The most beautiful cities of Slovenia
First of all, Slovenia is known as a country that is ideal for eco-tourism and ski holidays. But it also has quite a few cities that should be visited. Every tourist who has been to Slovenia will be able to touch the history and entertainment, see interesting places and appreciate the unique architectural styles.
Top 10 most beautiful cities in Slovenia
- Ljubljana. The picturesque capital.
- Maribor. The center of culture of the country.
- Novo Mesto. Famous for its nature and rich architecture.
- Piran. Popular with photographers.
- Portoroz. The resort with a capital letter.
- Ptuj. A city full of medieval buildings.
- Celje. A beautiful place with large castles.
- Bled. A town in the foothills of the Julian Alps.
- Kranj. A beautiful little town by the river.
- Dobrna. A resort area with spa clinics.
Ljubljana – a beautiful city among mountains
Although considered the largest city of the country, Ljubljana is a rather small town, where the architecture of the local buildings is in the baroque style. Ljubljana Castle has the same style. It combines Illyrian and Celtic styles. Prešerna square is a famous attraction of the capital. Very interesting are pedestrian bridges decorated with beautiful dragons. Of the important religious sites should be noted the Cathedral of St. Nicholas and the Bishop’s Palace.
For new knowledge you can go to the National Museum, whose collection has many different exhibits, including:
- The discoveries of archaeologists;
- collections of numismatists;
- historical exhibits.
And there is also a large garden. Ljubljana has the Church of the Holy Trinity, which was completed in the 18th century. It is another example of Baroque, and the building has an original roof, the interesting elements of which are the curves, completely uncharacteristic for church architecture. In the church building there is a marble altar, preserved from the time of its foundation.
Ljubljana abounds with beautiful parks, one of which is Tivoli. There is also a large mansion built in the 17th century. There is also a very unusual building, called “Ljubljana Skyscraper” by the locals. This popular attraction appeared in the city in the 1930s and attracts tourists with its observation deck.
Maribor – beautiful cultural center
If you ask the locals what Maribor is associated with, they will probably tell you about the Markburh Castle. The structure was built back in the 12th century and it was the beginning of the construction of Maribor, which became an important commercial center and later a cultural one.
Interest in Maribor Castle year after year does not fade, not to mention the large number of museums and exhibition centers. For tourists who enjoy cultural leisure time, Maribor offers a lot of impressions. It is beautiful both in winter and in summer. In winter the local ski base opens, the slopes are rated very high and the resort regularly appears in the ratings of the best in all of Europe. Adjacent to the ski base is Mariborski Pohorje, where international competitions in extreme sports are organized. The beauty of the thermal springs attracts visitors wishing to improve their health.
One of the main attractions of the city are the wine cellars. Maribor is famous for its excellent wines that wait in the underground tunnels, the total length of which exceeds 2.5 thousand meters. Stocks are truly enormous – the cellars contain over 5 million liters of wine. The underground complex has become so popular that now you have to book a tour in advance.
Another thing is to visit the banks of the Drava. The nature of Slovenia will appeal to all who like a serene holiday. Known a good entertainment among the locals is a boat trip. Traveling along the river, you can see the 400-year-old grapevine and vivid scenes, which are arranged right in the field.
Novo Mesto – another town with beautiful views
Novo mesto offers a few sights that every tourist should see. Among them stands out the People’s House, which locals consider the most popular. On the main square under the unpretentious name of Glavni Trg there are many large stores and restaurants, the famous Slovenian fairs are held there and paintings are offered for sale. Fans of architectural monuments should visit the City Hall, the Church of St. Nicholas and the Franciscan monastery.
Novo-Mesto is famous for the castles that surround the city. There are 8 of them, all in excellent condition. In the city there are many parks and nature reserves, which you can explore while riding a bike. Fishing is also allowed here. At the end of the day you can go to the promenade at Breg and see the beautiful buildings, preserved since the 17th century. If you want to take pictures, go to the bridge that crosses the Krka River. It offers a gorgeous view. You can also take pictures from the different banks. A tour of the WW2 German bunker is interesting. It was built by the Germans and is located on a hill. You will have the opportunity to look at the city and touch the terribly exciting entourage, including weapons. On the hill Trska Gora is a beautiful park, which offers a wonderful view. There are also many playgrounds for children. The most famous attraction after the People’s House is considered to be the Castle Castle Hrad. In addition to the tour, you can also take a walk through the local garden. The castle was built in the late 16th century and has remained intact. Walk around the castle for hours, and tourists are not limited in anything, you can even get into the most secluded corners.
