Thirty thousand people is not much. You would probably see more people at Rolling Stone’s or Pink Floyd’s gigs. Nevertheless, if you set these thirty thousand people into one Middle European valley, it will make for one exceptionally interesting town. Bardejov is very likely the biggest small town in Europe, but unlike the other, much bigger cities, it still possesses its famous history within medieval town square. The Basilica, the Town Hall, or fortification system with its bastions – this is the town to which amazed generals and emperors paid a visit.

Nowadays, Bardejov is the 20th biggest Slovak town but hits the top positions in the quality of life. Impressive environment, clean water, dense green woods, low crime rate, good education and traffic infrastructure, or skilled ice hockey team. On top of that, Bardejov repeatedly takes the first place of the poll on the most beautiful Slovak town.

The town thrives in its own, let’s say, very special way. More than 10 % of its citizens work abroad in countries like Czech Republic, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Ireland, or United Kingdom, where they earn an income which is above-average when compared to money they would earn in Bardejov.

The members of this huge economical diaspora come home from time to time and can be divided into two groups. The first group settles and invests, while the other one is satisfied just with occasional visits of families and friends. The first group keeps the reasonable prices of properties, revive the old neighborhoods and create small but successful companies. The other group is the reason why there is the highest rate of gastronomic facilities per 1000 inhabitants. It resembles of Reno in Nevada a little bit – every other door in Bardejov is either pub, bar, or restaurant.

Anyway, it is the people who are the real trump card of Bardejov. They are indeed good and beautiful, hardy but fair, envious but helpful, greedy but loving, foolish but merry. They are just like people anywhere else, yet still somehow special. But when it comes to girls and women, no place in the world can compare. Their beauty is unmatched. If you are not one of the locals, you can lose your mind and heart for a local girl very easily. Believe it or not, many have fallen in love.

By the way, it was a famous merry wanderer called Simplicissimus Dacianus who described our town in these immoderate words: “Von Kaschau unge-fangen, von Eperjes ungehangen, von Bartfeld ungeweibt, von Seben ungekleidt, kommt er in die Laut, kann er sagen von gutter Zeit.“ In translation: “If man doesn’t get arrested in Košice, doesn’t get hung in Prešov, doesn’t get married in Bardejov, doesn’t get naked in Sabinov and does finally reach the town of Levoča, he can say that the times are good.” Simplicissimus used this fitting and mocking metaphor to describe five cities grouped in the Pentapolitana alliance in order to point out that people from nobility would end up married too frequently after visiting famous Bardejov Spa.

Spa resort Bardejovské Kúpele is one of the most renowned in the Middle Europe. It was the Russian emperor Alexander I. who in 1821 pronounced that: “Here is (TN: where I want) to live and die!”

That’s it – the concise information about one remarkable town. We invite you wholeheartedly to Bardejov, and we are looking forward to your visit!

Translated by:
Mgr. Tomáš Fedorko