26 Unique Things To Do In Slovenia
Located in Central Europe, Slovenia is a popular destination among tourists who like to climb mountains, lounge in resorts, and swim in beautiful lakes. If you are planning a trip to Slovenia, here are twenty-six things you can do while you are there.
1. Take a Trip to Lake Bled
Very few tourists can say they have been to Slovenia if they did not visit picturesque Lake Bled. This beautiful body of water with its beautiful island and hilltop castle is one of the most popular destinations in Slovenia. Visitors who come find many reasons to stay – from the picture-perfect landscape to the various cell-enclosed swimming pools and simple and sweet hikes. Lake Bled is great for a day or three and can easily be reached from Ljubljana, Kranjska, or Gora.
2. Visit Vintgar Gorge
Situated just 4km northwest of Lake Bled, Vintgar Gorge is a magical canyon that runs down Radovna Valley, thanks to the ancient flow of the Radovna River. The popular gorge is made accessible by 1.6km of boardwalk that around the River in a manner that encourages exploration and stops for pictures set onto jaw-dropping backgrounds. A trip to Vintgar Gorge will probably take 2-3 hours, so try to arrive early in the day to avoid crowds.
3. Check Out Ljubljana: The Capital City
Slovenia’s capital city is colourful and compact with lots of things to see and do. The streets are beautiful and you can stroll through them for hours, or you can talk a hike to a hilltop castle. If food is your thing, then you can try out a few local culinary establishments like Strelec Restaurant, Okrepčevalnica Čompa, or Julija. You can also visit the National Museum of Slovenia, where there are exhibitions detailing Slovenia history or visit the Museum of Modern Art.
4. Go Hiking at Triglav National Park
Of the many things to do in Slovenia, hiking is by far one of the most popular pastimes. Triglav National Park is one of the best places to visit in Slovenia if you are interested in going on a great hike. A mountain range situated in the Julian Alps, with views of Italy and Austria available to lovers of the outdoors, this park is a serious favourite among beginner and seasoned hikers as well as rock climbers.
5. Enjoy The Resort City of Piran
The colourful and coastal land of Piran is a popular resort city that attracts a large volume of tourists every year. While you are there, walk through the streets of the city, dining at whichever seafood restaurant catches your fancy. Explore Tartini Square and make your way to the majestic St. George Parish Church with its popular tower clock. Walk the medieval Walls of Piran to get the best pictures of the city.
6. Tour Predjama Castle
The Magnificent Predjama Castle was constructed in the Renaissance era in south-central Slovenia. While many have marvelled about its beauty, the most awe-inspiring fact about the castle is that it was built inside a cave and was, for a time, the residence of a young rebel knight known as Erazem Lueger. Modern-day visitors to the castle can take guided tours which include audio renditions of the castle’s exciting history along with views of secret tunnels and other interesting tidbits of information.
7. Explore Postojna Cave
In Slovenia, there are many attractions above the surface as well as underground. Tourists are able to visit twenty-two caves around the country, and among them all, the Postojna Caves are the most popular. A guided tour of the beautiful caves takes about 90 minutes; going through naturally formed passageways and halls that were cut from the mountain by the Pivka River. Explorers can marvel at sparkling karst formations that have been in the caves for millions of years. The cave is also used for a Nativity scene every December.
8. Learn the History of Franja Partisan Hospital
Franja Hospital was set up as a Partisan hospital in the Pasica Canyon, during the Second World War. Due to its well-concealed location, the enemy was unable to find it and the lives of many men and women were saved. After the war was over, Franja Hospital has turned a museum that remained open until it was destroyed by a terrible flood in the year 2007. However, it was reconstructed almost perfectly and is open to visitors once more.
9. Admire Horses at Lipica Stud Farm
Lipizzan horses are a special breed of horse that is found only in Lipica, Slovenia. Lipica Stud Farm has been in the business of breeding these magnificent beasts for more than 400 years and is currently the oldest existing stud farm in the world. Helping people forge better relationships with four-legged creatures, the Farm permits visitors to come walk through its barns and to meet with the horses in guided tours.
10. Visit the Defunct Mercury Mine Idrija
Back when mercury mining was practised in Slovenia, the Mercury Mine in Idrija was one of the largest mines in the world, second only to the Almadén mine in Spain. This former mine, however, is now an underground museum that highlights the hard lives that the Slovenian miners were subjected through. Visitors enter through Anthony’s Main Road, which is said to be among Europes oldest mine shaft entrances. The Mercury Mine in Idrija is listed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
11. See the Salt Fields of Sečovlje Salina Nature Park
The method for producing sea salt is centuries old. However, there are only a few places in the world where it is made that way. The salt pans of the Sečovlje Salina Nature Park is one such place. This process of salt production is open to be seen by visitors walking past on park trails. Lovers of body care can also visit Lepa Vida Thalasso Spa for a variety of sea-salt based massages and baths.