Piran is the most peculiar
Thousands of photographers travel to Piran to take pictures of Slovenia’s most singular city on the Adriatic Sea. It has long earned fame as a port town and is beloved by fans of medieval architecture. Tourists come to Piran for the atmosphere of the Mediterranean Sea, walks on a yacht or a boat, fresh seafood. Beach recreation is also a popular activity for visitors.
Piran has a special history. Before the arrival of the Roman Empire, the Illyrians lived here as farmers, then, after the Roman conquest, the Slavs arrived, then the Franks and then the Romans again. This is how Piran acquired the features of cities of different nations. In the architecture of the city one can see Italian motifs, which can be explained by the influence of Venice, with which the local authorities had a long and fruitful relationship. If you are not afraid of noisy companies, you can safely go to the city beach. It is very famous, so get ready for large companies. However, this does not mean that the beach is not well maintained, on the contrary, there are sun beds and umbrellas, the area around is clean, the beach is well maintained. Walking in silence is better in the vicinity of Piran. Many people admire the sea, the water in which is notable for its transparency. For those who are interested in diving, there are special schools that provide training courses and the necessary equipment. It will also be interesting to visit the maritime museum. On the second floor there is an interesting exhibition, which shows models of real ships. It is possible to look at the weapons, the uniform of the sailors of the 18th century, and the fishing boats.
Portorož is the most famous resort
Portorož has the well-deservedly best known status among the Slovenian resorts. It is warm and never hot here almost all year round. Tourists are attracted by the seafront and the possibility to stay in comfortable hotels, as well as to go yachting. Portoroz became famous for its thermal complexes and good conditions for outdoor activities. But it is not the only thing it can offer. There are many casinos and cultural events are regularly held. Among them is the popular sculpture festival. Sculptors from all over Europe come to the celebration. Each sculpture will be a gift to the city. We are talking about professional works, each of which is unique.
For water entertainment, Portoroz offers a visit to the Laguna Bernardin water park. It has recreational areas, attractions, including extreme ones. There are also swimming pools with hot water, in which you can relax.
Ptuj – rich in antiquity
The city of Ptuj has many beautiful places. Among the attractions worth noting the castle with the city museum. In the local cellars there are interesting tours that tell about the technology used centuries ago to make and store wine.
In the castle, seemingly impregnable, there is a tower, from which you can look at the city. The structure has not changed a bit since it was built. It is a wonderful example of medieval architecture. In the museum, which is located inside, you can look at the beautiful musical instruments, furniture, chests and utensils used by the feudal lords of the 15-16th century. On the walls hang paintings by famous painters. The museum has many rooms, so you will have to save time to explore the castle. But you will not be bored, because you can learn how the rich people of that time lived. All the household items have been perfectly preserved, and the gem of the collection is the costumes designed for carnivals.
The prestige of Ptuj is its wines. Every tourist is allowed to take part in a tour, during which the characteristics and charms of Ptuj wines are revealed. Of course, at the end of the demonstration you can try all five varieties and taste fine cheese. In winter, there is the Carnival of Courantovanje, with which the inhabitants greet the spring. The locals glorify the ancient gods, which are called kurents. A gruesome procession is organized for the festivities, where people wear masks made of sheep skin and hang bells around their waists, holding a weighty wooden stick in their hands. During the festival, participants dance to symbolize the farewell to winter. Professional musicians take part in the procession, the carnival is accompanied by lighting fires, cooking national dishes and loud chants.
Tsele – the heir to the county
The medieval town of Tsele was able to keep its independence and was even granted the status of a county. A mighty castle, which is one of the main and the most interesting sights in the town, reminds of those times. Of great interest is the Church of St. Mary, built at the beginning of the 14th century. Celje is full of ancient structures that make the walk rich and informative. It is recommended to start a trip to Slovenia with it, if you are an ardent fan of medieval architecture. Gornji Grad is a must-see. The second most important attraction is the museum at Velenje Castle. It is surrounded by amazingly beautiful nature: nature reserves, forests and waterfalls.
