Here's a little list of tips we've compiled for living on the road in Slovakia.
Slovakia’s official national language is Slovak.
Slovakia’s official currency is the Euro. Credit and debit cards are widely accepted. Be prepared to use cash in smaller towns and some petrol stations.
Drinking water can be difficult to find, even in mountainous areas such as the Tatras, although here you can occasionally find it in the form of a small pipe sticking out from a small dog kennel-like structure.
“Pitná voda” means drinking water. Check out our map of water points here.
You can get post delivered to Slovenská pošta post offices in Slovakia by addressing it as Poste Restante. You will need to show ID upon collection.
The address format is as follows:
Street name, number
Where Pošta Town is written the name of the post office should be included.
Post office names, addresses, facilities and opening hours can be found at posta.sk.
Petrol: Natural 95
LPG: LPG / Autoplyn
There are few supermarket fuel stations in Slovakia apart from Tesco, the majority are companies like Shell and OMV. Apart from Tesco, we found Slovnaft to be among the cheapest.
Currently there are no reliable fuel price checking websites for Slovakia.
Most supermarkets close around 10-11pm although many are 24 hour.
Rubbish bins and recycling facilities can be difficult to locate, although are sometimes found around residential streets and flats.
Sklo - Glass
Plastický - Plastic
Kartón - Cardboard
Built-up areas 31 mph (50 km/h)
Outside built-up areas 55 mph (90 km/h)
Motorways 80 mph (130 km/h)
Motorways and expressways in built-up areas 55 mph (90 km/h)
Motorways and expressways outside built up areas 80mph (130 km/h)
You must use dipped headlights at all times of the day and night - drivers will usually flash you as a friendly reminder if you haven’t turned them on.
The general condition of the roads in Slovakia is average to poor, although major road reconstruction is occurring all over the country. The roads around Bratislava are particularly bad, and can often be dangerous and damaging to your vehicle with their large potholes and uneven surfaces. In some places it looks as though the cars have driven through the concrete while it was still wet.
There are a small number of motorways in Slovakia which require a vignette- the D1, D2, D3 and D4 are the main ones, although a map of the toll roads is available on tolls.eu. The vignette can be purchased at petrol stations and post offices and the prices are as follows:
- 10 days €10
- 1 month €14
- 1 year €50
These vignette roads are easily avoidable.
Drinking and driving is strictly forbidden: the legal limit is zero. Random roadside testing is a regular occurrence. There is a large police presence on the roads enforcing speed limits and drink driving laws.
Compulsory items to carry in your vehicle always:
First aid kit
Winter tyres must be used in winter weather conditions such as snow and ice
Wild camping in Slovakia is -as in many countries- a legal grey area. In less touristy areas campervans may attract attention as the locals are not so familiar with campers.
As a general rule if you are out of the way, not on private property or in densely populated tourist areas you will be okay to stay in your van overnight. Just look out for signs and restrictions. Police tend to look differently at the situation if you have chairs out and awning up etc., so just keep it discreet and move on regularly and you should be fine.
Slovakia is a country that sort of bridges the gap between Central and Eastern Europe, with influences of both. The East of the country is beautiful and mountainous, where you will find the Tatras mountains, while the West is where you'll find the country's capital, Bratislava.
We spent a couple of weeks dipping in and out of Slovakia, first visiting Bratislava and Devin castle, staying on the banks of the Danube, then crossing back into Slovakia in the Tatras National Park, simply one of the most beautiful and wild mountain ranges in Europe. Bratislava was not an overly friendly place for campervans, not least because of the state of its roads, but also because of the high crime rates. In the areas surrounding the city the locals are perhaps not as used to campers as other countries, and twice we had somebody trying to get into our van at night. The Tatras however were unbelievably beautiful, perfect for parking up in and hiking.
We had no trouble from the police while we were there.
Make sure to try Vianočka if you see it, a type of plaited yeast bread sometimes covered with a sugary glaze. Slovakia is also famous for being the only country where beer is cheaper than water- and yes, it really is.