Sightseeing in Slovenia
Take a study tour of Slovenia, a republic in Europe bordering Italy, Austria, Hungary, Croatia and the Adriatic Sea. Despite its small area, Slovenia has a diverse landscape. In the north-west of the country run the mountain ranges of the Steiner Alps, Julian Alps and the Karawanken. A paradise for skiers and hikers. Because of the coast to the Adriatic Sea, it is a popular bathing destination in summer. In the capital city of Ljubljana, the university founded in 1919, the old town with the castle, which are under monument protection, the archbishop’s palace, the town hall, the dragon bridge, the Franciscan church, the river promenade and the cathedral of Ljubljana deserve your attention. Do not miss the main attractions of the other cities of Slovenia, such as the city of Maribor (Marburg an der Drau) with the city castle, the cultural event center, the water tower and the old grapevine on the Lent; Kranj (Krainburg) with the Egg at Krainburg and last but not least the city of Koper with the Praetor’s Palace from the 15th century and the Saint Nazariu Cathedral from the 14th century. Do not miss a tour of Slovenia!
Gentle landscapes and fertile soil along the river
From Nova Gorica in the west to Vipava in the east, the Vipava valley extends through an area bounded by the Trnovo plateau in the north and the Karst in the south. The busy highway connecting Italy to Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia, runs right through the valley and vacationers can see and easily reach a multitude of villages, small hills and plains on either side of the road. Ajdovscina and Vipava are the main towns here and the area is perfect for a relaxing holiday as it is relatively free from mass tourism and only a handful of tourists visit the wineries.
The center of the region is the city of the same name, Vipava. It is the largest settlement and the seat of the municipality and is located near the numerous sources of the river of the same name, in the upper Vipava Valley, 102 meters above sea level.
Vipava with its approx. 2000 inhabitants is an important agricultural center of western Slovenia and is known for its wine production. Tourism is just as important as small and medium-sized businesses. Due to the mild, sub-Mediterranean climate, the region is suitable for growing various fruits, especially apricots, peaches and figs. Due to the agricultural cultivation, every season here in this fertile valley has its own magic. Something always blooms here between March and October. The Vipava Valley is also known for its quality wines, especially the white ones.
The local residents take their wines very seriously here, and there are a few villages and producers that are particularly in the spotlight. Names like Ivan Batic, Matjaz Lemut, Radivoj Lisjak, Valter Mlecnik will play an important role in a visit, but the region also consists of hundreds of smaller vineyards where families offer their products as a collective or just make a few bottles themselves. Viticulture is in fact the most important agricultural sector in this fertile valley and the vines cover over 3000 hectares of its total area. The small, family-run vineyards focus mainly on terraces in the higher elevations, where the excellent soil cultivates both white and red grape varieties. Viticulture is really a way of life here near the Adriatic Sea.
Ljubljana, located in the historic Upper Carniola region, presents itself as the young, cosmopolitan capital of Slovenia. The car-free old town of a pleasantly manageable size spreads out in a semi-circle
Ljubljana, located in the historic Upper Carniola region, presents itself as the young, cosmopolitan capital of Slovenia. The car-free old town of a pleasantly manageable size spreads out in a semicircle below the castle, the city’s landmark. Appealingly restored buildings of different style epochs make the old town a jewel box well worth seeing. The center of the well-tended building ensemble and the meeting point for international study travelers is Prešeren Square with its baroque Franciscan church. The Ljubljanica River meanders through the old town and is crossed by more than a dozen bridges. The best known is the river crossing called “Three Bridges”, which consists of a main bridge and two pedestrian bridges attached to the side. The imaginative dragon figures in Art Nouveau are striking, that adorn the Dragon Bridge. The Robba Fountain is an impressive baroque monument on which three river gods symbolically represent the three rivers of the Carniola region. The boat tours offered on the river broaden the perspective of the city. On the waterfront, countless cafés and restaurants invite you to linger under the accompaniment of street musicians. The fish market as well as the fruit, vegetable and flower market underline the friendly atmosphere of the capital of Slovenia. On the waterfront, countless cafés and restaurants invite you to linger under the accompaniment of street musicians. The fish market as well as the fruit, vegetable and flower market underline the friendly atmosphere of the capital of Slovenia. On the waterfront, countless cafés and restaurants invite you to linger under the accompaniment of street musicians. The fish market as well as the fruit, vegetable and flower market underline the friendly atmosphere of the capital of Slovenia.
