All posts by Brano

Slovak Crown ended, long live Euro

As of January 1st, Slovakia has transitioned its currency from Slovak crown (Slovenska koruna) to Euro. Let’s look at Bratislava references on previous and current Slovak banknotes and coins.


50cv.jpg The Bratislava castle is shown on the new EURO coins with 50, 20 and 10 cents. 50 cents sample featuring Bratislava castle is attached here.

In past, with the old currency, Bratislava was explicitly shown on 500 Slovak Crown banknote and references were also on 50 hal and 5 SKK coins.

(Pictures and facts used in this article are from the website of National bank of Slovakia where you can find also the info about other Slovak banknotes nad coins- visit www.nbs.sk for more details)


500l3v.jpg The front of 500 SKK banknote (approx 16EUR) showed the portrait of Ludovit Stur, one of the greatest Slovak personalities of the 19th century, who was known as the father of the idea of Slovak national emancipation and the founder of the Slovak literary language. He was a lecturer on the high school in Bratislava an later also an active member of Hungarian parliament having its sessions in Bratislava. A street named after him- Sturova street- is mentioned in audiopoint Opera House (Hviezdoslavovo Sq)

500sk.jpgThe design on the back illustrates Bratislava Castle (The Castle audiopoint) together with the Baroque St. Michael´s church and a part of the Gothic tower of Klarisky Church. The central part of the composition displays the oldest layout of Bratislava dating from the 15th century wood carving CHRONICA PICTA depicting Bratislava Castle, three churches surrounded by a fortification, and a sketch of the River Danube.


5sk.jpg Another reference to Bratislava was on the reverse of 5 SKK coin (approx. 16 eurocents) where you can see the Celtic coin depicting a galloping horseman beneath which the inscription “BIATEC” appears. It is a tetra drachma of Bratislava type from the first century BC


50hr.jpg

And finally, on the reverse of the coin with the minimal value-50 halers (1.6 eurocent), there was  a renaissance polygonal tower with battlements- the most photogenic part of the Devin Castle, situated on a cliff above the confluence of the river Morava with the Danube. Ruins of the Devin Castle are situated outside the city center so they are currently not part of our audio tour but it is still the most recommended location for half-day visit when you are finished with city center.

Visiting Bratislava in December? Do not miss the Christmas market.

NB! Note the important announcement at the end of the article.
Main Square is one of the must-see locations in Bratislava. Its importance for those who like to have fun grows especially in December when it host the Christmas Market. Together with adjacent squares and streets it accommodates this December over 100 stalls, mostly offering typical “Christmas” cuisine and beverages.

Official Bratislava website lists them all- typical “Gypsy Liver” pork burger (Cigánska pečienka), spicy sausage, bread with lard and onion, savoury pastry (Pagáč), goose or sauerkraut potato crepe, sauerkraut soup, hot punch, mulled wine or grog. For dessert, you can try some sweet pastry, Christmas wafers, honey biscuits, or Christmas mead.

The stalls have various trinkets and gifts on sale, complementing the special pre-Christmas atmosphere. Wood, glass, leather, wicker, dried corn leaves, or beeswax, are just some of the natural materials used to make practical and decorative wares.

But do not confuse it with some shopping festival. These markets are special socializing event, an opportunity to meet friends. For trespassers and tourists, it is also a chance to feel the local atmosphere more than any other time. And who knows, you may also learn more about these places while listening our MP3 Audio tour – especially the tracks Opera House, Main Square, Old Town Hall and Primate’s Palace and Primatial Square.

Limited time offer:
Hey, Bratislava Christmas Market lovers.

First 50 fans can now download 2 Main Square and Old Town Hall tracks for free!

Merry Christmas 2011!

10. Primatial Square

This audio track is covering the Primatial square (Primacialne namestie). It is named after the Primate’s Palace which dominates this square. On the opposite site of the square, there is a new Town Hall. Thanks to that, there is a free wi-fi Internet access on the whole square so if you have a laptop or any Wi-Fi enabled device with you, you can sit and surf for a while.

In this audio track you will learn:

  • how the famous alchemist Paracelsus revived the burnt rose
  • and why is he quoted now by Harry Potter and Frankenstein
  • which songs were played on Captain Corelli’s mandoline
  • and where a man who composed them was born
  • where George Clooney and Nicole Kidman visited Russian mafia boss
  • and more..

11. Primate’s Palace

This Audio track describes what you can see inside the Primate’s Palace.

You will also hear about:

  • Mirror hall where the Treaty of Pressburg (German name for Bratislava) was signed between Napoleon’s France and Austria.
  • Who is killing Winter with his golden spear in the inner courtyard.
  • Amazing story of unique English tapestries
  • and what you can see on your way up to the Michael’s Gate.

About

Bratislava Audio Tour project is managed by enthusiasts who felt that Bratislava needed such offering.

