Halloween is celebrated in many countries on the 31st of October, but most of us associate this holiday with the USA. It might be true that in Europe, and precisely in Slovakia, Halloween is not a big thing for everyone. There is no “trick or treat” or pumpkin fields for kids, but we have a public holiday on November 1st, which means there are a lot of Halloween parties for adults going on a night before. If you are traveling to Slovakia´s capital during that time of the year, I suggest to go out and have a night to remember. This is Bratislava Halloween survival guide and basically everything you need to know.
The best part about Halloween is definitely dressing up. You can go for something scary, funny or unconventional. You can even be a provocative devil in a too-short dress for the night; creativity doesn't have limits here. Many clubs have a competition for the best costume, or you don't have to pay an entrance fee if you are dressed up accordingly. But what if you didn't bring any costume with you? There are many second-hand stores in Bratislava, most common chains are Genesis or Textile-House, or you can also opt for vintage stores with carefully picked “cool” items. If you didn't have any luck, there are actual costume stores, but they tend to be more expensive, or you can rent a costume in so-called carnival stores. Variety is huge, and it might be a good idea that will save you some space in your luggage on your way back.
Bratislava has tons of Halloween parties all week long, so don't worry, you will have fun whether it is Wednesday or Sunday. If you want to see very well-thought costumes and opt for a bit fancier night, there is an event called Bloody Sexy Halloween happening every year in the biggest cities of Central Europe. Bratislava is one of them. Another locals favorite hotspot is a party organized by the most popular Slovak lifestyle magazine Refresher. You can expect mainly rap music, the best Slovak artists and people from the fashion industry, as well as different subcultures. Not a fan of rap? What about rock then? Every year there is also a very popular party called Halloween Rock Night. Locations might differ from year to year, so always check the updated event. And if you just want to meet some cool people from different countries, then you can go to the Erasmus party called ESN International Halloween Party.
There are multiple cinemas in Bratislava, and many of them play horror movies during the Halloween week, new ones as well as Hollywood classics. Some movie-theaters even go for a horror movie marathon, with a Halloween themed decoration and snacks. The good thing about Slovakia ́s cinemas is that movies are usually in an original language (that tends to be English) with Slovak subtitles, so most of the cinemas are also foreigners-friendly. There is only one movie-theater, where subtitles are all in English, and it is called Kino Inak, in the beautiful multi-genre venue dedicated to contemporary art. Many English-speakers, not necessarily tourists, but for example, international students, hang out in there, so it might be worth visiting.
In Slovakia, we don´t really celebrate Halloween on the 31st of October, but a Christian holiday - All Saints Day on November 1st. We go to the cemetery to light up candles for our loved ones. Although, the American version of Halloween is getting more and more popular, especially among young people, as they like to dress up, go to parties or watch scary movies. In the capital of Slovakia, Bratislava, there are multiple Halloween-related activities, so if you carefully read this survival guide, you will have fun!
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