Slovakia What are some good Slovak films

Slovakia

1. Topography 1.1 Location in Europe The Slovak Republic - in Slovak Slovenská republika or in short Slovensko - Slovakia is located in the east of Central Europe. Slovakia borders Poland to the north and Ukraine to the east. In the south lies the border with Hungary. The western neighbors are Austria and the Czech Republic. With an area of ​​49,035 km², Slovakia is about 1/7 the size of Germany and with over 5.4 million inhabitants about 1/15 of the German population. In addition to over 85% Slovaks, the country's population consists of around 10% Hungarians and almost 2% Roma. Other minorities are Czechs, Ruthenians, Ukrainians and Germans. With an average age of only 35.5 years, Slovakia is one of the European countries with a particularly young population. Slovakia has been a member of the European Union since May 1, 2004. 1.2 Natural environment and climate From the plains of the Danube in the south to the mountains of the High Tatras in the north, Slovakia has a multitude of varied and wonderful landscapes. In the north, the mountain ranges of the Carpathians shape the picture. They do not form a single mountain range, but are divided into various low and high mountains such as the Little Carpathians, the High Tatras, the Low Tatras opposite and the Beskids. The mountains of the Lesser and Greater Fatra and the Slovak Ore Mountains - which occupy most of the center of the country - also belong to the Carpathian Mountains. In the south-west Slovakia is part of the Little Hungarian Plain. In the south-east of the country, the East Slovak lowlands extend. The climate of Slovakia is continental with dry, hot summers and wet, cold winters. The coldest month is January, July and August are the warmest. At higher altitudes there is snow for more than 120 days a year. 1.3 Mountains The Carpathian Mountains occupy most of the country. They form an arch over 1,300 km long and 100–350 km wide, open to the west, which begins near Bratislava as a continuation of the Alps and ends in Romania at the Iron Gate. Similar to the Alps, the Carpathians are divided into different parts. The Outer Carpathians stretch across the border area between the Czech Republic and Slovakia and the border area between Slovakia and Poland. The Inner Carpathians, which connect to the south, comprise the highest mountains in the Carpathian Mountains. One part of the Tatra Mountains is the High Tatras, in Slovak “Vysoké Tatry”. It is the highest part of the Carpathian Mountains and two thirds belong to Slovakia and one third to Poland. In both countries it is under special protection as a national park and is part of the UNESCO biosphere reserve. The Gerlachovský štít - in German Gerlsdorfer Spitze - is at 2,655 m the highest mountain in the High Tatras, the Carpathians as a whole and Slovakia. The High Tatras are often referred to as the "smallest high mountains in the world" in terms of area - but by no means in terms of height. The mountains offer an abundance of natural beauties such as the Štrbské pleso here - Lake Tschirmer, a glacial lake. On November 19, 2004, a hurricane destroyed almost half of all trees on the Slovak side of the High Tatras. The path of devastation is 3 kilometers wide and 50 kilometers long. The massive Slovak Ore Mountains extend to the south. It is the largest mountain range in Slovakia in terms of area. Its relief is massive and mostly plateau-like. The once rich ore deposits such as iron, manganese, copper, lead, tin and antimony have always been mined, but more intensively since the 14th century, and are now largely exhausted. The Fatra denotes two mountain ranges in the north-west and the middle of Slovakia: The Big and Little Fatra. They belong to the Slovak part of the Carpathian Mountains. Both mountain ranges are national parks. Even bears still live here. The Forest Carpathians begin in eastern Slovakia - a northern part of the Eastern Carpathians - which then continue to Ukraine and Romania. The name of the mountain refers to the partly original and unused forests in the region. Original customs can still be found in this area. 1.4 Plains and rivers In the south-west, the Little Hungarian Plain extends north over the Danube to the edge of the mountains of the Slovak Carpathians and into their wide river valleys. It's a flat, fertile landscape. Geotectonically, the Small Hungarian Plain is a break between the Eastern Alps and the Carpathian Arch. The Eastern Slovak Lowland, Východoslovenská nížina, is part of the Great Hungarian Plain. It extends in the southeast of the country and is at its deepest points about 90 to 100 meters above sea level. This