The fact is that you’ll probably love Ljubljana. You don’t believe us yet, we understand. But you’ll be charmed by its small old town, the atmosphere, and green trees shading you from the hot summer sun.
Capital cities of any country are usually the first contact we get when flying into that country. Sometimes they are exciting, other times overwhelming. Many people find them too loud, too crowded, and too much of everything.
That’s why we’ll talk about the capital of Ljubljana in Slovenia today. In 2014, Lonely Planet named Ljubljana the second-best place to visit in Europe. If it’s good enough for them, it should be good enough for you! But forget about that plane ticket for a moment. Let’s have a look at what this European capital has to offer.
Are you ready to take a tour through the street of Ljubljana Slovenia? Let’s begin!
Things to do in Ljubljana
Ljubljana may be a relatively small capital compared to other European cities, but that doesn’t mean it has nothing to offer. During the summertime it becomes alive with live music, people strolling through the streets, relaxed atmosphere, and hidden little shops selling unique souvenirs or used books.
Have a look at what you can do in Slovenia’s capital!
Observe the city from
Yes, there is a castle in Ljubljana. And it’s probably the first and most obvious choice for most visitors. It’s also an excellent spot to start your vacation. Because it introduces you to the vibe, the views, and the outlook of the entire city! Even if you skip the watchtower (because you’re afraid of heights or you don’t feel like too much walking), there are lovely views from the castle’s stone walls.
The best part? The central courtyard is entrance-free. You can enjoy a drink at a café or have a bite in a restaurant.
Relax in Ljubljana Park Tivoli
Only a few streets away from the buzzing center, Tivoli park is a green space that all love to visit, locals especially. It’s a favorite meeting spot, but there’s more to it than just trees and meadows.
While walking around, you may stumble into a mansion, a contemporary history museum, as well as Botanical Garden, and a picturesque promenade that leads right up to the Tivoli Castle.
Bring a picnic basket and a blanket, relax in the shade of trees or stroll through the park on a sunny afternoon.
Stroll past Ljubljana Bridges
Ljubljana has many bridges, and they each come with a unique story you can discover on
There are four dragons angrily staring at the passers-by from the Dragon Bridge. Continue walking towards the city center, and you’ll pass another bridge, which has turned into a romantic stop for many lovers. Here, you can lock your old or new love with a padlock on the Butcher’s Bridge. You can also get lovely views of the Central Market and the Triple Bridge from here.
The Triple Bridge is probably one of the most famous and scenic points of Ljubljana. You can find it on many postcards, photos, and guidebooks!
People-Watch at Preseren Square
Located next to the Triple bridge, Preseren Square is an introduction to Ljubljana’s old town. The statue of Slovenia’s most famous poet, France Preseren, observes the enthusiastic crowd of strollers, cyclists, tourists, visitors, families, passing by under his watchful eyes.
You can join him at his favorite past time: observe the people walking by while sipping a glass of Slovenian wine. Remember, this area used to be full of traffic jams, taxis, noisy buses, and cars until the center has become car-free. Now it’s there for everyone to enjoy it!
Explore the Central Market
Going on a culinary exploration of any kind can be an incredibly fun thing to do! We’re convinced you can dive deeper into any culture with food, so where better to stop than at the central market of Ljubljana?
You can easily explore and taste fresh fruits and veggies on your own. You can also find meats and local cheeses on the market. You can easily pack some of the delicacies and enjoy a picnic next to the Ljubljanica river (or in Tivoli park).
If you’re looking for a more consistent approach to Slovenian cuisine, hop on a food tour! These are becoming more common, and many people happily take part, leaving the thinking and organizing to the locals, who know where to find the best foods with the most value for money. You can find excellent food and wine tours here. If there’s a beer lover among you, try this beer and food tour instead (PS: craft beers are all the hype now)!
Sip cocktails at the top of the Skyscraper
The 70 meters high skyscraper offers unique views of the city as well! Take the lift to the top and enjoy a refreshing cocktail while watching the colors of the sky change as you relax and unwind.
Ljubljanica River Boat Trip
Ljubljana trip wouldn’t be complete without a boat ride on the river, where you can observe the city center from a different point of view. You can take in the architecture while listening to a commentary on Ljubljana and its sights.
Visit Ljubljana Slovenia: FAQ
Now that you know some things to do in Lubiana, let’s have a look at a few basic information about the capital city:
Ljubljana Slovenia weather
We’ve already talked about the weather in a post on how to get to Slovenia. But in short, the best time to visit Ljubljana is all year round, apart from November. That can be a bleak and the foggy month when everyone depressively awaits December festivities.
In general, you can expect cold winters and warm summers. Since Ljubljana is a very green city, you can enjoy blooming spring, lush green summers, and colorfully vivid falls.
Ljubljana Slovenia map
While you can find a detailed map of Ljubljana on Google Maps, you can also download or print a tourist map right here.
The city is easy to get around; you can use public transport (buses) for larger distances in the city, but you can easily do a walking tour of the center as it’s walkable and quite small. If you’re too tired by the end of the tour, take a funicular up to the castle
to enjoy the evening view of the whole town.
Ljubljana Slovenia flights
There are many online options where you can find affordable flights to Slovenia: Kyak, Expedia, Skyscanner, etc.
