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Slovenia

Slovenia Travel Guide

We have a huge crush on Slovenia. Every time we try to decide where to go next, we just keep returning to Slovenia. This central European country, nestled between Austria, Italy, Croatia, and Hungary, will steal your heart. It has stolen ours.

If you love pristine natural environments and outdoor activities, Slovenia is for you. Brimming with turquoise-colored rivers, spellbinding gorges, majestic limestone mountains, alpine lakes, and expansive forest, Slovenia invites you to hike, climb, raft, kayak, paraglide, and more.

In the Julian Alps, you can experience the beauty of Triglav Lakes Valley, Mount Triglav, Lake Bohinj, and Pokljuka Plateau, whilst encountering grazing Ibex and edelweiss flowers along the way. In the Kamnik-Savinja Alps, you can explore Slovenia’s most heavenly glacial valleys, like Logar Valley, and attempt to keep up with Slovenia hikers along the Slovenian Mountain Trail. In the Karawanks, you can sample traditional food including the best štruklji in the country.

Most people’s itineraries are limited to Ljubljana and Lake Bled. We urge you to read this travel guide to discover Slovenia’s most alluring landscapes and hidden gems beyond the well-traversed path. If you’re planning a Slovenia road trip, also check out our 2-week itinerary and 5-day itinerary.

We have now visited Slovenia three times, always finding new hidden pockets to explore. We hope this guide helps you plan an unforgettable trip to Europe’s green heart.

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Slovenia Travel Guide

Slovenia Travel Guide Overview

  • Where to Go in Slovenia: MAP
  • What to See & Do in Slovenia
  • What to Eat & Drink in Slovenia 
  • Getting Around Slovenia
  • Slovenia Travel Basics
Slovenia Itineraries
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Jezero v Ledvicah, Seven Lakes Valley, Julian Alps

Where to Go in Slovenia

Click the dots to explore specific destinations. The map is best viewed on Desktop.
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Sekira mi je padla v med

 

 

 

 

 

 

Slovenian Expression 

(Photograph: Seven Lakes Valley)

My axe fell into the honey

(an expression of good fortune)

 

 

 

 

 

What to See & Do in Slovenia

Our favorite experiences
Dvojno jezero, Koča pri Triglavskih jezerih, Julian Alps
Seven Lakes Valley, Triglav National Park

Explore Triglav National Park

Triglav National Park is the largest protected area in Slovenia and covers an area of 838 square kilometers. This alpine wonderland encompasses a huge chunk of the Julian Alps (Julijske Alpe). The park’s name is derived from the highest mountain in Slovenia, Mount Triglav (2864 m), which is the mountain depicted on the Slovenian flag.

The park is accessible from many different towns, including Kranjska Gora, Kobarid, Trenta, Bovec, Ukanc, Stara Fužina.

Read our Triglav National Park travel guide to find out how to get to the park, what to see and do, and where to stay.

Triglav National Park Hiking Trails

Recommended Guide Book: Cicerone Julian Alps Walking Guide

 
Eat Štruklji at Kofce, Best Things to Do in Slovenia
Štruklji Borovničevi

Eat Štruklji Borovničevi at Kofce Mountain Hut

Štruklji is a traditional Slovenian dough roll (or dumpling) made with various fillings. One of the best places to eat Štruklji is in Dom Na Kofcah (Kofce), a mountain hut situated below the Košuta ridge in the Karavanke (Karawanken) Mountains. They make at least five different varieties:

  • Štruklji Sirovi – cheese filling 
  • Štruklji Borovničevi – blueberry filling 
  • Štruklj Čokoladni – chocolate filling
  • Štruklj Čokolada malina – chocolate and raspberry filling 
  • Štruklj Ajdovi z orehi – buckwheat and walnuts filling 

As you enjoy your loaf of sugar dough, you’ll be surrounded by grazing horses and cattle (in summer). On a clear day, you’ll see both the Kamnik-Savinja Alps and the Julian Alps from the hut terrace.

Learn More: Kofce Mountain Hut

 
Hiking in the Kamnik-Savinja Alps, Slovenia
Kamnik-Savinja Alps

Hike in the Kamnik-Savinja Alps

The Kamnik-Savinja Alps are all about imposing peaks, heart-pounding trails, perfectly situated mountain huts and challenging ridgelines.

