The third of six countries on our European summer tour…

Ljubljana, Slovenia

Ljubljana, Slovenia

Slovenia

view of homes, mountains outside our Hotel Ribno, Bled, Slovenia

view of homes, mountains outside our Hotel Ribno, Bled, Slovenia

Bled
We departed Austria and approached the border control to Slovenia, which was through an 8-kilometer-long tunnel on the other side of a majestic mountain range — a grand entrance into a picturesque country that was part of the former Yugoslavia. Our tour bus winded through the peaceful countryside, pristine lakes, and breathtaking mountainous scenery.

We stayed overnight at Hotel Ribno in Bled, situated in a scenic, wooded area and complete with tennis courts and a restaurant with balcony seating. After dinner there, we took a walk down the paved roads and gravel paths through a nearby neighborhood. The homes were simpler than the ones in Germany but had the similar dark wood trim and rectangular flower pots hanging from every window sill. In the air was the intoxicating aroma of what smelled like lavender and tea leaves. The sun set on the rolling hills and our magical evening.

view of Ljubljana from Ljubljanski Grad, Slovenia

view of Ljubljana from Ljubljanski Grad, Slovenia

Ljubljana
The capital of Slovenia, Ljubljana, is a sea of orange rooftops and mostly uniform architecture. We took a cable car (known there as a funicular) up to the top of a hill where the castle Ljubljanski Grad sits, providing an overhead view of the city skyline. Down below are several elegant bridges, including the Dragon Bridge and Triple Bridge (three bridges side by side). In the area is a mix of historic buildings and statues as well as modern retail establishments, like H&M.

Postojna
I’ve been to plenty of caves, including the longest and largest ones in the U.S. and other countries. I thought the Postojnska Jama Cave in Postojna was the most impressive one. We took a long train ride deep into the cave and then took a walking tour. The cave has beautiful lighting that enhances the stalactite and stalagmite formations. Human fish (fish with human-like skin) reside in the cave. At the end of the tour is the cave’s “concert hall,” which is a large, open space with good acoustics for singing.

Julie at Triple Bridge, Ljubljana, Slovenia

Julie at Triple Bridge, Ljubljana, Slovenia