30 Sep Ljubljaba Travel Tips + Photos
Start your Slovenia trip in its capital city, Ljubljana!
I loved Ljubljana’s easy charm! Start your Slovenia trip from Ljubljana, an immensely charming capital city. The Ljubljana River curves around the Old Town, which littered with Baroque style buildings, restaurants and cafes to linger in and pedestrian-friendly streets. And with a population of only 280,000, Ljubljana never felt overwhelming.
How I spent my time in Ljubljana? I flew to Slovenia from Amsterdam for a long weekend. In the 3 days that I was there, I did a walking City + Food tour of Ljubljana and day trips to Lake Bled, Predjama Castle and Postojna Cave. Read on to get my Ljubljana Travel Tips.
Some of the top sights of Ljubljana are the Ljubljana Castle, Prešernov trg square, Central Market, Dragon Bridge and the famous Triple Bridge. You can easily spend 2-3 days here, checking out its main sites, eating great local food and drinking great Slovenian wines. My favourite thing about Ljubljana though is just how pedestrian-friendly the city is. I loved taking leisurely walks, taking photos and exploring the different neighbourhoods never feeling rushed or overwhelmed.
Ljubljana – a great place to Eat, Drink and be Merry!
Food in Ljubljana
If you have read my travel blog, you know how much I love food and wine! I was pleasantly surprised to find that Ljubljana (and Slovenia in general) has a great food and wine scene. And why not? The country is surrounded by Italy, Austria, Hungary and Croatia and as a result, a lot of its food is influenced by these places. While it doesn’t have a strong culinary tradition of its own, Slovenia can thank Italy for some fantastic pasta and sauces, Austria for pastries, Hungary for sausages and meats and Croatia for seafood dishes that you can find here.
Slovenian wine is highly underrated! Not only was the food a pleasant surprise, so were the wines. Slovenia shares its terroir with Italy and Croatia and as a result, you can find wonderful local wines that are as good as in these other countries. And the prices are wonderful too! Very little wine gets imported outside of Slovenia so the world doesn’t know much about Slovenian wines. There are 3 main wine regions in the country.
1. Drava Region – largest region, subdivided into 7 districts and producing great whites. 97% of wines made in Drava are whites.
2. Lower Sava Region – known for sparkling whites and fantastic reds.
3. Littoral Region – most well-known region, producing high-quality whites.
Ljubljana is also (in)famous for its nightlife. There are some great bars here but also some seedy ones. Think of it as Amsterdam of Central Europe. Because it is an affordable destination, and because of its live-and-let-live attitude, in summer it tends to attract the party crowd. During peak season, lots come here for bachelor/bachelorette parties or to drink and let loose. If this does not sound appealing, then avoid the summer months of July and August.
Architecture in Ljubljana is eclectic!
In addition to great food and wine, Ljubljana has some really interesting architecture. Like the famous Vurnik House, an example of Slovenian nationalistic style architecture (the pink house pictured below).
Also make sure to check out the Parliament Building (pictured below, left), which is decorated with naked people (why naked?!) and the cool spiral staircase in Nebotičnik, (pictured below, right).
Nebotičnik is a high-rise building in the centre of Ljubljana, which also houses a restaurant/bar on the top floor and that offers one of the best views of the city. Go the to the restaurant/bar at the end of the day, have a glass of wine and enjoy the views. Check out the sunset from Nebotičnik below (left) and the panoramic view of the Old Town (right).
If however, you like your architecture less eclectic and more classical, then there’s plenty of that too. There’s Baroque churches like the Ursuline Church (left) and the Franciscan Church of the Annunciation (right).
And there’s also the Ljubljana Cathedral. From the outside, the Cathedral looks dull but inside, however, is gorgeous. And best of all, the entrance is free. Check out the photo below.
Take some shoes comfortable and take a hike!
The best way to explore Ljubljana is on foot. Make sure take a pair of comfortable and walk! I found it to be one of the most pedestrian-friendly cities in Europe. And clean and safe.