This Slovenian mountain range is located in Northern Slovenia, close to the Austrian border, and about 1:30 hours north of Ljubljana.

For some very mysterious reason, the Kamnik-Savinja Alps see very few tourists. Even in high season, there’s very minimal foot traffic on the trails. For the life of us, we can’t understand why.

We spent 4 days traversing this mountain range from Kamniška Bistrica valley to Zgornje Jezersko village, sleeping in mountain huts (dom, koča) along the way. Here’s our hiking itinerary: Kamnik Savinja Alps Traverse.

If you want to experience the Kamnik-Savinja Alps, but don’t want to do a multi-day hiking tour, we recommend visiting Logar Valley, Robanov Kot, and Ravenska kočna Valley (Jezersko).

Day Hikes in the Kamnik Alps

 
Martuljek waterfall, Kranjska Gora, Slovenia
Martuljek waterfall

Visit Kranjska Gora

Kranjska Gora is an alpine resort town in northwestern Slovenia. It’s actually the cheapest ski resort in Europe! So, most people visiting this Slovenian town come in winter.

If you’re visiting in summer, you’ll be happy to know that there’s a lot to do. With unbeatable views of the Julian Alps and its close proximity to Triglav National Park, Kranjska Gora is a great base for hiking, climbing, and cycling.

Learn More: Kranjska Gora Summer Guide

Where to Stay in Kranjska Gora

Look for accommodation in Kranjska Gora.

 
Swimming in Lake Bohinj, Slovenia
Lake Bohinj

Swim in Lake Bohinj

Slovenia’s largest lake is the perfect destination for a summer holiday. With unbelievably clear and clean waters, even I (Sabrina) have no problem jumping in. Side note: I’m a wimp when it comes to water.

Lake Bohinj is located in Triglav National Park, making it an ideal base for exploring the park. Here are some fun things to do around Lake Bohinj:

  • Visit Savica Waterfall. Entrance: 3 EUR
  • Hike to Mount Vogel. Take the Vogel Cable Car to Vogel Ski Resort and hike to the summit of Vogel. The views of Lake Bohinj from the top station are sensational.
  • Hike to Triglav Lakes Valley
  • Mostnica Gorge
  • Hike to Planina Vogar, a high alpine pasture, from Stara Fužina. There’s an almost secret lookout point of Lake Bohinj, from the mountain hut Kosijev dom.

Learn More: Lake Bohinj Travel Guide

Where to Stay in Lake Bohinj

Stay in the towns of Ukanc or Stara Fužina.

Look for accommodation around Lake Bohinj.

 
 Glamping & Hostel Stara Pošta, Zgornje Jezersko, Slovenia
 Glamping at Hostel Stara Pošta

Go off-the-beaten-path in Zgornje Jezersko

Zgornje Jezersko is a small Slovenian village, located very close to the Austrian border. Come here if you want to get away from the crowds, glamp, or simply admire beautiful mountain vistas.

What to Do in Zgornje Jezersko

  • Walk to the beautiful lake Planšarsko jezero. At the lake, you’ll find the restaurant, Gostišče ob Planšarskem Jezeru.
  • Hike to Češka Koča mountain hut for lunch in the Kamnik-Savinja Alps. Learn more about this hike in Best Hikes in Slovenia
  • Take a walk in Ravenska kočna valley.

Where to Stay in Zgornje Jezersko

Look for accommodation in Zgornje Jezersko.

 
Planina Zajamniki, Pokljuka, Julian Alps
Planina Zajamniki, Pokljuka

Discover Pokljuka Plateau

Pokljuka is an alpine plateau located in Triglav National Park, high above Lake Bohinj and Lake Bled. Blissfully rural and tucked away from Slovenia’s tourist attractions, Pokljuka is a perfect destination to unwind. Slovenians come here in winter to cross-country ski and in summer to hike and bike. If you visit, don’t miss the hike to Viševnik.