12. Visit Ljubljana Castle
If you are looking for places to visit in Slovenia and just happen to be in the capital city of Ljubljana, then you definitely want to visit Ljubljana Castle. Astoundingly beautiful in design, visitors to the castle are often overwhelmed with its radiance and the views it offers of the city of Ljubljana. It is also easily accessible and visitors can walk up the hill to it or take a tram.
13. Go See The Oldest Vine on Earth
The world’s oldest grape-producing wine is said to grow in the city of Maribor, which happens to be the second-largest city in Slovenia. It has grown on the façade of an old house in the Lent area since the seventeenth century. In honour of the vine, the house has been converted to a wine tasting centre, where guests can taste some of the best wines yielded from the crop of that vine.
14. Appreciate Art at the Church of the Holy Trinity
Art and Christianity are intertwined into Slovenia’s history, which is why the little village of Hrastovlje is famous for its Church of the Holy Trinity and the striking fresco, The Dance of Death (Danse Mac), which hangs inside it. Measuring seven meters long, the fresco was discovered in 1949 by Jože Pohlen. It beautifully portrays skeletons leading people in different social classes to their graves.
15. Learn War History at Kobarid Museum
After the First World War was over, the Kobarid Museum was built in order to learn, teach, and preserve the history of Slovenia’s part in the war. Much of the presentation space at the museum features work on the Soča Front, which was of prime importance to Slovenia during the war.
16. Go Skiing at the Planica Nordic Center
Being a country with lots of snow-capped mountains, the largest ski jumping hill in the world is to be found in Planica, Slovenia. Planica has been the ski capital of the world and the Planica Nordic Center was built in 2015 to show forth the grandeur of Slovenia skiing. The centre features ski jumps, a zipline, a full stadium, a wind tunnel, and more.
17. Visit the Oldest Monastery in Slovenia
Stična Abbey is not only the oldest of all monasteries in Slovenia but is also the only functional Cistercian monastery in Slovenia. Opened in the year 1136, the holy place has been converted over the centuries to house the Slovenian Museum of Religion, which preserves and preserves history related to the Stična Monastery and Roman Catholicism in Slovenia.
18. Traverse Solkan Bridge
The Solkan Bridge is a long and windy bridge that crosses the beautiful Soča River and connects Jesenice to Nova Gorica. Cross it by train and take pictures of the gorgeous Soča Valley below or admire the valley upside down by going bungee jumping off the bridge.
19. Explore Bled Castle
Set on the hill above Lake Bled, Castle Bled overlooks the lake with the city of Bled in the distance. Castle Bled is the oldest existing castle in Slovenia and is currently one of the most famous tourist attractions in the country. While it dates back to ancient times, the castle has been restored and is used for historic preservation.
20. Walk Around The Tolmin Gorge
Located about two hours from Ljubljana by car, The Tolmin Gorge shares many similarities with the Vintgar Gorge, with winding boardwalks in the same fashion. However, there are fewer crowds at Tolmin Gorge, making it more suitable for photography shoots and calm, cool walks across the suspension bridge.
21. Enjoy the Water at Peričnik Waterfall
Peričnik Waterfall is not the most popular waterfall in Slovenia (Savica Waterfall is), but visiting it is definitely a more fun experience. Hike up a challenging trail and be rewarded by a magnificent view. If you want a more magnificent experience, you can creep behind the waterfall to take pictures of the sunlight passing through the water in dazzling colours.
22. Zoom down the Vršič Pass
The Vršič Pass is a 1611 meter mountain pass that was constructed during the First World War by Russian war prisoners. The Vršič Pass is the highest existing mountain pass east of the Julian Alps. With about 50 hairpin turns to make as you traverse the road, driving down the pass is one of the coolest things to do in Slovenia.
23. Go Driving on Slovenia’s Highest Road
If the Vršič Pass is not an exciting enough drive for you, take a drive on the winding road that connects Slovenia and Italy. A truly hair-raising experience, this road features multiple hairpin turns on roads that have little to no guard rails. Driving down this road is only advisable for experienced drivers who have no fear of heights.
24. Have Fun at Lake Bohinj
For the fun lover, Lake Bohinj is definitely one of the coolest places to visit in Slovenia. This outdoor funland is full of opportunities to explore the outside world. Visitors can kayak, go hiking, learn to paddleboat, or swim in a pool or inside the lake. The Vogel cable car offers a great view of Triglav National Park and you can go marvel at the beauty of Savica waterfall.
25. Discover Radovljica
If you are looking to find a spot that is even more picturesque and secluded than Lake Bled, you may only need to drive ten minutes away to reach Radovljica – a little jewel in the heart of Slovenia. Easily bypassed, Radovljica is home to two museums; one dedicated to beekeeping and one to gingerbread.
26. Explore the Seaside Town of Koper
Koper is famous for its large harbour and was once a largely inhabited town. Now, visitors walk through the town, exploring its history as they go through Titov Trg, the bell tower, and the many airy and beautiful streets with stores and restaurants everywhere.
Slovenia is a great holiday destination for lovers of European culture. It is full of many things to see and do from hikes to swimming in lakes, to exploring great churches and more. The next time you are planning a trip to Slovenia, use this guide to plan your experience and you will have a great time.
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