plain is mainly drained by tributaries of the Hungarian Tisza and the Slovak Bodrog. Immediately behind the Austrian-Slovak border, the Dunaj - the Danube - passes the Slovak capital Bratislava. The Dunaj initially briefly forms the border with Austria, then flows through the Slovak capital and finally forms the border with Hungary. The Waag - Váh in Slovak - is the longest river in Slovakia at 403 km. It is created near the center of the country by the confluence of the White Waag and the Black Waag. In its further course it flows through the large Liptov reservoir, alternates between broad plains and narrow breakthrough valleys, circles the high mountain ranges of Slovakia in a large semicircle and flows into the Danube at Komárno. The March, Morava in Slovak, forms the border river between the Czech Republic and Slovakia or Austria and Slovakia in its lower reaches. It flows into the Danube below Devín Castle near Bratislava. Slovakia has several reservoirs. The best known is the Liptov reservoir. 45 km² of Slovakia is covered by water. 2. History 2.1 The Slovaks under the Hungarian crown For much of the 20th century the history of Slovakia is also a history of Czechoslovakia. Around 500 BC The Slavic ancestors of today's Slovaks came. At the beginning of the 9th century, the Great Moravian Empire, a Slavic principality, existed in what is now Slovakia. In the 11th century the area became part of the Kingdom of Hungary. Today's Bratislava became the capital and coronation city in 1536 and remained so until 1848. The Slovaks now shared the history of the Hungarian kingdom for more than a thousand years, which remained part of the Habsburg Danube Monarchy until the First World War. 2.2 Unification and division of Czechoslovakia With the breakup of Austria-Hungary, the Slovaks merged with the Czechs in 1918 to form the independent Czechoslovak Republic. After the Second World War, the unity of the Czechs and Slovaks under the leadership of the Communist Party was restored and the country belonged to the Eastern Bloc for more than 40 years. The March became the insurmountable border to the west. It was not until 1989 that the non-violent system change from communism to democracy was achieved in the so-called “Velvet Revolution”. The partition of Czechoslovakia on January 1, 1993 also proceeded peacefully. A Czech and a Slovak republic was founded. On March 29, 2004 the country became a member of NATO and on May 1, 2004 Slovakia joined the European Union together with the Czech Republic and 8 other countries. 3. Economy 3.1 Industry and agriculture During communist rule, the predominantly agricultural Slovakia was developed into a center of heavy industry. In the areas of steel production, the chemical industry and the armaments industry, Slovakia was a leader among the Warsaw Pact states. Slovakia was considered the armory of the Warsaw Pact. The social upheaval at the beginning of the 1990s resulted in the restructuring and closure of entire branches of the economy. However, an economic boom began in the late 1990s and today the country is a popular production location. The share of agriculture in the gross domestic product is now between 3 and 4%. About 6% of the workforce work in agriculture. The main agricultural products are grain, potatoes, sugar beets, soybeans, fruits, pigs, cattle, poultry and wood. But also hops, because beer has a long tradition in Slovakia. Slovak industry employs around 30% of the working population and is booming. Leading branches of industry are -  machine and vehicle construction, - the chemical and pharmaceutical industry, - power generation and - metal production. Especially because of the flat tax rate, the cheap labor but also because of the central location in Europe, more and more large foreign companies are settling in Slovakia. The most important trading partner and investor for Slovakia is Germany with over 1/3. In the Volkswagen plant in Bratislava, near the Austrian border, around 6,500 employees manufacture the Golf and Bora models as well as transmissions and related components. In addition, the VW Touareg will be completely built in the Slovak VW plant in Bratislava. In 2006, PSA Peugeot Citroen opened a new plant in Trnava. The steel works of U. S. Steel near the city of Košice in Eastern Slovakia are the most important employer in this region and the largest manufacturer of rolled steel in Central Europe with over 16,000 employees. The quality of the factory of the Slovak aluminum giant AluTiRex is one of the best in the world. This is the most important electrolysis company within a radius of 1,000 kilometers. In Komárno on the Danube, the Slovenské Lodenice shipyard even builds ocean-going ships. 