Equally beautiful is St. Daniel’s Cathedral, built in the 14th century. The area around it used to be considered the center of Celje. The building belongs to the Gothic architectural style, the naves and ceiling are particularly awe-inspiring, because it is a skillful and somewhat jewelry work. In the 18th century, the cathedral was reconstructed, which resulted in the Chapel of St. Francis.
Celsus House, which is included in the rating of the most unusual sights in the world, is also interesting. The building dates from the beginning of the 20th century, but with all its appearance gives the impression of a medieval architectural monument. The historic district of the city is notable for a medieval water tower, and there used to be as many as 4 of them, but only 1 has survived. Nearby is the church of St. Daniel, notable for its small size, but extraordinary charm. It was built on the ruins of a church of the early 14th century. The tiled roof and narrow windows seem modest compared to the pompous stained-glass windows of the large cathedrals. Even more pompous is the church of St. Joseph, which boasts a huge tower of stone. Worthy of a visit is the cultural center of the city, the Posavier Museum, with an exposition of exclusive jewelry and antique books. You can also see a collection of weapons and works of art, and each room has its own theme, which allows you to feel the spirit of different eras.
The 10 most beautiful cities of Slovenia
The castle is situated in the very center of the city and towers over the capital. It offers wonderful views of the entire city and the surrounding mountains. The castle has a restaurant, coffee shop, souvenir store, and observation decks. You can get up to the castle in 3 ways: – By cable car (funicular railway) – By car – On foot if you feel strong
The central stone bridge of Ljubljana was built in 1842 and replaced the former wooden bridge, a strategically important medieval bridge that connected the countries of northwestern Europe to the Balkans.
Metelkova is one of the most unusual sights in Ljubljana. Center for alternative culture, which emerged from a former military barracks. Metelkova has a number of music clubs that regularly host alternative music concerts by performers from all over the world, club music nights, DJ performances, etc.
The Open Cuisine festival takes place every Friday from May to October on Pogačarjev trg, in the heart of the city. Here you can eat and drink delicious food and drinks from Slovenian craft producers and local culinary experts. Also, local small cheese dairies, wine producers and prsut (traditional Slovenian cured meat) are well represented at the festival
The National Gallery is the central Slovenian gallery that houses a large collection of fine art from the early Middle Ages to the 20th century. In addition to the permanent collections “Art in Slovenia” and “European Artists”, the gallery also hosts temporary exhibitions. Open: Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00 to 18:00, every first Thursday of the month from 10:00 to 20:00 Closed: Monday Tickets: 5/3/7 EUR, depending on age
The Contemporary Art Gallery is also a museum of contemporary art. The museum offers a permanent collection of Slovenian art from the 20th century, in addition to temporary exhibitions presenting new artistic practices. Monographic exhibitions of famous Slovenian artists from impressionists to contemporary artists are regularly prepared. Open: Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00 to 18:00. Closed: On Mondays and holidays. Tickets: 5/2,50/8 EUR depending on age.
When: beginning of July Every year the Ljubljana Jazz Festival attracts hundreds of performers from all over the world and thousands of spectators and tourists, lovers of this musical genre. The festival has been continuously held in Ljubljana since 1960.
During the tour you will visit all the most interesting corners of the city, get acquainted with the legends, learn about the underground river, which flows up to the Postojna Cave, about the great times of ancient Rome, the Argonauts and much more. Ljubljana has a lot to tell you!
Tour duration: 2 hours Season: all year round
The city on the Sava River, or rather on the confluence of the rivers Sava and Kokra, 20 kilometers from Ljubljana. The fourth largest town of Slovenia. The city has a population of only about 40 thousand people. The city is situated in the foothills of the Julian Alps, and the north of the city rests on the Karavanke mountain chain, and the first mountains rise just outside the city, so if you stay here you can observe the peaks from your balcony.
The city boasts a 600-year history and rich culture. The streets of Krani are overflowing with elements of art and architectural design. There are many farmers in the region – their products can be found in local markets and shops (vegetables, prsut, cheeses and wine).
Kranj is typically Slovenian, very hospitable, quiet and unhurried, and its proximity to the Italian and Austrian border makes it a convenient stopover point.
