Slovenia

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Slovenia - A Land of Countless Attractions
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SLOVENIA

Slovenia is a country that represents crossroad in European cultural and trade routes.The territory of Slovenia is mostly consisted of mountains which gives it continental climate with the exception of Slovene Littoral that has a sub-Mediterranean climate and the north-western area that has an Alpine climate. Slovenia used to be part of many different state formations, including the Roman Empire and the Holy Roman Empire, later followed by the Habsurg Monarchy.

FUN FACTS

  • The official symbol of Ljubljana is the dragon which was said to have been slayed by Jason
  • Triglav National Park is one of the oldest parks in Europe
  • Half of Slovenia’s total surface area is forest
  • The world’s largest ski jump is in Slovenia
  • World’s oldest vine, at 400 years old, is located in town of Maribor.
  • There are still over 400 Brown Bears in Slovenia
  • There are over 10 000 caves in Slovenia.
  • If couples marry at the church on Bled Island the groom must carry the bride up the 99 steps.
  • Slovenia has many food festivals like the Salt Makers Festival, Cabbage Festival, Chestnut Sunday and Bean day.
  • In Slovenia, you can pay to stay in a prison cell at the Hostel Celica in Ljubljana

WHY VISIT SLOVENIA

1. Beauty of Lake Bled

Lake Bled posses many beauty, starting with beautiful turquoise lake. It also has stunning steeled church on a tiny islet which is in a shape of tear. That plus being set against a backdrop of snow-capped mountains is a gorgeous view. Alongside the beautiful sight you can also enjoy fresh mountain air while rowing traditional pletna boat. You can also take a dip in the crystal-clear waters, or go for a hike up the hill to the medieval Bled Castle and enjoy the magnificent view from there.

2. Beautiful capital, Ljubljana

The beautiful capital city of Slovenia, Ljubljana, is a great pedestrianized zone together with pretty Ljubljanica river. If you wish to enjoy astonishing views then take the glass funicular up to Ljubljana Caste, where you can also enjoy the food in two of the city’s top restaurants - Gostilna na Gradu and Strelac. Beneath the Ljubljana castle is the Old Town from 19th century which consists of wooden shop fronts, cobblestone streets and quiet courtyards.

3. Caves

Slovenia is a country that is very famous for having many caves. The Karst region hides a treasure chest of secrets under its relatively unassuming surface. The underground water has carved out vast subterranean landscapes.

4. Coastal sunsets and saltwater spas

Even tough Slovenia doesn’t have a lot of coastline, it has beautiful Venetian Gothic architecture. There is also a pretty marina crammed with colorful boats.

5. Maribo’s wine

The city of Maribor gain its reputation through wine-growing trade that dates back to Middle Ages. One famous vine has lasted throughout Maribor’s vine cultural history.

6. Sentrupert’s rural nostalgia

The Slovenian kozolec used to be a simple agrarian tool but now it has grown into a symbol of national pride. It is often decorated with latticed woodwork, the most elaborate hay rack are status symbols for farmers. In 2003. open-air museum in Sentrupert began to showcase the kozolec and its history.

LJUBLJANA

Ljubljana being the capital city represents the political and cultural heart of Slovenia. It is also an important European business, exhibition, commercial and congressional center. Town is filled with people who are very friendly. The city is categorized as a medium sized European city, but it offers everything a metropolis does while preserving its small town charm.

The architecture of the city is one part Italian baroque and one part Art Nouveau, which is the style of the numerous buildings erected right after the earthquake of 1895. Like every other metropolis it has many theaters, museums and galleries. Most people who visit this city get the impression that it is relatively young city cause it is home to over 50 000 students who give that special vibe.

FUN FACTS

  • There is fog every morning during fall.
  • Nearly everyone speaks English in Ljubljana.
  • There are more people practicing sports than sitting in McDonald’s  
  • People are very polite
  • Hotels usually have one electricity plug per room, 2 at the most.

WHY VISIT LJUBLJANA

1. Its beautiful

Ljubljana is a beautiful fairy tale like city. It is mix of Baroque architecture and an old castle looking style all over it. The river that goes trough the center of the city which together with many bridges, cobblestone walkways form a beautiful scenery. The biggest perk is that due to its small size everything can be seen on foot in just one day.

2. Not many tourists

Probably the one of the best things is that there are very few tourists, at least compared to Prague, Vienna or Budapest, but the vibe and architecture that it has makes it good enough to be able to compete with these European metropolis.

3. Food

Slovenia has a lot of regional delicacies to offer as well as its own traditional food. Every Friday in Ljubljana there is a street food market. Locals head there for their lunch or an after work aperitif and tourist can enjoy in many types of international cuisine as well as traditional Slovenian cuisine.

4. It’s a festival city

Ljubljana also has many festival to offer during the year. Some of them are International Street Theater Festival, Ljubljana Festival and Ljubljana Jazz Festival.

5. Bike friendly city

Ljubljana is also a great city for cycling. With bike lanes cross-crossing the city and a public bike scheme used by locals and tourists.

TOP PLACES TO VISIT

1. Ljubljana

Ljubljana may be a small capital city, but it has plenty to offer. Above the city is Ljubljana Castle which is accessible by funicular or by a steep but scenic walk.While you walk around the city you will be able to notice a lot of pictures and statues of dragons which represents the mythological origins of the city. According to legend, the Greek hero Jason and his Argonauts killed a monster in a swamp on the present site of Ljubljana.

