I didn’t really know what to expect when it was decided I’d be going to Slovenia. My mum chose the destination and booked it all, so unlike my other trips, I purposely didn’t over the top research and look at photos, so it’d be a surprise for me when I arrived. Slovenia impressed me. The people were friendly, I liked some of it’s quirky aspects and it didn’t feel packed full of tourists. I had so many cool experiences, including ones that appear on other ‘must see’ lists, I found it impossible to pick just 5 top experiences…so I’ve gone for a Top 7 instead! I stayed in Bled for 7 days, there was easily enough to stay there for longer!
Swimming in the Kosjak Waterfall
It was such an awesome experience! It was freezing cold and awkward to reach as it required a short hike through the woods, but swimming in a waterfall pool in it’s own little cavern was great!
Car train from Most Na Soca to Bohinjska Bistrica
Car trains aren’t THAT unique…after all there’s one that whizzed from England to France BUT this particular train that takes 40 minutes connects Most Na Soca to Bohinjska Bistrica is so much cooler!! Literally just a deck with railings you can see everything you pass from the comfort of your own vehicle.
Unfortunately you have to stay in your vehicle while it’s moving but it passes through the mountains via a series of tunnels, including one that’s 6327 metres long, leaving you in complete darkness for 7 minutes! At some stations, the train stops and you can watch a man on a bicycle cycling between the 2 signal boxes to put you onto the right track! It’s old school, I loved it. (A vehicle ticket, including passengers is around 40Euro)
White Water Rafting on the Soca River
Slovenia’s ‘Emerald River’. Not the most challenging rapids in the world, but the river is bright blue/green and really clear! Still a fun trip to take, the guides stop half way through for optional rock jumping and you can swim a short section on the river (definitely do the the swim! It’s FREEZING cold but cool to float down the river on your back, letting the current take you along). The day I went, it was rainy and cloudy and at some points there was a mist over the river with men standing in the middle fishing, it had a creepy atmosphere!
The relaxed feeling capital of Slovenia is quite do able on foot. It has several unique bridges going over the Ljubljanica River, including Butchers Bridge which has been over taken as a ‘love lock’ bridge. Padlocks can be bought at a shop opposite and they even have marker pens so you can write messages/names on them before attaching them to the bridge!
Also along the river, is a weekend market and lots of cafes and bars with river side seating. A funicular railway goes up to Ljubljana Castle, the look out tower has a nice little observation deck. Trubarjeva Cesta is a cool little pedestrian street, on every power cable along the street, pairs of shoes are hanging up…it started by a man advertising his shoe shop and expanded from there!
There’s cute graffiti on the walls…and even over the trains, in England it would be scrubbed off (our graffiti is tacky rather than arty) but it’s colourful and adds to the character of the place!
Summer Toboggan – Bled
By winter, a ski slope, in the summer a toboggan run! Strapped into a plastic tray, attached to a rail and with a stop/go lever to control the speed! For an extra kick of adrenaline, keep it flat out, ignore the ‘slow down’ signs and you’ll reach speeds of 30mph! It throws you about and at a couple of points you’re get the ‘stomach dropping feeling’ but it’s all part of the fun!
It’s reached by a chair lift up the mountain included in the toboggan ticket price! I went down it 3 times. For a little bit of extra thrill, a high ropes course is located a short walk from the top chair lift station for an extra cost. Also good value for money, all 5 adult ropes courses take around 3 hours to complete.
Bled Cream Cake!
Cream, custard, flaky pastry and recipe that’s over 60 years old! The original recipe came from the Park Hotel over looking Lake Bled. The portion is huge and it’s yummy! It’s so good I had 2 from the Park Cafe and a 3rd from the supermarket!
Hiking from Vintgar Gorge back to Bled
The hike through Vintgar Gorge is a nice walk in itself but rather than walk the same away back towards the car park, you can continue walking back to Bled through the forests, fields and little villages. The forest section has red targets painted on various tree trunks to help guide the way. As you come out, there’s a nice cheap pub over looking the fields leading back to Bled (good for a well deserved beer!) before going down narrow little streets with fancy little houses! The very last section of the walk is a bit hairy…there aren’t really any pavements and because the streets are narrow you have to try and dodge the cars that pass pretty close!
Most of the experiences can be combined. The Kosjak Waterfall and car train were part of my 65Euro ‘Emerald River Adventure’ with 3Glav Adventures…it’s a great 12 hour day out around the Triglav National Park. For 35Euro more, I had the White Water Rafting thrown in too.
The toboggan, cake and hike are all based in and around the town of Bled…that has a whole heap of other things to do there too!
What are your favourite things to do in Slovenia?