I stupidly never expected a lot from Ljubljana (perhaps that was partly why it blew me away so much) and gee was I very wrong to underestimate the capital city of Slovenia.
This was the last stop for my friend and I on a week tour that started in Montenegro. We arrived on a Friday, which means (except for the winter months) there’s a food market called Open Kitchen near Preseren Square, the main meeting point in the city.
Open Kitchen markets
Sadly we only discovered it after having lunch which prevented us from going all out but there were dishes from almost every cuisine – it smelled amazing!
Ljubljana has an interesting link to Greek mythology in that it’s believed Jason and the Argonauts founded the city. He is believed to have killed a dragon in the process hence Dragon Bridge (Zmajev most). What gets even better is the legend also goes that if a virgin walks across the bridge the dragon’s tails begin to wag!
Just out of the city centre/old town with its beautiful Preseren Square, the set of interesting three bridges (Tromostovje) and pastel coloured buildings lining the canals the city looks a little rougher and graffiti was pretty common but what I really enjoyed was the unexpected street art around the place.
Ljubljana Castle sits above the city and is roughly 900 years old. There’s a small display of Slovenian history inside but the main draw is the great views. The entry fee is 6 euro for adults and you can climb to the top or take a funicular with the return journey and ticket combined for 8 euro.
Views from Ljubljana Castle
It’s hard not to return to the topic of food since Ljubljana does it well. I’m not a vegetarian but I don’t eat meat often, however at the time I was travelling with my friend who is and after a hard few weeks around Eastern Europe with its love for it she was particularly stoked with this city – it’s a paradise for vegetarians! Pretty much every restaurant we saw seemed to offer veggie friendly options.
The best kebab I’ve had to date came from this place fittingly called Falafel. It was a hole in the wall joint and the menu was far from extensive but for only a few euros made for a cheap and delightful meal. Bonus was that it was in walking distance from our accommodation and maybe five minutes by foot from the centre of town anyway.
View from Dragon Bridge (Zmajski Most)
My friend and I chose to visit the scenic Lake Bled with our spare day here so while I wanted to get to Metelkova City, which was once army barracks and is now a place for culture and arts judging from the google searches displaying some pretty unique and awesome works. From the comments I can agree that it definitely reminds me of Christiana in Copenhagen. Next time!
I would definitely visit Ljubljana again, I loved the relaxed pace of this charming city.