Slovenia is a country that offers bold and diverse attractions in a relatively small geographic area. Ljubljana –the capital- is known as the small big city of Europe, it boasts one of the most vivid nightlife scenes of Europe, surrounded by impressive nature with very friendly people. Slovenia can be perfectly included as a stop on a more extensive European vacation or as the only destination.
It makes sense to start a trip to Slovenia in Venice Italy. This may sound odd but it is true. Especially if one is flying from another point in Europe, Venice is a cheaper airport. It is possible to use the opportunity to explore the city. What makes sense is to rent a car in the airport or in the train station. It takes only around two hours driving from Venice to Slovenia. The two places are so close and at the same time so different.
There are many possible points to start a trip in Slovenia but probably the most beautiful one is Lake Bled. There are many great hotels, but those close to the center of town are more expensive, if one has a car it is possible to stay in one of the many lodgings around the city. These are great family run places with excellent service and traditional local architecture. Bled is truly a paradise. There is an incredible lake surrounded by mountains with an impressive Castle and a tiny island in the center of the lake that makes up one of the most picturesque places of the world.
From Bled the next logical step is Ljubljana, the capital. There are several little villages and middle sized cities in the way ready to be explored, offering great restaurants and traditional pubs. Local food is a combination between Italian and German influences.
Ljubljana is a small capital, but a beautiful city. There is a castle on the top of a mountain that is one of the best spots to enjoy a great view of the city. Every night Ljubljana takes on one of the best atmospheres; with loads of restaurants, great bars and live music everywhere this is a fantastic place to have fun with friends. Once again even when there are many good hotels in the city it makes sense to stay in one of the many good bed and breakfasts in the outskirts and enjoy the traditional Slovenian hospitality.
Maribor is the second largest town of the country, located 123 kilometers from the capital on the border with Austria. It is beautiful all year round, but particularly appealing during winter since it offers amazing ski resorts in an idyllic natural setting.
Going back to Italy one has to stop along the Slovenian Riviera. Several little towns sit on the small Adriatic coast of the country. Particularly beautiful are Izola, Piran and Portoroz. The last one is the most modern with first class hotels, famous for natural thermal waters, spas and casinos. Piran is a magical town, one can be transported back in time, a place to take it slow and just enjoy oneself in such beautiful arrays.