Slovenia or Budapest after a tour?

We are with a tour company through Albania, Bosnia, Herzegovina and Croatia and then into Slovenia through Postojna Cave, Lake Bled and ending in Ljubljana. My husband and I along with another couple are trying to decide whether to rent a car and drive through the Julian Alps and other parts of Slovenia for a few days or to take a train to Budapest and spend time there until we fly from there home. If we do the latter how many days in Budapest? This would be the early part of June so we are just beginning to formulate plans and all suggestions are appreciated.
Thanks so much,

Posted by James
Frisco
1775 posts

Both ideas are good. Really depends on what floats your boat. I have a bias towards Budapest. in the context of what I enjoy I can't think of a better place to unwind, relax and enjoy after a schedule as aggressive as what you described. How long? Three full days is a good start but we spend about a month here every year and haven't gotten bored yet.

Posted by James
Frisco
1775 posts

If you decide on Budapest let me know the dates and I will give you a list of what is going on in town at the time, hotel suggestions, etc.

Posted by Bruce
Whitefish, Montana
611 posts

If you want to unwind, my vote would be Slovenia....a delightful country with good roads and much to see. I am just not as taken with Budapest (1.75M people) as others.

Posted by Greg
Ajdovscina
102 posts

Hi there! Agree with James, both ideas could work no problem. The Julian Alps are ideal for relaxing and Slovenia gets few tourists compared to other places so you can sometimes have the trails and sights to yourself. You might want to spend a few days in either Kranjska Gora or Bovec to enjoy the mountain air and go for walks and bike rides. Further down Goriska Brda is beautiful rolling hill wine country. The whole country has amazing tourist farms and B&Bs like the Stekar for instance. if you need help with an itinerary, let me know. As for Budapest, we love it!! James is obviously the expert here but you could easily spend a day relaxing on Margaret island for example. Ok, take care and love to hear how your plans go.
Greg

Posted by Patricia
Littleton, Colorado, USA
31 posts

Both places sound equally enticing as you all describe them. Budapest would be easier to plan I think at the end of the busy guided tour we are completing. I did check on rail rates and it seems a bit pricey for the one way trip to Budapest. Thanks to all of you for the information so far.

Posted by Paul
Sioux Falls, SD, USA
214 posts

How many days? If more than 4, you could do Julian Alps for a day, then drive to Budapest. If 3 or fewer, pick one of the two.

Posted by Paul
Sioux Falls, SD, USA
214 posts

You have 4. Rent the car (forgot that in the last message). Driving is easy. It's a 4-5 hour drive from Ljubljana to Budapest, and you can stop at Lake Balaban for lunch on the way. Freeway is excellent. But as I said it depends on the time you have. It's 10 months from now - if you have not locked in air travel, you could plan an extra 5 days, spend 1-2 at the Julian alps (driving at the end of Day 2), and then 3 days in Budapest.

Posted by Lane
Mansfield, GA
847 posts

You cannot go wrong with either choice. We recently did Budapest and Slovenia back to back and enjoyed each. You would enjoy the drive through the Julian Alps but since you will be visiting the other sites you mentioned in Slovenia I would opt for Budapest. I agree with James on three full days as a start in Budapest but if you have another day or two it would be even better.

Posted by Paul
Sioux Falls, SD, USA
214 posts

You have a long time to figure it out. I forgot to tell you to check the drop-off charge. That may make the rental of the car less optimal. Still, a wonderful problem to have ...

Posted by Emily
Vienna, Austria
296 posts

Stay in Slovenia! You are seeing some already, but so much more to see. Piran, Ptuj, Maribor... Be sure to fully explore the Istrian peninsula - just gorgeous. Save Budapest for another trip.

Posted by Patricia
Littleton, Colorado, USA
31 posts

My head is swimming with all the ideas. I now have the RS books on Budapest and Croatia/Slovenia to check out the places you all mentioned.
If one rents a car from Ljubljana to Budapest it seems to be more economical for four people than the rail. I really appreciate all the suggestions and will keep you posted after we work this out with the friends. They are checking on other options also.

Posted by Jerry
Madison, WI, US
66 posts

Just got back from Croatia, Bosnia, Montenegro and Slovenia. I've been to Budapest also. My vote would be to go on to Budapest. It looks like you'll have seen Slovenia....maybe not all of it but you've seen nothing of Hungary. My vote is for something new...Budapest. 3 nights in Budapest...be sure to visit the Szechenyi Bath.

Posted by Patricia
Littleton, Colorado, USA
31 posts

First let me thank each of you for the excellent information to my initial request. Our friends now prefer taking a train from Trieste to Venice instead of staying in Slovenia or going to Budapest. I'll probably just start a new subject but I do wonder how one gets a bus to Trieste from Ljubljana in order to take the train to Venice? Thanks in advance.

Posted by Greg
Ajdovscina
102 posts

That's easy Patricia. You have a few choices: The easiest is to take a direct GoOpti transfer. The bus also has a very early service: http://www.ap-ljubljana.si/eng/ Type in Ljubljana and Trst (Trieste) And there is also trains to Sezana then take a bus or taxi to Trieste. Trieste is famous for its coffee (Illy) and its buffets. You cannot miss the Miramare Castle. There is a sightseeing bus you can use to see all the sights around town. Have a great time!
Greg