The medieval fortress has towered over the city for more than 900 years. Most of the buildings on the castle hill date from the 16th and 17th centuries. The fully glazed funicular already makes the ascent a comfortable experience. The observation tower gives the traveler a wonderful view of Ljubljana and the surrounding area. The permanent exhibition “Slovenian History” gives those interested a comprehensive overview of the historical development on Slovenian soil. The Puppet Theater Museum provides information on all aspects of Slovenian puppet theater culture. In addition, the St. George’s Chapel and the former penitentiary are ideal for a visit. Two restaurants and a café take care of the physical well-being. The castle grounds are used regularly for music events and changing exhibitions.
City castle of Maribor
The Slovenian city of Maribor gave the legendary Emperor Friedrich III. owe a lot. Among other things, the construction of the city castle, which is one of the most important sights on the Drau today. Nobody ruled the Holy Roman Empire longer than Frederick III, who entered Rome for his coronation as emperor by Pope Nicholas V on March 9, 1452 with 5,000 horsemen. The city castle of Maribor was one of his ambitious structural plans in his Slovenian homeland.
A pink staircase
When the city castle of Maribor was built between 1478 and 1483, the realization that the north-eastern part of the wall surrounding the city was insufficiently secured against enemy attacks played a major role. Over the centuries, the former defense tower changed into a feudal castle with various styles. The pink rococo staircase with its playful putti on the east facade is particularly worth seeing.
On the trail of history
Today the city castle of Maribor houses the regional museum. Anyone visiting the museum is walking in the footsteps of the history of this idyllic metropolis on the Drava. Numerous valuable paintings hang on the walls. Knight armor tell of the strength of defense in earlier epochs. Finds from the time when Maribor was first settled are on the first floor of the building. In the knight’s hall, the wall representations and the ceiling paintings from the workshop of the brilliant artist Jozef Gebler are impressive.
The cultural capital of Europe
The Loretto Chapel on the southern facade of the town castle dates from 1665 to 1675. The castle bastion, which is attributed to the building specialist Domenico dell Allio, is almost two hundred years older. In 2012, Maribor in Slovenia – together with the Portuguese Guimaraes – was elevated to the status of Europe’s cultural capital. An honor that gave the city new impetus. The coffee houses and boutiques around the city castle awoke to new life. The outstanding architectural monument of Maribor and thus the most important sight is still the building of the castle.
Praetor’s Palace in Koper
Venetian charm on the Adriatic
The city of Koper on the Slovenian Adriatic is steeped in history. The proximity to Italy and the city of Trieste has shaped the region on the Adriatic. In the city of Koper, visitors can walk in the historical city center in the footsteps of the Venetian dignitaries. The most beautiful building in the city is the Praetor’s Palace from the 15th century. Construction began in the late Gothic period and the most impressive palace in Slovenia was completed in the Renaissance. Newly renovated, the two-part facade shines with its unusual crenellated crown. The interior is open to visitors and shows the historical development of the region around Trieste. In the future, faculties of the university will move into the Praetor’s Palace and fill the historic cafés near the palace with scientific life. In the immediate vicinity in the old town is the cathedral with its bell tower. The ascent in the tower is rewarded with a unique panoramic view.
The south of Slovenia
Slovenia combines natural landscapes, culture and history. The coastal landscape on the Adriatic is a pronounced karst landscape with many caves and unique rock formations. The area around Trieste shows the development of early civilizations and takes visitors back to the Middle Ages and the influence of Venice. The wealth of the trading cities on the Mediterranean is reflected in the representative city palaces and the ornate decorations of the buildings. Kilometers of beaches along the Mediterranean coast invite you to relax. The coastal cities offer maritime flair and a rich culinary offer.