3.2 Energy and mining Slovakia has six power plants. They provide most of the electricity required. Two of these power plants are nuclear power plants: Mochovce and Jaslovské Bohunice. Units I and II of the Bohunice nuclear power plant are to be shut down by 2008. The large-scale Gabčíkovo power plant is a run-of-river power plant and uses the hydropower of the Danube. It is the largest power plant in Slovakia and generates around 11% of the national electricity demand. A large oil refinery is located in the capital, Bratislava. The most important mineral resources are lignite, small amounts of iron ore, copper and manganese ore, and salt. 4. Tourism 4.1 Popular holiday destinations The alpine landscape of the Tatras is the main tourist attraction in Slovakia. Around the towns of Poprad and Štrbské Pleso there are superbly developed winter sports and hiking areas with opportunities for mountaineering and skiing. Another popular form of vacation, besides hiking, is hunting in Slovakia, as there is still almost untouched nature here. The medieval Spišský hrad (Spišský hrad) in eastern Slovakia has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1993. It is enthroned on a 634 m high rocky limestone cone and is the largest castle in Central Europe. Numerous health resorts attract visitors. The thermal health resort Piešťany - located on the Waag in western Slovakia - with its natural healing springs and high standard of medical care is one of the most popular and most visited in Slovakia. There are still very picturesque wooden churches in eastern Slovakia. 4.2 Cities worth seeing Slovakia also has a lot to offer the culturally interested visitor. Their proximity to the border with several countries and the many ethnic minorities make the two larger cities of Bratislava and Košice particularly interesting. The former Austro-Hungarian cities have an excellently preserved old town. Košice, in German Kaschau, is located in eastern Slovakia, has 234,969 inhabitants, making it the second largest city in the country. The St. Elisabeth Cathedral or Košice Cathedral is located in the center of the city of Košice and is the largest church in Slovakia. Košice is a university town and, in addition to the state theater - the Štátne Divadlo - also has the first professionally run Roma theater. With almost 91,000 inhabitants, Prešov is the third largest city in Slovakia. The city has a historically significant old town. An important architectural monument is the St. Nicholas Church, a late Gothic hall church. Next to Bratislava, Nitra is probably the oldest city in Slovakia. The city has 86,000 inhabitants and is primarily a cultural and school center. The Nitra Castle with its nested churches, the bishop's seat and the surrounding fortifications, is one of the most interesting building complexes in Slovakia. Banská Bystrica is located roughly in the geographic center of the country on the Hron River. The city has about 82,000 inhabitants and is historically a famous mining town of the Middle Ages and modern times. The beautifully designed main square is well worth seeing. Trenčín is an important center of the central Waag Valley in western Slovakia near the border with the Czech Republic. The city has about 57,000 inhabitants. The castle of the same name towers over the city on a steep cliff. From here you have a magnificent view of the city and the Waag valley. 4.3 The capital Bratislava In a triangle on the Danube, directly on the state borders with Austria and Hungary, not far from the border with the Czech Republic and only about 60 km from Vienna is the Slovak capital Bratislava - in German Pressburg. With 425,000 inhabitants, Bratislava is the largest city in the country and also the political, economic and cultural center of Slovakia. Bratislava lies on the Danube, which is up to 300 meters wide here and is spanned by several bridges in the city. The most famous and most modern is the Nový Most, the New Bridge, a huge road and pedestrian bridge stretched from the southern bank of the Danube towards the old town center, which is one of the town's landmarks. Another landmark of the city rises on a rock on the left bank of the Danube - Bratislava Castle. The imposing, four-towered building can also be found in the Bratislava coat of arms. Upstream from the castle is the modern building of the Slovak Parliament. Bratislava has a picturesque old town, which is characterized, especially in the city center, by the late baroque architectural style of the Theresian period. The Slovak National Theater and the Slovak Philharmonic highlight the cultural importance of the city. The Hungarian kings were crowned from 1563 to 1830 in the Crown Cathedral of St. Martin, St. Martin's Cathedral. A gold-plated crown on the top of the 85-meter-high tower is still a reminder today. Maria Theresa was also crowned Queen of Hungary here in 1740. Other important sights are: - The main square with the old town hall and the Maximilians or Roland fountain, the oldest fountain in the city -  the Palais Grassalkovich, today's seat of the President of Slovakia - and the Michaelertor in Michaelergasse. The large district of Petrzalka has a particularly high population density. The many apartment blocks in prefabricated construction, however, offer a little varied picture. 