On the one hand the architecture of the town hall and the whole city center is typical for medieval cities of Europe, but on the other hand it is very unusual, because it combines two buildings built in different styles – Gothic and classicism. There is hardly another such town hall in Europe.
The museum and landmark building where the eminent Slovenian poet Franze Prešern, the pride of Slovenians, lived for the last more than two years of his life, from the fall of 1846 to February 8, 1849.
During World War II, the tunnels of Kranj were used as a refuge, and now they host events, guided tours, and a museum.
A picturesque deep river valley with very steep, often steep slopes and a narrow bottom, usually completely occupied by the river bed. In a gorge, unlike a canyon, the bottom is not completely occupied by the river, and part of the bottom is often occupied by forest.
The city is located in the northeastern part of Slovenia, on the banks of the Drava River, at the foot of Mount Pogorje, just 16 kilometers from the Hungarian border and 65 from the Austrian city of Graz. Maribor is likely to be the first city you see when traveling to Slovenia from Hungary. The region is rich in vineyards, and in the city itself you can visit the world’s oldest grapevine, the wine from which is still made today. It is a city of red roofs and students. In 2013, the city was named the youth capital of Europe. Also, you may have seen the name of this city on the t-shirts of the same name soccer team, which regularly achieves success in the European soccer championships.
- Population of the city: about 115 thousand people.
- The city was founded in 1254
- Distance from Ljubljana: 125 km
The bell tower is 57 m high. The church was built in the first half of XII century as a three-nave basilica in Romanesque style. Originally the church was consecrated in honor of St. Thomas the Apostle, but in 1254 it got a new patron saint – St. John the Baptist. Address: Slomškov trg 20, 2111 Maribor
- Trip: 4.00 EUR/per person
- Guided tour + tasting: 7.00 EUR/person.
- Standard admission ticket: 3.00 EUR/person
The peat bog with its small lakes is one of the most attractive natural attractions of the region. The lake is located at an altitude of 1200m above sea level. Address: Partizanska cesta 6a, 2000 Maribor
- Ticket for one way up – 4,00 EUR
- Round trip ticket – 6,00 EUR
- Children and pensioners one way – 2,00 EUR
- Children and pensioners round trip – 3,00 EUR
Grapevine House is located in Maribor right in the center of the old town. The Old Vine, which is over 400 years old, has taken its place in the Guinness Book of Records as the oldest noble vine in the world that still has grapes in it. The old vine symbolizes the rich wine culture of Maribor and Slovenia. Today, descendants of this great vine are grown almost all over the world. Address: Vojašniška ulica 8, 2000 Maribor Opening hours: October-April: every day from 9 am to 6 pm May-September: every day from 9 am to 8 pm
The second biggest university of the country after Ljubljana University with more than 26 thousand students. It was founded in 1975 and nowadays consists of 17 faculties. Address: Slomškov trg 15, 2000 Maribor
One of the most popular and largest ski resorts in Slovenia, a place for all who love active holidays, including Slovenians, who at the beginning of the season here more than foreigners. Maribor Pohorje is a great ski resort for both beginners and pros alike, with ski slopes of all difficulty levels, snow cover guarantees and reasonable prices.
The resort is located 30 km from Maribor. Today, Terme Ptuj Spa is one of the largest centers of medical wellness in the country, where the concept of recovery from modern stress and “burnout” at work has been developed. Visitors of all ages will love the newest water park with the widest range of slides in Slovenia, the wine barrel saunas, and the Olympic pool, where top athletes from all over the world regularly train.
You probably haven’t heard much about the town, and you should rectify that omission, because Škofja Loka is the best-preserved medieval town in Slovenia. It is situated on the Sora River and in ancient times was famous for its water mills situated on the turbulent waters of the river. The mills were not only a measure of the wealth of the local rich, but were also the backbone of the local economy – it was through the production of flour that the town developed and grew. The first mill began operating here in 1173, and in 1630 there were 173 of them, 24 of which worked around the clock! There are a lot of entertainment and historical events, cultural events, and the restaurants will delight you with an authentic Slovenian cuisine of this region.
- The city was founded: 973, and in 1274 it received the status of the city.