All texts have been written specifically for these recordings having in mind these basic rules– tracks need to be understandable, not too long and balanced with not only facts and figures but also legends and interesting background information.

Bratislava has a quite small city centre which is great for our purpose- most points of interest are in walking distance.

Authors:

Brano Pokrivcak – website founder and author of the tour script.

  • Bratislava-born travel guide veteran, currently primarily active in marketing and information technologies.

Curtis Irwin- “voice of the tour” and script co-author.

  • American by birth but Slovak in heart spending the last six years trying to learn Slovak and understand the soul of Bratislava. His mission not yet completed. Holds a B.S. in Communications and is pursuing his career in Training & Development.

Contact us:

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O projekte (in Slovak)

O projekte:
bratilsava audio tourBratislava Audio Tour je projekt, ktorý prináša niekoľko noviniek unikátnych na slovenskom Internete:

Je to prvý sprievodca Bratislavou písaný priamo pre audio nahrávku. Viac ako štyridsať minút anglicky hovoreného textu približuje najzaujímavejšie miesta hlavného mesta Slovenska.

Nahrávka je vo formáte MP3, čo zabezpečuje jeho univerzálnu použiteľnosť na MP3 prehrávačoch, väčšine mobilných telefónov, počítačoch a PDA. Je distribuovaný výhradne cez Internet, takže nie je nutné žiadne posielanie poštou, či dokonca nakupovanie v kamennom obchode.

Cena za kompletný balík je 4.90 EUR. Užívateľ sa k nahrávke dostane okamžite po zaplatení, bez zbytočného čakania.

O autoroch:
Braňo Pokrivčák – autor námetu a scenára k audio sprievodcovi, webmaster stránky Bratislava-AudioTour.com. Vyštudovaný historik a dlhoročný bratislavský sprievodca sa dnes viac realizuje v marketingu a informačných technológiách.
Curtis Irwin – americký “hlas” audio sprievodcu a spoluautor scenára. Posledných 7 rokov žil v Bratislave a Košiciach.

Viac informácií:

Bratislava Audio Tour pozostáva z jedenásť skladieb v celkovom trvaní viac ako 40 minút.  Približuje v anglickom jazyku najzaujímavejšie miesta centra moderným spôsobom – vo forme populárnych MP3 súborov. Návštevník si ich môže prehrať z internetových stránok www.Bratislava-AudioTour.com do svojho MP3 prehrávača a počúvať výklad individuálne počas prechádzky mestom.
Bratislava sa týmto projektom zaradila medzi popredné svetové metropoly, ktoré už podobného audio sprievodcu majú, či už je to New York, Londýn alebo susedná Viedeň. Je určený pre individuálnych turistov a biznis návštevníkov, ktorí hľadajú základné informácie o Bratislave a nemajú čas na organizovanú prehliadku so sprievodcom. Súčasťou súborov je preto aj mapa centra s vyznačenou trasou a jednotlivými zastávkami. Autormi projektu Bratislava-AudioTour.com sú dvaja nadšenci – Slovák a Američan – ktorí majú Bratislavu radi a mali pocit, že podobná ponuka v ich meste chýbala.

“Dúfame, že týmto projektom naštartujeme aj ostatné mestá a inštitúcie”, hovorí autor projektu Braňo Pokrivčák. “Takmer každý zahraničný návštevník dnes cestuje s MP3 prehrávačom – či už samostatným zariadením alebo na mobilnom telefóne alebo počítači. MP3 audio sprievodca je preto ideálnym a efektívnym spôsobom, ako bez väčších investícií spropagovať nielen prehliadku miest, ale aj vnútorné priestory – výstavy, galérie a múzeá.”

Američan Curtis Irwin, ktorý nahovoril audio sprievodcu, dodáva: “S nadšením som prijal ponuku zúčastniť sa na tomto projekte. V Bratislave som žil ostatných viac ako 6 rokov, ale i napriek tomu som sa pri tejto práci dozvedel o mnohých bratislavských zaujímavostiach, o ktorých som predtým ani netušil.”

Súčasťou projektu Bratislava-AudioTour.com je aj blog, prinášajúci v angličtine zaujímavosti a najnovšie informácie zo života mesta.


12. Michael’s Gate

Michael’s Gate is the only remaining gate from the original medieval fortifications. The original Gothic tower from 15th century was redone in Baroque style in 1750s. It is named after angel St. Michael whose copper statue from 1728 you can see on the top of the tower.

In this audio track you will also learn:

  • Legend explaining why there are clocks only on three sides of the tower.
  • where is the narrowest building in Europe (with 130 cm front façade)
  • Why to avoid going through the smaller entrance of the Barbican gate.
  • and last but not least some brief history of Presidential Palace and adjacent garden.

Listen to the audio track or download it now: