One of my favorite pictures. the old … … and the new. Straßenbahning Communist era housing developments This is how you know you're behind the Iron Curtain. aahh, blue skies, at last! The postwar communist regime built this highway along with the Nový Most bridge to create a better traffic flow across the river and into the downtown area. In the process they demolished the city's Jewish quarter, which had previously endured a different type of hardship. As you can see, the castle is unfortunately being renovated :( Slovakia! Even if the castle itself was not much to see, it provided some amazing views of the city, and thus justified the hike up to it. This steeple of St. Martin's Cathedral is topped with a crown, symbolizing its role as the Coronation Church of the Hapsburgs-the royal family of Vienna, who also held the title, King of Hungary. After Buda was conquered by the Ottoman Turks, Bratislava (then: Pressburg) became the the capital of Hungary. Historically, it had been home to a mixed ethnicity (although predominately German). Bratislava didn't take on its truly Slovakian nature until after the First World War, when it was incorporated into Czeckoslovakia. When Slovakia gained its independence from Czechoslovakia in 1993, Bratislava once again became a capital city. hhmm … no urban sprawl here.