Slovakia is a landlocked country in Central Europe, though its past as part of the former Czechoslovakia often leads to it being classified as Eastern European.
Sharing cultural aspects with its neighbours Austria, Hungary, Czech Republic, Poland and Ukraine, it is a land of wild beauty and vivid history which is yet to be overrun with tourists.
Bratislava may conjure up images of Communist blocks, but the medieval Old Town couldn't be further removed from such an urban landscape. Red-tiled roofs huddle together, the skyline punctuated by towering church spires and elegant palaces. Open squares provide focal points for public events, while modern street art sculptures dotted around town add a contemporary edge.
From Bratislava Castle above the city it's possible to see the old and new faces of the capital, which, like Slovakia as a whole, is an attractive mix of ancient and modern.