Learn More: Hidden Wonders of Pokljuka

Where to Stay in Pokljuka Plateau

Check out Šport Hotel Pokljuka and Hotel Center Pokljuk. Both hotels are ideally positioned if you want to do a lot of hiking around Pokljuka. Hotel Center Pokljuka is located at the Rudno Polje trailhead.

We stayed at the tourist farm Ročnjek (Turistična kmetija Ročnjek), which is in Gorjuše, on the edge of Pokljuka Plateau. We loved that it was remote, but also so well-connected to Bohinj and Bled. It felt like a secret – one that you simply don’t stumble upon. The only downside is that it’s a bit overpriced.

Look for accommodation in Pokljuka.

 
Logar Valley, Slovenia
Logar Valley

Logar Valley

Logar Valley (Logarska Dolina) is an alpine valley in the heart of the Kamnik-Savinja Alps. Located in Slovenia’s Solčavsko region, Logar is a bit out of the way, but more than worth the effort to get there.

We highly recommend staying in the valley for a few days, so that you can explore the trails leading into the Kamnik-Savinja Alps, but also the surrounding valleys of Robanov Kot and Matkov Kot.

Read Next: Best Things to Do in Logar Valley

Where to Stay in Logar Valley

Lenar Tourist Farm. For a personal and local experience, the family-run Lenar Farm is the best place to stay in Logar Valley. Situated in the heart of the valley, there’s no better place to base yourself for a hiking, walking, or biking-themed trip in the Kamnik Alps. The breakfast is superb. And, the views are pure magic!

Look for accommodation in Logar Valley.

 
Dolga Njiva, Alpine Dairy Farm, Slovenia Travel Guide - Best Things to Do
Dolga Njiva Alpine Dairy Farm

Journey back in time at an Alpine Dairy Farm

Alpine dairy farming commenced in the 13th century and prospered until the mid 20th century (especially around Bohinj). As you travel across the Slovenian Alps, you’ll probably encounter many alpine pastures (planina) dotted with herdmen huts. Many of these huts have been converted into accommodations for holidaymakers and tourists.

There are very few active dairy farms left in Slovenia. However, they still exist. If you get a chance, visit Robanova planina in Robanov Kot (July and August only) and Dolga Njiva in the Karawanks (Karavanke). Here, you can sample traditional herdmen fair and homemade sour milk. We visited Dolga Njiva after hiking to Košutnikov Turn.

Learn More: Košutnikov Turn and Dolga Njiva Day Hike

 
Šuklje, Ljubljana
Šuklje

Wine & Dine in Ljubljana

Slovenia’s capital is an approachable city that is best discovered on foot. As you wander the city’s streets, you’ll notice that Ljubljana is heavily influenced by Viennese and Venetian architecture, resulting in a delightful fusion. 

Many cities in Europe feel like an overwhelming “to-do” list. Ljubljana, by contrast, feels like a “to-be” list. You’ll feel compelled to simply enjoy yourself. For us, that means hopping between wine bars and cafés along the Ljubljanica River, visiting shops, and hiking up to Castle Hill with an ice cream in hand. 

During your visit, we recommend grabbing a bite to eat at Open Kitchen, a food market that takes place every Friday from mid-March to October.

And, after a day of sightseeing, head to Šuklje with a wine flight, featuring regional wines from Vipava Valley and Goriška Brda.

 
Lunch at the Kamnik Saddle mountain hut (Kamniška koča na Kamniškem sedlu), Kamnik-Savinja Alps

What to Eat & Drink in Slovenia

To eat the most authentic and traditional Slovenian cuisine, we recommend staying at a Turistična kmetija (“tourist farm” aka farm stay). Slovenian farm stays serve homemade and homegrown food to their overnight guests. Make sure to communicate any dietary restrictions in advance, because they will be preparing food specifically for you. You won’t be ordering from a menu.

