On a journey of discovery through Slovenia

A fascinating journey of discovery...

by Helga Meier, mautwelt.de - 21 November 2023

Take a fascinating journey of discovery through Slovenia, a country rich in cultural treasures, breathtaking nature and historic cities. These travel tips will guide you through the most important sights without having to travel all over the country.

From the charming capital Ljubljana to the majestic Julian Alps and the picturesque coastal towns - experience Slovenia's diversity on an efficient tour. Repeatedly referred to as Europe's best-kept secret, Slovenia will inspire you too.

Ljubljana - The charming capital city

The tour starts in the capital Ljubljana, where you can experience historic architecture, cosy cafés and the picturesque Ljubljana River. Although the city was partially destroyed by an earthquake in 1895, today it is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. The centre of Ljubljana is Presernov Trg with three adjacent bridges over the Ljubljana River and a well-known landmark of the city. Be sure to visit Ljubljana Castle for a breathtaking view over the old town centre.

Bled - The jewel of the Julian Alps

Drive to Bled, only about 1 hour from Ljubljana. The picturesque Lake Bled awaits you here, shimmering from blue to emerald green depending on the weather, with a small island on which the Church of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary invites you to take a boat trip and visit. Or take a hike along the lake to Bled Castle, which is enthroned on a 130 metre high rock and is considered the oldest castle in Slovenia. In Bled Castle you can visit the museum, the chapel, the castle print shop and the blacksmith's shop to learn about the castle's historical trades.

Bohinj - a natural paradise in the Alps

Continue to Lake Bohinj, around 30 minutes from Bled. Here you can enjoy the unspoilt nature of the Triglav National Park region. Unlike the holiday region of Bled, things are much quieter here; without the 24 small villages, you would almost think you had discovered a piece of paradise. Take a boat trip on Lake Bohinj, enjoy the water for a swim in summer, cycle along the well-developed network of cycle paths or explore the surrounding mountains on a hike.

Škocjan Caves - An underground world

Head south-west into the centre of Slovenia to Škocjan, where the impressive Škocjan Caves are located. This UNESCO World Heritage Site (since 1986) offers a fascinating underground landscape with huge cave halls that, according to archaeological findings, were inhabited for over 5,000 years. These impressive caves were created by the underground river, which accompanies you on your way through the cave world. The "Underground Canyon" is open to visitors all year round, the "Reka Underworld" from April to October and the "Škocjan Educational Trail" from June to October.

Piran - The picturesque coastal town

Machen Sie sich auf den Weg zur Adriaküste und besuchen Sie die charmante Stadt Piran, die zu den schönsten Städten an der slowenischen Küste zählt. Die Altstadt mit ihren engen Gassen, offen Plätzen, reich verzierten Kirchen, alten Stadttore und Mauerwerken sowie der venezianischen Architektur ist ein Genuss. Sowohl Badeurlauber, die schöne Badestrände suchen, als auch Sportler, die das große Wander- und Radwegenetz nutzen wollen, kommen hier auf Ihre Kosten. Unser Tipp: Genießen Sie den Ausblick auf das traumhaft klare Meer vom Glockenturm der St.-Georgs-Kirche.

Postojna Cave - Another underground world

Unser Tipp für schlechtes Wetter und nur etwa eine Stunde von Piran entfernt: der Besuch der faszinierendsten Karsthöhle auf der ganzen Welt, der Postojna-Höhle, die mit einer konstanten Temperatur von 10° Celsius, atemberaubenden Tropfsteinskulpturen und einer vielfältigen Tierwelt beeindruckt. Eine elektrische Bahn bringt Sie tief in das Höhlensystem der Postojna-Höhle. Sie ist ein weltweit bekanntes Naturphänomen, stellt eine Herausforderung für Forscher dar und gilt als Wiege der Speläobiologie auf globaler Ebene.

Ptuj - The oldest town in Slovenia

Travel north-east to Ptuj, the oldest town in Slovenia, just 20 kilometres from Maribor. The town, which has been inhabited since the Stone Age, is rich in history and is home to the impressive Ptuj Castle with the Ptuj-Ormoz Regional Museum, the town hall by Max Ferstl, the town tower with clocks on just three sides and numerous historical monuments. Slovenia's largest lake - Lake Ptuj - is just a few kilometres from Ptuj and offers a wide range of leisure activities. The banks of the Drava, the surrounding hills and the nearby Pohorje mountain range are also an Eldorado for recreational sports enthusiasts, both in summer and winter.

Maribor - wine and culture

Your journey ends in Maribor, the second largest city in the country, which is surrounded by the green forests of Pohorje and a sunny wine-growing landscape. Here you can explore Maribor's 15th century city castle, defence towers and remains of the city walls in the oldest part of the city, Lent, the main square Glavni Trg with its historic buildings, the Old Vine (the oldest vine in the world) and the picturesque banks of the Drava. In the evenings, the Slovenian National Theatre, festivals and concerts as well as the clubs and discos of Maribor are inviting.

This suggested route allows you to experience the diversity of Slovenia without travelling across the country. Enjoy the charming towns, breathtaking nature and fascinating culture on this compact trip.

Travel planning

Planning your journey by car

Be aware that the motorways in Slovenia are subject to tolls and it is best to buy an e-vignette for your trip in advance in order to use the motorways efficiently. The A1, A2, A4 and A5 motorways are important routes that connect most of these attractions, and tolls are charged on all of these motorways in Slovenia. All information about tolls in Slovenia and the appropriate e-vignette for Slovenia can be found here:Digital vignette Slovenia - Valid immediately.

Reisen mit dem Bus

Travel planning by coach

Alternatively, you can also use public transport in Slovenia, especially for the routes between the larger cities. The bus network in Slovenia covers numerous routes and offers broad coverage. A large number of buses depart daily from the bus station in Ljubljana as well as from the country's larger cities. These bus connections allow travellers to reach most of Slovenia's tourist attractions. The only disadvantage, however, is that the buses stop practically everywhere. Although this has the advantage that you can get to know the country in all its diversity, it also means longer journey times. As a rule, bus journeys take about twice as long as journeys by car and in some cases even up to three times longer to reach certain destinations.

Photo credits : Header image © PhotoFires/ stock.adobe.com & Bild Bohinj @ Freesurf / stocke.adobe.com & Bild Postojna @ Matthew / stocke.adobe.com & Bild Omnibus @ Jerome/ stocke.adobe.com