Slovakia, officially the Slovak Republic, is a landlocked country in Central Europe. It is bordered by Poland to the north, Ukraine to the east, Hungary to the south, Austria to the west, and the Czech Republic to the northwest. Slovakia’s territory spans about 49,000 square kilometers and is mostly mountainous. Heavily-forested, the rugged Ore Mountains dominate the central regions of Slovakia, while the Carpathian Mountains cover its northern borders with the Czech Republic and Poland. The tallest peaks are in the Tatra Mountains. The highest point is Gerlach Peak, rising to 8,743 ft. (2,665m) The mountains slope into the fertile lowlands of the Danube River plain as well as to its southeastern border with Ukraine. Significant rivers include the Danube, Morava, Hron, Hornad and Vah. The Hron, is a 298 km long tributary of the Danube and the second-longest river in Slovakia. Its basin covers approximately 11% of Slovakia’s territory.
The lowest point of Slovakia lies near a place where the Bodrog River crosses the border with Hungary, at 308 ft (94m) above sea level. Slovakia is rich in small natural lakes, as well as reservoirs that were built in order to store water to prevent flooding or to generate electricity. And Slovakia is the only European country outside of Scandinavia to have a geyser. Located near Kosice, the geyser shoots 1,056 gallons of water 98 feet into the air for 20 minutes once every 32-34 hours.
Key cities in Slovakia include: Bratislava, Kosice, Zilina, Presov, Nitra, Banska Bystrica, Martin, Trnava, Trencin, Poprad.
Historical, Cultural facts & Religion
Early Slovakia Slavs settled in what is now Slovakia in the 6th century AD. They were soon conquered by a people called the Avars but at the end of the 8th century they drove out the Avars. In the 9th century, Slovakia became part of the state of Great Moravia, which included parts of Germany, Hungary, and Poland. The culture of Slovakia has various folk traditions influenced by its location in Central Europe. It shares similarities with Austrian, German, Polish, Hungarian and Ukrainian culture.
Brief Country History
The earliest artifacts uncovered by Archaeologists in Slovakia date to as far as 270,000 BC. One of these is the oldest female statue carved from a mammoth bone and was found in Moravany nad Vhom. Evidence of commercial exchanges taking place has been also confirmed by the discovery of necklaces made from shells. Around 500 BC, a people known as the Celts settled in the area. They used silver coins in which the name of the Celtic Kings was written. Five hundred years later the Romans established their presence in the region. Waves of different people and cultures came in and settled in afterward.
In the 5th century, the Slavs achieved dominance over the entire area of modern Slovakia. In 863, Saint Cyril, a Byzantine missionary introduced the first Slavic alphabet and gospel written in the Slavonic language. In the early 10th century the Moravian Empire fell. The Hungarians then annexed the whole territory. During the middle ages, Slovakia survived the Mongol invasion and the famine that followed. The size and number of towns increased and the arts flourished. In the early 16th century the Hungarians themselves were annexed into the Ottoman Empire but they became independent again in the late 17th century.
By the end of the First World War, Slovakia became independent of Hungary and together with Bohemia and Moravia formed a nation called Czechoslovakia. In 1939 Slovaks declared independence and allied themselves with Germany during the Second World War. However, a resistance movement waged bloody guerrilla warfare against the Germans. After the war, Czechoslovakia was reestablished and joined the Warsaw Pact.
In 1989 communist rule ended and in 1992 Slovakia parted ways with the Czechs and once again became an independent state. It is a current member of NATO and the European Union. It has also adopted the Euro as its national currency.
Language (s) Written & Spoken
Slovak is the language spoken in Slovakia, a country in Central Europe. It is a Slavic language, like Russian, Polish and many other East European languages. It is very similar to Czech, and Czechs and Slovaks understand each other quite well when they speak their own language.
Important Types of Commerce in Slovakia
Major industries are metal and metal products; food and beverages; electricity, gas, coke, oil, nuclear fuel; chemicals and manmade fibers; machinery; paper and printing; earthenware and ceramics; transport vehicles; textiles; electrical and optical apparatus; and, rubber products.
Language Services US and others will provide working with Slovakia
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