2. Bled

This small, fairy-tale like town is probably the most popular resort in Slovenia. People come here to enjoy the stunning views of the lake with its small church that sits on an islet in the center of the lake.

3. Skocjan Caves

Slovenia is famous for its great number of underground caves. Skocjan Caves is a system of underground caves that is also listen in UNESCO world heritage site and has the highest cave hall in Europe. The caves are filled with impressive stalagmites and stalactites and are also home to as much as 15 species of bats.

4. Piran

This beautiful coastal town is filled with streets which are lined with Venetian style buildings. The most impressive attraction is St Georges Church which stands tall over the town and from the hill that it sits on you can see all the way to the ocean.

5. Predjama Castle

Predjima Castle sits on a 123m tall cliff and is built into the mouth of a cave. It is 700 years old and became famous thanks to the legend of a knight named Erazem Lueger, who like Robin Hood, stole from the rich and gave to the poor. In July you can watch annual medieval dueling tournament. 

6. Soca valley

If you are a lover of extreme sports then you should definitively visit this beautiful turquoise river Soca. You can enjoy Paragliding and rafting, but if you are more into slower pace things then going for a hike would be a great choice, or enjoy horse riding.

7. Maribor

The second largest city is the city of Maribor. It is located very close to the border with Austria and built up along the banks of the river Drava. This city is very famous for its vine growing industry that surrounds the city as well as its endless outdoor recreation opportunities.

8. Celje

Celje is the oldest city in Slovenia. It is a small city on the banks of the Savinja river. The enormous castle, which was built in the 24th century is this city’s biggest attraction. You can spend your day here walking through Old Celje, which is the historic downtown where buildings date back all the way to medieval times and you can stroll along cobblestone roads, dine at traditional restaurants or admire the traditional architecture.

9. Triglav National Park

If you want to take a break and enjoy natural places then Triglav National Park is the ideal spot for you to visit. Most of the park is in the Julian Alps. Highlights of the region include the towering peak of Mount Triglav as wells as the calm waters of Lake Bohinj. If you wish to enjoy spectacular views, you can hike Mount Triglav, or you can take the easy way out and ride on the Vogel Cable car ride. There is also a wooden footbridge from the 19th century for those who feel adventurous enough or a steep staircase which will let you enjoy the rushing waters of the Savica Waterfall.

10. Koper

Koper is one of the oldest towns and a major port in Slovenia. Hence representing an important part of the country’s infrastructure. This town also used to be part of the Venetian Empire but later became part of Yugoslavia. Today it is a lesser-known destination but still it offers several enjoyable attractions.

TOP PLACES

1. Dragon Bridge

The famous Dragon Bridge was built in 1901. for the 40th anniversary of Emperor Franc Jozef I’s rule and it symbolizes the history, beauty and architectural style of Ljubljana.

2. Tivoli Park

Trivoli park is located on the northern outskirts of the Center District and is the green heart of Ljubljana. It is a beautiful place great for relaxing. Besides nature, it also offers facilities such as playgrounds, fountains, ponds and so on.

3. Triple Bridge

This bridge is the most famous and most beautiful bridge in the whole city. It connects the modern city to the Old Town. The area around the bridge is packed with bars and restaurants with delicious food.

4. Preseren Square

Presren square is located in the old town and is the central square of Ljubljana. It is surrounded by stunning architecture. The cobbled plaza being a major meeting point, also is the place where many carnivals, concerts and festivals take place.

5. Ljubljana Castle

Ljubljana Castle represents symbol of the city that is hard to miss. It is located on a small hill in the center of Ljubljana. Some part of the structure date back to the 15th century. This mighty medieval fortress has served as military housing as well as the royal residence for several centuries. Inside of the castle are Chapel of St George and coat of arms of Carniolian provincial governors. Today, this castle is an oasis in the middle of the Old town and is a place where people go to relax or go for a walk. On top of that it also serves a venue for cultural and entertaining events.

6. Cathedral of St Nicholas

This beautiful Baroque cathedral with its twin towers and the green colored dome was built to honor Saint Nicholas, the patron saint of fishermen and boatmen. It dates back to the early 18th century, but was renovated and had bronze doors added for the Pope John Paul II’s visit in 1996.

7. Metelkova Mesto 

If you are interested in alternative cultural centers then u should visit Metelkova Mesto. It is a center that was developed from a squat in a former army barracks and became one of the liveliest cultural, artistic, social and intellectual urban areas in Ljubljana which brings together a variety of different artistic practices and events. Thanks to many bars, public art and graffiti this area is very colorful.

8. Congress Square

The Congress Square was built in 1821. and was used for ceremonial purposes. It is surrounded by beautiful green trees and some of the most important buildings in Ljubljana.

9. Ljubljanica River

The main River that runs through the old town of Ljubljana and it divides the medieval center from the rest of the city. There is a big number of cafes and restaurants which makes it the perfect place for sitting and watching ho the world goes by. If you want you can also enjoy the walk alongside the river and that way discover the beautiful city of Ljubljana.

10. Central Market

This lively open-air market has always been a place where locals would meet and enjoy themselves. In this market which is open everyday except on Sundays, you can buy all kinds of fresh fruits and vegetables, meat and dairy products.

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