Ljubljana and Lake Bled for some intense marathon viewing
26.10.2013 - 29.11.2013 6 °C
A few months back Hayley and I were sitting in our hostel in Cusco, Peru and we struck up a conversation with a friendly Slovenian gal over breakfast. She told of a beautiful country off the beaten track and that few people visit. By the time we had finished our brekkie – we had decided a visit to Slovenia was in order.
Back in the Northern Hemisphere and being treated to our second autumn this year, we took a train from Budapest through the Hungarian countryside to Ljubljana, Slovenia.
We shared a cabin with some old Hungarian ladies who spoke as much English as we spoke Hungarian so we talked at each other for a few hours, they pointed out all the hotspots and we happily ate their grapes.
10 short hours later we were at our final destination. We were meeting up with our pals Nic and George who were in town for Ljubljana’s half marathon. We happily assumed the cheerleader roles and congratulated ourselves on having dodged a bullet by not signing up for the run.
Nic and George pre-21km jog
George cantering to the finish line
We planned to head up the road to the picturesque Lake Bled for a couple of slow days taking in the sights.
Strolling around the lake
We visited Vintgar Gorge. True to form it was gorgeous
Your typical autumnal processes underway here
Don't fall in - its glacial
Boats on Bohinj Lake
Hows that serenity
G - not easily impressed
Having bade farewell to our athletic amigos, Hayley and I headed back to Ljubljana to have a better look around. It is a small city with a your stereotypical cosy old town at the foot of a castle on a hill. How quaint!
Ljubljana's famed Dragon Bridge
There's plenty of these frightening statues around
Pretty Saint Nick's
Becoming fast friends with the borek and miscellaneous meats
Having had some great experiences on walking tours on our travels we signed up again to get the local’s take on Ljubljana which was well worth braving the cold for. Perhaps the most interesting part was hearing the Slovenians’ account of warring with its neighbours in the backdrop of the dissolution of Yugoslavia in the 90’s. Slovenia fared somewhat better than most of the nations involved but is certainly struggling on the economic front – and may well need a bailout from the EU in the not too distant future.
Political and economical woes aside, Slovenia has a lot to offer the humble tourist – beautiful landscapes, great food, a good dollop of history and some of the friendliest folk we had come across in Europe. Thanks Slovenia, you've been all we wished for and more.