Soups & Stews

  • Jota – thick stew made with sour cabbage (Sauerkraut) and beans.
  • Ričet – barley stew made with beans, smoked pork, or sausage. We ate a delicious Ričet at Jarški dom na Mali planini, a mountain hut on Mali Planina (close to Velika Planina).
  • Pasulj – bean stew
  • Gobova Juha – mushroom soup

Savory Dishes

  • Kranjska klobasa – Carniolan sausage, a sausage made with pork meat and bacon and spiced with salt, pepper, and garlic.
  • Ajdovi Žganci – buckwheat spoon bread, or buckwheat porridge, served with pork cracklings. Try it at Dolga Njiva.
  • Kislo Zelje – Sauerkraut

Štruklji

Štruklji is a dough roll (or dumpling) made with various fillings. It can be served savory, or sweet. For the best blueberry Štruklji, hike to Kofce mountain hut.

  • Štruklji Sirovi – cheese filling
  • Štruklji Borovničevi – blueberry filling
 
Julian Alps, Slovenia

Getting Around Slovenia

Car

Most people will say that the best way to get around Slovenia is with your own rental car. If you want to see the mountains, coastline, wine region, and the lakes of Slovenia, that’s definitely true. Use this 2 Week Slovenia itinerary or this 5 Day Slovenia Itinerary for road trip inspiration.

If you’re driving into Slovenia from a neighboring country, make sure to purchase a vignette right after you cross the border. You can purchase a Slovenian vignette at any petrol station.

Also, we recommend checking traffic conditions on the Promet website to see if there are any construction zones/closed roads along your planned route.

Here’s a guide about hiring a car in Slovenia.


Public Transit

From other European cities, it’s easy to get to Slovenia by train or by flixbus.

If you plan to concentrate your time in a certain area, public transit is reliable and punctual. We used buses to travel to and from Ljubljana, Kamnik, Zgornje Jezersko, Kranjska Gora, and Ribčev Laz (Lake Bohinj). Buses were always on time, clean, and easy to find.

Use the AlpeTour website for bus schedules. Or, book your ticket here.

 
Slovenia Travel Guide - Best Places to Visit in Slovenia

Slovenia Travel Basics

Official Name: Republika Slovenija (Republic of Slovenia)

Capital:  Ljubljana

Government: Parliamentary republic

Regions: In 2000, Slovenia was divided into 12 administrative entities for legal and statistical purposes.

Population: 2.065 million

Language: Slovene is the official language of Slovenia. In several municipalities, Hungarian and Italian are recognized as co-official languages. German, Croatian, Serbian and Romani are also spoken in Slovenia.

Currency: Euro

Tipping Etiquette: 10% on bills.

Water Quality: Excellent

Something Interesting: The cheapest ski resort in Europe is in Slovenia: Kranjska Gora.

 
Slovenia Travel Guide - Best Things to Do in Slovenia

Slovenia Travel Resources

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Slovenia Travel Guide
Learn more about Slovenia
External Resources
@moonhoneytravelers
  • Lake Drachensee in the Mieminger Mountains in Tirol, Austria.

Check out our stories for a recap of this gorgeous hike. 

@tirolerzugspitzarena @almbahn.tirol @visittirol
  • The greatest homecoming of all - Almabtrieb in Mayrhofen, Tirol, Austria. 🐄🐐🐑🐏

If you’ve hiked in the Alps, you’ve likely encountered grazing cattle, sheep and goats on high alpine pastures.

When the animals return safely to the valley at the end of the summer/beginning of fall, their homecoming is celebrated with jubilant festivities in villages across the Alps.

Seeing this special cattle drive marks one of our top experiences of 2021.

❓Have you been to an Almabtrieb? If so, which one?
  • Another perspective of one of the prettiest lakes in Slovenia.

📍Double Lake, Triglav Lakes Valley
  • Drinking coffee in the historic @post.hotel.kassl - a hotel in Oetz dating back to 1605.

Once a farm, then a stagecoach inn, and now a 4-star-luxury hotel, the Haid family has been hosting royalty, artists and travelers for centuries.

If you find yourself in Ötztal, drop by for a drink in their gorgeous Belle Époque bar, or better yet stay overnight to step back in time for a while.

📷 photo taken inside the stone pine Stube.
  • The loop trail around Pala di San Martino (2987 m) in Pale di San Martino.

📍Trailhead: San Martino di Castrozza, Trentino, Italy
  • Dvojno jezero (Double Lake) in Triglav Lakes Valley, Slovenia.