First association when mentioning cities of Europe are usually cities of Western-European countries such are Rome, Paris, Barcelona and other famous of this part of Europe. But on the other hand, the European continent offers an abundance of cultural and historical content when it comes Central part as well, which are visited way less than the ones in the Western part. When we talk about Central European states, we can’t, but not to think about magnificence of second longest European river – Danube, and countries through which it flows, including neighboring countries as well. All of those countries have interesting cultural content to offer, especially their capitals, and in this article, we’ll talk more about them.
The place where West and East meet – Berlin, is one of the most visited capitals in Europe and considering stormy past and what came out of it, it deserves the attention of visitors from all over the world. The city is placed on rivers Spree and Havel, which offers an effective way of sightseeing the city, by taking a cruising tour on those rivers. Tour of the capital city of Germany can be started with sightseeing of Reichstag, an amazing example of 19th-century architecture, built as a home to first Assembly of the German Empire. If you’re fond of history, remnants of Berlin Wall, which divided the city on the Eastern and Western part, it will certainly attract your attention. Especially the Gallery of the Eastern Side, the only preserved side containing beautiful murals by different artists from the whole world, making it the longest gallery in the world. Berlin can be proud of the fact that it’s the only city in the world in possession of three Operas – Berliner Staatsoper, Deutsche Opera Berlin, and Komische Opera Berlin. IF you’re truly a fan of cultural content, we advise you to add on your visiting list some of the 180 museums open throughout the whole year, especially Museum Island – the biggest museum complex in the world.
Prague, Czech Republic
Prague is certainly one of the Central-European capitals you can’t miss out on. Also known as the Golden Prague, it lies on the river Vltava and placed in the heart of the European continent. Prague’s bridges over the Vltava will amaze you with its beauty and between others, the most famous of all – Charle’s Bridge from the 14th century, which has an amazing view on the city to offer. The city also offers beautiful architecture examples such as Prague’s Castle dating to the 9th century, Cathedral of St. Vitus and many others. Prague is also a place of origin of one of the oldest clock tower, older than 600 years, which makes him one of the oldest working clocks in the world. Orloj, as it’s called, is placed in the downtown which measures Babylonian time as well, which has measures hours differently depending on the season of the year and is the only clock in the world with that feature. The whole magic of Prague is enriched by traditional Prague cuisine, including famous Prague beer.
When we talk about Vienna, it’s hard not to associate it with its tradition related to classical music, which is why, in the 18th and 19th century, was known as the city of the music. No wonders, considering many successful music composers originated from the capital of Austria, such are Haydn, Beethoven, Schubert, Strauss, and Mozart. If you find yourself in the city of music, don’t miss out on Vienna State Opera, built in 1869. This city is not only the city of music but many other forms of art. Something distinctively amazing is architecture examples you’ll be able to see here as Schonbrunn Palace, Belvedere Palace, Holgburg, St. Stefan Cathedral and many others. Most visited places are Museum of Art & History, Natural History Museum, Leopold Museum – for all lovers of contemporary art and works of Gustav Klimt, Alebrtin Museum – where you may find works of Picasso, Michelangelo, Raphael, Leonardo da Vinci, and many others. If you plan on visiting many places, think about buying public transport passes, which will allow you to enter over 60 touristic attractions.
Lying on the coast of the second-longest European river, connected by lavish bridges, is Paris of this part of Europe – Budapest. Enjoying lavish architecture of Hungarian capital will cost you less than visiting many other European capitals that won’t be able to offer the same experience, considering Budapest is filled with wide streets, spacious squares and beautifully settled parks that enrich the glare of this capital’s beauty. That glare is completed with popular tourist attractions such are: Matthias Church, St. Stephen’s Basilica and others. Another trump card of this capital is amazing cuisine, defined by a variety of specialties such as goulash, langos, lamb stew, and desserts such are: Dobosh cake and Kurtosh cake. Besides delicious food, you may find good domestic wines that, with good music, make the nights by the Danube river unforgettable. You could make your stay here even more enjoyable if you try some of their thermal water sources, since this country has over 120 of them at its disposal, and some of them are in use since the Ancient Rome.
Another in a row of European capitals on the Danube River is the Slovakian capital – Bratislava. It’s placed between Slovakia, Hungary, and Austria and it’s the only city in the world with that geographic location. Although it’s not as popular as other capitals throughout Europe, this small city has a lot to offer. The city is relatively small, and besides its city lake, you can enjoy its architectural beauties without commuting throughout the city. Some of the places you don’t want to miss out here are the Bratislava Castle, St. Martin’s Cathedral, Slovakian National Theatre, St. Elizabeth’s (The Blue Church) and Grasalkovic Palace. If you visit Bratislava in the midst of winter holidays, you’ll have a chance to experience the Christmas Street Market, which begins from the last week of November and lasts until the last week of December. Here, you can try some delicious meals, such are roasted sausages, pork knees, goose’s liver, Christmas soup with sauerkraut (kapustnica), potato pancakes filled with cabbage (lokse) and many others. Besides culinary specialties, here you can find many creative works made out of wood, ceramic and glass. Also, you’ll be able to find caps, scarves, and mittens which could be the perfect gift for someone dear to you. The market provides a musical program that runs great with the Christmas atmosphere.
The Slovenian capital is the one with the least residents in Europe. The Ljubljanica River flows throughout the whole city, which with a lot of city green, makes this place one of the most beautiful small capitals in this part of the world. In the middle of this city, lifted by a hill and surrounded by forest, as a crown stands the Castle of Ljubljana, long time ago known as a residence of rulers, then as a prison, and today as a tourist attraction which gives a magnificent view on the streets of Ljubljana. You could get yourself familiarized with streets of Ljubljana by touring the city on feet and while doing that, you can also visit some of its famous landmarks such as Tivoli Park, Dragon Bridge, Preshernov Square, Buther’s Bridge and the city corner dedicated to alternative arts – Tovarna Rog. This artistic corner is placed in the Street of Trubarjeva and it’s a perfect place for gourmands since there is a number of restaurants that offer different specialties from all over the world.