- Population: About 13 thousand
- Distance from Ljubljana: 25 km
The architecture of the 16th century in this main square has earned the nickname “the Colorful Loka. Almost every house here has a historical and architectural value, but perhaps the most impressive is the Homan House, built in 1511 with graffiti and pieces of frescoes of St. Christopher. The square is often used for concerts and city events. Here you will find many restaurants and feel the atmosphere of the old town.
Škofjeloć Castle was built in 1202. It was almost completely destroyed by an earthquake in 1511, and Bishop Philip set about rebuilding it. In the courtyard of the castle once stood an impressive quadrangular tower, which has been restored. Today the castle houses one of the best museums in Slovenia with archaeological, historical, cultural, art and ethnological collections. Visitors can also see the beautifully preserved 16th century farmhouse, Škopar’s house (Š koparjeva hiša ) in the castle garden.
This Renaissance manor house with two single-story buildings was built in 1220. It is ornamented with a circular two-storey corner tower and a courtyard with arcades. The castle chapel contains an altar fresco of Gilio Cavallo the Younger, The Deposition of the Cross, created in 1706, which is considered one of the most valuable works of art in Škofja Loka. Address: Puštal, 4220, Škofja Loka
One of the oldest bridges in Europe – it was built in the 14th century by Bishop Leopold. The bridge has an observation tower, which offers a beautiful view of the surrounding area and the city. A great “instagram place.”
An old town of vivid impressions, leading its history from the first century AD, when these lands were under the rule of the Roman Empire, received the status of a city. Above the city towers an ancient castle, under the castle there are ancient wine cellars, and the streets of Ptuj will plunge you into the Middle Ages. One of the most colorful carnivals in the world takes place in Ptuj, and the city itself is under the patronage of UNESCO. Nearby is one of the youngest thermal spas in the country – Terme Ptuj.
- Population: About 24 thousand people
- Distance from Ljubljana: 130 km
The Dominican monastery was founded in 1230 by Metheldis, widow of Frederick III of Ptuj, and operated until 1785. The monastery complex is built in Gothic and Baroque style. The recently renovated monastery is a venue for several cultural events and is open to visitors from April to October.
Ptuj Castle is one of the most magnificent castles in Slovenia. It overlooks the tiled roofs and cobblestone streets of Slovenia’s oldest city. The castle is also home to several exhibitions of the Ptuj-Ormož Regional Museum: from tools, weapons and furniture, to traditional masks and art objects.
After fires and bombardments, the 13th-century monastery was renovated and now houses a library with more than 5,000 books, some of which date back to the 16th century. The courtyard, with its arcades, is one of the most popular venues for summer events.
It is almost impossible to miss the city tower. It is interesting not only for its onion dome in the Baroque style, but also for the antique monuments inside. The attentive visitor will notice that the tower only has a clock on three sides. Citizens decided not to put a clock on the wall facing the castle in protest when the owners of the castle refused to pay their share to the city treasury.
Take a relaxing walk along the Drava River. Visit the Sturmovec Landscape Park near Lake Ptuj, and observe the rare bird species that inhabit the region and visit the vineyards. Take a walk along the river to the observation deck next to the Terme Ptuj spa. You can also relax by visiting the castle park at Chateau Tournische .
Here you can relax as the ancient Romans of antiquity did – the patricians once came here. Spa water has a temperature of 56 ⁰ C, coming from a depth of 1100 m. The water is mild and very effective in the treatment of rheumatic diseases, diseases of musculoskeletal system, rehabilitation of injuries and postoperative rehabilitation of bones, joints and muscles.
The town is located along the Krka River, the center of Dolenjska region. The region is rich in archaeological heritage and is surrounded by hills and vineyards. A unique Slovenian wine, Cvicek, is produced here. On a small island in the middle of the Krka River stands Otocec Castle, the only “castle on the water” in Slovenia, where you can stay overnight or hold a special event, such as a wedding. The world-famous pharmaceutical factory Krka is also located in Novo Mesto. There are 8 medieval castles in the vicinity of the city which are perfectly preserved up to now (now there are museums in some of them). There are also many interesting sights of the Second World War, for example a German bunker which was built by the German occupants in 1943. This beautiful little town is also ideal for cycling and hiking trails.
The town was founded by the Austrian Duke Rudolf IV on April 7, 1365 under the name of Rudolfovo. Population of the city: about 24 thousand people Distance from Ljubljana: 72 km