A Day Trip To Brno Czech Republic From Bratislava

Day trip to Brno city view

If you find yourself in Bratislava, Slovakia and fancy a day trip a little further afield, Brno in the Czech Republic is a fabulous city to explore. 

It is easy and affordable to get to Brno from Bratislava on the train and I would recommend adding a day trip to Brno to your Bratislava itinerary. 

Please note: This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I’ll receive a small commission at no extra cost to you, which helps towards the running costs of this site.

 

How to get to Brno from Bratislava by train

From the centre of Bratislava I took a tram to the Bratislava hl.st. (Bratislava Main Railway Station). Once at the station, I obtained a day return ticket for 14 Euros by using the ticket booth although there were also self-service ticket machines available.

The distance between Bratislava and Brno is 131 kilometres and the journey by train takes 1.5 hours. I opted for a train that left Bratislava at 08.30am. Getting to Brno at 10am gave me enough time to enjoy a full day in the city. 

Crossing the border from Slovakia into Czech Republic on the train was simple and didn’t require a stop or any paperwork/passport checks.

Once I arrived in Brno, the city centre was just a short walk from the train station. That was definitely a plus to side to only visiting Brno for the day; it is a compact city centre so therefore doable on foot.

 

A brief introduction to Brno, Czech Republic

Brno is the second largest city in the Czech Republic and the center of Moravia Region. It is filled with beautiful buildings, attractive squares, green spaces and plenty of history and culture to keep you entertained for days.

Brno is less crowded than its more well-known counterparts of Prague and Vienna. If you’re looking for a quieter alternative to these bigger cities, I would certainly recommend Brno as an authentic Czech experience. 

To me, it felt like I was exploring a city on an average day and it was nice to wander without queues and other tourists swarming the pavements.

 

Map of Brno

Here is a free city centre map that you can download to plan your day.

Freedom Square Brno

Freedom Square, Brno

6 things to see and do on a Brno day trip 

  1. Freedom Square (Namesti Svobody)

First stop from the station is Brno’s main square, which is actually more triangular in shape. There are several beautiful and imposing buildings to see here, including the House of Lords of Lipá. This building is decorated in a Renaissance style and features mythological and biblical scenes on its facade. 

There are several monuments in the square, plus the tram tracks run right through meaning this area is a fun place to spend a little time soaking up the atmosphere and people watching. 

The most intriguing element of the square has to be the rather rude shaped moment in the corner. Made of granite, the Clock Machine (Hodinový stroj) is almost six metres tall and its shape is supposed to evoke a gigantic bullet although it may strike you as something a little more suggestive…

The sculpture is a ‘clock’ of sorts and at 11am it releases one glass marble from one of its four holes. It was designed to commemorate the Czech’s perseverance and bravery against the Swedes in the Thirty Years War. 

  1. Cathedral of St Peter & St Paul

You can find the cathedral on Petrov Hill in the centre of the city. It dates back to the 11th century, although it has had several alterations in the following centuries, and its tall spires jut out against the cityscape with gothic grandeur. 

You can enter the cathedral itself to explore inside or take to the winding staircase to climb up the belltower. At the top of the tower there are fabulous views across the city. 

The cathedral is home to the church’s treasury items, which you can view in a small exhibition area as you ascend the tower. 

It is a site of significance to the people of Brno.

In the 1600s the Thirty Year War was fought and the Swedish army laid siege on the city of Brno. The story goes that the Swedish army General claimed to call off their attack if they had not been successful by noon. The ingenious Czechs rang the midday bells of St Peter & St Paul’s Cathedral at 11am to try to deceive their invaders. 

I was there at midday and heard the deafening noon bells ring above me as I stood at the top of the tower surveying the city below, so I can’t say for certain if this still happens today!

cathedral st peter and st paul Brno Czech Republic

Cathedral of St Peter and St Paul

  1. Castle Špilberk

Another much loved building in Brno is Hrad Špilberk (Špilberk Castle). In the Medieval Era when it was first built it was used as the royal castle, but in later years it has been transformed into a fortress and a prison.

In the present day the castle is open to visitors as a museum, with guided tours available in Czech and other languages by request. You can also explore the casemates (underground chambers), bastion and tower yourself with a printed guide.  

It’s also nice to walk through the castle gardens and around its walls. You get to experience some lovely views over the city from the top of the castle mount. 

Find the castle at Špilberk 210/1, 66224 Brno.

