(Photo by: Juanma Pérez Rabasco)
Caption: Cross the Dragon Bridge in Ljubljana, Slovenia… if you dare!
Why You Should Go to Slovenia
Slovenia, or the Republic of Slovenia as it’s officially called, was once home to the Roman Empire, the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and even a part of Yugoslavia for numerous years. In 1991, Slovenia became its own country, and it proudly sits on some prime European real estate. Nestled between Italy, Austria, Hungary, and Croatia, Slovenia is home to everything from the glorious Alps to Mediterranean beaches. You can do it all in Slovenia, and visitors enjoy some incredible architecture nestled among breathtaking natural landscapes! Sit back and let me tell you why you should go to Slovenia.
Go to Ljubljana
Let’s begin in Slovenia’s capital city, Ljubljana. If you’re envisioning a bustling metropolis filled with massive transportation corridors and tons of people, well, let’s just say that you’ll be pleasantly disappointed. Many describe Ljubljana as “pint-sized,” and it is. You can pretty much walk around the entire city, and it is well worth the stroll. Cobblestone streets, a river running through the city’s center, Ljubljana Castle, Old Town, and the Dragon Bridge make wandering Ljubljana’s streets a primary reason why you should go to Slovenia.
Go to Lake Bled
Head to the Julian Alps – you’ll find them in the northwestern part of the country – and visit Lake Bled. Not only will you be blown away by the picturesque scenery of the lake and its surrounding alpine forests, but you’ll also get to visit a centuries-old castle, named Bled Castle, of course! The beauty of Lake Bled is legendary, with clear blue-green waters that you can dive into, if you’re brave enough – the water is a bit cold. Bled Castle dates back to the 11th century and offers its visitors a museum, local art, and panoramic views of the lake and surrounding areas.
Go to Vintgar Gorge
Near Lake Bled, Vintgar Gorge offers its visitors a natural wonder that can be explored two ways depending on your fitness level. For those of you looking for a low-impact workout, marvel at Vintgar Gorge by walking over its many bridges or spending time in its viewing galleries. Those looking for a real forest trek can take a higher-impact trail alongside the gorge’s rushing waters. Either way, Vintgar Gorge is perhaps one of the most beautiful natural sites in the world.
Go to Triglav National Park
Since I’m talking about natural beauty, we may as well talk about Slovenia’s only national park. Triglav National Park is home to Mount Triglav, Slovenia’s highest peak at nearly 9,400 feet. Serious hikers can conquer Triglav’s summit, and there are also numerous hiking trails for those of you not seeking mountain-climbing glory. You’ll be blown away by the beautiful plant life and numerous outdoor activities at Triglav National Park.
Go to the Postojna Caves
If you’re tired of wandering cobblestone streets, swimming, and hiking, then relax a little while enjoying a train ride through some of the most fascinating earth-made caves in the world. The Postojna Caves offer visitors 12 miles of underground passages filled with tons of those fascinating formations geologists call stalactites and stalagmites. You’ll be amazed by the sites underground, and if all of the physical activity hasn’t worn you out yet, wander through the close-by Skocjan caves on foot!
Go to Lipica Stud Farm
Let’s head southwest to Lipica – it’s near the border of Italy (hooray!). If you watch the Rose Parade every New Year’s Day, and you probably do, you’ve seen the stunning Lipizzaner stallions trotting proudly down the parade route. Lipizzaner stallions are beautiful horses, and the Lipica Stud Farm, located in Lipica, of course, began breeding and supplying these glorious creatures for the Hapsburg Empire way back in the 16th century. You’ll be amazed by these magnificent horses!
Go to Maribor
Maribor is Slovenia’s second-largest city behind Ljubljana. Like Ljubljana, Maribor is small and has a ton of charm! Within Maribor is Maribor Castle, which is actually more like a mansion than a castle, but it’s still really magnificent, and there’s a must-visit museum inside. Also located within Maribor is a Guinness World Record-holder. If you’re a wine aficionado, you probably already know that Maribor, Slovenia, is home to the world’s oldest wine vine – it’s 400 years old. How cool is that!
These activities are just the tip of Slovenia. This European country is astoundingly beautiful, filled with natural geology that rivals other European nations. Slovenia is small enough that you can actually visit the entire country while you’re there, and its people are a welcoming and wonderful sort. Bottom line? Go to Slovenia!