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The eastern part of the former Czechoslovakia is now the modern Republic of Slovakia. For a small compact country it contains some of the finest mountain ranges in central Europe stretching from the High Tatras in the north down to the Danubian plain in the south where it meets Hungary.

The Slovak capital Bratislava is barely an hour from Vienna by river, road or rail and can also be reached by a selection of British airlines. On the North of the mighty Danube river you can find the hilltop castle looking over small medieval thoroughfares while across the river you can see one of Europes largest tower block estates Petrazalka dominating the skyline before the land opens out into the forests of windfarms that is central Austria.

High Tatras

In the North, before you reach Poland, the land rises steeply as you encounter the Carpathian chain in the form of the High Tatra Mountains, home to bears, pretty much guaranteed skiing (not the bears) and perfect high altitude mountain walking.

A country of folk music tradition with a strong Gypsy influence the mountain Kolibas are a pleasant way to appreciate the Slovak culture and cuisine with a variety of locally produced wine, beers and borovicka (yet another locally made strong spirit).


The first visit by Yeovil College to the Czech Republic and Slovakia for more than ten years was designed to study comparative Health & Social care provision in both countries and involved planes, trains, automobiles and 'Sound of Music' styles treks over mountains.

Flying from Bristol to the Czech Capital, Prague, the students - twenty-two girls and one boy plus four female teachers, visited a kindergarten, a secondary school and a Youth club during their three day stay.



Students from Bridgwater College catering course spent a week in East Europe visiting Slovakian college, sharing cooking experiences and learning something about the local culture and people amidst the sunlit landscape of the High Tatra mountains.

Starting their journey in the Southern Polish city of Krakow the students stayed in the Kazimierz area - once the hub of Jewish Krakow. With the help of Polish teacher Karolina Tymochowicz, the group had a guided tour of the city which included the famous market square and the Castle at Wawel next to the Vistula river. It was here that they visited the tomb of the recently buried Polish President Lech Kacynski who had died only the week before in the Katyn wood plane tradgedy. They were also told the legend of Smok the fire breathing dragon whose statue can be found at the entrance to his cave beneath the castle and next to the river.