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A Restful First Night in Ljubljana

Hi, we will be flying into LJU and visiting Slovenia for nine days in late Sept..

Being a little bit older, we tend to feel pretty wiped out the first evening after a transatlantic flight. I am looking for some not too strenuous suggestions for our first evening. I'm thinking we'll be ready to go by 5:00 pm. We'd love to have an early supper and maybe learn about the city a bit by night. I can locate lots of food and wine tours which seem to start earlier than we'll be ready to go but no "LJU by night - calm, strolls" type of thing. Any suggestions would be appreciated - tours, activities.
Thanks!

Posted by
2526 posts

Just wandering about the core of this very beautiful city is what we've done. Love it! Enjoy dinner. Walk some more. I would not be ready for a tour upon arrival as in your circumstances.

Posted by
4955 posts

I agree - just wander around. Ljubljana is lovely and charming - and fairly small. Very low-stress. I have found it a great place to start a trip, actually, though it's also a favorite place, too.

Walk along the river. Walk south past the pedestrian area and when you see a creek branch off to the right from the river, follow it a short ways to a big church on the left. Right behind that is Jože Plečnik's house. Plečnik was a key architect who designed a lot of the prominent bridges and buildings you'll see in Ljubljana. You can tour his house with a guided tour - takes about 30 minutes, though it may be too late in the day by the time you arrive to do it that day.

At the church, turn right and walk back into town. This is a less charming walk than the one along the river but gets more interesting as you walk further north.

You can also walk up to the castle if you like. There's a funicular too. You don't have to go into the castle (which, as I recall, is OK but nothing that amazing), but the views down are amazing.

I'd also bring an umbrella with you to Slovenia. I've had a little rain on every visit I've made there (sometimes a lot of rain) even in September. And I've had beautiful, sunny days too. Just be prepared! Even a stroll in a slight rain can be fun in a charming town like Ljubljana.

Posted by
21 posts

Thank you....this particular trip is about relaxation in a beautiful country and I am encouraged by your comments.

Posted by
4955 posts

What's your itinerary, Jennie? If you rent a car and drive to Bled, consider the scenic detour via Skofja Loka (lovely town) and the scenic drive from Skofja Loka through the mountains via Jamnik and Kropa on to Bled - very beautiful. There are other neat small towns nearby like Kamnik and Radovljica. Very low-stress and fun.

Posted by
21 posts

Andrew, This is our plan so far - a big loop with, hopefully, not too much rushing around! Thanks for the suggestions..I'll have a look.

Ljubljana - 3 nights (day trip to Maribor and Ptuj) , then pick up rental car
Bled - 2 nights -Bled and explore area around Bled, including Bohinj, Vrsic Pass
Bovec - 2 nights - Explore Soca Valley and Kobarid
Piran - 1 night - Lipca, Piran
Ljubljana- 1 night - Tour Piran in the am, Postojna Cave and Predjama Castle on the way back from Piran to LJU
Dep. next am.

Posted by
50 posts

Perfect itinerary and do as Andrew advise, go to Bled over Skofja Loka, Kropa and Radovljica.

Posted by
21 posts

Thanks so much for all the feedback! I am grateful and so excited to see beautiful Slovenia.

Posted by
1106 posts

On your first full day, if you don't already have a walking tour planned, this past June, 2018, I greatly enjoyed the "Free Walking Tour" that begins at around 11:00 (?) in front of the triple bridge. (Meets right at the steps of the salmon-colored church there.) I was part of a group of 20 people with an exuberant, bright, well educated young tour guide. He said that he had graduated university in history and he was full of fascinating stories and descriptions. The tour lasted about two hours and gave me an excellent basic understanding of much of the central part of Ljubljana.

Posted by
2333 posts

Yeah, wandering about and looking for a good restaurant are the best uses of your time. You could consider a boat ride on the river as well - they are short (1/2 hour) and inexpensive, and offered in many places. You pretty much go 1/2 KM down the river, turn around, go 1 km the other way and disembark. Maybe 5 E?

