Last year it was Europe’s green city, the Small but very perfectly formed capital city of Ljubljana, Slovenia.
But before we headed out of the mountains, we couldn’t resist a trip in the National Park, stopping beside Bleds much prettier sister lake, yes I know I wax lyrical about the fairy tale that was Lake Bled, but this was,is, something else. If you ever end up anywhere near, it a must see spot!
We drove along the waters edge, before finding a suitable parking space, with a tiny stone and shingle beach at the bottom. As it was first thing in the morning, the crowds hadn’t descended, a dip of the toe left us believing it was fairly warm watered! Swimmers on I paddle out about 10 feet in what can only be described as Luke warm bath water, heaven, for an early morning swim in the sunshine.
Wrong wrong wrong!
Plan of the day was to head towards the country capital, with its unpronounceable name, Ljubljana, all slient L’s…. Sadly now we know how to say it, it’s a lots less fun than the Lub-a-juba-juba-land that it had become on the trip down .
Thanks to the Camper Contact app we had earmarked a place stay, bus stop outside, bar and resutarant next door.
The owners of , may have created a near perfect setup, offering van owners a pitch, electricity, toilets, showers and services for either the princely sum of €10 per night or free if you eat in the restaurant. A quick recy of an icy cold beer, sealed the deal, daily special menu of €10 per person….
The site itself is around 20 minutes bus ride into the capital, in a sleepy village, giving an insight into proper Slovinea life. Taking the Fred dog for a quick trot showed off the village church, road side shrines and such like.
Cue shock number one. ….
Beef Soup with dumplings and bread
Pork ribs with poateos and veg
Apple filled pancakes
Whilst eating our feast, we had water, a litre of wine, a beer and two shots of forest liquor.
Cue shock number two……
A total bill of less than €35 -bargain !
Thankfully we were able to part with €2 deposit and the €4.80 for the two return journeys right here, leaving us only to remember to catch the number 13 bus!
Bus caught, 20 minutes later we are in the centre of our next capital city.
Ljubljana is a cute and compact size, with the main attractions all centred around it’s delightful old town, with a real cafe culture feel. The old town is almost complete set around the river which winds it way through the city.
This place is so travel friendly, that there is no need for one of those tourist trap hop on hop off bus experiences, in fact the only way to explore is on foot.
We happily wounder around the old market, taking in the vast variety of fresh produce For sale.
We found probably the famous landmark in the city – Dargon Bridge, considered by some as super example of Art Nouveau architecture. Randomly the plaque would rather tell you it was Ljublijana first reinforced concrete structure.
After that we ventured to the bridge of love, sadly we hadn’t caught onto this fade before we left Blighty and didn’t ever get us some “Paul loves Shell” padlocks to leave around Europe, but what a heartwarming treat for the soul, that all these young couples are forever in love.
Perched above all of this is Ljublijana castle. The castle has been a fort, a seat of regional government, a military barracks and now a massive tourist attraction for the city.
Back in the “Presern” square we were treated to Bollywood film in full swing, with some pretty girls dressed like fairys stood waving their hands in time to the music, well most of them !
We also got the chance to see one of Maks Fabiani most famous building Facade.
I was unsure after last weeks vist to Vienna, as to weather I need to visit another capital so soon, but this is one of europes hidden gems, before we arrived we couldn’t even pronounce the name, let alone had we any idea of the beauty we would find, this one goes into the top 10 already.