It's tough competition in the medieval wonderland of East Slovakia, but Bardejov wins the award for our favourite old town square, which would look barely a brick out of place 400 years ago. Bardejov received its royal charter in 1376 and grew rich on trade between Poland and Russia into the 16th century.
If you've seen a brochure or postcard of Slovakia, you've probably seen a photograph of Čičmany (www.cicmany.viapvt.sk); dark log homes painted with white geometric patterns fill this traditional village. This is no skanzen; most houses are private residences, but Radenov House is a museum. There's a gift shop, a small restaurant and a pension in the long, narrow settlement.
A time-trapped medieval delight, Banská Štiavnica enjoyed a 16th-century heyday as an internationally renowned architectural showcase and grew to become the old Hungarian Kingdom's third-largest city. As the minerals ran out and mines closed, progress stopped, leaving buildings wonderfully untouched.