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100 years of Danube Shipping

Discover the stories of Slovak ships on rivers, seas and oceans

Since time immemorial, the Danube has served as a transport artery. From the beginning of the 19th century, modern shipping began to develop on it. Ports in Bratislava, Komárno and Štúrovo were gradually established on the Slovak section of the Danube.


Navigation business in the newly established Czechoslovak state began in March 1919 with the establishment of the Czechoslovak Danube Transport Authority (ČSDÚ) based in Bratislava. Czechoslovakia was able to use 19 tugboats and 460 cargo boats from the fleet of the First Danube Steamboat Shipping Company (DDSG) and the Hungarian Royal River and Sea Shipping Company (MFTR) free of charge.

In the end, ČSDÚ rented 5 steam side-wheel tugs and 44 cargo boats from the DDSG. In addition, he repaired a larger number of boats detained in Komárno. On October 20, 1919, he was the first to sail on the Danube.


The economic situation of the new Czechoslovak state stabilized so much in the first half of 1922 that the state administration could start negotiations on the establishment of shipping joint-stock companies on the Danube and the Elbe. Since then, a shipping company has provided transport on the Danube, the current successor of which is the joint-stock company Slovak Shipping and Ports (SPaP).

Its main mission is foreign and domestic transport of goods by inland waterways, transport of goods by cargo barges, transhipment and storage of goods, as well as forwarding activities in inland sea ports and transhipment centres.

The exhibition presents the centuries-old history of navigation in Slovakia from the establishment of the company in 1922 to the present day. Visitors can familiarize themselves with the history of the cruise company through information panels, large-scale paintings, maps, as well as period artifacts. There are also period documents, but also various machinery and ship equipment that were used on ships on the Danube. Boat bells, anchors of various types, propellers or radio stations will be presented. The piston of a boat engine with a diameter of 350 mm will also surely draw the attention.


This exhibition will certainly appeal to a wider range of visitors of all ages. Looking at the unique models of ships that sailed under the flag of the cruise company, both little as well as the big ones will come to their own.