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Venice to Ljublana

Hello everyone!

I need some advice on how to get from the Venice airport to Ljubljana via the Bohinj Railway. I have done quite a bit of research and I am seeing that we can go from Venice --> Trieste --> Gorizia walk/bus across the border to Nova Gorica --> take the train to Lake Bled --> bus/GoOpti/train to Ljubljana. Is this the easiest way? I am seeing that we could take a GoOpti from the Venice airport straight to the Nova Gorica train station for about 25 Euros per person, which might be worth the cost (not that it is even that much) since we will be jetlagged flying in from the US. Our plan is to then stay in Ljubljana for 2 or 3 nights and then rent a car and do a loop around Slovenia that will include starting in Ljubljana --> Predjama Castle --> Postojna Cave --> Skocjan Caves --> Tolmin Gorges -->
Soča (1st night here) --> Vintgar Gorge --> Lake Bohinj (next 2 nights here) --> Lake Bled --> end in Ljubljana where we will drop off the car and take a train/bus/GoOpti to Zagreb.

We have heard great things about this train ride so that is why we are trying to fit it into our trip but also are wondering if it is even worth it since we will be doing a significant road trip driving through Slovenia? Also, if the train trip is worth it, are we doing this the easiest way? We have seen some people advise to rent a car in Lake Bled and drive to Ljubljana but since we are spending two to three nights here we do not want the car until we leave for our road trip.

Any advice is much much appreciated, THANK YOU!

Posted by
4700 posts

The easiest way to get between Venice Airport and Ljubljana is a direct bus or shuttle e.g. GoOpti or DRD, with no train involved.

If you want to go by train, the easiest way via Trieste is to take a bus from the airport to Mestre train station, take a train from there to Trieste, take a local bus or taxi from Trieste Centrale to Villa Opicina or Sezana, Slovenia, and then a train from there to Ljubljana. (There's also a historic tram running to Villa Opicina but it's not running at the moment). I've never done this - almost did it in May. (My flight into Venice arrived too late and I missed the train to Trieste I had hoped to catch, thus ruining my plans.)

Is there a more scenic way by train? Could be. I've heard vaguely of the route you mention through Gorizia. Not sure how scenic it is, but it sounds incredibly complicated to do on the day you are flying in from he US.if you are going to be renting a car anyway, you'll be seeing plenty of beautiful scenery probably in that same area.

If you really want to know the ins and outs of trains in Europe, dig up the Man in Seat 61 website - he doesn't seem to cover this route you mention on his site, but he will probably respond to you if you try to contact him with a query about it.

You could try taking the car train between Bohinj and Gorizia too as part of your car journey.

Posted by
2487 posts

The train trip from Gorizia/Nova Gorica to Lake Bled is wonderful and well worth the effort. When arriving from the US, the most sensible way would be to take the train from Venice to Trieste and have a night there. It's a much overlooked beautiful city. Have the next morning a train to Gorizia, which is the Italian railway station. There you'll find a taxi to take you to Nova Gorica, the Slovenian station. That train will deliver you at the railway station Jezero Bled. You'll find a few hotels and apartment nearby. Alternatively you can continue to Jesenice, where you can pick up a train to Ljubljana.

Posted by
470 posts

Don’t bother with the Bohinj Railway. It goes through the Soca Valley but you’ll be returning to explore it by car anyway. There is no point in doing such a complicated journey just to ride a railway that will give you access to the same scenery you’ll get to see by car a few days later. Go straight to Ljubljana and start from there.

Posted by
5 posts

I would take a train ride between Gorizia, Bohinj and Ljubljana,it is a very scenic one. Back to Venice I would suggest to take Flixbus, it is a new connection, very comfortable bus, wi fi, however you have to book it in advance because can be pretty busy. Here some ideas: