Ljubljana is Slovenia’s capital and largest city, with 5000 years of history dating back to pre-Roman times. Classified as a mid-sized European city with approximately 280,000 inhabitants, Ljubljana has still preserved its small-town friendliness and atmosphere while providing all the facilities of a modern capital.
Also known for its green spaces and quality of natural drinking water, Ljubljana became the European Green Capital in 2016. The city is situated on the curving Ljubljanica River, lined by numerous outdoor cafes that divide the city’s old town from its commercial hub.
Ljubljana, often referred to as the hidden gem of Europe, is a unique, walkable city dotted with pleasant picturesque places where you can expect all kinds of nice surprises. The old city centre is full of outstanding architecture composed of a medley of styles with the remains of the Roman city of Emona, its medieval castle, Baroque facades, decorative portals and uneven roofs.
Ljubljana is definitively one of the most charming European capitals: stroll the quaint streets and discover why its name means “the beloved”.
The public city bus network makes it easy to travel within the city. There are more than 40 bus lines, which run according to regular schedules throughout the day. Holders of the Ljubljana Card are entitled to free of charge use of the city bus network.
One journey costs 1.30 € and allows you to change as many busses as you need in a time of 90 minutes. You can by your Urbana card from LPP ticket offices, tourist information centres and most of the city’s newspaper kiosks, news-stands and post offices. It costs 2 euros for the card, which you can top up in previously mentioned locations.
The BicikeLJ public bicycle system is available across the wider Ljubljana city centre and it enables you to easily move around the city center. Bicycles can be hired practically for free. For 1 euro, you will have access to the bikes for 7 days. You can take a bicycle unlimited amount of times for 7 days! One journey can last until 24 hours. Once you purchase the ticket for 1 €, you can use the bicycle free of charge for 60 minutes each time. Extra 60 minutes will cost 1€, the second extra hour 2€ and all next after it will cost 4€ each.
For details and signing up your account please check: http://en.bicikelj.si.
Ljubljana also has a well-organized taxi service, which is not exceedingly expensive. Charges range between €0.80 and €1.50 for the starting fee and from €0.70 to €1.70 per kilometre. A taxi ride from Ljubljana Jože Pučnik Airport to Ljubljana costs from €20.00 to €45.00. Charges are lower when taxis are ordered by phone. In any case, it is advisable to enquire about the fare before the ride.
The Euro is the official currency of Slovenia. Currency exchange can be made in most banks and post offices as well as in train stations, airports and exchange offices near major tourist sites.
Ljubljana Castle, standing on a hill above the city for about 900 years, is Ljubljana’s main attraction. The castle’s Outlook Tower and ramparts offer some of the most beautiful views of the city, while the castle houses a museum exhibition on Slovenian history, a puppet museum, and a number of historical rooms such as the Chapel of St George, the Prison, and a video presentation room called Virtual Castle.
Ljubljana Castle, which can quickly be reached by funicular railway, also provides space for art exhibitions, houses a café, a nightclub, and two restaurants (Strelec and Gostilna na Gradu), and serves as a venue for cultural events, family entertainment, dance evenings, and open-air film screenings held under the tile of Film under the Stars in the summer.
Tivoli Park is Ljubljana’s largest and most beautiful park, stretching right into the city centre. It was designed in 1813 by the French engineer Jean Blanchard and created by joining together the parks which had surrounded Podturn and Cekin Mansions.
The park, covering an area of approximately five square kilometres, is crossed by three grand horse chestnut tree-lined walks and landscaped with ornamental flower beds, interesting trees and numerous statues and fountains. The park area blends into the slopes of the Rožnik hill, to which it is connected by several walking paths and a trim trail with several exercise stations along its length.
The Robba Fountain, one of Ljubljana’s best known Baroque monuments, also known as The Fountain of Three Carniolan Rivers, stands at the edge of the Mestni trg square.
It was created between 1743 and 1751 by the Venetian-born sculptor and architect Francesco Robba (1698-1757), who spent most of his life in Ljubljana and is considered to be the city’s greatest Baroque master sculptor working in stone.
The Robba Fountain is modelled on famous Roman fountains. The sculptures of three river gods adorning it are believed to represent three Carniolan rivers: the Sava, the Ljubljanica and the Krka.
The Fountain’s ground plan is shaped in the form of Ljubljana’s ancient three-leaf town seal. The Fountain of Three Carniolan Rivers was Robba’s last work in Ljubljana. While sculpting it, he became poor and as soon as the work was finished he moved to Zagreb.
The central of the three bridges forming the Triple Bridge has stood in its place since 1842, when it replaced an old, strategically important medieval wooden bridge connecting the north-western European lands with south-eastern Europe and the Balkans. Between 1929 and 1932, the side bridges, intended for pedestrians, were added to the original stone bridge to a design by the architect Jože Plečnik, who thus created a unique architectural gem of Ljubljana.
Plečnik removed the metal railings from the old stone bridge and furnished all the three bridges with massive stone balustrades and lamps. From each of the side bridges, two stairways lead to terraces situated just above the river, where poplar trees were planted to contribute to the overall appearance of the Bridge.
On the right bank of the river, the Bridge is enhanced by a small flower shop connected to the Ljubljana Central Market colonnade, and on the left bank by a kiosk. It has a key position on the crossing of Plečnik’s two urban axes, the river axis and the axis running between the Rožnik and castle hills. In 1992, the Triple Bridge was thoroughly renovated.
This beautiful promenade towers over the sea from L’Anse des Catalans to the Parc Balnéaire du Prado and features an array of stunning views of the Frioul Islands and Château d’If. The promenade is 5km long and was redeveloped at the end of the 1950s and was then renamed Corniche J. F. Kennedy in 1963.