Embassy of Slovakia
25 Kensington Place Gardens
W8 4QY
Tel: 0171 243 0803, Fax: 0171 727


Physical geography

The Slovak Republic lies in Central Europe. Geographical measurements have shown that atop a hill named Krahule not far from the historical town of Kremnica in Central Slovakia is the geographic centre of Europe. The relief of the country is characterised by considerable differences in elevation range, from 95m above sea level in eastern Slovakia - Streda nad Bodrogom up to 2,655m - the Gerlachov stit peak in the High Tatras. The territory in northern and central Slovakia is mountainous - it is covered by the Carpathian massif. Southwards it slopes down to the Danube plain and the East-Slovak plain which are important agricultural areas. The most significant river is the Danube, a waterway connecting the territory of Slovakia with ports on the Black Sea. In the past, two important trade routes ran across the territory of Slovakia, the Amber and the Czech road which carried not merely goods (gold, amber, furs), but also information which permitted various ethnic minorities and countries mutually to become acquainted.

Raw materials: copper, antimony, iron ore, lead, tin, mercury, rare metals, magnesite, limestone, dolomite, gravel, ceramic materials, rock salt, etc.

The Slovak Republic is located in Central Europe The country's terrain is characterised by marked differences in the above sea level. Central and northern parts of Slovakia are noted for a hilly terrain with the Carpathian Arc dipping into the regions, whereby southern and eastern parts of the country are lowlands significant for Slovak agriculture. The Danube River interconnecting Slovakia with Vienna, the Rhone-Mainz channel and the Black Sea ports plays a crucial role in the country's economy.


Slovakia lies in a temperate climatic zone with a regular alternation of the yearly seasons. The mean temperature is from 3.7° to 10°FC. The warmest and the driest areas are in the South and the East-Slovak lowlands. The coldest month is that of January, the warmest July. Considerable differences in temperature often occur. Temperature inversions are frequent in winter when it is colder in mountain valleys than on the surrounding uplands. In high mountain regions snow may persist for up to 130 days.


Population: 5,310,154 (according to 1990 census). Population density: 108 inhabitants per square kilometre. Capital: Bratislava, 441,453 inhabitants, Kosice 238,4541, Zilina 97,535, Nitra 91,9301, Banska Bystrica 88,3901, Trnava 73,0121, Trencin 57,9211, Zvolen 44380.

A brief history

623-685 Samo's Kingdom, the oldest state formation
826-828 Consecration of the first church in Nitra
833 The beginning of the Great Morava Kingdom
863 The arrival of Constantine and Methodius, the Slavic missionaries
894 Death of Svatopluk, the sovereign of Great Morava
907 The downfall of the Great Morava Kingdom Annexation of Slovakia to the Hungarian State
1241 The Tartar invasion
1467 The founding of the university, Academia Istropolitana in Bratislava
1515 Commencement of Reformation
1530 The Turkish invasion
1780 Commencement of the Slovak national enlightenment
1780 Commencement of Magyarisation
1785 Abolition of serfdom by Joseph II
1843 Enactment of literary Slovak
1848 Appeal of the Slovak nation to the Emperor's court requesting the granting of equal rights to the Slovaks
1848-49 National liberation uprising
1861 Memorandum of the Slovak nation
1863 The establishment of Matica slovenska
1893 The establishment of the Museum Slovak Society
1918 The establishment of the Czechoslovak Republic
1918 Martin Declaration
1919 The founding of Comenius University in Bratislava
1939 The founding of the Slovak State
1944 The Slovak National Uprising
1945 The founding of the second Czechoslovak Republic
1969 Declaration of the Czechoslovak Federation Law
1989 The Velvet Revolution, overthrow of the communist rule 1992 Declaration of the sovereignty of Slovakia
1992 The signing of the Constitution of the Slovak Republic
1993 The establishment of the independent state of the Slovak Republic.

Languages spoken by nationals



One hour ahead of Greenwich time. Summertime lasts from March to September and it is two hours ahead of Greenwich time.


Slovak crown (Sk) is the currency valid in the territory of the Slovak Republic Slovak crown (Sk1 = 100 hellers).


Roman Catholic, Greek Catholic, Orthodox, Evangelical of the Augsburg profession; the Jewish community, too, is active here.

Official holidays (all offices and shops closed)

1 January - New Year, Slovak Independence Day - 6 January, Epiphany - Good Friday, Easter Monday - 1 May, Labour - 8 May - Liberation Day (after World War II) - 5 July - Sts Cyril and Methodius - 29 Aug, Anniversary of the Slovak National Uprising - 1 Sept, Constitution Day of the Slovak Republic - 15 Sept, Our Lady of Seven Sorrows Patroness of Slovakia - 1 Nov, All Saints' Day - 24 Dec, Christmas Eve - 25 Dec, Christmas Day - Dec. 26, Boxing Day.

What one should not fail to see

Bratislava Castle - the earliest name of the castle dates from 907. The original Romanesque castle was later rebuilt to a Gothic royal residence and simultaneously a military fortress. The castle !ached the peak of its significance under Maria Theresia (royal seat 1740-1748). Since 1962 the castle has been open to the public. The Gothic Cathedral of St Martin - built in the 14th to first half of the 15th century. It was the coronation site of 11 Hungarian kings and seven royal consorts. Devin Castle - a Slovak hill-fort, ruins of the castle on a steep cliff over the confluence of the Morava and the Danube rivers. Museum open to the public from May to October.

Academia Istropolitana - a University founded by king Matthias Corvinus in 1467, is at present, a Faculty of Histrionic Arts, VSMU.

Further monuments: The Primatial Palace (1777) Michael's Gate (11th-15th century), Roland's Fountain (1537).

Museums and galleries: The Slovak National Gallery, The Bratislava Town Gallery, The Municipal Museum.

Visit castles and stately homes in Budmerice, Bytca, Kezmarok, Kremnica, Nitra, Oravsky Podzamok, Trencin and Zvolen, among others. Explore Slovak caves and museums of villages.

Main holiday sports

Skiing, hunting, fishing, yachting, boating, windsurfing, water-skiing on the lakes.

Frontier formalities

Passports and visas

Mandatory are valid passports (not European identification cards). There is no visa liability between the Slovak Republic and all the European countries, the USA (for US citizens), Brazil, South Africa, China (for holders of diplomatic and service passports, Thailand, etc.

We have been able to publish the present tourist information on Slovakia thanks to the co-operation of the Slovak Department of Tourism