From Austria we took a bus through the Julian Alps into the capital of Slovenia. Ljubljana is one of the smallest capital cities within Europe with a population of only about a quarter million. This made for a quaint and quirky city which was a breath of fresh air, and a fun place to explore for a few days.
A Brief History:
Slovenia along with six other countries (Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Macedonia, and Kosovo) comprised the former country of Yugoslavia from 1918 to 1992. It was formed after WWI and changed from a Kingdom to a Socialist government after WWII. It was wholly separate from the USSR, and was governed by Josip Broz Tito. He was the primary source of unity for the country, and after his death in 1980 tensions between the different republics emerged and led to a series of wars and unrest.
With this said, Slovenia leaves many similar impressions to that of its also formerly socialist northerly neighbors. However, it was the country’s extra quirks ranging from locals rollerskating and scootering through the streets, a Mexican restaurant advertising pizza, a full locomotive in a neighbors front yard, and some of the downright wacky looking residential buildings that made us really love Slovenia.
- Castle – A castle sits on top of the hill overlooking Ljubljana and provides a great view of the city. The castle itself has been used by many empires and kingdoms over the centuries including the Romans, the Ottoman empire, and Austro-Hungarian empire.
- Old Town – The old town was a quaint little town with beautiful buildings. There were many festivals and events happening each day we were there including a volleyball tournament, food festival, and nightly movies in the castle.
- Lake Bled – with mountains surrounding this picturesque lake it is a big tourist attraction in Slovenia. The lake also boasts a castle on a cliff as well as a small island with a church that can be visited. This was a fun day trip from the city!