Posted by
459 posts

If it's a Friday, you're in luck: that's street market night, with food stalls grilling terrific sausages & peppers (& &), people strolling & hanging out at the riverside cafe tables, great relaxed atmosphere. We even ran into an exuberant folk music band & happy little kids dancing with their parents - remembering makes me grin. If it's a non-Friday evening, just walking along the riverside's tree-lined pedestrian streets is a joy. Window-shop, menu-shop, look at the architecture & happy people & their polite dogs. And/or go up to the Neboticnik building's 12th-floor terrace for great city&countryside views. Last month we had daytime coffees for E3-ish a cup. Drinks & light food menu goes into the night.

Posted by
3463 posts

Jennie,
We are in Ljubljana now and agree with others who recommend strolling this beautiful city. Very easy walking. After our week in Venice we are relaxing a couple days before we begin our Adriatic Tour.

We had a wonderful meal at Juliya last evening. Have to say it was our favorite thus far. We are staying on the river and it was a 5 min. walk away. They get very busy by 7 pm. so highly recommend reservations. They serve the amazing Pumpkin Seed Oil to dip your bread into. Already picked up a couple travel size to tuck in our suitcases.

Yes, it has been drizzling off and on but it hasn't stopped us from walking this charming city.

** Andrew H & Jane thank you for all your postings over the last few months. Everything was spot on. We LOVE Ljubljana!

Posted by
903 posts

We had a great dinner at Hisa Pod Gradom, close to the base of the funicular that goes to the castle. Explore the streets at the base of the castle hill. Walk towards the triple bridge, but stop for the best ice cream in town at the little cart just before the bridge, on the right side along the river. Cross the triple bridge to the town square, then along the river toward the dragon bridge. The river boats stopped running relatively early (6:00?) when we were there in June, but that would be fun. It really is a lovely city.

Posted by
50 posts

Jennie, I am writing this from our room in Ljubljana. We arrived yesterday afternoon. Strolling around the old town will be an easy way for you to settle in, especially with a gelato in hand. As you walk around, I would suggest making reservations for dinner as the restaurants fill up quickly. We just finished dinner at Marley and Me. The food was delicious, the service outstanding and the prices reasonable. I highly recommend the Free Ljubljana Walking Tour. Look for the guides in the yellow shirts in front of the Pink Church. The tours are at 11:00 and 3:00. I agree that the weather can change quickly. In 24 hours we have had temps. 66-77 with a mixture of sun, clouds, cool breezes, and light showers.

Posted by
21 posts

Thank you, everyone for your wonderful suggestions! We leave for LJU day after tomorrow and could not be more excited. Will let you know how it goes!

Posted by
3463 posts

Jennie, have a wonderful time! Ljubljana was our favorite city. Didn't want to leave.

Posted by
3463 posts

@Annie, I can recommend a couple accommodations in our favorite city! We stayed a couple nights at Mescanka. (see Booking.com for positive reviews). It's a charming apartment on the river. It's located in old town. Perfect location for enjoying the ambience of Ljubljana. Great selection of restaurants along the river. Following our stay here we moved to our tour Hotel Mrak. Lovely hotel, but we preferred staying in old town. Can't beat the amazing vibe of old town!

Posted by
4955 posts

The Grand Hotel Union in Ljubljana is not exactly charming per se - but it's a very nice conventional hotel in a perfect spot right in the center of town. And the views from the rooms are breathtaking. I stayed only once because usually the place is very expensive but sometimes rates are discounted last minute if they have low vacancy.

Posted by
21 posts

If you are up for a splurge, check out the Antiq Palace Hotel. We stayed there one night near the end of our trip and were sorry that we were not there longer. Great location and terrific staff. If mobility is an issue make the staff knows when you book as some rooms-suites are up one or two flights of stairs.