more positive social climate. In recent years, the attitude of the society towards LGBT people has begun to improve. Slovakia is a very conservative country with a large number of Catholics and rural population that can be hostile to LGBT people. The situation in Slovakia can be compared to the situation in Western Europe in the 1970s, but it is still better than in Poland. According to the Angus Reid Global Monitors survey of December 2006, only 19% of citizens and citizens support an equal marriage.

After several attempts, the first parade of pride was organized on May 22, 2010 in Bratislava, titled Rainbow Pride Bratislava. Participants and participants were attacked during the parade by the neo-Nazi groups, which is why the planned walk to the city did not happen.

In 2016, the Slovak government decided to withdraw from the decision to adopt the National Action Plan for LGBTI Equality, saying that it should be the next government to do so.
LGBTI activists from Slovakia and the roof of the European LGBT organization, ILGA-Europe, are particularly concerned about this change, given that the Slovak government has made great efforts to prepare for this step on LGBTI equality. Lastly, in 2015, the Slovak government invited representatives of the Council of Europe and other European countries to discuss the best way to implement the announced changes, and the National Action Plan for LGBTI Equality should have been presented this year.
Pride page-

There are a lot of places to visit by staying in Bratislava LGBT and LGBT friendly bars/restaurants/places are:

The centre of the Slovak capital is tuned friendly towards LGBTI people, lots of bars, cafes and restaurants are often popular with the gay clientele. There are a lot of hipster places here, as are Stur, Urban House, Gorila Urban Space, KC Dunaj, Foxford, Nu Spirit, St. Germain, U Kubistu, U Fúza and also Tri-Šty-Ri are known because of their open and friendly atmosphere.

1. Apollon Club- one of the first gay bars in Bratislava, exclusively LGBTI, offers disco and drag parties
2. Be Happy- bar exclusively for gays
3. Club Sauna Expert- sauna exclusively for gay men
4. Batelier club- It is one of the most famous clubs in the city, and every two months it organizes LGBTI party Teplaren. A lot of colorful and interesting people is attracted by this club: gays, lesbians, bisexuals, transgender people which enjoy together in Tepláreň entertainment. The Tepláreň is focused on quality dance music, like deep house, tech house or techno style.
5. Homomat,- a party held every month in the Bratislava HSC club. It is known as a party with a lot of hot men. DJing, VJing and a lot of good vibes will make you feel great.
6. Queer Slovakia organizes also another smaller event - the Queer Beer, which is held every other Wednesday in Bratislava. Spaces vary according to season, from pleasant bars in the centre, to popular locations close to the Danube, during the summer months. The exact schedule of events is to be found at:
7. Film Festival od Diversity/ Filmový festival inakosti is an important event on the Slovakian LGBT scene. It takes place in Bratislava in antumn and it travels through several Slovak towns in spring. The Month of LGBT history, have a rich probram every year which presents gay culture trough music, theatre, literature and film. For the fans of electronic and contemporary music there is Radio Kiki queer music festival which is happening at the end of summer.