Slovenia has well and truly stolen my heart. I fall in love with every European city and town that I visit, but not very often do I feel enthralled by an entire country.
From the capital city, to the coastal towns, to the little villages, mountains, lakes and even just driving around in the middle of nowhere, everything is beautiful (especially on a sunny day!).
Slovenia isn’t on the typical tourist map and this is why I think I loved it so much. A lot of travel bloggers have fallen in love with the country recently and I felt so desperate to go that this was my very first spontaneous solo trip.
Population: 20.1 million (For perspective, London alone has a population of nearly 9 million)
Well known for: mountains (The Julian Alps), outdoor sports and activities, lakes and beautiful scenery.
Where to Stay?
It’s safe to say that I was nervous about my accommodation in Slovenia given that this was my first solo adventure. I knew that I wanted to be situated in the capital city Ljubljana, so I headed straight to HostelWorld to see where the best place to stay would be.
After much debating and my family asking me countless times whether I’d seen the horror movie “Hostel”, I settled on The Zeppelin Hostel and it was definitely a good decision.
A lot of travellers stop off in Slovenia to relax and unwind, so don’t expect a crazy party hostel. The hostel is small, cosy and definitely makes you feel welcome. From the relaxed vibe, to the clean rooms, to the local restaurants that send the hostel cakes as a thank you for sending customers to them, everything was perfect and nothing was ever too much for the staff.
Ljubljana is the perfect place to stay throughout the entirety of your trip to Slovenia. Day trips can be made to the surrounding areas easily as the country is so small!
My Top Tips!
1) See Everywhere: Slovenia is tiny and can be driven across in a matter of hours, so make the most of your time here and combine a number of different stops into one trip, the whole country is truly gorgeous! Use the capital city (Ljubljana) as a base for your travels and then move around as you wish each day. See below for my top day trips from the city!
2) Be Careful with taxis: I made the mistake of getting a taxi from Ljubljana airport to my hostel. Please make sure you get into a licensed taxi (these are the ones that have prices listed on their windows). It’s sometimes hard to avoid the scam taxis (as I found out) as you are herded into the next available taxi with no regulation, therefore it cost me a hell of a lot more than it should have to get into the city centre!
3)Use the Airport Shuttle Bus:If you don’t want to get a taxi from the airport, there are buses that run directly from the airport to the city centre. Alternatively (and my preferred option), there is a shuttle bus that runs between the airport and a number of hotels in the city centre, speak to your hotel/hostel to see which is the closest stop off point to you, it will save you a lot of money compared to a taxi!
4) Rent a Car: I am a nervous driver and I spent a fair amount of money on my trip to Slovenia by doing guided tours across the country. In doing so, I spent a lot of time on the road and decided that Slovenia is one of the few European countries that I would feel comfortable driving in (despite it being on the opposite side of the road to the UK!). If I were to return to Slovenia (which I hopefully will in the near future!), I would hire a car and drive around to ensure that I see as much of the country as possible. You will however need to purchase a vignette (sticker) at the border or from a petrol station if you want to drive on the Slovenian highways.
5) Check the Weather: This is a mistake that I made on my trip to Lake Bled! Slovenia can have fairly temperamental weather and if you have plans that could be scuppered by bad weather, re-arrange them! This is a truly beautiful country and should be seen at it’s best! I visited in September and the weather ranged from 28 degrees Celsius and very sunny to torrential rain and storms, to overcast and cold days – and I was only there for 4 days!
6) Plan plan plan! There’s so much to see and do in Slovenia, make sure you use your time wisely and know exactly what you want to see and do. On the other hand… having relaxing days and enjoying ice cream in a cafe on the River Ljubljanica is just as great too!
Top Places to See
1) Ljubljana (see my post here)
2) Lake Bled, Lake Bohinj & Vintgar Gorge (see my post here)
3) Piran (see my post here)
4) Postojna Cave
5) Predjama Castle (see my post here)
6) Škocjan Cave (see my post here)
8) The wine region in the east
9) Hiking in the Julian Alps
10) Water sports in the Soca Valley
11) Day trip to Venice, Italy
12) Day trip to Zagreb, Croatia
Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post and all thoughts are my own.
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