Awarded in 2016 as the European Green Capital and located in southern central Europe, is Ljubljana the capital of Slovenia. A charming, small but cosy city that will tempt anybody with a desire of wanderlust.
Positioned in the heart of Slovenia, Ljubljana (Liubliana) is a beautiful place, that is perfect to visit all year round. However, with each different season offers many different activities and things to see and do in Ljubljana.
As the European Green Capital, the place offers a beautiful environment for people to appreciate and soak up. You must check out one of the Ljubljana walking tours which is totally free and you can enjoy the beauty of the downtown area.
There are many great things to do in Ljubljana for those visiting for the first time or recurring visitors you’ll find plenty to entertain you on your trip. By just taking a walk downtown, you will experience an outdoor museum with magnificent statues, monuments and buildings all around you.
Top Activities and Places to Visit in Ljubljana
- The Ljubljana Castle – Walk to the top of the city and be delighted by the panoramic view this location offers. Stop by for a delicious cup of coffee to then appreciate the history and art exhibitions this place has to offer.
- The Ljubljanica River – A promenade to amuse yourself with this magical view on offer. One of Ljubljana’s notable landmarks is this place where you can just sit down by the river and enjoy a nice picnic, read a book or take a boat tour.
- Zmajski most (The Dragon Bridge) – Built in 1901, is the amazing dragon bridge with dragonfly sculptures, where dragons are the synonym of Ljubljana. You shouldn’t miss taking a photo with them!
- Prešernov trg Square with the Franciscan Church – In the middle of the historic city centre, is one of Jože Plečnik (a renowned Slovenian architect) masterpieces. You can’t pass this by while on a trip to Ljubljana.
- The Butchers’ Bridge – Many people come here to lock a padlock with a favourite memory of theirs onto the bridge. It has often been considered the bridge of love, with many couples writing their names on padlocks then placing it on the bridge and throwing away the key into the river which is similar to the famous love lock bridge in Paris. The Butcher’s Bridge features one of Ljubljana’s main attractions.
- The Museum of Illusions – A place to entertain the mind, educate and to experience the impossible. Suitable for all ages, this is a must visit if you are in Ljubljana.
- Metelkova Street (Alternative culture centre) – With a variety of art, people, tourism, events, and exposition, the Metelkova street can surely draw anybody’s attention on a visit to Ljubljana.
- Tivoli Park is the largest green space within Ljubljana with five square kilometres and home to the Rožnik hill, helping to emphasise the meaning of green that Ljubljana has with its big beautiful trees, different fountains and statues. A place where the whole family will have fun!
- WOOP! Ljubljana – A huge trampoline park in Ljubljana city with 102 trampolines, WOOP is an award-winning destination that you should not miss. Perfect activity if you’re visiting the city with children, they are sure to have lots of fun here as well as adults.
- City Museum of Ljubljana – Last but not least, a place that offers new visions into the past, present and future of this remarkable city. History buffs are sure to love this place with its wealth of information on offer.
Where to Eat in Ljubljana?
Ljubljana offers diverse restaurants from traditional Slovenian food to international cuisine. At the city centre, you will easily find food such as Asian, Mexican, Italian, Indian, Balkan and more.
Slovenian traditional food is delicious and something you must try when you are there. Some may joke about Slovenian being proud of their wine and sausages. But to be honest this is true, Slovenian cold meat products are very tasty. If you are looking for proper traditional food, we recommend you to visit the following places:
Sweets from Slovenia are pretty distinctive and tempting. Some of the typical Slovenian desserts are kremšnica, a deliciously creamy vanilla dessert, Gibanica, a layered pastry with walnuts, raisins, apples and other appetizing ingredients. In general, Slovenian desserts are exquisite.
If you are looking for something sweet and a good cup of coffee or tea, you should not lose the chance to visit these best cafes in Ljubljana:
- Cirkus Club: With its unique crazy atmosphere and great music selection, it is on the top of our recommendations’ list.
- Top Six Club: Located on the top of a building in Ljubljana, the view from the top of the building will amaze you.
- Shooters: Good prices, quality music and open during the week! The interesting fact about this bar is that it only has female bartenders.
- Cvetličarna: Hosts different event styles and is one of the biggest clubs in Ljubljana.
- Parliament Pub: Is a place considered a must “pre-party” location in the city, enjoy the great atmosphere and cool style that the place offers.
- Roundabout Tours offers different kinds of tours from beer experiences to biking in Ljubljana.
- LjubljanaYum is for you if you want to eat like a local with a local. On this tour you’ll get to enjoy amazing food.
- The boat Ljubljanica is a wooden boat tour that offers normal tourist rides and also features private river cruises.
- The Moustache Tour is hosted by the three main figures of Slovenian history, Jože Plečnik, Ivan Cankar, and Rihard Jakopič will guide you to the key secrets of Ljubljana through its beautiful streets.
Where to Stay in Ljubljana?
There are many options available from Airbnb, hotels and hostels, you will find the right fit for you to spend the night.
If you have a tight budget here are a few of the many options to choose from:
- C-Punkt hostel
- Hostel 24
- Rainbow Rooms
- Hostel Sleeping Beauty
- Kva Hostel
- AdHoc Hostel
Transportation and the Ljubljana Card
The city of Ljubljana has excellent transportation services. One journey bus fare is only €1.20. This allows you to go around for 90-minutes no matter the number of buses you may need to change to get to your final destination.
The Ljubljana Travel Card entitles you to:
- Free travel on city buses.
- One regular guided tour of the city.
- 24 hours of WiFree Ljubljana.
- A free tourist boat cruise.
- One free funicular to Ljubljana Castle.
The validity of this card is 24, 48 or 72 hours, and it starts once the card is activated. For more information about this.
Winter Events in Ljubljana
- Christmas Markets:
Four Christmas markets held in its historic city centre to enjoy the cheerful atmosphere the city offers during this time of the year.
- Christmas Cribs:
Depicting the birth of Jesus.
- Tour of the festively decorated Ljubljana:
Ljubljana is ranked among the most attractive European capitals with its December illuminations and Christmas fair. This is not to be missed.
- Ice skating in Ljubljana:
A beautiful place to go ice skating in the city centre.
Another wonderful place to enjoy ice skating is at Tivoli Park Ljubljana.
We hope you enjoyed getting to know a bit about the Green City of Dragons, Ljubljana! Have you ever been there? We’d love for you to share your experience and thoughts with us in the comments below.