So yes, you can fly directly to Ljubljana from other larger European cities, but a cheaper option would probably be flying to one of the surrounding airports of neighboring countries: Venice (Italy), Budapest (Hungary), Vienna (Austria) and Zagreb (Croatia). You can read about getting to and from these airports here.
Ljubljana Slovenia airport
If you fly to Ljubljana, you land at Ljubljana International Airport (which is officially called Jože Pučnik airport).
The airport is located some 25 kilometers (about 15 miles) from the capital, which means about 30 minutes by car. If you book one of the Slovenia tour packages, they may arrange an airport pickup for you. Another alternative is taking the airport shuttle; the ride takes about an hour.
Ljubljana Slovenia hotels
Wondering where to stay in Ljubljana? With tourism dripping into the country, more and more hotels, guest houses, and other types of accommodation are opening up. You can easily find the best you’re looking for on Booking, or look elsewhere for a more authentic or unusual experience.
Think about it: if you book a hotel in the city center, you can easily explore Ljubljana on foot and avoid public transport. That way you can soak in the vibe of the city and not tire out your feet too much!
Ljubljana Slovenia restaurants
While Slovenian cuisine at first glance doesn’t look like it’s anything special, get ready for a treat. Slovenia is a meeting point of many cultures that also result in its cuisine. From seafood to hearty stews and local cheese, you can explore vast options to find the best suited to your taste.
The easiest way to find the best restaurants in Ljubljana is to browse Tripadvisor. If food is something you love to enjoy when discovering new countries, you’ll be pleased to know that the culinary scene has been flourishing in the past few years. There’s something for everyone: traditional, vegan, fine dining, cheap eats, and much more.
One of the most exciting things to do in Ljubljana in terms of food is to visit the Open Kitchen. It’s buzzing with locals and visitors every single time. You’ll easily blend in when discovering all the specialties different restaurants have to offer.
If you happen to be traveling to Ljubljana, make sure to check the Open Kitchen events to see if you can catch the open-air food market and get a bite of Ljubljana’s food delicacies!
Ljubljana to Lake Bled
While leaving the capital won’t be as easy as you may think (nostalgia, love, and all that), there are plenty of Slovenia destinations you can easily turn into a day trip. One classic example (which is also probably a must) is visiting Lake Bled.
Lake Bled is truly a picturesque sight, with mighty mountains in the background, a castle climbing over the lake with an idyllic church that grants wishes. Prepare your camera for a picture-perfect moment!
There is public transportation that takes you there and back again if you have plenty of holiday time and a feeling for adventure. Otherwise, book a trip with a travel agency that will provide you with modern transportation, cover entrance fees, and provide a full English service on anything you need.
Is Ljubljana safe?
According to many online sources, Ljubljana is one of the safest capitals you’ll visit. Slovenia as a country is very safe as well.
How many days do you need
While that depends on every traveler personally, we believe you don’t need more than a week for Ljubljana. The city is quite small, and if you’re in decent walking shape, you can easily see it in a couple of days. For a quick visit, one day would be enough. If you also want to visit the museums and explore the city a bit further, 2-3 days are enough. After three days you can focus on the rest of Slovenia.
Day tours from Ljubljana?
There are plenty of options when it comes to day trips from Ljubljana. While you could try and arrange all these by yourself, we can save you a lot of hassle and stress (after all, Slovenia’s public transport is a nightmare, even the locals despise it!)
With a day tour from Ljubljana, you can easily visit all the most impressive and popular sights. Here’s what you can choose from:
Slovenia tour packages?
You can pick these tours with the base in Ljubljana, or you can pack your bags, get on a tour bus and enjoy the rest of Slovenia bit by bit.
What tour will you take? That depends on your preferences, time, and interests. Do you want to get the most from nature in Slovenia? Are you interested in history?
How about all the classic sights you can’t afford to miss?
How to: Ljubljana to Zagreb
There are a few options that can bring you from Slovenia to Croatia: train, bus, or Flixbus. Of the three, the train is by far the most comfortable option.
Just like Ljubljana, Croatia’s capital is also worthy of paying a visit to. In case you’re not feeling too comfortable to explore it by yourself, hop on a tour and visit Zagreb with comfortable transportation and a professional tourist guides that know the best way, the language, and the country!
How to: Ljubljana to Vienna
Same as to Zagreb, you can catch a bus or a train ride to Vienna, which would probably take you about 6 hours. While trains come with lovely scenery you can observe while stretching your legs and snacking on whatever delicacies you’ve hidden in your bag, Vienna is quite expensive compared to Ljubljana.
When you have a few days to spare, a Ljubljana to Vienna tour would be an excellent option to get the most of Vienna. The only few things you’d have to worry about are personal expenses and gratuities!
Ljubljana Slovenia: is it worth it?
It may come as a surprise, but there are many things to do in Ljubljana: whether you want to focus on nature, on history, on people watching or food, there’s something for everyone in this European capital.
Since it’s located almost in the center of the country, getting around on day trips from Ljubljana is very easy. While you don’t need more than a few days for the capital, you can easily get the most from your vacation and see a large part of Slovenia at the same time.
Let Ljubljana charm you the way she knows best!