Castle Spilberk

Castle Spilberk, Brno

  1. 10-Z Cold War Bunker (Kryt 10-Z)

Just outside the castle grounds you will discover the entrance to the 10-Z Cold War Bunker on Husova, 60200 Brno.  

This bunker was originally an air-raid shelter built during World War II against American and Soviet bombs. The shelter was confiscated by the Communist Government and in 1959 it was turned into a bunker to sustain up to 500 of society’s elitist people underground for up to three days. 

Nowadays it has been preserved as a museum documenting the workmanship that went into creating and sustaining a hermetically sealed bunker. 

Guided tours are offered but I walked around by myself as there was mountains of fascinating information about Stalinist and Nazi Brno to read, watch and explore in its eerie tunnels.

More info: https://10-z.cz/en/

  1. Moravian Art Gallery (Moravská galerie)

Located at Husova 18, 66226 Brno, this museum is the second largest in the Czech Republic. Dating back to the early 1800s the museum houses displays including traditional fine arts, photography, graphic design and architecture. 

It can be a welcome retreat from the weather if it’s raining or exceptionally hot outside. The museum is free to enter.

Moravian art gallery Brno

Moravian art gallery

  1. The Vegetable Market (Zelny trh)

Zelny Trh is a square located a short walk away from Freedom Square and is used as a farmer’s market. I browsed through the stalls and nibbled on some fresh fruit, plus enjoyed the architecture of the buildings surrounding the square and the statues within it. 

My main reason for visiting the Vegetable Market square was because I really wanted to explore the labyrinth of chambers and tunnels underneath the square itself. Despite my best efforts with Google maps, I couldn’t find the entrance for some reason,which can be found in the building at Zelný trh 21.

For those luckier than myself, guided tours of the medieval cellars are held every 60 minutes for CZK 160 / 5.90 EU / £5.30 GBP per adult. 

Although they date the medieval period, most of the tunnels were dug in the Baroque period. They were used as storage units for the market above them, for the maturation of beer and wine or as hideouts during wars.

More info and opening times: https://ticbrno.cz

Vegetable Market Brno day trip

Vegetable Market, Brno

Eating and drinking in Brno

I stopped for lunch in a restaurant near to the Vegetable Market. There were plenty of eateries of all kinds dotted around that area. I chose Tripoli restaurant and enjoyed lunch on their outside terrace, which was the perfect spot to watch the world go by. 

I tried the local Starobrno lager with my lunch and Brno has a thriving beer industry with plenty of microbrews and bars to explore if you’ve got a little more time.

My time in Brno wasn’t long enough to sample the many eateries the city has to offer, but the Go To Brno website has loads of suggestions that I would have checked out if I was there longer.

At a kiosk near the station I purchased a bottle of Kofola. Produced in the Communist era, it became a staple drink when brands such as Coca Cola wasn’t available. To this day, Kofola remains a much-loved soft drink and is widely available. I was intrigued to discover whether I could detect the difference between the two, and let me say they were nothing alike!  

 

When is the best time of year to visit Brno?

I visited Brno in June and the temperature was very pleasant. It was necessary to take plenty of water, sun cream and a hat with me to protect myself against the sun, but overall it wasn’t too hot for sightseeing. 

That said, visiting the underground tunnels of the 10-Z Bunker was certainly a welcome temperature to revive me when I was feeling a bit fatigued!

The warmest months are between June and September when the highest average temperature is around 26 degrees C. 

Tram in Brno Czech Republic

Hints and tips for an enjoyable day trip

  • Comfy shoes! – You’ll be doing a lot of walking so I definitely encourage you to wear your comfiest shoes or sandals. 
  • Water bottle – I’m a huge advocate of carrying water for any adventure and city breaks are no exception. Lately I’ve been loving my Chilly’s water bottle, which can keep water cool for hours and has a little caribiner to clip onto your bag.

  • Brno Pass – if you’re planning on staying a few days it may be worth investing in a Brno Pass. This is a card that allows visitors to access discounts to local sightseeing attractions, plus free transportation on the city’s trams for the duration of your pass. 

Further European city break inspiration

Please note: This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I’ll receive a small commission at no extra cost to you, which helps towards the running costs of this site.

Over to you! Have you been to Brno? What were your favourite things to do there? Are you planning on visiting Brno for the day? Drop your questions below – I’d love to hear what you think. 

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Day Trip in Brno Czech Republic

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