Absolutely beautiful country in Central Europe, virtually undiscovered by American tourists (yet), which makes its currency exchange rate a visit of Slovakia a trip to paradise. Add to it, it is populated with very friendly people (about 5 million) who have a proverb stating Visitor to your house, God to your house.
The Carpathian Mountains start right in the "backyard" of Bratislava, the capitol of Slovakia, which is located in the South-Western corner of the country, only about 50 kilometers from Vienna.
The South-Western part of the country is a plane along the Danube River (called Dunaj in Slovak), and is characterized by amber waves of grain.
The Swiss-like Tatra Mountains are in the North, about half way between Central and Eastern Slovakia, on the border of Poland.
Between the southern planes and the northern rockies, you can find just about everything in-between. Absolutely gorgeous!
Slovakia is full of castles, mostly in the mountains, some completely ruined, some in perfect shape. The Bojnice Castle is probably the most famous. It looks quite like the Magic Castle in Disneyland, but is much bigger (well, it would be more fair to say that the Disney Castle looks like the Bojnice Castle, actually).