There are plenty of reasons why you should travel to Slovenia now. Take a look below and find the one that calls you, because I promise that this country will steal your heart.
1. Slovenia is made for vacation
You go on holidays and when you come back you feel like you need a vacation from vacation. Been there? Done that?Well, that is not bound to happen in Slovenia.
If there is a list of places where people rush or walk fast, Ljubljana is certainly not on it. Does it mean that you have to wait for everything? Nope, not at all. It only means that they love to enjoy life and they do, without making you wait or rush. Just let yourself go and enjoy Slovenia like a local, they’ll welcome you in.
2. It’s a small place
OK. Slovenia is not a big country, which makes it a great destination for a short trip, but also for a long trip. Almost everything in your must-visit list will be about 1 hour and half away by car (or less) from your starting point. And even by train or bus, you will get there in less than 3 hours.
So, basically, you can choose a central place to stay during your full trip or stay in two or three different places, it’s up to you.
3. You will see dragons alive!
Where else in the world can you see dragons alive? A short visit to Postojna caves will allow you to visit the human fish, proteus, olm… you name it.
They call them baby dragons and guess what…? It’s this year when baby dragons are hatchling, so you might be lucky enough and see the birth of a mythological creature in front of your eyes! (they only reproduce every 5-10 years)
PS. There are other caves where you might be able to see baby dragons in Slovenia too.
4. Looks like out of a fairytale
Slovenia is full of small, medium and big castles. Ones in the top of a mountain, others in an island and even inside a cave. Most of them have been restored and you can even sleep in some of them.
Then you have caves, waterfalls, beautiful churches in the middle of lakes…
5. Full of free and open-air ‘spas’
Living in Spain, I was more attracted to the Seas than to swimming in lakes and rivers. But while Slovenia has only about 30 kilometers of coast, it’s full of beautiful rivers and lakes with clear turquoise waters I would definitely jump in.
Kolpa river warms up to 30 degrees in the summer (or a little less at Big Berry Glam Camp, where I stayed, as it mixes with Lahinja river nearby), lake Bled is also a warm place to swim due to natural hotsprings. But you can also find fresh water sources in Bohinj and Soca valley (and many other places). And all of them are surrounded by nature.
6. Hip for city lovers
I love cities, and I certainly fell in love with Ljubljana. It has fashion stores, alternative art and spaces, design shops, good food, relaxed cafes, museums….
And, although I didn’t visit Maribor, I believe I would have fallen in love with it too. No wonder it was the European Capital of Culture in 2012. And I would definitively add Piran to my list too.
7. Nature everywhere
Skying, kayaking, hiking… whatever outdoor sport you like, you will probalby find it there. Slovenians love being outside and you can even tour the country by bike (it’s a small place like I said.)
If you are really into hiking, check out Triglav (every slovenian should climb it at least once in their life), and if you don’t feel like going up there, Ljubljana has two forests inside the city (real bears also live there ;) ) where you can walk to.
8. You will not need filters
I just downloaded all the pics from my camera and well,1,000 pictures and no time for editing. Bad? Nope, none of the pics in this post have been edited (except for the watermark)
Green and red and blue… all the colors come alive in Slovenia. No need to fake with instagram filters or brag about sunsets or landscapes or food. You just snap and it’s perfect!
9. Everywhere it’s a food experience
With a mix of culinary influence that comes from Italy, Austria and all the other slavic regions, you will find a caloric diet that is tasty and original. Best? it is fresh fresh fresh!
Trouts and wines from Bela Krajina, sausages, podgaca, Kremna Rezina cake, bean and barley soups, Rakija liquor… all comes from small family-run businesses with small productions and a taste for quality and sustainability.
PS. …and they are saving the world one bee at a time
9. You don’t need a car for everything, but you’ll love to drive around
Ok, you can’t get “everywhere” in Slovenia if you don’t have a car or hop on a guided tour, but you can still travel most of the country by train and by bus: Ljubljana, Bled, Postojna, Piran, Maribor, Ptuj… they are all connected by public transport.
So, you can still visit many places if you don’t drive. Or rent a car when you need it, which is way cheaper than at any of the surrounding countries, and enjoy the ride with all the beautiful colors and small villages at a sight.
10. Lots of perfect spots to enjoy a book
With everything close by and that relaxed atmosphere, you will sure find lots of perfect spots to read. And time to do so. So bring a book (or buy one) and enjoy anywhere.
PS. I must confess that I tried to find slovenian literature in Spain and found almost nothing. There are many more options in English. But it’s still a shame because they are great writers and passionate readers, so I am reading now what I didn’t get to read before.
11. You will get understood
Amazing for an out-of-the-radar country, even at its out-of-the-radar regions, everybody (or almost) speaks English. You will also find many people who speak Italian, German and even Spanish. And if they don’t, they will do their best to help you out and have the best experience.
Most probably? You will come back with a couple of new friends.
12. It’s not on everybody’s bucket list (yet)
Bragging about your travels is also part of the experience, isn’t it? Well, you can certainly brag about visiting Slovenia. Not many people have been there yet and it’s an awesome country to brag about.
As a result, you won’t suffer the crowds. Imagine, I didn’t wait in line for any of the major attractions in Ljubljana, Predjama, Bled, Postojna… in June. But I did have to wait for a pretty bad coffee in Madrid.
And you will get to do things non of your friends have, like glamping (glamourous camping) by the river, as I did at Big Berry in Kolpa river, a minihouse concept camping site where you can enjoy the relaxed luxury of the Slovenian countryside and the quality of the slovenian products and foods.
Extra: It won’t kill your budget
Except for the flights, which we’ve talked before, Slovenia is not an expensive place to travel to. There are plenty options to stay at (hotels, hostels, rooms), transport is not expensive (the one-country Eurail pass for Slovenia is not even worth buying in many cases) and you will eat awesome quality without going for international fast food.
So take your savings and go for an additional experience: wine tasting, specialty tour, museums, spa…
So, what’s your reason to travel to Slovenia? ;)
5 Comments and Questions
One really fun way to visit island in the middle of lake Bled is Standup paddling. Some tours include introduction, so chances to fall into the lake are 1%. I recommend this active sightseeing experience!
Thanks for the tip Spela! I didn’t have time to try it on our trip to Bled, but I would have loved to!
Thanks for so nice review of Slovenia) I love it too, especially the picturesque and cozy Bled. I wish I would visit it in summer.
What an interesting read! Loved the pictures too. Thank you for this beautiful article that promotes Slovenia in such a wonderful way.
This place sounds amazing! I wish I had the budget to travel outside of the U.S.!