5. Infrastructure, population and cultural life 5.1 The transport network The transport network is oriented towards Bratislava in the west and Košice in the east. Since the country is very mountainous, it is based on the valleys and rivers. The most important rail connection is the electrified east-west connection from the Ukraine via Košice to Bratislava with continuation to the Czech Republic, Vienna and Hungary. The motorway network is being expanded. The main connections run parallel to the railways. There is also a well-developed network of trunk roads. Bratislava is an international road and rail hub. The largest airport in Slovakia, Letisko Bratislava, has its catchment areas in Austria, Slovakia, the Czech Republic and Hungary. The second major airport in the country is Letisko Košice. Since June 2006, the Twin City Liner high-speed catamaran has been connecting the two capitals Vienna and Bratislava across the Danube three times a day. The journey time from Bratislava to Vienna is around 75 minutes. 5.2 Religion and language About 70% of the Slovaks belong to the Roman Catholic Church. Around 13% are non-denominational - the rest are Protestant, Greek-Catholic or a member of the Orthodox Church or of the Jewish faith. Like Czech and Polish, Slovak is one of the West Slavic languages. Slovak and Czech differ from each other mainly in certain sounds. The vocabulary is largely identical apart from the phonetic differences. In Slovak - as in Czech - the pronunciation of the first syllable is always emphasized. Slovaks and Czechs get along relatively easily, but the younger ones, who no longer grew up in the former Czechoslovakia, find it much more difficult. Since May 1, 2004, Slovak has been one of the official languages ​​in the EU. 5.3 Cultural heritage The central location of the country in the middle of the continent has always been an intersection of different cultures, whereby Slovakia not only absorbed foreign influences but also passed on its own values. Museums and galleries manage and nurture this rich and varied heritage. National and regional customs are mainly upheld in the countryside. They are associated with the various religions, especially the Roman Catholic. The Slovak writer and politician Ľudovít Štúr caused - in the first half of the 19thCentury - the elevation of the Central Slovak dialect to the written language and thus established the current version of the Slovak literary language. The founder of Pop Art, Andy Warhol, was born in Slovakia. His parents emigrated from the village of Miková near Medzilaborce - in the Carpathian Mountains - to the USA. His birth name was Andrej Warhola. 5.4 Recreational opportunities Joining the European Community brings the country closer to the other countries and opens up completely new opportunities for them to look beyond national borders. When it comes to leisure and sport, climbing and hiking in particular are very popular, due to the many mountains, also among young Slovaks. 5.5 Culinary The Slovak cuisine has been strongly influenced by its neighbors over the centuries - it is similar to the Bohemian and Hungarian cuisine. A typical national dish are the bryndzové halušky - the brim sausage. They are small potato dumplings with bacon and the famous Bryndza, a cheese made from sheep's milk. Bryndzové halušky are the pride of the population. Another national dish is pirohy, dumplings filled with sour cream. Pancakes (pancakes) and soups are eaten daily and can be varied in all flavors. And something else: KLÁRKA - a walnut cake that is particularly popular in eastern Slovakia. After the fall of the Iron Curtain and after separating from the Czech Republic, Slovakia succeeded in reestablishing itself as a separate state - which it used to be. With its numerous nature parks, its picturesque mountains and high mountains, its beautiful, up-and-coming cities, its tradition and its open-minded, friendly people, Slovakia has an important place in the east of the European Union.